1.) The popular girls.
Me (in the red) and my best friend before formal, my freshman year.
When I was a child, I was one of those kids who befriended everyone, especially the "special" kids. I was endlessly kind, and protected those who were small or in need of help.
I was transferred to a "GATE" school when I was in 3rd grade, so the school was full of nerdy kids, so I played secret agents with Matthew and hunted for and "bred" ladybugs with Jenny, I even used to spend lunchtime with friends looking for 4 leaf clovers.
I am not really sure what the "popular kids" did during lunchtime, at that school. I honestly didn't care. Kids wanted to be my friend because I was kind and confident in myself. I was never alone.
As a Jr. Higher, though, my happy carefree days came to an end. Suddenly I realized that there was a popular group... and I wasn't in it. It hurt me deep down. I had a solid group of friends, who did normal Junior High things, like ditching each other and cussing for no reason. I should have been content. But I wasn't. I wanted to be "popular". (I blame 16 Candles and the Breakfast Club)
I ended up "going around" with one or two of the boys in the popular group, but never hung out with them. I tried out for cheer, but didn't make it (unfortunately I broke my hand just before tryouts... AND I wasn't a popular kid, and my sister wasn't a popular kid (she was 3 years older than me), so I had no chance). So off I went to High School, and I was STILL NOT POPULAR.
So, I did what every self-respecting girl did in that situation... I became a "stoner". I wore black and I vowed to hate the "preppies" until I died. I wrote angry poetry and wore a lot of silver jewelry, I joined theater and attempted to forget the longing to be part of the "in" group.
But then I joined Leadership... and ran for class president (TWICE) and dated another boy in the popular group... which turned into a MAJOR fiasco. I helped decorate the class float for homecoming, planned dances and made balloon arches for football games. I wasn't popular, but everybody knew me. I always had a boyfriend, I never ate lunch alone. (I went to Prom all four years!) Eventually that was enough.
What makes a person "popular"? Ultimately I decided it had to do with some unwritten, unspoken caste system that had something to do with who you knew, what you had, and if you were too nice... forget it, you were out. Can I tell you a secret? I still don't like "preps"... but I try to not hold it against them. Oh, one more... even in bloggy land... I still sort of long to be popular, but know it ain't gonna happen.
Does this look like a girl who was alone? My Senior Prom, I'm second from right.