“We all tend to judge people by their appearances, even though looks can be deceiving.” The last time I remember judging someone was in Alfred, New York this past summer. I had applied to Alfred University’s Creative Writing Summer Course earlier that spring. It was like actually applying for college. When I finally got accepted, I was so happy and proud that they liked my work I had sent them. The course was to last five days and I was to sleep there in real dorms like a real college student.
When I got there, I was one of the first. Unpacking my stuff into my room that I shared with another girl, then walking around all the dorms that already had girls, I introduced myself. Later on, there was about five of us, we all decided to wait in the entrance lounge area on the first floor to greet all the new arrivals.
Everyone seemed really nice. We all said our names, where we were from, and how old we were. There were girls from all over the country, some even out of the country. Ages ranging from twelve to seventeen. Every time a new girl came in, we all judged her, including myself. Whether or not she was taller than me, more pretty, if her outfit was cute, or if she needed a haircut. Either way, everyone was judging everyone before we even got to know each other personally.
Then this one girl came in. She looked like the typical, stereotypical, fake “emo”. Her hair was died a dark violet, almost red color, her eyes sky blue, she had pale skin, and was wearing too much makeup. She did look really pretty though. She had dark skinny jeans with converse, a blue plaid button down shirt, and a bright highlighter green bow in her hair. Her expression looked like she thought she was better than everyone here. That she was the best and no one could topple over her.
I assumed she was one of those popular girls in school. She introduced herself as Emily, seventeen years old, and lives in Connecticut. She sat down next to me on the couch. After a while, we sparked a conversation and connected right away. She seemed really nice, unique, and funny. Just the kind of person I like. No one “fake”. I felt bad that I had prejudged her so poorly from her self-image.
As the course neared it’s ending, we exchanged cell phone numbers and befriended on Facebook. We still talk every now and then when we can and are not busy. We keep each other updated on our lives, what’s new with everything. I’m glad I got to see the inside of Emily, because I definitely did not like the outside of her.
It’s just too bad that people can’t see the inside of you before they judge you, because they may not like what they see. They could be missing out on something amazing.
2010 (c) Jennifer Gioia