He Said…She Said

by Mark Pleiss and Mindy Marks

How do I become more popular? I was the coolest kid in high school, but none of that really matters here.

What do I do? Will I ever be cool again? What happened to me?

-Member of the geek squad

Mark says

The most important thing to remember is that you’re going to Simpson, which probably means you’re from a high school with a student body somewhere between 5 and 20. I think we can connect the dots – the only reason you were cool was a lack of competition.

I’m sorry, I kid, I kid. We’ll get this figured out. Luckily for you I happen to be cool.

We all know what being cool is. In high school, kids can be cool for the typical charismatic, good-look reasons. Unfortunately, being cool in college is completely different. Though scoring off your high school stories will work in some reprehensible situations, you have to understand that you can be tried in court as an adult, therefore that’s what you are.

With adult status come certain requirements that your peers won’t find you cool without. First of all, you have to have direction. Second, you have to be nice. You could be mean to the dorks in high school and people would like you, but at the collegiate level that’s just mean, so be nice.

But remember, being cool is still mystical as the unicorn. I can tell you it’s not too late. But I make no promises.

Mindy says:

What do you think this is, Simpson High School? Loser. People come to college to engage in the learning process, create lifelong friendships and put off “real world” responsibilities, not to relive high school politics and worry about being cool. Loser.

Sure, there are some members of the Simpson community who are more well-known than others, but generally it’s due to their campus involvement. Losers. If you aspire to be Mr. or Miss Simpson College then I wish you the best. Loser. Just remember that college commitments tend to be more intensive than the laundry list of clubs you may have been involved in high school. Loser.

Another way college students often gain notoriety is through their weekend activities, but on a campus this size it would be easy to humiliate yourself. Loser. Did you forget talking to that girl in your 8 a.m. class? Dance on a table? Streak the football field? It all comes back to you, and probably at an inappropriate time. Loser.

Best case scenario? Quit trying so hard, be your cool quirky self and someone’s bound to be your friend. (By the way, don’t ask anyone else how to be popular or you’ll sound like a bigger loser.)



It’s true that one of the cold, hard facts about college is that we don’t care who you were in high school. For some people that might be bad news bears, but it’s also a great opportunity to start over and make yourself into who you want to be.

I’m a firm believer that the path to popularity is being nice … to everyone. Show people that you really care for them, and care about what’s happening in their lives. Eventually they’ll start caring back and they’ll think you’re a cool person. This means stepping out of your comfort zone a lot. Be the first to call someone else or talk to the girl sitting next to you and sooner or later you’ll find you’re well-known.