This post follows some of the things I said in my post about Geek Girls. I’ve had some more conversations about this lately, and I think it bears writing a bit more about. (You might want to read that post first, as I dislike repeating myself. Go ahead. I’ll wait here.)
This is a post written for those geeks who were geeks long before it was cool. This is for people who got picked on, called names, and made fun of because they liked geeky things like Star Trek or Star Wars or RPGs. This is a post about geek recovery.
As I mentioned in my Geek Girls post, some of us still carry around hurt and resentment from our childhoods. We were outcasts. If we were kids now with our same interests, we would be mainstream.
Yes, that’s frustrating. Yes, it’s unfair. Really, I think it’s time to let that go.
My friend Jen said I could quote her for this post, so here’s her amazing tweet:
Jen has embraced her sudden rise to coolness, as have many of us. We get to be hipsters. We liked that ‘verse before it was mainstream, man. We get to hold the weird knowledge.
Unfortunately, I also know many, many geeks who still resent. Who still hurt. There are geeks who get angry when they see the jock from high school posting photos of his kids dressed up like Ginny Weasley and Boba Fett.
Here’s the deal: That jock from high school is still carrying around hurt and resentment from his childhood, too. Maybe he was really smart and never got taken seriously? Maybe a geek hurt his feelings during a group project. I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that this is the case for everyone. This is the state of the world. Get over it.
Embrace the Now
The great thing about geek culture being mainstream is that people are creating the stuff we love more than ever before. There are more movies, more books, more comics, more television shows targeted to us, and our imaginative interests, than there have been at any other time in history. This not only means that we get to consume more great stuff, it also means that we can create more great stuff and have a hope of getting it published or produced.
Not only that, but geek chic is a great thing for our children. My stepson doesn’t have a choice about being a geek. The things we find cool and the things we engage with him about are invariably geeky. Lucky for him, he doesn’t have to be embarrassed about it. He’s a pretty popular little guy at school (if the girls who flock around him at events are any indication). It’s a beautiful thing.