I've mentioned before that I used to be a member of an online forum for fans of the old-school Christian band dc Talk. Though all of us loved that band, we talked about everything else under the sun as well, including other musical artists/bands, both Christian and mainstream. A longtime frequent poster, who was known as Jab, once posted that he felt the music of Pink Floyd was overrated, but that Relient K's album Five Score and Seven Years Ago was among his favorites. That single comment caused a firestorm of responses from just a few people. One of them wrote, "Jab, your musical tastes are utter CRAP. Until you hear 'Shine On You, Crazy Diamond,' in all SEVEN of its parts, you have no idea how talented they were, in comparison to someone like Relient K. Seriously, let's hear Kelly Clarkson try to play 'Money' without sampling it." All of them continually railed against him until an administrator stepped in and said, "I think that right now, this topic should end."
I bring that up for one reason and one reason only: As someone who finds much of what is popular to be overrated, I have faced similar backlash, even when it comes to topics outside the entertainment realm. Currently, most of what I like--Nickelodeon and Disney Channel productions, reading, yard/garage sales, etc.--is largely unpopular with similar-aged folks, and most of what I cannot stand--anything involving large bodies of water, any piece of entertainment that is or should be rated "R," sports, Halloween, and the like--are nearly universally liked, based on what I hear and see almost everywhere. When I have expressed my opinions, though, people often respond with harsh criticism; they wonder how anyone could like the latter over the former.
Now, I understand that everyone is entitled to their own opinion; however, I am, too, and what I don't get is why folks would think that trying to argue with me or cajole me was going to cause my opinion to change. If I would rather watch VICTORiOUS than go to the local water park, who's to tell me that's wrong?
Some of you probably would say that my dislike for certain entities, particularly beaches, pools, and the like, is very intense, and you'd be right; in fact, I used to feel it was both a phobia and a religious conviction. At one point, I was so opposed to them that I felt that no one should be involved in them; that was erroneous on my part, though. After some recent thinking, and realizing that I'm not really afraid of large bodies of water, and that I didn't care for activities involving them even before I could understand what Matthew 5:28 meant, I realized that it's not a conviction nor a phobia; I just despised them, and I still do.
What is it that causes me to feel that way? I originally was planning for a post titled "Beaches, Pools, Water Parks, and Me: The REAL Story," but I don't think I had enough to go on for an entire blog post, so I'll sum up how I feel: Essentially, it's nothing more than the exposed skin that is required when one goes to such a place. I know that some of you might be thinking, "Well, that's ridiculous!" To you it may be, but to me, that's the way it is. Others of you may be saying, "Well, if you went on such outings regularly, you'd probably get used to it." Sorry, wrong again.
When I first started middle school, I was shocked by the language the majority of my classmates were using. Although the shock went away after a while, the fact that it bothered me did not, and I am thankful that I am currently employed at a location where no one uses profanity, which means I am hopefully done with that mess. Hearing such language is still irksome, and probably always will be to me.
Recent events have also shown that the exposed skin regularly seen at beaches, pools, and water parks is the same way. Many of you don't know this, but for a few weeks, I tried watching an Australian-produced teen fantasy/dramedy called H2O: Just Add Water, which is about three teenage girls who transform into mermaids whenever they touch water. There was at least one beach or pool scene in every episode, so swimsuits were on full display. Though the mermaids' costumes showed less skin than Disney's Ariel, and the content was largely clean--no profanity, romances that were 100% innocent, violence being occasional and never graphic--I ended up giving up on it, most likely because of the exposed skin. H2O: Just Add Water must be pretty popular; Calendars.com has a 2013 calendar of the show for sale, and I also randomly came across a licensed mermaid costume inspired by the show. Still, it was just too much for me to handle. The fact that I don't like being submerged in water only adds to my dislike.
You probably already know why I don't care for sports or Halloween/October, so we don't need to get into that. Here's my point, though: Whether or not you understand why I feel the way I do about whatever, if you're my friend, there's one thing you should do: Accept it. Even if you can't comprehend why anyone would adore iCarly but despise the beach, don't debate it; don't try to change me or my opinions; just leave it be.
That may sound easy, but, in the past, it wasn't for some people. Yes, part of that may have been immaturity on others' parts, but, many times, the adults were just as bad if not worse. Remember that incident with the "fun" outing that I refused to go on because I knew what it involved? Well, other than me, there were no kids involved in that. Everyone in that story, even the person who sent me the nasty-gram, was an adult, and other grown-ups acted similarly at other times. Seriously, did people really think that they could force me to like something I never have? Even trying to politely refuse didn't work; I would get bombarded with questions like, "How do you know you don't like...?", or, "Why don't you like...?" Why couldn't they just accept a simple no, instead of dragging it out, which didn't help anyone?
The fact is: It doesn't have to be that way anymore. Some of you reading this may see yourselves in the above words; I would hope that, by this point, you've matured enough to realize the error of your ways. For those of you who have never been that way, I hope you'll take these words of mine into consideration. Let me be clear on one fact: I don't want people to stop inviting me to functions; that's not my point here. What I want is for people to just accept it when I politely refuse; that's all I ask.
In conclusion, let me say this: I didn't want to have to post on this topic again; in fact, if you look at my last two posts, you'll see that they're discussion starters, and end with questions I wanted my readers to answer. However, my attempt to do something different was foiled by an essential lack of response; the same person, albeit a good friend, was the only one to even bother answering? True, some frustration with other circumstances, such as a random leak that has caused serious damage to my parents' house, probably made the above weigh heavily on my heart. Still, this blog doesn't have to be all about me, celebrities, and entertainment; it can start a discussion, but that requires other people. I'm not about to sit here and talk to myself on here; I do that enough offline. If I'm left to my own devices, I'll have to talk about what I know, which is going to cause some serious repetition; I don't think any of you want that, do you?