I was once told a very interesting thing and I didn’t know whether to laugh or be angry, “You’re not having a good time because you don’t want to.” Luckily for me the person who told me this was an honest friend, so when I was told this I didn’t get angry. It made me think though. Having a good time is overrated. Everyone wants to have a good time and in the process, they build it up so much that even if reality tries really hard it will always fall short of their expectations.
I used to think there was a standard for having a good time. I thought I had to have a good time doing things others have a good time doing just because the people I knew enjoyed it. When I really started to appreciate my own kind of fun, and nobody got why I enjoyed it, I treated it like a secret. Then at one point, I was told the above line when I had the guts to tell someone that I wasn’t really enjoying myself. It made me feel like I wasn’t trying hard enough to enjoy the event. But no matter how much I tried I still didn’t find the event fun.
Ultimately, I went home wondering whether having a good time is about the attitude you carry. Today when I am comfortable in my own skin and when I am too far ahead to be able to change myself I know that attitude is only one part of it. I still feel like I only have a good time when I am doing things that genuinely make me happy and sometimes that means another person might not get it. Now when I am older I am ok with that. That wasn’t the case a while back.
Nowadays I see a lot of comic strips, movies and books all talking about how being different is cool and I think to myself, being different should have always been cool. I remember at school and college I met some people who wear glasses because they like the “nerd” or the “hipster” look. The same “nerd” look, complete with braces and pimples was my only look as a teenager and back then it wasn’t cool at all.
It’s the same way with fun, comic strips talk about being introverted as a cool thing, cancelling plans and social anxiety. Things that should have always been normal now need to be “normalised”. Oh, how I hate that word. What I always did which was not go out, play video games, read books, binge-watch movies alone and stand in a corner at parties is suddenly a trope. Guys in books fall for the “weird” girls, girls at the end notice the “weird” guy, the guy or girl who has been there all along like in Taylor Swift’s hit, ‘You belong with me’.
What took the world so long? Why did I spend my years as a teenager trying to change my attitude towards fun when what I already found fun would become cool someday? Yes, I don’t have fun when I don’t want to. I don’t think loud music and blinding lights are fun, I probably will never find it fun. I don’t like being up till two partying, that’s just me. Honestly, I don’t think I want to try and make that fun for myself. I’d much rather sleep wrapped in my blanket with teddy bears on it, and wake up early so I can go roller-blading in the morning. The only thing I’ll stay up till two for is to watch a horror movie with really close friends.
I don’t like dressing up to go eat at an expensive restaurant, I’d much rather cook up a storm at home and watch a serial on Netflix in my oversized t-shirt and pyjamas. I don’t enjoy spending time in malls and five-star hotels on trips, I like to backpack to places people wouldn’t usually go to and trek or bike through the hills, soak in the culture, talk to the people who live there and explore the history of the place.
I now don’t care for being cool, this is who I am. I don’t look into the mirror thinking of ways to reduce my flaws but now I wear my flaws on my sleeves. I know that one day the flaws will turn into wings, every human is different. If we have to try so hard to enjoy something then it’s probably not that fun. If doing something brings a smile to your face without you having to force yourself then it’s fun and it’s worth it. I don’t want to spend my time trying to have a good time. I’m old enough to know I like certain things and dislike others and it’s ok. I don’t think it’s impossible for a group of people to find one thing they all enjoy doing.
Before I was worried about being left out, now that I know who my friends are I’m not so afraid of saying no. If it’s that important that I be there, then they would change the plans if that’s not the case then they can do without me. I only make an allowance on people’s birthdays but otherwise, it’s very hard to convince me to do something I don’t want to do. I might agree if you pay me but then that’s really sad if you have to do that. The past few days doing things I like doing has really made me happy. Whether it’s my job or education, I have one philosophy if you don’t like doing it, don’t do it. The world will be ok.
I’m not going to spend my time standing in the corner talking to the plants, I’d rather be in the centre of my bedroom dancing to songs in languages I don’t understand looking my worst with the volume turned up and singing at the top of my voice. While you go around trying to fit in tight spaces I’ll be comfortable in the wide radius people give me. I won’t be found at your usual spots, I’ll be found where you don’t care enough about to look.