By Katie Burrell
Am I an oddball?
If an oddball is someone who continued to play with their Barbies well into their teenage years then maybe I am. Or perhaps it’s the way I like to eat a Cherry Bakewell – first biting away at it’s pastry crust, then at it’s soft, jammy centre, next the satisfyingly sweet icing and then finishing with the slight crunch of the glacier cherry. I save the best bit till last.
I know that I have a habit of over-sharing, mostly about bodily functions. Does that make me an oddball? I guess it contributes. Hey, I like to share! Although maybe I should draw the line at discussing ‘time of the month’ experiences over dinner with the in-laws. Or maybe not.
Is an oddball someone who is interested in a wide spectrum of things? I love space. I love watching all sorts of documentaries, from pioneering medical operations to research into parallel universes. My music taste ranges from Lizzo to Led Zeppelin, Claude Debussy to James Brown. I frequently have the urge to get up off of that thing and dance till I feel better. I’m not easily embarrassed.
Perhaps it’s the way your brain works? I’m the first to admit that I’m not the most logical of people. I can also be incredibly gullible – my family will remember that time I believed Guinness was made partly from coal…And when I was convinced that Aberdeen was in a different time zone from the rest of the UK.
It would be fair to say that my mind is a very visual one. I’ve never been very good at mathematics. Perhaps that’s because my Year 5 teacher (I was 9 years old at the time) sucked what little joy I had for the subject out of me when he shouted and told me off for not understanding something. I wanted to curl into a tiny ball and hide away. “Jenny has 5 apples. She gives 2 of them to Peter. Peter…” Just. No. I switch off. I still have to count with my fingers sometimes and I have to sing the alphabet to know which letters are in which order. Does anyone else have to do that?
Are you an oddball if you love your dog a little bit like it’s your child? I’m sure other people can relate to this. Or are you an oddball because when you listen to music whilst walking down the street you pretend that you’re in a music video? Or maybe you’re an oddball because that thorn that got stuck in your arm when you were cycling popped out of your scarred flesh a year later and you decided to keep it because, well, how cool is that?
Surely we’re all oddballs. Every single person has their own quirks and eccentricities. We’re all completely different. We’re all individuals. Celebrating our differences will help us to excel. We should be learning to use what makes us all ‘oddballs’ to our advantage – it’s exciting to be in a place that encourages that.