What does it mean when someone says “she’s a cool girl”? I mean, I want to be a “cool” girl. Don’t you?
During church summer camp at the age of 12, I was not allowed to use the word “cool.” I got rebuked by my counselors for calling someone cool because that meant I cared only about appearance and popularity. So they said. I’m not sure if they had their contacts in because I was chubby, awkward, and desperate for a friend…the last person who cared only about appearance and popularity. And if I did, I was failing miserably at both.
That being said, I somewhat understand why my counselor disapproved of the word “cool” as it relates to adolescents. You’re a cool [female] tween or cool [female] high schooler if you have the following:
1. Big breasts
2. Trendy clothes
3. Ugg boots (class of their own outside of trendy clothes)
4. Good hair
5. Intelligence but not too much
6. Individual birthday invitations like you’re on “My Super Sweet 16” and they forgot to air your episode
7. A boyfriend- or at least a few prospects
Of that list, I had number 5 going for me. I could have had number 4 but I decided to go with bangs in 8th grade and, well, that was bad move.
Now that I’m 25 and still hear this word “cool” being thrown around, I’ve noticed that the definition has changed. Big breasts are a dime a dozen, plus most guys have realized by now that they really just get in the way (it’s the harsh truth). I’m kind of glad I don’t have them. Trendy clothes- eh, no one cares that much anymore. People don’t think someone is cool because she/he has expensive clothes (sidenote: why does everyone seem to think they’re fashion bloggers these days?), rather “cool girls” are always the ones who have- gasp- good personalities. Too much intelligence doesn’t exist, and everyone starts wishing they’d been that smart girl in class who now has her life together while the rest of us still can’t afford much more than rent and Trader Joe’s wine. And the whole boyfriend thing? Well certainly if you’re 25 and single, a little voice in the back of your head whispers that you might die alone, but no one else judges you. Everyone just assumes it’s because you’re an independent chick who has more important things to focus on (Yeah! That’s it!).
Let’s take a deeper look at the good personality I just mentioned. What is a good personality? I feel like it’s this weird phrase used to describe gene-pool-challenged individuals. Which is so wrong. Just wrong. I won’t get into that misuse, though. From what I gather about “cool girls,” their good personalities follow this general guideline:
1. Witty: Your clothes don’t matter if you have awesome one-liners.
2. Humble: You don’t take 800 selfies per day. Or even one.
3. Independent: You have a job and are passionate about something. Anything.
4. Emotionally stable: What does this even mean??? I still don’t know. Maybe I am, maybe I’m not.
5. Awkward: This is a compliment these days. It makes you relatable. This is the primary reason I have friends.
6. Nonjudgmental: If you talk behind people’s backs, people have learned that you’re probably talking behind theirs, as well.
7. Confident: Not the fake kind. The kind where a smart, gorgeous woman can walk in the room and you don’t automatically feel threatened.
I’m actually pretty thrilled with what it means to be a “cool girl” in your twenties. How refreshing to know that being cool isn’t about money, genetics, or gossiping. If you are still living in the high school mindset that being cool is about what you wear and how many juicy stories you can spill, you might want to re-think your approach. Hint: Don’t have an approach. Accept the fact that being cool is nothing more than being comfortable in your own skin.
To sum things up, I shall present a few of my favorite celebs who have shaped this idea of coolness:
Jennifer Lawrence– Below is a real quote on the red carpet on the night she won the Oscar for Best Actress. Girlfriend was hungry, and we can all respect that.
Emma Stone– I know this was her “character” in Easy A, but she’s kind of like this in real life, too:
Zooey Deschanel– Same thing as Emma Stone…I’m positive her New Girl character reflects her in real life.
Mindy Kaling– If you haven’t read her book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? then your life is way sadder than those of us who have read it.
Adele– Just. Yes. I’ve never heard an artist laugh at herself more on stage and off.
Which leads me to…