Let Your Freak Flag Fly!

I’m sure many of you out there have heard the term “freak flag” and wondered about what the heck it could possibly mean.  Is it an insult?  Is it a compliment?  It is anything special?  Is it worthy of a blog post?

The short answer is yes.

Urban Dictionary defines freak flag—its Urban Word of the Day on March 21, 2008—as “a characteristic, mannerism, or appearance of a person, either subtle or overt, which implies unique, eccentric, creative, adventurous or unconventional thinking.”

Ok, so what does that mean?

Is flying your freak flag horrible? Absolutely not!

In simplest terms, a freak flag is something that sets you apart from everyone else.  Now, I’m not saying that it involves a person swinging from a chandelier or down on all fours, barking like a dog in the middle of a staff meeting.  In the right context, that might work, but for the most part, those types of behaviors might land you a trip to a padded room with a jacket you can’t get out of.  Rather, waving one’s freak flag might be a gesture learned from your father or an accent that you only use with your best friend.  What sets these quirky acts apart is that they would not be defined as freaky if performed in private.  However, once you let loose in front of other people, consider your freak flag flown.

For example, I have a co-worker.  Let’s call her Mary.  Mary is infamous for dramatically exiting rooms.  One day, she stopped in front of my desk, raised her hands to her head, stared at the ceiling, and stood there.  For at least sixty seconds.  She never looked at me or even acknowledged that she was standing directly in front of my workspace.  With a heavy sigh, Mary finished whatever it was she was doing and walked out of the room.  Dumbfounded by the whole experience, I tried to go back to my spreadsheet, but I found it difficult to focus.  Mary had just flown her freak flag.

What’s so important to realize about a freak flag is the acceptance that comes with it.  People cannot fly their freak flag without being comfortable with themselves and not giving a rat’s tushy about what other people think about them.  A lot of people are envious of those who do not let the opinions of others affect their behavior and I’m sure even more people are made uncomfortable when someone acts in a way that does not fit their definition of “normal.”  It makes them uneasy and they don’t know how to react.  Or their reaction is to run far, far away.

I have a freak flag of my own and I am definitely not afraid to share it.  Are you ready?

I dance all the bloody time.

Yep, I’m that person in the car next to you making the duck face and getting’ down with her bad self.  I am the co-worker walking down the hallway with a little extra swing in her hips and a bounce in her booty.  I am the gal cha-cha-ing on the tile waiting for her frozen meal to heat up.  I am the chick in the store swaying along the aisles with her cart as she reaches for yogurt and cereal.  I’ve got music and rhythm inside me all the time and who am I to keep it locked up.

And I see the way people look at me.  Some gaze at me like I’m an alien from outer space, but most seem entertained by my antics.  It’s hard to frown at someone who is so clearly enjoying herself.

Even in a pineapple, I dance!

My mom is often embarrassed when I hear a classic song off a public speaker and break out the moves.  She’s used to it by now, but she would never join me in my freakiness.  That’s what my dad is for.  Long before I embraced public dancing, my dad would horrify my teenage self by singing and dancing wherever people could see and hear.  Now, we dance together.

My goal is to one day have someone who I don’t know join me in my dancing.  You never know how much fun something can be until you throw caution to the wind and join in the pleasure.

But enough about me… what about all of you?  There’s a quote in The Family Stone where Luke Wilson’s character tells Sarah Jessica Parker’s character, “You have a freak flag… you just don’t fly it.”  I’m sure my Wonderlings are proudly flying their own freak flags.

What defines your freak flag?  Do you freely fly it or do you try to suppress it?  If you don’t fly your freak flag, why not?  What do you think about those folks who do?

And you too can have your very own Freak Flag for the low, low price of $19.99 + shipping and handling.

I hope you all know how wonderful it is to fly that freak flag, how liberating it feels to do what you want when the mood strikes, and how much fun it is to just embrace your unique little quirks.

And if you don’t, you can always come dance with me.

25 thoughts on “Let Your Freak Flag Fly!

  1. Kitt Crescendo says:

    Your freak flag and mine would get along! I sing all the time, everywhere… If you ask my husband he’ll tell you that if you listen closely enough you’ll know what mood I’m in by the song I’m singing. 😉

  2. jbw0123 says:

    Yeah! Between you and Susie, the quota of dancing days at my house has gone seriously up. Seriously. I love this post. Where do we get this idea that other people are watching us or care about what we do? I’d send you a $19.99 check right now, but don’t want to cause problems for your non-monetized blog. Happy dancing.

    • Jessica says:

      Emily, once you figure it out, embrace it! Everyone has a freak flag, some are just more aware of it than others. If you’re in doubt, ask friends, family members, or co-workers. One of them is bound to recognize it. It’s too bad dogs can’t talk. I’m sure they would be able to help you out for sure. Mine definitely does even if he can’t express it. 😉 Thanks for stopping by!

  3. susielindau says:

    I have been flying my flag for years! Hahaha! I have no shame and I love that you let it roll too!
    Thanks for bringing this post to the party! I hope you will have fun clicking on links and chatting with the guests! Have fun!

    • Jessica says:

      Thanks for the hosting the party, Susie! Keep on flying your freak flag and sharing those videos. We freaks need to be reminded that we are not alone. 😉

  4. marrymeknot says:

    I love that part in The Family Stone! It’s true everybody has one. I think mine is my sense of humor, and I love to talk to strangers when I think something funny is happening. At first they don’t know how to take it, but then most of the time they see where I’m coming from and if I’m lucky, I’ll even get a response funnier than what I said back. I love when that happens. Stopping by from Susie’s party. Enjoyed your post.

    • Jessica says:

      It’s my favorite scene in the whole movie! Talking to strangers when something funny is happening is awesome, Kari. They could be all awkward and freaked out or they could share in the hilarity of the situation. Either way, you’ve got yourself a great story. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. My Ox is a Moron says:

    I found you at Susie’s party. I’m so glad that we can meet like this. I do have a freak flag. It is humour and sarcasm. It is how I deal with life, good or bad. Life is too short not to enjoy it. Flyin’ my flag daily and proud.

    • Jessica says:

      I love when bloggers host “meet the people” parties! I am very versed in sarcasm and you are absolutely right, it is a great mechanism to deal with life. Thanks for stopping by and keep flying that freak flag, Fawn!

  6. The Guat says:

    Hey I found you at Susie’s Party and thought I would stop by. I saw your title and it hooked me. Anytime anyones talks about raising up their Freak Flag and letting it fly … I’m all for it. Great post! And I love that clip from Weeds, I remember watching it when it originally aired. Very cool find. And that quote from The Family Stone is awesome .. AWESOME! I love Luke Wilson’s character in that movie and Jessica Parker let’s it fly in that bar doesn’t she. Glad I stopped by 🙂

    • Jessica says:

      I had completely forgotten that scene in Weeds until I was looking for some visual representations of freak flags. I just love how Celia and Shane just accept each other and are completely real in the clip. It really embraces all that is freak flag-y. Thanks for stopping by!

    • Jessica says:

      They certainly do in NYC! You’ve got your Naked Cowboy and all the other Times Square “performers,” not to mention all the characters on the subway. Thanks for stopping by, Phil and a Happy New Year to you as well!

  7. wordsurfer says:

    Awesome post. I love your freak flag! I sometimes sail under the same, although I don’t do it nearly as often as I should. I’m still a bit inhibited about dancing in the supermarket, although I frequently do when I’m outside in nature – just something about wide open space that gives me the urge to dance out my happiness! 🙂
    (btw, dropping in via Susie’s party and very glad I stopped by!)

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