My pre-adolescence, in summary, was pretty much a bombardment of what society wanted me to be. How I should dress, how much I should weigh, what type of clique I should be with, how I should speak. Everyone had a say on my preferences, opinions, and beliefs. It was as if every societal command on me was imperative and that when I chose to do otherwise, I had to face the punishment of societal banishment. Yes, punishment. Every single time I conformed to their preferences, I always ended up being miserable. Every single time I was lured to this seemingly eternal piece of paradise (called peer acceptance) where everyone seems as jolly and happy as hell, I ended up in my own little hell of ignorance. I mean, sure tween magazines existed to guide girls to their real world problems; but for me they were just a mere set of words printed on glossy paper. And in those years, I further got lost into understanding of who I really was. I was forced to start my teenage years carrying a false notion of my individuality.
But then boom, blogging happened. I can personally agree to the fact that technology, specifically the Internet, is the ultimate haven for the misunderstood, for the lost, and for the distraught. Being the swayed teenager that I am, I ended up reading blogs to pass the time (style blogs were my favorite, and still are!). Although I’ve discovered almost a thousand published blogs since then, only one remained to be my favorite. And ta-da, it’s this ONE.
And with that, here are three reasons why the uber-talented TAVI GEVINSON is this month’s Girl of the Month.
1. She knows.
Let’s face it: the blogging sphere is practically 30% ingenuity, 70% intellectual knock-offs. A lot of blogs out there are carbon copies if not attempted plays to attract readers oftentimes for fame. I think Tavi is really sincere in what she does. She writes so that she can be heard. She writes about things that she knows about, something relevant to herself and her audience. She writes because she wants to change the world (and yes it is possible).
Her interest in pop culture from various decades is also inspiring. Whether it may be about Grease, the Dixie cups, Virgin Suicides, etc., her articles will ALWAYS have room for inspiration.
2. She understands; she listens.
When Tavi started Rookie Mag, she wanted teenage girls to have some sort of relatable and intimate form of reference with the way they dealt with their own lives. I agree. I started reading Rookie Mag because it had stuff that I could truly relate to. It had articles that addressed issues that most teenagers are even too embarrassed to talk about. This website is a collection of awe-inspiring wisdom for the people who are just starting to venture into their own endeavors.
I was most impressed with Tavi when she addressed the dilemma of girls in this TEDxTeen video.
In a feminist lens, she was able to define a strong female character and bring about empowerment in ourselves despite the presence of our flaws. She recognized the complexities of a teenage girl who is still figuring it out.
3.She has a pretty good sense of what style really means.
Being the fashion enthusiast that I am, I love taking inspiration from other people. I’ve seen A LOT of people who are yes (probably) fashionable, yet do not have an immaculate sense of style. We draw the fine line here: being fashionable doesn’t necessarily mean being stylish. Having a good grasp on style means communicating your own individuality - introducing yourself - by means of clothing. I’ve seen a lot of people who dress pretentiously for the sake of sartorial pride, and lose their own personality in the process.
In Tavi’s article entitled How to Not Care What Other People Think of You, a line that struck me the most is this:
“It will always be harder to get to be someone who doesn’t care what people think, but that’s why you’re a tiny little awesome warrior for even trying. And isn’t that kind of exciting? Go forth, tiny warrior, and conquer.”
If you scroll on her posts from earlier years in 2008, you can definitely see the passion she has for style. She drew inspiration from fashion shows, editorials, pop culture references, and she presented it such that you slowly understand who Tavi really is, in the tender age of 11.
- Bea Ticsay
P.S. Hi Tavi I just want to say THANK YOU. Thank you for teaching me a lot of things!