I feel like you need to be of a certain age, or at least a certain demographic profile within a potential intergenerational range of time, to appreciate a particular orientation toward high school. See, when I was in that phase of life, none of the old stereotypes taught to us by Saved by the Bell or John Hughes movies really held up — radically evolving metacultural forces and growing up in basically nowhere will do that, I guess — but that didn’t mean that people didn’t try to hew closer to certain notions, and especially those who had a foot on each side of the divide in eras. For instance, I had friends who definitely still looked at the world through a lens by which a “popular” person was, by definition, a rude snob with only a tiny handful of sycophantic bully friends; that this all flies in the face of any kind of logic was lost on them. These were the folks, though, for whom high school kicked the most ass, because they could place every instance or relationship into a predefined box and feel confident that the world had an explanation.
And what a world that lets you live in! A world where you and your friends could always start a band and go on to be at least Local Famous just by the power of hard work and spunkiness, where even the biggest jerk teachers secretly see the genius hidden inside you, where the late trend in lip sync videos was a regurgitation of a much cooler era when everybody wanted to be Ferris Bueller a full decade too late, or at least Parker Lewis. It’s a world of constant sunshine, pep rallies, falling in love with your first kiss and impromptu dance troupes with everybody being everybody else’s best friend.
What does that have to do with PIIIIIIIN? Everything, apparently! Continue reading