If any teen movie is to be believed, the group you belong to in high school defines everything. There are the popular ones, the nerds, the jocks, the sexually active band geeks… OK, maybe not. But you get the picture. What group you fit into was important, and defined who you could and couldn’t talk to.
Recently I went to a high school reunion of sorts. My high school is closing down and a fair number of my grade turned out to see the final event. It got us talking about groups in school and how we never really had any.
But it was then I realised: They did. It was me who didn’t. I’ve never fit in. Apart from a brief sojourn in 1999 when I had a set bunch of friends and a standing Saturday night arrangement for Skate2000, I’ve spent most of my life in a group of two.
I’ve never really fit in anywhere. I wasn’t popular, but wasn’t unpopular. I wasn’t sporty, or smart. Not hugely artistic (contrary to what my later hobbies would lead you to believe), or nerdy, or good at anything enough to stand out. I was unusually skinny, overwhelmingly loud, and outstandingly average.
I used to call myself a “social butterfly”. I would flit between groups as the mood called for it and while I was happily accepted in to most groups for a conversation or two, I never really fit in anywhere.
But that was high school. That’s when the cliques end, right?
As an adult I am still in a group of two (although thanks to my best friend moving to Albury my group of two now consists of the Viking & I – it may be a group of three if she were here). I have no shortage of friends, don’t get me wrong, but my friends are the most random accumulation of random people you’ve ever met. There are people I’ve met on trains, people I used to date, people who grew up with the Viking, people who have worked with me at some point or another. When I have a birthday I can certainly pull together a crowd, but on any given weekend I don’t have a set group of people I see.
I’ve always been a bit envious of people who have “a group”. Who spend their weekends with the same people. Who have a set of friends they’re close with, their best friends, their crew.
But it got me thinking – why would I need one? Among my friends I can count an amazing variety of people. We have engineers, historians, teachers, nurses, receptionists, students, and a lot of people who I have no idea what they do. I am incredibly blessed for the amazing people in my life, and never have a shortage of people to see.
A quick survey of my twitter told me I’m not alone. It seems a lot of us never fit in. Maybe that’s why we all blog? We’re still finding our own place. Our own little corners of the internet.
Maybe I’m a better person because I’ve never had a group. And yet, deep down, I think I still want one.
Were you in a group in high school? Which group were you? Do you have a group now?