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How do you define being COOL?

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by Justme, Jul 4, 2012.

  1. Justme

    Justme Banned

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    What particular action, activity or personality can the title, "Being Cool" be used?

    I remember when I was growing up that being cool was the in thing to be and those people who were considered cool were those that others tried to emulate.

    I never quite understood the reasoning behind everybody wearing the same thing and hanging out in the same crowd made someone important enough to idolize. I wonder just what in our makeup makes some people more popular than others.

    I know that this doesn't necessarily end after adolescence and some people get so wrapped up in the persona of others that they actively imitate the people they think are cool. Thus the Elvis imitators and the fashion movements that are spurred on by Hollywood stars and recording artists.

    Did the minions of Hitlers inner circle think they were cool? Is being cool defined by the popularity of a certain image and if so, how does that image become popular.
     
  2. Martinus

    Martinus Scribe

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    Having never been "cool," I can certainly understand your ruminations on the subject. It seems to be more of a tribal group mindset, of trying to emulate the Alpha individuals. However, the "Alpha" individual isn't always the smartest or the most sophisticated, but generally someone who appeals to the more primitive instincts of the human mind. That's why you have the hot jocks and the trendy clique girls leading the pack.

    Personally, I often find that pop-culture panders to the lowest common denominator. It's hard to rise to a higher level, but anyone can lower themselves and join the dregs. Hence the decay of modern society in general.

    On that note, being "cool" is really a fluid term that doesn't really mean anything. As with beauty, "coolness" is in the eye of the beholder. In general, what society considers to be cool is the latest trend or fad, which is followed by the majority. Perhaps I'm feeling too cynical at the moment, but that's just how I feel about it.

    All right, I'll admit it. Being dipped in liquid nitrogen, now that's cool.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2012
  3. Penpilot

    Penpilot Staff Article Team

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    This is like one of those questions like What is Art? I can't define it but I know it when I see it. I really don't know but I'll take a stab and talk out of my rump for a bit.

    To me there's a continuum of cool. Most fall into the middle, but you can't really tell where you fall until you leave school and enter the "real" world. Because there's what I call highschool cool. People who are highschool cool are those who generally are thought of as cool for superficial reasons: they're on the high end of the looks scale, they have a car, they're the big time jocks, they have that I don't give a crap attitude found in cheezy movies. They're cool for reasons that only really matter when you're in highschool.

    Real-coolness, I really can't define because it can take so many shapes and be in so many different people. I'll just throw out some characteristics, but not a full definition.

    One primary requirement is not to be an a-hole. A-holes are not cool. They may think they are and many may claim they are, but they're not real-cool. They're highschool cool, regardless of their age. Real-cool people are genuine. They do what they do regardless of what other people say, and don't prejudge others who are different from them. The person matters if you're real-cool, not their occupation, not their looks, not what car they drive. If you're their (beautiful, ugly, overweight, anorexic) friend, the only word in that description that matters to them is the last one.

    But what they hell do I know about being cool? I'm a dork.
     
  4. Kit

    Kit Maester

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    Confidence, epitomized by manifesting one's true self without regard to what others think of it.
     
  5. Caged Maiden

    Caged Maiden Staff Article Team

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    I don't think I'm particularly cool, but other people seem to think I am. HA! It's stuff I've done and places I've been and the fact that wherever I am people gravitate toward me. I'm not interested in impressing people, but I'm kind to everyone and listen and laugh at even their bad jokes. I make people feel good when they hang out with me, and I'm honest, something that can be hard to pull off in this world.

    So whatever cool is now, I'm sticking with what I've always been, a deep but disturbed individual with way more social skills than physical ones. I keep my wits about me and laugh at myself when I do stupid things, and all I can hope is that people continue to be my friends.

    Some things I think are cool:

    Fast cars (especially when they reek of carb-cleaner on a hot summer night by the lake), completely overdone costumes that transform you into something you will never be, men with rich voices that play acoustic guitar, military style jackets (you can never have too many, they go with everything), interesting scars (the kind you can look at and think, "Yeah, I remember that day.") people who can tell you the truth because they love you enough to do it, people who aren't afraid to stand up for themselves even when they are going to lose the fight (especially when they stand up for someone else knowing they're going to lose the fight), and people who care about putting their best foot forward (looking and feeling good despite their circumstances).

    Things that are uncool:

    People who preach to me about all their strong beliefs without regard to how I feel about them, people who get off on being mean to other people or animals because they need to feel powerful, people who wear pajamas at Wal-Mart, apathy in general, hatred racism or bigotry, people who drink to excess and become obnoxious or violent, people who think dogs are fashion accessories or furry babies, complainers who never do a thing to change things, and ugly shoes.

    I think coolness is a state of mind and when you act cool, people believe you are, even if you do not think you are.
     
