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'She's a cool girl' - Zita Harrington, Year 12

The pop culture phenomenon of cool girl is not a recent invention, however author Gillian Flynn has allowed women to finally recognize something among us that was just lacking a name. Gone Girl brought the modernized description of 20th century women who just “aren't like the other girls”. As a woman you learn that you can never escape the male gaze. It influences what you wear, what you eat, how you view other women and how you view yourself. It is important not to blame the cool girl as she is just a repercussion of living in a phallocentric world. Gone Girl's perfect neologism came with a great description but you don't have to read Gone Girl to understand what the cool girl is. Whether you have been her or seen her she is an extremely easy social construct to identify. Let me first address however that the cool girl does not mean women can not naturally like any of the things that cool girls typically conform too. The cool girl is about addressing how women change for men. Not identifying the women in the room who don't fit into society's provincial conditioning of gender roles.

The cool girl is extremely misleading not just for the gullible straight men who buy into their perfect bangable bro counterpart with boobs but for the women who wear the masks. The cool girl is so easy to do because it encapsulates a false sense of power and freedom. Suddenly you are labeled as chill and down to hang. You embrace traditionally straight male humor, interests, and opinions while maintaining your best straight female qualities. You mix this deliciously cool cocktail as you laugh at their extremely degrading joke that you just happen to find so funny. Passing up insults to the rest of your gender with an extremely monotone “Haha algood”. The girl cool manages to combine society's favorite top 20 banging qualities of men and women. All while looking really hot. But with this power comes great responsibility. You may not have heard his favorite and particularly annoying music artist or watched the revoltingly trashy movie that he refers to as a “classic”. A cool girl is fun, attractive, always ready for a good time, never too serious and completely indifferent to feelings. Even if you don’t see a problem with this and can embody all the attributes that mean you live for the game while eating at least 5 burgers while maintaining that seriously toned bod. The number one rule of a cool girl is to never be pissed off. The zero arguments policy is the downfall of the cool girl. The concept of anyone being forever understanding and forgiving is actually quite worrying. Relationships are filled with arguing, negotiating and building, this is how people grow. The cool girl is a two dimensional pool of limited emotions with the sole purpose of serving someone else's fantasy. The cool girl is not real nor is she sustainable.

While the cool girl creates problems for herself she also creates problems for women around her. A huge ammount of gender performance is only beneficial for men. Men are constantly in pursuit of non existent cool girls and their existence means that for other women who do not play the game their real personalities are considered undesirable. Women are constantly being labeled and defined by shallow words that are then made their identity. The only way to fight back is to undermine and attack the reality of these labels. When a cool girl presents herself she is a packet of someone's favorite allsorts. She receives all the desirable labels while not being herself. She wants less than whatever you want and she is forever indifferent to the notion of commitment. Leaving the other women who choose to show any emotion or desire to be read and labeled as jealous, clingy, needy or just a cold hearted bitch. Recognizing the boxes we put on woman and identifying that the Cool Girl speaks way more about the observer than the observed.

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