You Don’t Have to Look Nice

In high school, I did cross country and track. As a result, I spent a lot of time in the sun and my skin became darker. I used to think that made me look less pretty, which is a common belief amongst us Indians, for some reason. I now realize that’s not true.

Just for this piece of writing, let’s assume doing cross country and track in high school did make me uglier. You know what? I still would have done the sports. I made a lot of friends and memories. I got into really good shape. It gave me a lot of stories to tell. It’s an interesting fact about me because cross country is often seen as a nerd sport and I can confirm to anyone wondering that it is, in fact, a nerd sport. Also, I know the right way to run an 800 meters, mile, two mile, or a 3.1 mile race. I’m hoping that one day, I can bet someone money that I can beat them in a race of any of the previously mentioned lengths. As the saying goes, fast and steady wins the race. Wait, that’s not how it goes? Oh. Um, I knew that. (Act cool, act cool.)

Simply stated, not being a runner in high school to avoid the sun and be more attractive would not have been worth it. I would have missed out on so much. Perhaps, I’d even be a different person today.

I was voted most unique in eighth grade. This involved a picture for the yearbook. Everyone said that because the picture related to my originality, I had to pose in an odd manner. So naturally, I posed with my tongue out and my hands facing the camera and bent at the wrist. I looked like a dog. I don’t exactly know how I looked because I didn’t buy a yearbook that year, but I’m sure I looked ugly. Which is fine. I was voted most unique – and it was pretty cool.

So, I didn’t look nice. But I was voted something, and that was great.

It’s okay to look average. It’s okay to be ugly, honestly.

If you want to cut off a lot of your hair and donate it, but are afraid of looking bad with short hair – you should chop it off anyways. Your face might look awkward, but you did a good deed.

If you went to bed late because you were having a lot of fun last night and don’t want to wake up early to get ready, then don’t. You won’t look as nice, but you had a good time. And that’s what matters.

The way you look doesn’t really matter. I realize this is quite the statement in a world fixated on aesthetic appearance, but I think I’m right. No one really remembers the way you look. People remember you – who you actually are. Looks don’t sway people. There’s nothing revolutionary or influential about them. How you look is how you look. That’s all. It’s not bad to want to look nice. I try to look nice all the time. But it’s also okay to not care.


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