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Old 10-10-2007, 12:59 PM   #1
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I'm going out on a limb here and starting a new thread. I love the idea of an Alternachick forum, but as it is a tad slow, I thought maybe I would try a conversation starter. This forum has bios posted, but who has time to read through seven pages of bios? So this thread is for anyone who wants to jump in and talk about themselves about being alternative and maybe how that has affected your lifestyle. If it bombs, hey, I tried my friends.

In other words:

Why do you consider yourself alternative and, if it has, how does this correlate with your previous lifestyle and present change?


My location has a lot to do with me categorizing myself as alternative. I live in Alabama--and have tattoos, a nose ring, radical socialist views, I am an active feminist and a non-believer among many other things that stand out as being different (and dead wrong) in the south. I am sure if my latitude and longitude were different, I wouldn't be so different. Also, the south is known for its obesity problems. There are lots of places I go where I am smaller than many people there. Fried food and sweet tea aplenty. I suppose being overweight is accepted by society as the norm here.



Me surrounding myself within a feminist and slightly hippie (for lack of a better term) community has helped me keep a body positive attitude. I preach "love your body" as a feminist, and at the risk of being trite, a "hippie" community has really great clothes that are carefree and stress free. I have lots of floor lengths skirts, t-shirts, wraps, etc. and have never worried about fitting into my business suit. Make sense? My alternative lifestyle has given me a wonderful "F-you if my body doesn't suit you" attitude, but now I realize that my body doesn't suit me.


What say you?
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Last edited by ollie27 : 10-10-2007 at 05:53 PM. Reason: english major, I correct myself
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Old 10-10-2007, 02:53 PM   #2
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Ha ha ^^ Thanks for posting this ollie - I, too, would like to be more active in this group!

Interesting question!

First, I need to say that I think that being "alternative" to the norm has everything to do with how I think & act and nothing to do with how I dress, where I live, what I look like or how many indie bands I listen to.

Being alternative is opening your mind to ideas that may not come naturally to you, but that you can at least listen to before deciding anything about them.
Being alternative is being aware of the rest of the world, while being true to yourself. (Even if it includes wearing dockers & a sweatervest )
Being alternative is having freedom of expression with little worry about how others judge you.
Being alternative is going down the unpopular path when it's right for you, and not being afraid to go down the popular path when it's right path for you, too.
Being alternative means not turning a blind eye to another's plight.
Being alternative is being yourself.


Previously, these sorts of attitudes would get me nothing but stares and ridicule almost as if to say "What does she think she's doing, being happy & being herself even while she's so fat?" Especially since I'm from an area where being large is certainly not the norm. I know I do not dress the part of catalog indie girl, because people have actually come up to me and said "You are so different from what I thought you'd be like." That's a positive thing, it makes me smile.

While I can't say I'm alternative all the time, (Who doesn't have issues with perceived judgements?) I can say that I'm working towards it. I believe this has helped me in my current situation by learning not to judge myself so much. Heck, it's helped me to join this site & group to look for support. It's time for me to follow the healthy path that I truly want to follow

I'm looking forward to reading everyone's opinions ^^
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Old 10-10-2007, 06:13 PM   #3
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Thanks for responding Faerie! I dig what you have to say about alternative being a state of mind. I couldn't agree more! This is why I believe my philosophical, economical, environmental and political leanings have so much to do with me considering myself "alternative."

But I believe these ideas, at times, manifest themselves in not only actions, but appearances as well. And one's environment inadvertently effects ones thoughts and actions. (i.e. being a femninist in a patriarchal society, to me has a lot to do with alternative state of mind and where I live).

And when it does so, and one is in an area where it draws stares, well, this effects the state of mind. Which leads to one of your definitions "with little worry about how others judge you."

Sorry, today I am doing research for a senior thesis, and my brain is going 90 mph. Don't mean to sound all whoop-de-de-doo


I love your list by the way. Hopefully one day not turning a blind eye to people's plight will be the norm
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Old 10-10-2007, 07:54 PM   #4
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Great thread to start Ollie! I'm going to join in with my two cents too.

Faerie - Great, great list. I feel the same way and could feel my inner nod to the things you listed.

