Geekdom

This morning I had a pre-op appointment so I was able to stay in bed longer than normal – around 7:30 Tay came in to get me up – he had overheard me very deliberately ignoring the alarm so he laid down with me and began trying to coax me to get up and go for a run.

Initially his coaxing was his own version of annoying alarm noises that could not be turned off with an elbow or a fist and turned into him rattling off quotes from the Simpsons. I finally rolled over in exasperation and asked out loud how it was that I ever ended up being married to such a geek. Tay was quiet for a second and then said, “Good question, statistics-calculus girl”. I pondered his retort and asked him if we had been dating at that point in my univeristy days and he confirmed that we had. (If that wasn’t geeky enough, I was also taking physics and computer science as well.) Point taken, I acknowledged. Tay then reminded me that we had met through IRC – long before a lot of people were online and emailing and instant messaging.

So it turns out that I’m not the only one that ended up marrying a geek.

But I’m not complaining either. I love geeks (as proven by my ‘I [heart] my geek’ t-shirt) and in fact, I love nerds too. I saw a guy wearing a plain black t-shirt once that said ‘nerd’ in white letters and my reaction was twofold – I instantly was attracted to him and instantly wished I knew where he had gotten the t-shirt so that I could get one for myself.

(If you’re wondering what the difference is between a geek and a nerd, according to m-w.com, a nerd is “an unstylish, unattractive, or socially inept person; especially : one slavishly devoted to intellectual or academic pursuits” (I love the socially inept part especially) and a geek is “an enthusiast or expert especially in a technological field or activity”.)

Intelligence, knowledge, enthusiasm are all things that do it for me. And when you find those qualities in a person that’s also attractive, well, it’s almost like winning the lottery. But is it their geekiness or nerd factor that makes them attractive? It could be. The only reason that Mark Ruffalo ever lingered on my Friends Five list was because of his geek portrayal in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. The plastic frames, the lab job, the willingness to get high and dance in his underwear. That was hot. Geek-hot.

But what makes a person a geek? Should people be able to liberally label themselves as a geek -or do they need geek/nerd credentials? Do they need to be able to prove that they’re a geek in order to be classified as one? Tay quoting Simpson characters at 8am while wrapped in a blanket and his hair sticking up is a good credential. His numerous t-shirts that say obscure geek things are further proof (ie. ‘All your base belong to me” (or whatever it is) and ‘I write code so you don’t have too.’). The fact that he spent hours with Caius last night callibrating Caius’s new TV and labelling it fun is another credential. He’s a geek, for sure.

But what are my geek credentials?

I have a science/math background from University (have the actual documentation – a minor in mathematics) and I do online IQ tests for fun. In fact, I think all math is fun. If I’m bored I’ll catch myself doing things like what I’d do in University when we’d go across the bridge over the Halifax harbor – figure out how long it took to cross the bridge, count the number of cars that passed in the opposite direction, double the number and then try and figure out how much money the bridge was making at any given time (my answer was a lot). Or like how, during TIFF I’ll be waiting in line for the bathroom and will average how long it takes someone to pee, then consider the number of stalls, the number of people in line and calculate how long before I’d be waiting before I too could pee. I did begin to learn how to program (in Delphi) but quickly gave it up – mostly because I didn’t think I could handle the lack of social interaction (I guess that’s what differentiates me for a nerd). I will, on occasion, quote the Simpons back at Tay. And yes, I was online long before a lot of the people I know. Oh yeah, and can’t forget the geek-standard – plastic framed glasses. But that’s more because I think they look cool, which could be further proof of geekdom.

But I wonder if geek-girls are harder to come by then geek-boys? If I’m a geek-girl, does that make me a rare breed? And are geek-girls naturally drawn to geek-boys? I only know a couple of other geek-girls who, from what I know, were quickly snatched up by geek-boys. And maybe that in itself is a geek-thing – us sticking together if only because we speak a language that so few understand.

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One Response to Geekdom

  1. I think as we get older we get “geekier”. I compulsively check my email and blog at least 1 time every hour, and the computer is a main part of furniture in my livingroom. I also went to a bar with my cousin on Thursday, and after I took some pictures of them singing with my brother she looked at me and said “Are these pictures going to go on your blog?” to which I replied “Well, of course, everything goes on my blog!” So, I’m not sure if that makes me a “geek” or not, but certainly is pointing me in the right direction. Rob is also joining me on the “geek journey” as he is now becoming very good at using and mastering such programs and Adobe and Photoshop, making DVD slideshows and editing pictures. But hey, we’re happy and enjoy our many hours in front of the computer!

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