1. Spent money on things I couldn’t really afford in hopes of winning people over with my belongings.
Guys, look at all of my stuff, do you like it?! It’s got these logos and brand names and it cost so much that now I have no idea how I’ll afford electricity this month — but hey, on the dim, candle lit side, at least I’ll have expensive denim as I sit in the dark, weeping. When you really think about buying a particular type of clothing, car or whatever with the sole intent of earing oohs, ahhs and material based “friends,” you’ll recognize how silly of a concept it is.
How many times have you ever honestly felt the need to try to impress one of your close friend? Probably very rarely or never – friends are the people we’re supposed to be most comfortable looking our worst and acting our weirdest in front of, not walking on egg shells with the cautious feeling of a first date. Kind of sad that we’ll fart in a beloved friend’s vicinity while wearing holey Costco sweatpants, but we put up a front in designer jeans for some person we probably don’t even really care for… That stinks – the fart and the concept.
2. Suffocated my identity & originality.
We can embrace our unique likes and styles or smother them to death with the soft, comfortable pillow of norm. On many occasions I’ve simply done my best impression of everything I see around me, as to draw little to no attention to myself. It’s unfortunate because I’d often rather fit molds and avoid potentially negative comments or opinions than wear, listen to, talk about and get involved in things I’m actually passionate about.
I believe to some degree that it’s natural to act somewhat differently depending the people around and environment you’re in, but that doesn’t mean you can’t remain you, maintaining the same interests, beliefs, opinions and DNA.
3. Picked up a hobby that I had no interest in/completely sucked at.
This was usually done for the crushes I had from grades 7-12, but every so often there’s someone I’ll try to enjoy the same activities as, who I have no interest in dating. For example, the older I get, the more golf is a thing that dudes seem to do. Many professional partnerships flourish on golf courses, while some friends and acquaintances just enjoy hitting the green on a sunny day – either way, I’d like to be prepared in the event that I receive in invite.
I don’t just want to participate though – if possible I’d like to be able to perform like a very, very, very, VERY poor man’s blind version of Tiger Woods. Unfortunately I lack the coordination and skill to ever be anything other than awful, but the times I’ve practiced have been heavily influenced by the thought of impressing others. Oh well, I can’t make par but I’m willing to look foolish trying.
4. Play on my phone.
This is more like reputation damage control. For whatever reason, solidarity is associated with being a lonely loser, which is why I tend to limit my solo movie trips to Wednesday matinees when nobody’s there. Still, we all have moments where our friend is talking to a person we don’t know, or we’re eating a meal alone, or we arrive some place early, and have to find a way to look occupied. The cell phone is a solo person’s best friend. We can scroll through old photos, check social networks, write out texts — whatever. As long as people think I’m currently occupied, I’ll keep tapping away giving the illusion of a social butterfly.
5. Get educated on a specific topic so that I can hold my own in a conversation about it.
You don’t get astronomer friends without watching a few episodes of How The Universe Works on Netflix. Just saying, there are countless Google searches made with the sole intent of learning some quick facts and dropping that knowledge on an unsuspecting person. You like the Bruins? Well I don’t watch hockey, but I will be scrolling through the Boston Bruins Wikipedia page this evening, and I’ll be back tomorrow to woo you with some historical facts and current players statistics.
6. Flat out lied.
No, I never actually ran into Ryan Gosling at an airport, and we didn’t have a brief chat about the disappointment of unexpected bag fees, but how else was I supposed to top your story about finding $20 last week? I’m sorry, in the past I’ve just gotten so caught up in a person’s epic story that I felt the need to foolishly retort with a sack of awesome, fairly believable BS.