this essay is under construction
American culture thinks it's cool not to conform.
But in fact, if you really don't conform, people think you're uncool. Only if you stray outside the margins by just a little bit can you hit the happy medium.
I don't think the correct thing to do is to be a total nonconformist and do what you feel like, although that is an obvious solution to this predicament (and although I'm not certain myself if it is wrong). Instead, I think you should strive to conform most of the time.
Why? The main reason is:
Secondary reasons are:
(note: one way of making sense of how "it's cool not to conform" is the idea of a counterculture; what's cool is not nonconformity per se, but rather conformity to the counterculture. The counterculture does not conform to the primary culture; but individuals are not granted the privilage of being nonconformist (if they wanna be cool, that is), only the culture as a whole is allowed to do that.)
(note: this essay is related to my college application essay to Stanford on the paradoxes causes by baggy pants being cool because they're supposedly nonconformist)