I guess the kids who strive for both/neither smarts and/nor popularity are searching for something else: their true self. They are searching for happiness, which is basically only attainable once you've found your true self. It doesn't matter if you have 300 facebook friends and have had sex with nine different girls by the time you leave high school, nor does it matter if you got into Harvard, Yale and Princeton, if you aren't happy with yourself. It's fine to want to get into a good college, or want to have a lot of friends and be good at getting girls, but it's not fine if you need to have a lot of friends or need to get into a college ranked at a certain level in the US News rankings. Wanting transient things is fine, needing them is not.