“What is normal?” I’ve spend half my life pondering this conundrum. Here’s my ultimate conclusion: Normal doesn’t exist. “Normal” is a very subjective concept that changes from person to person. Everyone has different life situations and backgrounds which ultimately shapes what an individual considers to be their “normal”. Although, there are basic moral principles that universally apply to human beings. This is why I firmly believe normalcy is not a universal principal applicable to all human beings. “Being unique is cool. What is normal? A setting on a washing machine. No one wants to be that.” (Ashley Purdy, bassists of Black Veil Brides)
We live in society that is chalk full of stereotypes. Gender stereotypes. Personality stereotypes. Cultural stereotypes. Humans try to compartmentalize things into “boxes” to comprehend the world around them.
I’ve lived my whole life never completely fitting in only one “box”. Often, you cannot put my unique personality into any box. Middle school was an especially brutal time for me. I tried fitting into people’s “boxes” just be more accepted. During this brief period, I was absolutely miserable. You can pretend to be someone else to fit in, but you can never suppress your true self. It wasn’t easy finding other nerdy people like me, but I eventually formed a close-knit circle of friends. They made me realize my personality was too beautiful to be repressed. It took me a few years to truly come to terms and proudly embrace my nerdy, quirky personality. Without a doubt, it was a tumultuous journey of self-discovery.
In my opinion, stereotypes are a divisive strategy that must be eliminated. Diversity is what makes the world a beautiful place. Who would want to live in a world in which everyone had the same personality, thoughts, and mannerisms? Quite frankly this world sounds incredibly dull world to live in. Variety is what makes life more interesting.
There are many inaccurate stereotypes about individuals who associate themselves as part of the fandom subculture. We are not all the same! There is a wide spectrum in terms of how a person expresses their love for their nerdy passions. Why does society insist on blending people together as if they were bland soup? I personality like to think of the fandom subculture as Chex mix. You don’t necessarily like everything in the mixture, but you acknowledge its existence.
Despite fandom culture becoming more accepted nowadays, there is still much stigma to people who call themselves “fangirls” or “fanboys”. There are some who believe our nerdy obsessions prevent us from living life to its full potential. That is not true at all. In fact, my fandoms have been very therapeutic in some dark times in my life. My introverted personality makes it difficult open up. Often, it was my nerdy fandom interests which helped me come out of my introverted shell. This is why it is you should never discredit the impact the fandom subculture has on a person’s life.
Simon Pegg has an insightful quote about being a geek. “Being a geek is all about being honest about what you enjoy and not being afraid to demonstrate that affection. It means never having to play it cool about how much you like something. It is basically a license to proudly emote on a somewhat childish level than behave than a supposed adult. Being a geek is extremely liberating.”