Saturday, December 1, 2012

you don't really like geeks

Photo: Nils Geylen

Is being a geek really cool now?  Having been a geek my entire life, I don't think so.  I believe this despite the growing number of t-shirts that express an affection for nerds.

I don't know exactly when it happened, but sometime between my adolescence and adulthood (i.e. in the last 15-ish years), it supposedly became "chic" to be a geek.

It probably had something to do with Bill Gates becoming the richest man in the world for a while.  Then the dot com era solidified the idea that computers can make you rich.

Perhaps this uptick in acceptable nerdery led to the Spiderman reboot, which in turn caused the barrage of superhero and comic book movies that rule the box office today.

Then there was the merchandise.  From gadgets to throwback Star Wars t-shirts, the market evolved to capture all of this newly prospected geek gold.

But liking technology and going to see superhero movies hardly makes one a geek.

Geekdom is to today what metrosexuality was to the early-to-mid 2000s.  That is, a small segment of the population swayed the market enough to make nearly everyone think they were part of the club.

Ladies, here's how you can know if you really love a geek or not:
- If there are no photos of him from some hygienically-challenged (i.e. bad haircut, greasy hair, oily face, awkward facial hair, etc.) point in his life, he's not a geek.
- If he works with computers but doesn't enjoy them as a hobby, he's not a geek.
- If you understand everything he talks about, he's not a geek (or you are too).
- If he hasn't taken care of at least one problem in your home (mechanical, medical, logistical, etc.) by consulting the internet, he's not a geek.
- If you haven't yet learned to appreciate the story of at least one superhero or space-themed movie/tv series that you never would have watched otherwise, he's not a geek (or you don't love him).  (Note: "Appreciate the story" does not mean finding enjoyment in ogling Robert Downey, Jr.; Ryan Reynolds; Chris Pine; etc.)
- If one of your romantic gestures towards him hasn't been giving in to watching one of the aforementioned types of movies/tv series, he's not a geek (or you don't love him).
- If you have always had an easy time navigating entertainment devices in your living room via remote control, he's not a geek.
- If his wardrobe hasn't become at least 20 percent more fashionable because of your influence on his life, he's not a geek.
- If his wardrobe doesn't still have at least 20 percent to go to actually look stylish, he's not a geek.
- If he has to read the manual to set up a new gadget, he's not a geek.
- If you've never complained about the number of wires in your living room, he's not a geek (or he's also a contractor who buried them in the walls).
- If you regularly watch anything in standard definition or without surround sound, he's not a geek.
- If you haven't gotten yelled at for not knowing what standard definition or surround sound are, he's not a geek.

Two questions for my readers:
- If you watch The Big Bang Theory and enjoy it, do you laugh because they're so geeky and weird that it's funny to you or because you can relate?
- What else belongs on this list from the geeks you love?

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