Even saying that though, I can't really define why I think of myself as alternative. I feel like I'm alternative because I like to form my own opinions about something before agreeing or disagreeing with the crowd. I like doing my own research on things and experiencing things for myself. I think most things are worth trying at least once and I'm really just a person open to opportunities for new experiences. Still, I wouldn't call that alternative, just open minded. Maybe I'm just an alternative people groupie.
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Old 10-10-2007, 08:11 PM   #5
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I feel like I am "alternative". I just can't get into many things I see around me.

It's kinda funny: I am an advocate for the rights of women, but I enjoy being a stay at home mom. (But I do want a career after grad school) I teach my daughter to be a doctor and a princess. I teach my son to be a football player and a ballet dancer. I just think gender lines are stupid, yet I love a strong man.

That being said, I want more than anything to look like a 1950's style pin up girl. I don't really live the rockabilly lifestyle, because I can't afford the clothes. I also think I should lose some weight before making those kinds of purchases. Also, because I'm interviewing for grad school and internships, I can't really have the piercings I want (nose, lip, labret); I have to settle for the ones I already have. It sucks; that feels like the person I really am, but I learned young that I need to conform a little if I want to make money.
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Old 10-10-2007, 09:42 PM   #6
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Frog - Groupie! Ha!

Capulet-one of the rights of a woman is to stay out home Good for you for teaching your children that gender is not a box, nor pigeonholes to fit people in!

I'm interviewing for grad school, too. But no worries about my piercings. I love Humanities!

I hate that conformity and money go hand in hand. It sucks that people think the performance given by an employee would be hindered say, if he or she had green hair and a labret piercing.
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Old 10-10-2007, 09:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ollie27 View Post
But I believe these ideas, at times, manifest themselves in not only actions, but appearances as well. And one's environment inadvertently effects ones thoughts and actions. (i.e. being a femninist in a patriarchal society, to me has a lot to do with alternative state of mind and where I live).
Completely agree! I don't think there is anything wrong with dressing on the outside how you feel on the inside. And our surroundings do & will always have an impact on us in that way.

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Originally Posted by wrdfrog View Post
Even saying that though, I can't really define why I think of myself as alternative. I feel like I'm alternative because I like to form my own opinions about something before agreeing or disagreeing with the crowd. I like doing my own research on things and experiencing things for myself. I think most things are worth trying at least once and I'm really just a person open to opportunities for new experiences. Still, I wouldn't call that alternative, just open minded. Maybe I'm just an alternative people groupie.
AMEN! That is very much so how I feel. Especially the groupie part! ^^ LOL

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Originally Posted by dcapulet View Post
It's kinda funny: I am an advocate for the rights of women, but I enjoy being a stay at home mom. (But I do want a career after grad school) I teach my daughter to be a doctor and a princess. I teach my son to be a football player and a ballet dancer. I just think gender lines are stupid, yet I love a strong man.
I don't think any of those things have to be mutually exclusive. Having the right to stay home with your kids is a woman's right. Gender lines are stupid, and who doesn't enjoy a strong man when you want one?


Quote:
Originally Posted by dcapulet View Post
That being said, I want more than anything to look like a 1950's style pin up girl. I don't really live the rockabilly lifestyle, because I can't afford the clothes. I also think I should lose some weight before making those kinds of purchases. Also, because I'm interviewing for grad school and internships, I can't really have the piercings I want (nose, lip, labret); I have to settle for the ones I already have. It sucks; that feels like the person I really am, but I learned young that I need to conform a little if I want to make money.
I love pinup girls circa 1950's. They are sexy! And yeah, conformity can suck that way. Unfortunately you can't change the way other's see you. Hopefully with time everyone will learn to judge eachother based on the content of their character instead of the metal in their faces.
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Old 10-10-2007, 10:38 PM   #8
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Faerie - you hit the nail on the head! I've always felt different than the people around me - not more than or less than - just different. I can't really explain it.

I guess for me it is the courage to be myself in my heart and mind. I may not always dress the "part" and yeah I have a job, car payments and a mortgage but I'm still the artsy/creative/freaky chick that I've always been.

I guess my dad put it best when he said " You can be in this world but not be of it".

On that note this alternachick and her alternaboy raised some eyebrows at the polling station when we went to vote in the provincial elections this evening -
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Old 10-11-2007, 07:27 AM   #9
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I guess for me it is the courage to be myself in my heart and mind. I may not always dress the "part" and yeah I have a job, car payments and a mortgage but I'm still the artsy/creative/freaky chick that I've always been.

