Labels.

When I was in middle school, labels were a big deal. You know, prep, goth, nerd, and so on. I thought that once we all got to high school we would all outgrow that sort of thing, so why is it that I still hear my friends babbling on about jocks and emos? I thought we were above that. Pardon the cliche, but we’re not soup cans. Not only are labels usually not accurate, but they can also be offensive. I mean, I don’t mind it, but some people really take offense when they discover they’ve made a name for themselves as the school geek.

But that’s not my only beef with labels. It’s my belief that people can’t be classified with one word- we’re all complex individuals with different interests, and pigeonholing us like that is pretty pointless. Just because somebody dresses “preppy” doesn’t mean they can’t be interested in things that are generally considered to be only for “nerds”. Take my best friend, for example. She’ll sometimes wear Hollister or Abercrombie clothing, but she’s actually very smart and really interested in biology and dissection. Real nerdy stuff right there, eh? I myself am also hard to “classify”. Of course I jokingly refer to myself as a dork, but that’s not all there is to me. I’m also the theater nerd and truthfully a bit of a freak. Heck, I even have my preppy days- doesn’t everyone?

Atlanta with Karen 012
But I’m not a prep. I’m not a dork or a freak or a theater kid either. I’m Cocoa. I am me and you are you and we are all different, so don’t try to conform to any group. Don’t label yourselves or other people, either- you might end up hurting some feelings in the process. Save me another worn-out soup can analogy and be yourself instead.

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10 Responses

  1. I like this post. 🙂

    And it takes a lot for a person to take a step back and review who they are. I mean what is life but a quest? A quest for the self? All those labels just hinder a person’s progress.

    The picture is made of win also!
    😀

  2. Amen to that, Michelle! I’ve always despised labels, but I’ve never really thought about it like that before. I really like the way you put things.

    And thank you! I took it on vacation with a friend. We were trying to stay up all night to see her aunt’s reaction to a prank we set up, so I was just trying to stay awake. XD

  3. Labeling has never been a good thing. It’s just really silly the way people stereotype people, especially jr high and high school. I’m hoping with all my heart that college will be different. I’m rather sick of the pettiness of the whole thing, you know?

    Cute pic as well 🙂 question. are your ridiculously pretty locks curly or wavy? I have 1/2 and 1/2 and it comes out to be this giant bushy mess; nothing close to the sleekness of yours. 🙂

  4. labels were made out of convenience for lazy people who can’t be bothered to take the effort to describe people better.

    labels like “emo” and “preppy” remind me of horoscopes… as if everyone in the world can be divided neatly and simply into a few select categories?! 😛

  5. Michelle and Ashley, I couldn’t agree more. I also think some of it has to do with girls wanting to feel better about themselves, so if they put themselves into a certain stereotype then voila- they’re instantly cooler than other people. I would be very surprised if college was the same way- I haven’t heard about college labels (or maybe I just live under a rock) and hopefully we’ll all be a lot more mature and self-confident by then.

    And that hair comment made me very happy! My hair is naturally wavy with just a bit of curl (but a lot of frizz- it generally resembled a poodle), but what I do is apply this stuff called Morrocan oil for the frizz and then scrunch it with Redken curl refiner and it comes out really curly and not frizzy at all. If your hair is in between like mine was then it should do the same thing. 🙂

  6. couldn’t have said it better myself! i am a bunch of things; drama nerd, cheerleader, loner, geek, fat chick, black chick… it all depends on who is doing the judging. but, no one should judge someone else, since chances are, someone’s judging THEM right now!

  7. “so why is it that I still hear my friends babbling on about jocks and emos?” That’s a really powerful line, Cocoa.
    This was a beautiful post and I agree wholeheartedly.
    Actually, though, I think it’s okay to label yourself. Because only you know yourself fully. How would you hurt your own feelings? 😀
    I label myself as a nerd, as weird, and as a music-lover. All true.
    But I agree, no one should have ONE label. =]
    I love that I’m friends with people who think like this.
    SORRY I GET SAPPY SOMETIMES.

  8. Aww. ❤ Sappy is okay! 😀 And yeah, that's probably how I'd describe myself as well.

    And, for clarification, I didn't mean YOU'D get hurt feelings, I was talking about the people around you who might end up with the not-so-nice labels. Well, not YOU, but you know what I mean. XD

  9. We often oversimplify matters in hope of understand them better. If you see a person on the street walking backwards you’ll probably be stunned, add a label (crazy) and all of a sudden it all seems clearer.

    Since our personalities are defined by our experiences, the only true labels we can apply are our names.

  10. I hear more about gays at my school. Just because they like the same sex doesn’t mean that they are a bad person. I use labels because I go to a stuck up ass school where every one is either trying to fit in, trying to stand out, trying to find them selfs, or trying to be something they aren’t. 3 major labels at my school- “Prep” (rich stuck up) “Pot Heads” (The smokers and they’re close friends) “Gangsters” (like to show money they never seem to have) But why is it that everything is Gay? Thats Gay! Oh my god What a FAG! I’m Bi and many of my friends are Gay and Bi also, this is the one thing that gets on my nerves more than pretty much anything else.

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