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Look on My Geekiness, Ye Mighty, and Despair!

By Mrs. Julien | Comment Diversions | July 5, 2013 | Comments ()


geek-wars.jpg

I self-indentify as a geek. I may be actually be a nerd as I've never been quite certain of the distinction, but I'm pretty sure being a nerd involves math. Math and Prolixity are, like, un-mixy things. Experience tells me that at least one of you will provide clarification and/or a helpful link in the comments to clear the matter up.

The fact is I am not now, nor have I ever been, "cool" and I possess a reasonable depth of popular culture knowledge, as well three Opus toys I can't part with and a profound love of Kermit the Frog. I didn't always realise I was geek. I've always known I was uncool. High school has a way of sorting that out for you. I cared then, but now I'd rather be able to laugh inappropriately loudly and get disproportionately excited about things.

I became aware I was a geek when I decided to take a Learning Annex type night class in comedy improvisation. I found myself in a room full of slightly awkward, funny people who could quote WKRP in Cincinnati (which ran forever in Canada) and Monty Python. They were passionate about many of the sames things I was and I recognized that these were My People. When I told my best friend of my discovery, she said, "Yes, you always were kind of a geek." I was taken aback, but how it had escaped my notice is beyond me. It was right in front me the whole time:

thehappiestgirlalive.jpg

As part of my überWASP upbringing, I went to horseback riding camp of the "Though There Is No Change in My Patrician Façade, I Can Assure You My Heart Is Breaking" variety. We rode twice a day, went swimming, and took daily Stable Management classes. I loved it. To keep things interesting, they had themed events, such as costumed ride. I created the following ensemble for myself and Phantom, the horse I was riding for the month:

  1. White shirt
  2. Vest
  3. Low slung belt
  4. Stick for a blaster (to shoot first!)
  5. Sign for the horse that said "Millenium Phantom"

I was 15 years old. I felt like a hundred dollars.

Please tell us your ultimate geek/nerd story. Provide your bona fides, your geeka fides, if you will.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • The first "grown up" book I read was the first ElfQuest graphic novel, Fire and Flight, when I was five or six years old. My dad is a blacksmith, and he made a knife and a spear for me, and I used to run around my neighborhood playing wolfrider. This was especially realistic the year we cared for a pair of timber wolf cubs. (Also, the sanctuary they came from had named them Guinevere and Morgain. The two adult males who were sheltered elsewhere were Merlin and Arthur.)

    More recently, while going through the custom ringtones on my phone, after hitting clips from Doctor Who, The Addams Family, Shaun of the Dead, Repo! the Genetic Opera, Serenity, and Warehouse 13, a friend of mine affectionately said, "It's like a cornucopia of geek."

    Today, I have an entire room in my house dedicated to books, but still have permanent book storage in every room of my house except the hallway. The books are organized by fiction and nonfiction. Nonfiction is broken down by subject and alphabetized by author's last name and fiction is divided by poetry, anthology, novel, and children, and alphabetized by author's last name. My movies are likewise divided by TV and movie and alphabetized.

    My spices are also alphabetized, so I don't know if the organization of the books and movies qualifies as geek cred or just evidence of mental illness, but the contents of the same definitely count.

  • Mrs. Julien

    NeoCleo asked me to post this on her behalf -

    For many years a group of my friends and I would gather each New Year’s at a house we had access to in Bodega Bay and play our own adult version of Clue. One of my girlfriends was pure genius at pulling together trashy scenarios involving black mail, Hollywood stars (yes, we dared to go the whole way) and of course murder. One year she really outdid herself and
    found a “dead” body prop by way of a male blow-up doll. We had NO idea
    these things existed until that evening. The victim was dressed in a
    pair of wale corduroy pants, shirt, sweater-vest and terrible wig that
    looked like a Pomeranian sitting atop a – well you get the general idea. The whole situation devolved fairly quickly even though we only had to read our lines, not memorize them, because we were drinking my home- made margaritas (3 parts tequila, 2 parts Cointreau and 1 part lime juice doncha know). When it came time to discover our dead man, my one girlfriend cried out “But he’s not dead, behold!” and with both hands she roceeded to peel back the button and zipper of the props pants thus freeing his blow up boner to pop happily free. You can imagine the comments, e.g. Pepper got his pecker in the parlor and so on, not to mention the more obscene gestures made by very drunk and somewhat
    classless friends. We fell about the place laughing and never finished the game. BTW I was 45 at the time so I think if this does qualify, I can be considered a truly die-hard geek.

