Unconventional, Not Weird


“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” (Haruki Murakami, Norweigan Wood)

A lot of people say I am weird because I have different tastes, especially in books. I usually do not like those overrated books, the songs with lyrics that do not make sense to me, and the reality TV shows that seem scripted. On the other hand, they say that I read books whose authors are either never-heard-of or have been dead for a good deal of years already and that I do not like anything that is fun. That I am weird has been said to me so many times already that even I eventually went on to describe myself weird because I am different. Then, one day while I was reading Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami, I came upon this quote.

I read books that most people of my age do not read and this made me think and act differently. From the books I read, I have visited hundreds of places, met so many people from all walks of life, and time-traveled into the past and the future. I learned not to permit myself to be caged in my comfortable setting. I learned from history and foreign cultures. Hence, I came to adopt different values and ideas that formed opinions that sometimes do not mirror everybody else’s. This has made me different, the odd one out.

Before, I was really bothered by this. I thought there was something wrong with me. Why can’t I be just like everybody else? Now I know the answer: I cannot be like everybody else because I was able to become my own person. I do not conform to the standards that my generation has established and instead, I created my own. I dared to find my own identity. Yes, it is different. But it does not make me weird. It makes me unconventional.

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Author: Aira Mallapre

Aira, a dreamer by day and crammer by night, has been singing out of tune since 1995.

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