I wish I'd believed earlier in life that being weird is a good thing. I'm pretty sure I was weird from the start, but if we're being honest I think I was self-conscious of that weirdness for awhile. I made up clubs like The Purple Parrot Club in 4th grade and the The Gold Dolphins soccer team in HS that never actually played soccer. My friends and I wore sweatbands on our arms and skirts over pants in HS because the lead singers from our favorite band Superchick did that too. I make at least a friendship bracelet a day and I'm low key nervous about it leading to early on set arthritis. Rather than typical teacher posters, my classroom is filled with crepe paper streamers, posters of Taylor Swift and hundreds of pictures of the staff and kids from my school. I'm weird. But at this point, I'm convinced that being weird is better than being normal.
My friend KCraig is weird. She left teaching this year to go work for Young Life full time. She gets a vanilla cone from McDonalds every single day. Her Lulu Lemon pants that she got on sale are called her "funeral pants" because she wants to be burried in them. She'll start a dance party anywhere at anytime with anyone. She's weird and one of the greatest people I know.
My friend Ellyn is weird. She loves Will Smith and Spongebob more than life itself. Ellyn ate so many Nerd Ropes once that she blacked out and she asked Willy Wonka (the maker of Nerd Ropes) if she could marry him. Ellyn has rules for pooping at camp (plop, plop, flush) and is best friends with her grandma Jarn. At camp you'll find a minimum of four stuffed animals on her bunk (Mo, Jo, Yoda and Fairbanks) and she'll ask to see your stuffed animals too because of course you must still have stuffed animals regardless of your age. She's weird and one of the greatest people I know.
My friend Julia is weird. She's in HS and still enjoys coloring with markers and making lists. She's choosing to be gluten free because she doesn't want to get the shot to find out if she really needs to be and the food she misses the most is pretzels. She tries on overalls in Goodwill but doesn't end up buying them. She'd rather wake up at 4 in the morning to do her homework than just finish it at night. Her left pointer finger goes crazy when she makes friendship bracelets. She has a love/hate relationship with being touched. She's weird and one of the greatest people I know.
So many of my friends are weird. Brookie, Liz Koch and Cecilia are such weirdos. Chloe Green and Maggie Shadid are straight up kooky. Hope Vigren, Mel Lang and Erin O'Farrell are definitely odd. And I wouldn't want a single one of them to be any less weird.
Tonight Julia, Molly and I got to be weird together at Chipotle. Then something really weird happened. Molly and I were looking through Julia's stockpile of bracelets when a woman approached our table. She asked what we were looking at and we told her they were friendship bracelets. We don't think she'd never seen any before.
She told us she thought they were really neat and she's in retail. She thought maybe we could go into business selling them. She told us that maybe we should put a few of them on Instagram and just see what people think about them. If people like them than maybe we could sell them. We asked her how much she thought we should charge and she told us that Julia could sell them for $1.50 because she's in HS and Molly could do $2.50 because she's in college.
The woman and her friend were leaving Chipotle but once she got to her car she turned around and came back inside to give us information about her business. You know, in case we want their help in starting our friendship bracelet business if people like what they see. Weird. Awesome.
We parted ways with Molls and Julia and I continued our weird adventures. We surprised a few friends on the way home with lists of why we love them. The first recipient came out of her house jumping up and down-- she's a weirdo like us. The next friend opened her door and just looked at us and said, "You guys are weird." She knows us well.
I hope that today you will be weird. I don't think you will ever look back on your life and think, "Wow, I really should have been more normal." It's the weird things that set you apart, that make this world more awesome, that make you shine. In the words of Kelle Hampton, "Let your freak flag fly."