I think I got about 5 new links to people’s blogrolls this week! Thank you people, Thank you… I did have to harass TKC to give me a link because that stingy (no homo) bastage had never linked me before (on his blogroll, I have actually been featured a couple of times I think)! The nerve the misogynist racist has. Now, why would I be happy to be linked by an individual with such a reputation? He is freaking hilarious, some people take what he says seriously and even though he brings down his satire to like 5th grade level (at least that is when I learned about satire down in Colombia), people still take his hyperbole seriously.
Recently HitCoffee wrote a post about popularity. It had been sparked by an earlier post by someone else where it was a little upset at an article that said that girls with a support structure are less likely to stay in an abusive relationship. That got turned into, only popular girls have a chance at a healthy relationship… which is something that I do not agree with, but that is a whole other post. I want to talk about popularity.
I was popular during grade school. It was a small school, my mom is still best friends with one of my teachers from that time, and I knew all the kids very well. When I entered high school all of that changed. I ended up noticing that I was a lot younger than all of my class mates. The closest one in age was still a couple of years older than me. Add to that that most kids were from upper class families where I was only middle class. Then the constant teasing and my inability to do well on any sports made in a social outcast in an all boys catholic school.
Then I moved to the U.S. where I finally graduated high school. I had a chance to catch up in age while I learned English, but I was still not a very popular kid. I was respected because I hanged out with a well liked kid, but I was not someone that people were going out of their way to be friends with. I was pretty good at school and had met some people thanks to my part time jobs, but I did not have a whole lot of friends. I was still not considered popular.
College became a whole different story, mostly thanks to my picking up smoking I met a lot of the popular people and was in some ways in. I was invited to parties, got to hang out with most people and was overall popular. As the semesters went on and everyone but two of our smoking group dropped out I had made enough relationships to have a pretty big group of friends. I still keep in contact with some and consider myself good friends with a hand full.
The first taste of actually being popular came after school. I had never had that be a priority for me so I guess I did not notice if I was popular or not. At one of my jobs I actually had someone approach me and ask me if I was a player? I was a little puzzled by the question but then it was explained to me that I hanged out with the “players” at work so I had to be one too… it was weird… I did have a brand new car, a motorcycle that I rode to work on sunny days… but me “popular?” People actually wanted to hang out with me. I had parties at my house and got to know a lot of people… but I guess it was not something that I pursued.
I have since moved on from that job and that life, I don’t really care for huge parties of people that just want to hang out to be popular themselves. Until I thought about this from this point of view, I had not even realized that the whole high school mentality does not stop at graduation. Online, my blog has a PR of 5 which is not to shabby. I am the top search result for various topics, just search google for Thomas Tranchin or Boondock Saints Tattoos. I guess when I was not popular it was something I did not chose, but then again when I became popular it was not a choice either.
I like being read by people, I like it even better when people comment. I write on this blog to not just get recognition as in “good take on a topic” but to make people think. If people just see things from another point of view I think I have done a great job writing something. I do no expect people to change their point of view, just to consider another.
Last week was weird when in just a couple of days I ran into people I knew. First was a DJ I know in a government office, then it was a guy that one of my friends introduce me last year at the Ren fest with his family at the soccer game. Then out at Club I ran into 3 different people I had met through another friend that is a DJ and that is not counting the family of a friend that I had never met but ended up saying hi to and hugging by the end of the night (one of the guys ended up getting pretty drunk and got the “hug” alcohol induce disease).
My wife is pretty popular and I think has been her whole life. She has always had tons of friend and she knows enough people online to fill a small town with just her friends. She even has a new couple that wants to meet her so that she can babysit for them. We are both social butterflies and have created several great friendships here in KC. Sometimes it is hard to have a weekend where we don’t do anything because there are so many people that want to see us, and it is even more frustrating going to Chicago because we know so many people there and trying to see them all in a weekend is impossible. I don’t say this to show how cool we are, just that we are blessed with great friends.
For a couple of years I had little or no social life. I was stuck in a bad situation where I had pretty much erased my support structure. I feel that trying to be popular should never be a goal for anyone, but rather to have a support structure. You need other people that are going to tell you when you are doing wrong, or encourage you to write a book, or ask you to go hang out with them during the weekend. Family and true friendships are something that popularity cannot replace.