  6. Ambora

    Ambora Acolyte

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    I hate it when people try too hard to "be cool," it's so pointless. People should just be themselves.
     
  7. Elder the Dwarf

    Elder the Dwarf Maester

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    I think high school has changed a bit. I enjoyed that though.
     
  8. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    This subject made me think of the poem "We Real Cool," by Gwendolyn Brooks:


    THE POOL PLAYERS.
    SEVEN AT THE GOLDEN SHOVEL.

    We real cool. We
    Left school. We

    Lurk late. We
    Strike straight. We

    Sing sin. We
    Thin gin. We

    Jazz June. We
    Die soon.


    /derail
     
  9. Jabrosky

    Jabrosky Banned

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    Another dork here. I have a strong appreciation for the cool (or "awesome" as I usually call it), but I rarely succeed in emulating it myself. Someday I will though...
     
  10. Elder the Dwarf

    Elder the Dwarf Maester

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    To throw my own two cents in: I think we all know some people (I sure as hell do) that others naturally gravitate to for whatever reason. And I'm talking about all other people, not just certain groups. They are funny, attractive, well-spoken, or whatever. Usually it is a mixture of a couple traits, but they have a certain charisma that comes effortlessly. That's cool. A lot of other people want that. They are at least a little bit envious of that ability, and so they try to emulate it. They watch these people, consciously or subconsciously, and they pick little things. Mostly these things are insignificant, and none of them can truly bring them that ability. But still they will try to start combing their hair like that person, dressing like that person, talking like that person, acting like that person. And then these things become "cool". Celebrities are a large scale version of this.

    That is one form of cool. The natural form, I guess. Another form is what I'll call a "temporary cool" for lack of a better word. This happens when someone has a talent or something that people are impressed or entertained by. People who play an instrument very well are a good example of this. When that temporary persona becomes who you are- professional musicians or athletes- it turns into a permanent thing. Still, it isn't the same. You aren't the thing being emulated, it is what you do and represent.

    Since everyone seems to be describing themselves here, I will too. I just graduated high school. I don't think anybody I know would view me as "nerdy", except for perhaps my older brother, but I wouldn't describe myself as the person I talked about above. I was popular- not by the traditional definition of the word, but by my own. For various reasons, I wasn't- I am not- the kid that went to every party, got every girl. Most people knew me and most people liked me. But I was never someone that had that natural quality. My "temporary cool" comes from basketball. I'm not great but I'm good. I'll play at a gym and that night I'm invited to a party or a club or one of various activities that are illegal for someone who was 16 or 17 at the time. People in my "real" life are always shocked when I come back with the stories.
     
  11. Man, if you have to ask...

    ;)
     
  12. They'reWatchingUs

    They'reWatchingUs Minstrel

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    Trust me, it hasn't. Your judged, as a girl, on your appearance. As a boy, by your stuff/strength. I'm a girl, I don't give a crap about my appearance so I used to get bullied... then I bet them up :) Being cool, in this sense, is basiccly how big your head is.

    Being cool is when your not cold, but your not hot either :eek:
     
  13. Elder the Dwarf

    Elder the Dwarf Maester

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    Ok, I guess just my school was/is different then. Can't give you a girl's perspective, but I loved (for the most part) the people at my highschool.
     
  14. Reaver

    Reaver Kwisatz Haderach Moderator

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    One word: REAVER
     
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  15. Androxine Vortex

    Androxine Vortex Archmage

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    I dislike it when people try to be cool too. They just constantly boast and brag about their "Swag" and i was always the person who was just cool by being myself. I'm not trying to sound like I have a big ego or anything but when I was in High School everybody knew who I was. I was cool with pretty much every click and group and never had any enemies. I never really thought of myself as "cool" just "me." It's funny though because I was kind of different from everyone else. I was that guy who walked around with death metal T-shirts on, who was nerdy when it came to sci-fi and video games, and just goofy almost all the time, yet everyone seemed to like me. I wasn't afraid to be me jsut because that might not be what everyone else is. I really am not sure why what made me so appealing to everyone though. I didn't party, wasn't popular with the ladies (lol), and was kind of awkward. I guess they liked me because I was being "me" and that they liked "me" and not me trying to be something else.

    A lot of my friends became heavily involved with drugs because that was "cool." They became obsessed with getting high and we kind of went our separate ways because A) They all were becoming jerks and B) I've lost family members due to drugs so I didn't want anything more to do with them.

    Cool is an ever-changing thing. What was cool years ago is "lame" now. But if I had to define what it is to be cool, it is by being who you are without dressing yourself up or being influenced by other sources, and in doing so being likable by others. It doesn't matter if everyone on the planet thinks you are cool or not, the only person who should care if you are cool or not is yourself :) What's the point if everyone likes you but you don't?
     
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