If there’s one thing I always thought was important, it’s finding a good role model. In today’s world, there are so many people to look up to. With the Internet and television the way they are, we have more information at our fingertips than ever before. We can turn on the TV and find out new information about celebrities and politicians every day. And if you want that same information faster, we turn to the Internet. But with so many choices, and so many juicy lives to follow, have we lost what it really means to be a role model?
I see so many young people idolizing stars like Kim Kardashian, who have done nothing to prove themselves worthy of the title “role model.” The things she’s done to earn her claim to fame are not things I recommend anyone emulate. This doesn’t mean she’s never done anything good but from the selfie queen herself, odds are she did it for the paparazzi, not because she really cares. So as I thought about this dilemma we are faced with, I thought about women I have idolized. Katie Couric, Oprah Winfrey, Barbara Walters; all these women have proved themselves to be extraordinary. Breaking barriers in their fields, taking on unconventional roles for women, and leaving a powerful mark on the world. And that’s when I began to laugh at myself.
As I was thinking of all the women who have shaped me, who I have idolized, there was one very special young lady that came to mind. And I laugh because this woman has never even existed. From a young age, I began to read the "Nancy Drew" books. I was fascinated by this strong young lady, who was bending all the rules. Everything about her was an inspiration. She was smart and witty, able to fix things like her car. She solved mysteries, had a boyfriend, was always keeping up with the latest fashion trends, and basically good at everything. But it wasn’t unrealistic. She was just a very smart and ambitious girl. No one was ever going to tell her she couldn’t; it wasn’t in her nature to take no for an answer.
As I got older, my girlfriends and I discovered that there was a line of computer games based on Nancy. We played every single game, sometimes more than once, and lived vicariously through the girl detective. I don’t like to admit it, but I still get excited when a new game comes out, and I can’t wait to play it. Boys have "Call of Duty" and whatever else, why can’t a girl enjoy some "Nancy Drew?"
Looking at the person I strive to be, and those that I admire, it’s a sure decision to choose Miss. Drew as an idol.
- She’s smart.
This isn’t limited to books, though. She has always been handy and able to figure out puzzles and machinery. Many times in the books she has been described as working on her car when it was in need of repairs. In the games, you’re constantly working to figure out all sorts of puzzles, translating things from different languages, and more.
- She’s active.
She not only lives an active lifestyle chasing down bad guys, she’s athletic. It was said in the novels that she was exceptional at golf and tennis.
- She’s kind.
Even in the worst possible case, she still tries to be positive. Many times she could be facing the criminal, and she would still be trying to find the best in that person. It’s not naïve, but rather human. We all would like to think that people are generally good and have reasons for doing bad things. Nancy embodies this with her kind attitude towards everyone.
- She’s human.
It’s easy to idolize Wonder Woman, a character that seems to have no limits, but she’s not realistic. Nancy has always had just the right amount of everything. She was brave but knew when to call for help. She was handy, but sometimes she had to look for assistance. She makes mistakes, sometimes gets herself caught, or into trouble, but she manages a way out.
- When she was nice, she was nice because she wanted to be.
Nancy never did anything for the publicity. She never solved a mystery for the fame. She did it because she wanted to. She did it because that’s what she thought was right.
Maybe it seems silly to see someone who is a fictional literary character as your role model, but I think she represents the type of woman every young girl should strive to be. The views of women have changed since Nancy was created back in the 1930s. But she’s always stayed the same. She has stood the test of time, and has been able to adapt. She’s always been a character that while fulfilling many of the traditional roles of a woman has still found ways to break barriers and prove that woman are just as capable as men. So if you haven’t lately, take a look at Miss. Drew. You might just find she’ll surprise you.