Cool and Confident

It’s not so much what you wear but how you wear it

We are all cool in our own ways, but the word cool has many definitions. For many people, cool is something that others decide about you, while others think that coolness is something that comes from within a person.

The modern day image of cool comes from a progression of different styles and trends over the years. “Some recent fashion trends that I think are really cool right now are; the big push towards the celebration of a lot of different body images” math teacher Ian Mclnerney said.

Socioeconomic status also has a significant role in defining what cool is. “Since a lot of UPrep students are pretty rich, [students] often wear expensive clothes or certain designer brands. I think that’s kind of cool to me, personally,” Junior Josh Gao said.

Gao believes that celebrities embody cool. “I follow a lot of Instagram pages that talk about celebrities and what they wear, what they own or what they drive,” Gao said.

To english teacher Alex Duxbury, being cool comes from a sense of unawareness to the people and things around you. “Cool, in the media, comes across as someone who is not affected by what is going on around them. There is a certain aloofness to it, and a certain sense of separation for a person the media portrays as cool,” Duxbury said.

“Some cool people in media right now are Clint Eastwood or Marshawn Lynch. No one really knows what’s going on with Marshawn Lynch,” Duxbury said. According to Duxbury, that’s what makes him cool. But with all of these people, “Being cool needs to be a little bit of mystery about the person. The person cannot wear it all on their sleeves. There has to be a little depth.” Duxbury said.

According to freshman Jacob Fried, “cool-ness” is directly tied to social media. “The coolest person in media right now is Justin Bieber because he has a lot of Twitter followers,” he said.

To junior Donovan Bown, being cool is not about being the most talkative or most attention-seeking person. Instead the person who is calm and collected is the coolest. “You know who’s cool? Barack Obama. He is able to handle stuff, like the assassination of Osama Bin Laden. He can do that and at the same time go play fetch with his dog,” Bown said.

There are many interpretations of what cool means and how it can be accomplished. Being cool is “something that has to come from within a person in terms of their expression. If you are trying to be cool you will never be cool. It just has to happen,” Duxbury said.

“Cool is all about owning it. Whatever you are doing, you can make it cool if you own it,”

Bown said. Bown said that being comfortable with yourself and the people around you is one of the most important things about being cool.

Being cool also has to do a lot with “how you view yourself and how your peers, friends, and everyone around you views you too,” Mclnerney said. Being comfortable with yourself and feeling good about yourself is also really important to being cool. “Coolness is really about being comfortable with who you are as a person, and that is accomplished by embracing both your strengths and your weaknesses,” Mclnerney said.

But some people think there is no singular definition of what cool is. “Cool is different to everyone. I think it’s important if you’re representing yourself in a way that you think is cool, instead of what others may think is cool, and having confidence in that,” said senior Zack Beitel. There’s also a sense of inner gratitude and fulfillment that comes with being cool and ‘doing you.’ “Cool is something that gives you confidence and something that you’re proud of,” Beitel said.

The only thing that seems to unify people on what is or isn’t cool is that there is no single way to be cool. Freshman Sadie Bernard said, “I think that being cool is different for every person. Very different people can be cool, even if they’re nothing alike,” Bernard said.

So whether you’re an artist, jock, drama kid, or a geek, you can be cool. It doesn’t seem to matter what you do, as long as you be yourself. So if you’re looking for some sort of magic formula to make you be cool, all you need is a mirror.

By Gus Coluccio and Aaron Igra