  • TheOriginalMRod

    I can remember very strange things, like pulling Tenzig Norgay out of my brain, and remembering names like Pete Postletwaite. Maybe I just like interesting sounding names...

  • Mrs.P

    My children have been a mirror to my and my husband's geekiness. We dance wildly to the theme song of Batman - The Brave and the Bold (how can you not?) and my oldest does an awesome David Byrne dance.When I hear my children sing They Might Be Giants' songs, and I cannot help but smile. All 3 kids love The Goonies and Buckaroo Bonzai. My 9 year old wants to a comic book artist when he grows up, the 6 year old wants to be a mom and make robots that clean, and my 3 year old wants to beThe Hulk when she grows up. They are all the best of my geekiness!

  • E-Money

    In 8th grade my friends we're picking Halloween costumes that ranged from Lizzie McGuire to slutty Lizzie McGuire. My best friend and I wore ripped 90s jeans we found at good will and spray painted Wayne's World on a plain black hat. We went as Wayne and Garth and it was perfect. Needless to say boys did not ask us to dance at the Halloween Ball. 10 yeas later I reused this costume. Only this time I got to be Wayne and a new best friend was Garth and the internet provided me with a premade Wayne's World hat. Both times it was perfect. I've had plenty of traditional Geek costumes (Leia, Princess Buttercup, Miss Piggy, River Song) but it is this cross dressing costume that really demonstrates my geekdom and my strong belief that the best Halloween costumes are the warmest ones. I also learned that holes in the knees of jeans is very comfortable and provides a lot of range of motion. That should come back in style.

  • kucheza

    My parents stopped playing board games with me when I was 8. When I was 9 I had to wear headgear to school. In middle school I went to math camp and was a mathlete. In high school I took Japanese and was president of the Japanese club. Now I'm a librarian. I think this all makes me more nerdy than geeky, though. So maybe I should also note that I have a dog named after a Joss Whedon character and a cat named after a David Lynch character?

  • TheAggroCraig

    I re-labeled all of our test tubes at work, which we use 3 at a time, so I can use GLC, JLA, JLI, JSA, GLA, AIM, etc, basically any comic-book related group with a 3-letter name.

    Also once I mowed a friend's lawn for a bunch of Star Wars CCG cards.

  • Melissa D

    Hmmmm. Well, I wrote my honours thesis on Shakespearian Allusions in Star Trek, an idea that was solely spurned by spotting King Lear on Khan's bookshelf (the Fantasy Island Khan, not the Sherlock Khan). As the English department was full of geeks (except for the new prof who had NEVER SEEN STAR WARS, WHAT THE FUCK! She soon left.), I had profs fighting over who would get to be my advisor.

    That's the biggest one I can think of now, although I did give a student bonus points once for using a Star Wars analogy.

  • kinoumenthe

    Breaking my almost perfect 6 or so years lurking record to relate this :
    - I'm not sure how or why, but at the age of 9, a good friend of my parents takes me to see Ralph Bakshi's Lord of the Rings on the big screen. (because geek friend of geek parents are bound to involve children in they own geeky things when left to care for said children ? maybe ?).
    - After that, I'm so frustrated, (because, seriously, who the hell makes a movie that stops half-way to the end ?) that my parents give me the LOTR books the following Christmas.
    Closure at last ! I confess that on that first read, I skipped most of the first chapter…
    - Years have passed and I'm 14 or so. I spy the English version of LOTR that looks like a huge door-stop during a trip to the bookshop with the parents. Because I fancy myself old enough to actually read the original version (and have started English classes a few years back), I manage to get my mom to buy it for me. (This one has the appendixes !). The pages are full of ENGLISH WORDS !
    I don't care, I know my own language version almost by heart. I probably made a huge leap in language learning that year.
    - I'm 42. It's been years since I've last re-read what used to be my favourite book from age 9 to my early twenties (though I read tons of other fantasy, and even more science fiction in the meantime). But I own the dvd collection (director's cut), which I rewatch from time to time.
    I probably would have been a huge sf geek anyway, not mentioning that my whole life is pretty much a long geeky episode (I translate manga for a living, for Pete's sake…) I was already on the path in many different ways, but without Bakshi half-baked version (that I found absolutely fantastic at the time. heh. I was 9.), it probably wouldn't have been the same.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Breaking my almost perfect 6 or so years lurking record

    WOO HOO! Welcome! I hope you don't retreat. As you can see from all of the comments, you are so very clearly among friends.

