10/15/06 10:02 pm - peakechick
Dear Dr. Snackmonkey,
Hello! I've only been a part of this community for a little while, but after reading your responses to other people's queries, I see that you're good enough to take them seriously, and would appreciate immensely any advice you could give me.
I am seventeen years old and will be graduating from high school this June, and while I'm excited beyond words at the prospect of going to university, I am getting very upset about the...well, the pissing contest that college applications are turing out to be this year. All of my nerd-friends (and I am also a nerd of the highest order, make no mistake) are chattering about Princeton this and MIT that, and when they turn around to ask me where I'm applying, expecting some fabulously fabulous, prestigious name, I tell them my first choices are a pair of in-state schools--very good ones, but nonetheless, not Ivy League. And they get this smug glow about them, sort of, 'oh, well you must not be as smart as we thought you were! HA!' And they turn back to their Ivy-fest. That, or they get on my ass: 'But you're so SMART! You got a blah blah on your SATs, and blah blah on your AP exams! What's WRONG with you?!' One of them even had the nerve to pull the big-brother act: 'You know [name], you really aren't being reasonable; when I was at Stanford for a tour, they TOLD me...'
I want to scream back: 'Then shut up and move to Stanford/Columbia/Oxford already, and leave me alone!'
It is driving me CRAZY that people think I'm just crapping out, not applying to these schools, when the real reason is a combination of a lack of money and a lack of interest. I have no desire to go into the Ivy League, and I know I don't have to justify that feeling to my friends, but I cannot seem to get rid of the anger and embarrassment I feel whenever they start conversations about colleges. Am I just being subconsciously vain and childish, wanting the ooohs and aaahs that they're getting when they talk about their schools? Or am I not shooting high enough? Have you any suggestions on how to get rid of some of this frustration?
Thanks very much for your time.
~Upset in Seattle