As people age, their tastes change. Much like their developing tastes for vegetables, people mature in their tastes for friends.
When you are young you are willing to overlook a character’s shortfalls just to have company. This is a perfect example of quantity of quality.
Once you hit a certain maturity, the crude jokes, beer bong records or sharing a common enemy are no longer top priorities in your friends. You try and seek out people with common interests, similar beliefs or mutual friends.
That process sounds pretty simple, right?
Now imagine you live on a teeny tiny island in the middle of the Corn Sea. You are surrounded by uncivilized natives who seem to only concern themselves with their image and showing their fake dedication to the deity. They use all of their assets to dress up in sparkly trinkets to try and raise their social standing.
The natives spend their weekends guzzling potions from the medicine man and trading their women. On Sundays they all show up at their temples to gain forgiveness for their previous day’s excursions. They take turns strutting through the lines of other natives, seeking judgement and approval on their war paint and costumes, and the size of their huts.
Their empty lives cause them to spend time tearing down the other natives, rooting for them to fail, so that they may advance in popularity.
Looks and status out rank curiosity and courage. Education takes a back burner to legacy and standing within the tribe. You cannot trust anyone, because they would gladly throw you to the wolves just to move up in the tribe.
Faced with all of this, you must make a choice. Either befriend the natives and pretend to respect their way of life just to survive or spend your time outside of the tribe in solitude.
As a child, fitting in seemed pretty easy. You just followed the mid-level native who accepted you and were just happy to be included. Now life is much more complicated. You have standards
Priorities that differ greatly from those around you.
I think my choice would be to build a boat and row away from the little island in the Corn Sea to a place where adults read books, value education and question the establishment. Where grown ups support each other, and help each other succeed. Where your costume isn’t judged by anyone. In fact, you are celebrated for your uniqueness and revered for individuality. You are praised for having a hut to house your family, instead of having your worth based on the size of your hut. Your children are accepted for being themselves, not painted up and used as status symbols.
We all know there is no Corn Sea and definitely no tiny island, but most of us have been there, and we all know the natives. Some of you are just like natives while the others are struggling to fit in. Don’t be afraid to build your boat and row to a place that makes you happy.