GUEST ROOM | Considering Coolness

Do you want to be cool? Sub-question: do you think that a person’s taste in pop culture can signify their coolness or uncoolness? Twenty-five years ago, I’m pretty sure that almost everyone would have said yes to both. People from before the Internet took over used to identify themselves using now-defunct subcultures like “punk” and “nerd” — or so my parents tell me — and if you were part of one subculture and not part of another, that was considered cool. This is what spawned movies like The Breakfast Club, which divided teen culture into five easily recognizable and incredibly reductive stereotypes.