Okay this is my commonapp essay...the prompt is a topic of your choice...please care to read the whole thing although it's obscenely long :)
I have a Mohawk. In fact, I have had one for the past three years despite the inconveniences it has caused me; I often draw more attention to myself when walking down a street than a parade of bikini models would. Anyone foreign to our community would probably observe the above scene and leave with the impression that I was either some sort of a local hero or was much better looking than he was giving me credit for. Now I am not saying I would mind having an entourage of fawning sycophants, ready to swoon over every word of mine. The trouble, you see, is that these onlookers are rather less than admiring. As though gaping isn't enough, these "fans" of mine often see it as their absolute obligation, their moral calling, to grace my Mohawk with insults and slander. A few particularly memorable ones have been, "Can't afford a proper haircut?" or, "So is it the lawnmower or the chainsaw that you use on your head?" and even "It looks soooo gross." On one fine occasion, a local shopkeeper even went as far as to hurl pebbles my way; I guess he felt as though words couldn't justify the extent of his dislike of me. Of course, acquainted as I am with how Jagger handles upset fans, I always acknowledge these aspersions with a toothy smile and a wave of the hand.
My family members are peculiar beings indeed. You would have thought that having someone as distinguished as me in the house would have been an unwelcome cause for distraction and disruption in their daily lives. This, however, couldn't be further from the truth. It seems as though my family has become immune to my Mohawk and its charms; they hardly ever comment on it or even bother to take note of it anymore. It's almost as though they see me as the same Snape- haired boy that I was before.
However, my family hasn't always been so unfazed by my Mohawk. I can remember a time, just after I had first adopted the Mohawk look, when my family members had been my biggest "fans". Back then, they simply couldn't get enough of my Mohawk and rarely allowed me a moment of peace. Every morning, I would be welcomed at the breakfast table with snickers of, "Morning Freak" from my brother. And then, rather than admonishing my brother for his colorful use of language, my parents would join his cause with exasperated queries of "When are u going to grow some sense and get rid of it ?" or "Why can't you just be 'normal' like others?" My grandmother, whenever she felt like it, would pipe in with solemn premonitions of "The devil's got a hold of you boy". And all this was on a good day; I have lost count of the number of times my father threw ultimatums of, "It's either the hair or a place in my house" my way. On such occasions, I always found it best to retire quietly to my room and watch re-runs of HOUSE while I waited for father's anger to subside; he would often start humming downstairs even before the intro music had finished playing.
My life under my parents' roof went on in this manner for over a year before I found that I couldn't put up with their condescending manner any longer. Things had actually gotten worse with time in some respects; my brother's taunts had become more frequent than ever before (he wouldn't even spare me in the shower) and my parents, having failed miserably themselves, now resorted to conjuring up little-known relatives of ours every week to sermonize me on the "evils" of having a Mohawk. The last straw, however, had been when grandmother brought home a medicine-man from her village with the intention of "cleansing my body of the devil" as she put it. With incantations and mantras being cast at me every time I dared to venture out my room, I knew I would have to do something before my family and I lost what little sanity we had left.
"I can't get rid of the Mohawk," I declared during dinner. I watched as father rolled his eyes over his half-finished steak before he jeered in with, "Why? Because you think it's funny being weird?" "No I can't...." "Because I am joining the circus," my brother generously offered, cutting me off. This was my family's usual response to any talk of my Mohawk; rather than learn the reasons behind it, they preferred to shrug off any mention of it with ridicule. Okay, I'll admit some of their jokes were funny. But I had had remained silent for much too long and felt as though the time had now come to make some noise. "You will have to hear me out this time," I went on more forcefully, "How else are you ever going to understand me?" Father's gaze shifted to my face at this, and I could tell from his puzzled expression that he was either contemplating the truth in my words, or wondering whether to have me institutionalized. Encouraged nevertheless, I continued, "The Mohawk is simply a part of who I am, just like your hair is a part of who you are. I have been trying to get you to see that all along." After a long silent pause, father solemnly asked, "Why didn't you tell us this before?" I was very much taken aback at his sudden change in demeanor and honestly replied, "I wanted to, but I didn't as I never thought you would understand." After another eternity of silence, father spoke again. "We understand," he said with a curt nod in my direction before going back to butchering his steak. Coming to terms with what had just happened, I tried to affect an air of nonchalance. I believe I did a pretty good job of it as well as I pranced around our dining-table wailing the lyrics from Bon Jovi's "It's My Life". My family finished the remainder of their dinner in silence and have been oblivious to my Mohawk ever since.
"Thus, I will not get rid of my Mohawk," I concluded. The shopkeeper stared hard at me, as though doing so would somehow magically change my mind. Finally, he shrugged his shoulders and strode away. "Awesome," I congratulated myself, "no more pebbles." Nowadays, I have made it my duty to confront and enlighten anyone who, like the shopkeeper had been, is kind enough to offer me insults. My intervention with my family had shown me that ignorance and a lack of communication lay at the root of my troubles; I cannot ignore others and say nothing while, at the same time, expecting them to understand and appreciate my perspective. I now realize that if I truly believe in something, I have to stand up for it and express myself even if doing so entails me to confront society's criticism and prejudices. I have to speak up and let people hear my voice, however "girly" my singing teacher might have dismissed it as. This, I believe, will finally help my "fans" overcome their infatuation with my Mohawk and accept me for who I am. Because unlike my beloved Jagger, I have grown tired of my fame and would like nothing better than to go back to being just me.So what do u guys think??? Please be as critical as u wish to be....i know i have exceeded the word limit by a mile so feel free to point out sections of the essay which you feel as though i could do without....ALSO, more importantly...can u guys tell what i am talking about??? The Mohawk is a metaphor; i am really talking about embracing atheism in a conservative community( although i do have a Mohawk as well). Is the deeper meaning clear enough???
I didn't want to go all out and write blatantly on atheism...but i do want them to realize that i am talking about something deeper...i would really appreciate any help and u guys can post your essays if u want any help...THANKS...