Judging a Book By It's Cover.
Something I have done countless times. It''s something that I do unknowingly... until I'm proven wrong. I hate to be wrong, which is something I'm striving to overcome. Judging a book by it's cover is so simple, so easy, but so restricting a thing to do. I have judged books by their covers, too often, and have been proven wrong even more often.
It's not just books, but I also judge people as well. I stereotype people, and judge them for those stereotypes I've placed upon them. This restricts the love which I could feel and show towards everyone and everything.
Stereotypes limit our ability to meet new people, to learn new things, to try new things. Judgement and Stereotyping are best friends, they work like protons and neutrons, together as one. It's difficult--when society tells us that judgement is healthy--to rid ourselves of judgement and thus shed stereotypes. But nothing is impossible.
This essay, it's not your Stereotypical Essay. It's not about religion, it isn't about history, it isn't about politics, or natural disasters. It is about philosophy, which might be considered a stereotypical essay genre. But now... I'm just putting things into boxes ;)
1st Example: I was on a trip last year ( I think it was last year?) and we had stopped at a McDonalds. We got food and then headed back to the car. While going out, I held the door for three... stereotypical "gangster" looking fellows. Backwards baseball caps, baggy pants, long white tank tops... yah know.
Now get this.
Two of them thanked me for holding the door open. The third walked in without saying anything. One of the two guys turned to the third guy and said "Hey, you didn't say thank you."
Haha! I was judging them by their covers, but it didn't mean that they were mean, rude, gangster guys, like I had stereotyped them for. They did have manners, and they were nice, right? This is a perfect example about judging someone for the way they look. And I'm not saying you shouldn't be wary if someone looks dangerous. Don't just trust and assume that everyone is nice, safe, and friendly... but trust your intuition and don't judge people for a stereotype.
2cd Example: I'm reading a book right now, which actually does have a book cover which I judged. It has a girl in a frilly pink dress which is billowed around her dramatically, and her face is covered by her hair which is being dramaticalyl blown by wind. In the background is a blanket of stars. The story if about a girl who starts hallucinating different things. I thought it would be awful, really badly written, very inappropriate, bad language, cheesy. But it is very well done, very enjoyable and intriguing.
This is the literal "Judging a book by it's cover".
3rd Example: During the same trip as before, we had stopped at a rest stop, bringing out my friends white little fluffy Bichon Frise for a walk. We used the restrooms and then was about to get back in the car when a biker... a stereotypical looking biker (Big guy with a leather jacket, bandanna, scruffy face) pointed to the little dog and smiled, "Oh those are great dogs" he said. "I love mine."
This makes me laugh every time I think about it.
4th Example: My friend has a friend who I met who is very sweet, very happy all the time, cheerful and friendly. She signed up to this writing site I own and her poetry might be the darkest I've ever read! Now, if I had read the poetry first before meeting her, I probably would have envisioned a very sad, depressed person with black clothes and a negative attitude all the time, I would have judged her for her poetry (her cover). Having met her first, I was expecting light, whimsical, love poetry... and was surprised. Her writing, and wording are really fantastic, she really enthralls the reader with her deep meanings... I judged her by her cover (her happy-go-lucky attitude).
We authors must be the best example of all. You really can't judge us by our covers (our writing... or our selves). We can be very contradictory at times. We may seem really well learned, bubbly, wordy through our writing; but if one were to really meet us in person, we might seem shy, quiet, or rambling of speech. We might over-exaggerate in our writing all the time, but really be very serious, practical people.
Really, when you think of all the stereotypes we put upon people (and ourselves), those stereotypes are mostly wrong. They just hold us back from the potential we could really be, or the potentially great friend (or good book) someone (or something) could be.
So no matter how cheesy or childish a book cover is, no matter how happy or gangster someone looks, Don't Judge Them By Their Cover.