I've been browsing around the blogosophere a little bit, and I've noticed that there seem to be a lot of posts about the issue of labeling. I think its time for me to take a controversial stand, so here goes:
What is the big deal?!?!?!?
I mean, everyone goes on and on about how bad it is to have labels and stereotypes and how no one fits into a box, blah blah blah. Well, thats very nice and all, but how many of you people can tell me, in complete honesty, that you dont use labels? I mean, honestly? Of course you use labels! Everyone uses labels! Labels are pretty! Labels are convenient! We cant get along without them! Everyone wants to think that theyre the special ones, that they cant be labelled: well, let me tell you--as Barack Obama says--yes you can!
Let's try it and see:
You? Youre an out of towner bais yaakov rebel. You? Youre a right wing modern orthodox girl who doesnt admit to her frummie friends that she learns gemara. How about you? Youre a flipped out sem girl who wants to marry a kollel guy and your parents are about to disown you for it.
See? That was easy!
I can look around at all these girls in Stern and talk to them for just a few minutes, and I can already put a label on them. Now, dont get me wrong, that doesnt mean that there isnt any more to them. But the label isnt meaningless, and it isnt incorrect either--its useful and important. Then its our job to look past the label and find out whats unique about everyone.
I'm just starting to think about shidduchim, and how in the world could anyone answer the normal question: "What are you looking for?" if they didnt use labels! Youve gotta have 'em!
So how would I label myself then? It's only fair, after all, right?
Ok, no problem: I'm a centrist modern orthodox in towner typical stern girl.
In other words, I'm normal. :P