Cynical And Southern: “Radical” People Can Be So Damn Generic
There are only three things in life I am certain of:
1) Matt and Kim are the most annoying band to ever exist.¬† Period.
2) ‚ÄúBorn This Way‚ÄĚ is the most overhyped turd of an album to ever be released.¬† Exclamation point.
3) I despise the word ‚Äúradical.‚ÄĚ ¬†No question.
When I visited New York last year I read an article in a zine from a girl who prefaced her name with about seven adjectives. She was a ‚Äúradical feminist punk vegan queer blah blah motherfucking blah‚ÄĚ writer. And as I perused her article one side of me ‚Äúaww-ed‚ÄĚ at the cute idealism of pre-packaged youth, while the other side guffawed at the explicit self-stereotyping going on. Who exactly was this girl underneath all the niches she‚Äôd subscribed to?
I counted twenty times in her piece that she declared she was radical.
Patches on a dirty jacket? Check.
Piercings? Double check.
Homogenized ‚Äúrebellion‚ÄĚ against society? You bethcha.
I sadly knew everything about this girl before it was revealed in her article.¬† Right down to her taste in music, her clothes, her belief system, and the soy milk and humus she made of point of saying she was snacking on.
I am certain if I sat down with this girl we‚Äôd get along famously.¬† If you dig past the shroud of generic labeling that people encase themselves in, there‚Äôs always something golden to find.
Fitting a stereotype is inevitable in our current world.¬† At this point it seems like everything has been done.¬† But with the ‚Äúradical‚ÄĚ movement there seems to be such a large breach between the self-image and the actual image.
If you are blatantly fitting a stereotype be self-aware enough to fucking proclaim it and own it.¬† I scoff at pre-packaged outsiders.¬† As of late it seems the least radical thing someone can do is to be ‚Äúradical‚ÄĚ.¬† (The conservatively dressed man from Utah I met on a bus recently had so many twists and quirks that revealed themselves as I spoke to him.¬† Now HE was radical.)
I have tons of friends that call themselvses ‚Äúradical kids.‚ÄĚ ¬†Many are neither ‚Äúradical‚ÄĚ nor are they ‚Äúkids‚ÄĚ at this point.¬† I adore them.¬† They are wonderful people.¬† But I like them better when I ignore their self-imposed identifying adjectives. What a bunch of unnecessary baggage.
To be as predictable as the mainstream you are supposedly rebelling against (right down to the taste in music, clothes, and belief systems)¬† strips the word ‚Äúradical‚ÄĚ of its power and¬† substance.
I found the radical girl in that article fitting a stereotype to a T.¬†¬† The rebellion she saw in herself was only gaudy costuming.
A sincere and more effective rebellion against society would be to not fit into any box. Now isn’t that a radical idea?
more Jeremy Gloff at JeremyGloff.com
First time here? See what we're all about... Get involved... Send us a tip!...