“Animals naturally form packs.
Carnivores form social hierarchies within their packs. Those that fail to become alphas harbor the burden of failure until they die. I’m sure the herbivores feel guilt as they sacrifice their comrades to evade their predators and live on.”
Hikigaya Hachiman, Episode 2
The social hierarchy is a curious thing. It represents a natural form of order whenever a cluster of individuals is brought together to govern and live in the same place. It is certainly not confined to the teenage age group, though it is more prevalent and holds more invisible authority over those more emotionally susceptible to concepts like conformance, the ‘norm’, and the ability to ‘fit in’. Even as we grow beyond childish, unjustifiable social alliances then that bedeviled our teenage existence, and we laugh, adulthood brings certain realities and societal expectations that are merely a macro-effect of what we experience in school. Except that it looms over us like a dark cloud we try desperately to ignore as we go about doing ‘adult’ things like finding a job, trying not to get scolded by your boss and paying your bills. We feel strangled as a prior life of undulations as we knew it, be it grey or rose-tinted, evens out into a monotonous never-ending straight line. Even if we know that we can be our own person – which were the cornerstones of concerns during our younger years – we are restricted by duties and responsibilities.