I guess my dad put it best when he said " You can be in this world but not be of it".
Mauvaisroux - I can truly identify with that ^_^
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Old 10-11-2007, 09:39 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Hopefully with time everyone will learn to judge eachother based on the content of their character instead of the metal in their faces.
Martin Luther King! I love it!


mauvaisroux Whenver I vote I am always the only one in line under 50! Is it the same there? So discouraging.

Here, here for artsy/creative/freaky/contributing member of society!

I love the idea of pin-ups, too. The women that did that were very "ahead of their time" so to speak and did what they wanted to do with their body. Love it.
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Old 10-11-2007, 12:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mauvaisroux
I guess for me it is the courage to be myself in my heart and mind. I may not always dress the "part" and yeah I have a job, car payments and a mortgage but I'm still the artsy/creative/freaky chick that I've always been.
Ditto here. I'm a native (Santa Cruz area!) Californian living in the conservative Midwest. Ouch. That said, there's a great, active, thriving Alterna-community alive and well here.

I am just getting started meeting people and making friends. Having two small children has kept me house-bound more than I'd like. My hubby does his best to watch them and let me go out now and then, and I have to try harder to be more grateful instead of freaking out at how the house looks when I get home.

I *just* got a nose piercing a month ago. Took me several years to get up the courage, as I work in "mainstream" jobs, but I had a talk with my boss and she didn't have a problem with it as long as it was tasteful and (my word) subdued. My tattoos are hidden by work clothes too.

Er, what was the question again? LOL

-- Jenn
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Old 10-11-2007, 07:11 PM   #12
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Jeepifer - I think that's great that you're boss doesn't mind your new piercing
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Old 10-11-2007, 07:22 PM   #13
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I have also felt very different from the people around me. I think I was sent to the wrong planet by mistake! I feel alternative so much that I feel alternative to all the alternative groups too. (Uh-Oh!)

I'm single, no kids, 51. I am basically asexual; no desire for a mate. I don't understand why people have to follow traditions and customs. I don't understand why they scream at football games and rock concerts. When I was a little kid I didn't understand why other little kids screamed and ran around in circles. I don't "get" most conventional humor. I don't think dirty jokes are funny. I do appreciate some alternative humor that is out there. Thank goodness or whoever. I'm always surprised when I like something that anybody else does.
I've never worn a business suit. My look is kind of sloppy-inconspicuous except for the socks maybe. I don't eat breakfast food and I don't have a TV and I don't watch movies and I have no idea who most celebrities are. I have never liked most popular music. I really do like the music that I like though, with a passion, it's just not popular. I don't understand fashion of any sort.
I am however interested in blatant silliness, philosophy, spirituality, science, and original thought, making up ones own jokes, and having an entertainment center in ones own head.

Peace and good wishes to all,
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Old 10-11-2007, 07:39 PM   #14
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I am however interested in blatant silliness, philosophy, spirituality, science, and original thought, making up ones own jokes, and having an entertainment center in ones own head.
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Old 10-11-2007, 08:35 PM   #15
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Jenn I'm also trying to get over my dude's lack of cleaning skills


Jo I'm picking up what you're putting down. We are, if not on the same page, at least in the same book. I have been married for a year. Before that, I lived 9 years without a television. I married into one and it immediately got delegated to the closet. Only recently have I pulled it out to dust it off and try my hand at exercise videos. No cable. No primetime. And I hate our society's obsession with celebrities. And my unpopular music rocks as well

An entertainment center in one's head! Yes! I have always said I know not the definition of boredom.

Speaking of conventional....

I have never understood "small talk" I completely, and totally suck at it. I get in a crowd and I immediately think, "now is the time to TALK. To share ideas, speak about the atrocities and what we can do about them. Talk politics, policy, form a gameplan. I absolutely cannot and do not know how to participate in smalltalk. You want to talk about the weather? Okay, let's talk about global warming. Sports? Let's talk about lack of funding in education. I can't do it. A funny commercial? The product is you. Ahhhhh! Strange looks I get.

Jo says she's been sent to the wrong planet, I have always said I was born in the wrong decade.

I'm glad we're having this conversation. I was searching for a commonality in this forum. It was sort of like, "Okay, we're alternative, now what?" Every forum is specific, be it age, faith, illness, whatnot--we are so diverse!
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