To be Cool or To Be Popular, that is the Question.

You can only choose one, to be cool or to be popular? Cool and popular cannot co-exist, which do you choose?

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Here’s part of my reasoning:

Some kids are popular because they are outgoing and personable.  To be popular, it is to be something that a majority of people like or want to be. Cool things are fresh/new and therefore not popular and once popular they are too well liked by the mainstream to still be considered cool.

For example – James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause is super cool, but in no way popular.  He’s a rebel, that by definition means that he is actively going against the norm.  He also doesn’t have a cause. He’s mysterious and different.  Because of this film, people started emulating this character and this persona and eventually ever tween had a leather jacket and angst and because this got so popular, it became the popular norm and was thus no longer cool.


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Garth Brooks is statistically the biggest-selling music artist in US history and overall third behind the Beatles and Elvis Presley.  All of those artists were at one time considered different and cool, but the more mainstream and popular they became, the less cool they were.

I’ll admit being cool is hard and risky.   Madonna, Prince and countless other artists are constantly reinventing themselves.  Their cool factor fades and once they’ve become popular, they seek the next shocking and fresh idea to wow an audience.  Maybe that’s why some artists never surpass one hit – they strike cool gold, skyrocket to popularity and then their cool vision is forever clouded.

Being popular is no stroll in the park either.  Popularity, weirdly enough, can be lonely.  Because the goal is to be liked by the maximum amount of people, certain sacrifices and conformities must be made to retain appeal.


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Sometimes popular people are hated because other’s are jealous of the popularity they have and sometimes cool people are hated because they’re so different and misunderstood.  People don’t like what they don’t understand – which to a lot is both what’s cool AND what’s popular.

I could go on and on – Point is that they both have their pros and cons, which do you choose?