Mean Girls was a popular movie; actual mean girls aren't as enjoyable.Michelle Icard, an author of a guide book for parents of middle schoolers called Middle School Makeover, overheard a group of actual, teenaged mean girls engaged in a trash-talking session one day at her local Starbucks. At first, Icard just sat and listened. As the girls got meaner and meaner, she finally found herself driven to act. But she held herself back. Instead of talking to the girls, she instead posted on her Facebook page's wall about the situation she was presently dealing with. The post read:
I'm crawling out of my skin sitting next to three very pretty, very boisterous, horribly behaved young teenage girls at the Cotswold Starbucks. So far they have laughed about 1) a girl who wrote a song for the talent show about being a lonely cell (She is so weird!) 2) the crappy presents they have gotten in the past from friends 3) girls who copy them (the worst) OH and just now, how "Carolyn wanted to be the lead singer but we took a vote and everyone wanted me instead so sorry Carolyn you can be the manager." It is taking all my restraint to keep from exploding so I'm complaining to you all instead. Good luck, Carolyn, wherever you are. I hope you find nicer friends!
But this was only the beginning. Icard's fans encouraged her to step in, in some way. At first, she didn't. She said:
I left and went to do my grocery shopping, conflicted the whole time, and I could see the girls still sitting in Starbucks as I drove home. I ran into my house, grabbed a note card and wrote a quick, heartfelt note. Then I ordered three mini frappucinos on my mobile app and headed back up to Starbucks. They were still there. I walked up to them and said, "Hi Girls. You don't know me but it looks like you're here studying, and I wrote you a note of encouragement." I handed them the card and walked away. (The drinks weren't ready but the barista agreed to delivering them for me.)
Icard's note, was harsh but fair. It also had an optimistic spin that even (we hope) a mean girl could appreciate. The note said:
Hi Girls! I sat near you today in Starbucks and listened as you talked. You three are obviously pretty and hard-working. I wish your kindness matched your pretty exteriors. I heard you talk about a girl who sang a song about being lonely in the talent show - and you laughed. About a girl who couldn't be lead singer because you got all the votes, about crappy presents other people have given you…and you sounded so mean and petty. You are smart and you are pretty. It would take nothing from you to also be kind. - M.While we do not know how the girls responded to this note, we hope that it affected them. If it didn't, perhaps the fact that this same note went viral will.
HT: Twitter, Facebook, WCNC