  • kinoumenthe

    Thanks Mrs J. I'll try to be not so postophobic.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Thumbs up for that.

    I taught myself decent English reading Terry Pratchett novels by using a pocket dictionary of all things. Most of the time, I had to guess the meaning of words by context. Which is quite hard if you only have your crappy school English to lean on.

  • emmalita

    That's really impressive. I love the way he uses language.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Thanks. :)

    I noticed that several jokes didn't translate well (they didn't make sense). That was my main motivation.

  • kinoumenthe

    I agree, and I think that's a lot more impressive.

    To be honest, my English skills didn't really take flight until I went to London when I was 20 and my first trip to Forbidden Planet (to check out English-translated manga of all things…), where I discovered in the basement all the untranslated SF books I was missing ! Treasure trove !!
    … Yeah.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I would have been too terrified to go abroad at that age, with language skills that I felt were insufficient for the longest time. It took me about 15 years to do something like that.

    Being able to jump into unknown waters like that is enviable in my eyes.

  • emmalita

    I saw Bakshi's film, too! It played at the UT Austin student theaters when I was in high school. I was outraged that it just stopped. I was already well on the geek path at that point.

    But wait! You are paid to translate manga? I have a former student who would kill to have that job. How did you get to there?

  • kinoumenthe

    I studied the language in college, went to Japan a few times (lived there for one year with a scholarship - and had many manga-anime related geeky adventures there, among other things -). I always was a huge manga and comics fan, but I didn't think in a million years a career as a manga translator was possible so I was planning on teaching the language (which I did for a few years), but I was diverted along the way by a first translation offer I got through my few contacts in what was just a budding business at the time. Then another and another. It did take me a few years before having enough work to be able to live solely on it though, but I have for the past 7-8 years. I'm not in the States though, I'm in France and we publish a LOT of translated manga, now.

  • emmalita

    Very cool. I've passed on to Rachel that such a job exists. But I don't think you'll have any competition from her for a couple of years.

  • kinoumenthe

    I guess as long as nobody actually invents the Universal Translator, we'll both be fine.

  • Danar the Barbarian

    I am a closing-in-on forty woman, and I have never seen "The Notebook" or any other chick flick, by choice. (The only Ryan Gosling movie I've seen is "Drive", which I enjoyed!) I also have never seen any Real Housewives, American Idol, or CW show. But if it has spaceships, gangsters, or gangsters in spaceships, I'm totally in.

    My first movie was Star Wars, at the drive-in with my parents. I remember playing in the gravel outside the car during the trailers, but when the movie started, I wanted back in the car so I could hear it and watch it with them. I was five.

    I had a total geekgasm reading the Song of Ice and Fire series and an even bigger one watching the show. My nightly prayers to the gods of Nerdiness are that HBO will do the same multi-season show treatment with The Dark Tower series.

    All said and done, though, I think I wear it pretty well. I was in marching band and AP classes in high school, but I was also on the swim team, so at least I was a tan nerd.

  • Kati

    OH MAN, drive-in movies as a kid! My parents had a Pinto station wagon, and they would load my brother and me into the back (seats folded down, blankets and pillows ready), pick up some cheap fast food (I remember buckets of KFC), and take us to a double feature. I'm sure we saw Star Wars that way. I also saw Blazing Saddles there when I was eight - Dad (a lifelong chemist and proud nerd himself) censored only the baked beans scene because the, uh, sound effects embarrassed the bejebus out of him.

  • Allijo99

    When I was on Match.com, my headline was "By Grabthar's hammer, you shall be avenged."

    Still single.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    Leave that up there. You only want someone who's in the joke.

    http://www.thegloss.com/2012/0...

