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Get Quirky!

edited October 2012 in The Show
15 year old Madeline has a life goal: to become an eccentric.

How to get there? Start by writing a letter to the two most eccentric guys she can think of, Tom and Ray! You can read Madeline's letter right here.

Tommy’s answer? You’re only truly eccentric when you stop thinking about all the conventions about which all those other, conformists care.

Ray? He thinks you can’t strive to be eccentric... you just have to let it happen naturally. Like his brother, for example.

Eccentric as they are, this question was still a bit of a stumper for our hosts. Hear how they fumbled, then punted, Madeline’s question, right here.

Ultimately, Tom and Ray decide that they’re not qualified to give advice on this topic. So, they’re turning to us to help sort it out.

Help us help Maddy get quirky!

What would you do? Feign a limp and a thick Romanian accent? Take a 5 minute headstand break after lunch and invite coworkers to join you? Wear a floral bonnet when at work and refer to it as your "thinking cap"?

Share your ideas right here-- and thanks!
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  • eccentricity comes with having many facets to your life. many facets to your personality. a:nd many interests. so my suggestion apply your creativity for interest in everything. try new things that will grow your understanding of yourself and people around you. live life as full as you can.
  • edited October 2012
    Poor = crazy Rich = Eccentric
  • People's lives are incredibly eccentric, most live behind a mask in order to "fit in". Be your true and authentic self, treat others with respect and love, don't forget that every situation is an opportunity to learn and grow. Knowledge is power beyond measure.
  • Oldbodyman has it exactly. The goal is to have enough money to be eccentric. They don't put you in the loony bin for that.
  • @sharkboy You are right; don't start out by being eccentric; get rich as quick as you can legally and the "normal" way. Then you can be as eccentric as you want to be. Only Rockers are expected to be "eccentric".

    I have known folks who live on small islands off the West Coast, who wear "natural fibers", don't have TV, eat "natural foods", are "off the grid", etc. They are critical of everything modern life has to offer, but don't reject their social security checks earned for them by the normal majority. I've also noticed these guys let their wives do most of the work while they are writing the "perfect novel", or ponder the shortcomings of the world.

    I also know friends and relatives who don't listen to what the government and sociologists tell them, but follow their own common sense, eccentric or not! These folks are contented, lead less stressful lives and seldom get in debt. I hope most of the posters here fall in that category.

    We love plastic grocery bags because we use them for trash bags afterwards, and use just enough that way to only have to buy Kitchen Catchers once a year.
  • Take up tatting. Hardly anyone knows what it is. Start making random objects, starting with a keychain fob, working up to a pair of spats, then make some kind of cover or veil to attach to your graduation cap in a few years....
  • edited October 2012
    There is a simple four step system to being an eccentric and interesting person early in life:
    1) find a Hobby, and embrace it completely
    2) find something interesting that you like, and start collecting it
    3) Whenever you get bored with your hobby or collection, find a new one
    4) Get a library card and prowl the non-fiction section for books on random subjects that look interesting.
    By the time you're 25 you'll be a fencing, knitting, carnival worker; who has a remarkable collection of novelty beer steins, model cars, and old fashioned children's toys; who also has a disturbingly complete knowledge of 17th century romance literature and naval military design.
  • In your quest for notoriety, you must remember that there is a fine line between eccentric and crazy. You do not want to be considered crazy. Here are three simple steps to avoid this.

    First, determine which path you may be treading by listening for key indicators... when your friends use words like "quirky","offbeat" and "unorthodox" when describing your behavior, you are on your way to eccentricity. If, however, they use words like "bizarre","wacko" and "crazy" take care that you are not pre-fitting yourself for a Bellevue blazer.

    Second, accumulate a large amount of wealth. This will significantly blur the line between eccentric and crazy. I refer to the old adage 'What's the difference between eccentric and crazy... about a million dollars."

    Third, and most important, do not take the advice of people who post comments on blogs, especially those that are supported in part by Public Radio. You often find these people in coffee houses for 6 plus hours a day; feverishly typing on their laptops with caffeine stained fingers... or tending to their 8.7 cats... or worse, attempting to fix their own cars based on the recommendations of crazy old men. This advice is not to be trusted.

    Madeline, I hope this helps in keeping you just to the left of loony. Oh, and listen to your mom. She will get soooo much smarter in the decade to come.

    Al In Vegas (but you can call me Napoleon B.)

  • Madeline everyone is different which can make you eccentric by just doing normal things but do them in a different order. I hope this makes your dream easier . From peekopalcar
  • Becoming Eccentric! No problem.
    Just do things that make sense.
    Follow these 10 rules:
    (in order of easiest to hardest)

    1) Keep listening to NPR!
    2) If it doesn't rot, don't throw it away. Tidiness is over-rated.
    3) Stylish hair and nails are the bain of the vain. Wear men's clothing that costs 30% less than women's and lasts 75% longer (including your jockies).
    4) Keep up with the mentality of generations behind you (start NOW).
    5) Talk to old people whenever you need a second opinion. (Just listen, you decide what to do with the suggestion)
    6) Prepare for rejection and isolation by investing in pets.
    7) Learn how to do everything for yourself. Rotate your tires, raise chickens, build the coop, become a world class expert on Mediterranean spices and toilet fixing.
    8) Be perpetually enrolled in your local community college.
    9) Be organized and pay your bills on time.
    10) Pay attention.
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