Have you ever had someone in your life who you wanted to be just like? Maybe you thought they were cooler than cool. Maybe you just wanted to have whatever they had (eg. popularity, love life, wealth, etc.). Whatever your reason, did you find yourself doing the things that they do, dressing like them, maybe even talking like them? Did you ever fantasize about having similar life experiences as that person? Did you ever pretend that you actually had some of those experiences? Did you ever go as far as to tell other people that you had those experiences?
Speaking as someone who has one of the people who shadows in such a way I can tell you, knock it off. Knock it the fuck off right now.
For me, personally, this post is about two people who, combined in their nuttiness, have driven me up a wall.
The first one was a stalker whom I ended up having a legal relationship with in order to get her to stop. The reason why the stalking began was cliche. It was over a boy that, in hindsight, she could’ve had and my life would’ve been alright. She was an ex and I was the current so I suppose she felt showing him how much she was just like me would win him back. It didn’t work. It just managed to freak me out the entire time it went on. Proving that boys are trouble, it’s the same boy who brought about the next copy cat. Ironically, this time being the ex was the draw for the boy’s current love interest to copy everything I did so, I suppose, he’d find her interesting. That worked. In the latter’s case, I believe there has been a fascination with not turning into me, like the former, but rather doing everything that I do better than I do it, even down to the slight southern twang hidden in my Chicago accent. She hasn’t succeeded with bettering me at being me but she has managed to irritate me quite a bit.
I think my tipping point was recently when she dyed her hair the same color red as mine. I’m a natural redhead. The copy cat is a natural blonde. Why she’d want to trade her natural locks for red, I wouldn’t know. I had already been considering a new look after a tragically bad haircut. Side Note: Never let a straight man cut your hair at a budget priced salon. Seeing what she’d done to herself was my final kick in the butt to go where I haven’t gone since high school. I had my hair cut to collar length to get rid of the straight man’s many unnecessary layers, and then dyed it dark brown, almost to the black that I kept it in my high school days. Obviously, I didn’t change my look just because I was copied but it certainly made a deciding factor in going so extremely different.
Mind you, this particular situation has a lot more drama and intrigue than I care to explain in this post. I think I get my point across using only superficial examples. Although I don’t rule out psychological issues for either skin-crawling copy cat, I think there’s a lot of people who have no malicious intent. How many times have we heard the phrase, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” and disagreed with the premise of that phrase an equal number of times? I’d have to imagine there are people in the world who actually think the phrase rings true.
This makes me wonder why people stray from originality. Why mimic someone else? I’m guilty of saying, “I like this hairstyle on this celebrity in this picture. Can you give me that?” but I just like the hairstyle. You won’t find me collecting every piece of designer wear that celebrity is photographed wearing. The competitive darling I referenced above, she’s not ugly. She’s pretty and born a blonde. One would logically think that she’d develop her own style, her own way of doing things and stay with it. Not everyone seems that independent, even if you think there’s every logical reason for them to be.
So, if you read this and see yourself in any way, know that you can be originally cool without copying someone else. If you want to show off for a boy, don’t copy cat his current girlfriend. Be yourself in everything that you do and if one boy doesn’t get it, forget him. There’s a hundred other boys who’d love an opportunity to appreciate you for who you are.
So, I kindly suggest, knock it off already!