  • emmalita

    This is true. I went on a date tonight with a man who has never heard of Game of Thrones and didn't like Mad Men because he thought it was advocating a return to early '60's values. I dug deeper. He doesn't watch tv and rarely goes to movies. I am far too shallow for him. I'm holding out for the dork who knows I'm not talking about natural gas extraction when I say "frak."

  • Mrs. Julien

    Shallow/discriminating. Potato/potahto.

  • emmalita

    You are too kind.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I wonder what would happen if I'd wore my Doctor Who t-shirt outside the house.

    Is there such a thing as negative singleness?

  • emmalita

    Not unless you also don't bathe or brush your teeth.

  • emmalita

    I wore a cylon toaster t-shirt to a singles volunteer at habitat for humanity event. I am also still single.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Screw them! You're both awesome.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Look around you – can you form some sort of rudimentary lathe?

  • basse buus

    My geeking started with being the first in my class learning to read.. It was fantastic to be able to read, but my class was so slow to learn, and we all had to read the same things(?!). It was bad the first couple of years, but at some point I learned to bring my own book and hide it in the mandatory one. I am also a fast reader so I had read the mandatory one. To some of my friends I will always be the girl who read the Harry Potter book disguised as another book.

    I think my geekist strike today is my need-to-know. When I look at my google history it looks crazy. A fall down a rabbit hole and suddenly I find myself searching for information about kosher, the guy who plays Rollo on Vikings and the history of the street names of Copenhagen..

  • blacksred

    Same here. By Fifth grade I had read too far up my grade level. They sent me to help others learn how to read. And same here with the google rabbit hole. Starts off trying to find the name of an actor and 2 hours later my eyes are glazed over after reading about European torture devices in the 14th century.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    getting in trouble for "reading ahead" pissed me off so much in elementary school.

  • emmalita

    My second grade teacher thought I was slow and/or cheating because she never saw me read the assigned books. They had me tested for special ed and found out I was reading way above grade level. After that she sent me to the library during reading time so I could get what ever book I wanted.

  • basse buus

    The teachers just got mad at me and called my mum and told her about the reading not assigned books. She gave me the next Harry Potter and told me to be more discrete..

  • emmalita

    That's sad. Glad your mother was supportive though.

  • BobbFrapples

    I am a second generation geek thanks to my mother. She and I would watch films like The Terminator and Star Wars whenever we got the chance.

    My geekiest moment (so far) was when my bookclub read The Watchmen and I arrived dressed as Rorschach. You could tell who had read the book and who hadn't by the reactions.
    A modest geek moment, but I'm sure I'll gain more as I keep going to DragonCon. :)

  • blacksred

    Well hmm let's see I am a member of Pajiba which I think is the initial qualification. I am a hybrid negeweeb. My geekiest thing I do is READ everything. There is NO skimming with me. I was the kid who ALWAYS wanted to play school in the summertime. And couldn't wait to get the new reading assignment. I am a hybrid in that in high school i fit in with ALL the groups, cool kids, goths, foreign exchange students didnt matter blacksred was welcome to all. I annoy my husband with facts about movies he couldn't care less about; including the original production budget was only blah, blah , blah but once the success of x they doubled it. I take pleasure in knowing my money helped make a movie number one you know with my coupon!!

  • dizzylucy

    Your "playing school" reminded me that I used to do that too. I'd also play school office, and make up enrollment cards, schedules, and school memos. It's pretty weird now that I think about it...

  • kirbyjay

    Ok, this is also weird. When I was in elementary we used to have a book catalog that would come once a month and my mother would always let me buy at least 3 (paperbacks). I had a pretty decent amount and I would play school with them, meaning I would line them up in rows, do a seating chart, ( I named them all, either the character in the book or some variation) and all the school stuff that most girls would do with their dolls.
    Any doll that had the misfortune to be sent home from the store with me would be subject to a haircut upon arrival. They all looked like they were in basic training. I never had them in my class but I would wrap them in toilet paper and play hospital.

  • Gunnut2600

    While training non-nukes on the function of the reactor fill system on a carrier, I was explaining how a worse case scenario would stress our core protection system.

