“The higher your pants, the higher your grades.” That was something I started saying about halfway through the school year. I’m not so sure it isn’t true.
I think it came about because at that time of year in U.S. History class we talked about the 1950′s and 1960′s in terms of conformity and rebellion, especially among young people. At the same time the saggy pants look was completely taking over our school.
Even in the last 25 years teen rebellion has taken many forms. I remember in high school rebellious teenagers wore tie-dye t-shirts. Soon almost everyone wore them. So you were a rebel if you wore a tie -dye t-shirt just like everyone else. For those who miss the point, one is hardly rebellious if you are doing what everyone else does.
As a young man growing up in 1980′s New Jersey, I was certainly guilty of having way too much hair on my head and gold on my neck.
Other trends have come and gone. When I first started teaching, rebellious teenagers were getting piercings. So if you were pierced you were a rebel, just like everyone else. Then later it was tattoo’s. If you were inked up, you were a rebel just like everyone else. Who knows what the future holds.
It takes a lot of character and mental toughness to be your own person and to distinguish yourself for the person you are rather than the way you manipulate your appearance. I have always admired the young people who took this approach. Anyone can get pierced or tattooed or wear their pants way too low. These things take no effort. It takes effort to truly achieve something, to truly distinguish yourself. It takes mental toughness to not give into the crowd and set yourself apart in a way that is substantial and positive.
I mean if the Disney Channel is making fun of how easily people succumb to a senseless trend (video here), then maybe it’s time to give some thought prior to basing who you are on the popular style of the moment.
I just want you to know what is possible.