On Being Different, Deliberately

In a city of freaks (I mean a diverse city), I don’t seem so different anymore.
Sunday, April 16, 2006

Years ago a friend pegged me as “different” – independent opinions, strange tastes, odd hobbies. He thought I went so far as to relish in being different – that I enjoyed it and embraced it, deliberately accentuating those characteristics of mine most different from the people I associated with. I was reminded of that comment tonight when another friend of mine noticed my wallet and asked, “What is that thing?”

“That thing” turns out to be the most functional, reliable, sturdy and slim wallet I have ever used – and it happens to have been make by me out of duct tape. It was in stark contrast to my friend’s name brand supple leather wallet, which I imagine was purchased with at least a smidgen of ego involved (not that there is anything wrong with that.)

The oddest thing about me being different from my friends is that I live in a city of total wackos – freaks of all shapes and sizes – and so in comparison, I am quite easily clumped into my friends’ apt yuppie pigeon hole. But I don’t mind. I do enjoy declaring that I don’t listen to the radio, and therefore have no idea who the current Brittany Spears is; I flaunt the fact that I, as a software guy, despise reading from a computer screen and much prefer taking notes in longhand; I am proud that I did not collapse under the pressure of the Harry Potter phenomenon.

But do I do these things on purpose to be different? No, it’s just who I am. And so be it. My mom will still love me no matter what music I listen to.

Right?