Pernicious Personality Problems

I'm not a person who cares what other people think. About anything mostly. Okay, there was apparently a time when I was really little - between 2 and 4 - when someone thought I was a boy and I was quite vexed by this. I don't actually remember the incident. At any rate, that was quite a long time ago. At this point in my life I don't care, but I also don't operate under the dilusion that anyone is giving me much thought.

What's interesting to me is that I seem to have some really insecure people in my life. People who don't take a breath without wondering if someone thought it was too loud. And further, will someone hate them for breathing too loudly? Beyond the trivial, though, is the more insidious, "do they think I'm cool?"

This is a question that I find perplexing beyond almost anything. What's the target demographic on that one? Who could make them feel cool? And what's cool? I know we all know, but we all have a different idea. One thing we can all agree on, though, is that if you're trying to be cool and/or impress someone, you are not cool, nor will you impress anyone.

I have a close friend, or I guess it's more correct to say that I know someone who was once my close friend, who has fallen prey to this coolness disease. As a result, I can almost not stand her anymore. Over the last few years she's regressed to what can only be called an adolescent state of mind. Conversation with her is nearly impossible. Her range of interests seem to include shopping and celebrity gossip and little else.

In the past few months she's been adapting her personality to try to fit the new people she spends time with, spouting "facts" like, "You could be eating cloned eggs and not know it." I haven't heard her have an opinion in the last couple of years, either. She's happy to tell me what some other person thinks, though. "Jane says that I should get a job at Blah, Inc."

I've actively ended more than a few friendships in my life. And all evidence is pointing to the fact that I may have to do it again.