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(Pink) Masks [Game Overview]
Jan 14th, 2010 by Dan

But none of it is pink...

False Advertising

While running errands the other day I saw a girl wearing a blue pair of sweatpants that had the word “Pink” in large white print on the back. It got me thinking about the discrepancies between who we are and who we tell people we are. I can honestly say that I’ve never met a girl in a bar and opened by saying that I play approximately 20 hours of video games a week or that I run this blog. Instead I’d be far more likely to mention the movies that I like, the music I listen to, or the fact that I love baseball. It’s not really a lie, I’m not proclaiming to be pink when I’m clearly blue, but it’s not being totally honest with myself or the things that I spend most of my days doing.

It comes naturally from experience, since almost every girl I’ve ever dated or been interested in just doesn’t care much about the things that I do, which does call into question whether or not they’re suitable for me. I mean, is it really fair that she wants me to listen to the convoluted soap opera going on between her and her friends or that she wants me to take a real interest in her major or profession, but when I even start to talk about engineering, my job, or a video game I’m met with blank stares or a plain “I don’t care”? I’ve got a friend who tells me that she honestly cannot stand to listen to the things that her significant other talks about. Other girls have actually complimented me because I don’t subject them to the same boring conversations that their boyfriends or husbands would subject them to. Is this even healthy?

To a certain degree I think it’s healthy to have these partitions in place. That old stereotype about men talking about football while the women talk about shopping does play out plenty of times in groups that I’ve been a part of and nobody really worries about that. Men and women simply have different interests and tastes, but that’s not quite what I’m talking about here. I feel sometimes that even if the guys were to talk about video games they’d be way more likely to talk about Halo, Call of Duty, or Madden. Thing is, even if I did play those games, I’d still feel reluctant to talk with them about the topic because I have considerably more hardcore knowledge on the subject.

There’s nothing wrong with being familiar with a player’s career and having intimate knowledge of a team’s history. You’d be hard pressed to find someone who didn’t find it a little strange that you know Derek Jeter’s batting average for every year he’s been in the majors. I guess it’s a question of intensity. When something that you enjoy ceases to be that and becomes something that defines you, people start to frame their viewpoint about you in a different way. If I were to let my love of videogames or comic books or (back in the day) anime define me, I would always find myself pigeonholed into a certain group. Part of my high school life was spent hanging out with people who let these fringe pursuits completely define them and I found myself unhappy with the restrictive social group I found myself a part of. It turned into an us vs. them thing. They were busy loving football and being tools while we were technically ostracized just for liking things that weren’t in the mainstream.

That’s just not how I operate. When the opportunity came up to associate with and hang out around the Diversity Programs folks at Cornell, I opted not to. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with diversity groups or minority clubs, but it always seemed, to me, that these groups that hung out with each other based on unimportant qualities like ethnicity tended to be very insular and, to quote kindergarten, “not play well with others.” I guess the question I’m trying to ask is: does choosing not to let the things that define my personal life define me mean that I’m lying to the world?

I’d like to think it doesn’t and that I’m more versatile this way. By not forcing myself to hang out exclusively with like-minded individuals, I’m able to broaden my horizons and learn about way more topics than I’d otherwise be able to. Plus, I have got friends who are just as passionate about the things I privately am too, so it’s not like I’m not able to talk about the things I love (except baseball…the only person I know who is as passionate about baseball is kind of a tool). The only downside that I can see is that I end up with friend groups who are polar opposites to each other and who might not get along, but integrating friend groups isn’t really necessary for a healthy, happy life anyway.

Since this post is more emo than what I typically allow on this site, let me close by saying that my research has determined that Pink is a label of clothing by Victoria’s Secret.

I'm glad I don't have anyone to whom I'd have to explain why I was browsing the Victoria's Secret website to. I can see the conversation now: Research for my blog! Honest! Well I had to look at the bras too!

Relevant and necessary graphical explanation or desperate traffic-grab?

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