    "So a dual complete loop shear would cause a rapid drop in temperature (due to the inject of reactor fill water). Were the pumps started immediately, we would generate about 1.24 gigs of power in the core. That would be dangerous so we limit the initial start of the pumps by about 15 seconds. This allows the fill water to be heated an injected at a slower rate, limiting the power spike to about 1.8 gigs of power"

    Some kid asks "So like why is that bad? Why can't it handle the full 1.24 gigs?"

    "We would go back to the future".

    No one in the room got the joke and I died a little on the inside...

  • ,

    Won four games of "Jeopardy!" Have photo with Trebek. Once went to a baseball game with two people who got creamed by Brad Rutter in a Tournament of Champions, thus: Two degrees of separation from Ken Jennings and three from Watson.

    Member of Pajiba for like six or seven years.

  • Scootsa1000

    I, too, am a Jeopardy alum and have the picture with Trebek in the cheesy etched frame. That photo pretty much embodies my geekiness.

    Also, right now my three year old daughter and I are wearing matching Han Solo shirts.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    My parents just came across the letter & photos from my College Jeopardy appearance and gave to me 2 days ago. The package also had to names, phone numbers, contact info for each of the other 15 contestants...and their Social Security numbers. Whoops.

    I do not have a cheesy frame, but I do still have my Alpine Lace coupons somewhere...

  • To be honest, when I was in high school or in my early 20's, I was the guy who made fun of the nerds and the geeks. My interests were all fairly mainstream: wrestling, football, guns, cars.

    But when Dr. Who started up again, I got into that via the girl I was dating at the time and I still watch that all the time, even though she is long gone. I've even gone back and started watching the old ones off of Netflix, just finished 'Enlightenment' with Peter Davison the other night.

    About a year and a half ago or so, I was making fun of Dungeons and Dragons and one of my co-workers asked me if I had ever played. I said I hadn't and he invited me to put my money where my mouth is and play with him and his friends. It turned out to be a lot more fun that I expected and it's still something I do (almost) every week.

    I guess my point here, besides having found five dollars, is that 'geek' apparently has a conversion rate that most major religions would envy.

  • koko temur

    i have a tiny tattoo in elvish on my foot. It says "estel" in sindarin, which is Aragorn's exile name. designed it myself.
    *drops mike*

  • I love you SO much right now.

  • koko temur

    ..

  • Grifter

    I once gave a wedding toast in Elvish.
    And I have a fell beast tattoo.

  • linnyloo

    Disquis ate my comment.

    Anyways.

    Balls to the wall -- I've just finished my fifth year of an online role-playing game that is an Alternative Universe Harry Potter story where Voldemort won back in the day and created a totalitarian regime in England. We play in real time, so a year in the game takes a year in real time to play out, and when it's Christmas here, it's Christmas in the game. We're going to play out all seven years. A dozen people write for it, a couple hundred read it, and it's awesome fun.

    ...And I play Harry Potter.

  • I work at a start up political consulting firm. My boss knows I'm a huge Batman fan and while she won't outright say it, I suspect she thinks it's a bit childish. About a month ago we met a guy who wants us to run his campaign for city council. I was wearing my Dark Knight shirt. We introduce ourselves to each other and the first thing he does is ask me which movie in the Dark Knight Trilogy is my favorite and I go on to explain that Rises is my favorite despite Dark Knight being a better movie. My boss just kind of rolled her eyes. She also says she is judging me every time I reference Buffy. I just respond by saying I'm judging her for her negative judgment of me.

  • Morgan_LaFai

    I think my geekiest moment was when I was having a geek off with a friend. We were comparing shows and swapping trivia. He beat me on the British stuff, but in fairness he was British and I am American, and I beat him on all things Whedon. And to really set the scene, I was wearing a red velvet Bruce Lee t-shirt and reading a biography of Tolkien while he was wearing a Mighty Boosh t-shirt. Ultimately I won based on my love of Doctor Who which, ironically, he didn't really know about and acknowledged was really geeky.

  • emmalita

    Red velvet Bruce Lee t-shirt? I had no idea such a thing existed. Must go find.

  • In the dark time between Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back, they were doing everything they could to fan the fanboy flames. There was a laser light show/concert/promotional event that was held at my local basketball arena.

    They blasted the soundtrack on a great sound system, with lasers, and showed a film of promo images and such from Empire. No trailer, no interviews, no guests.

    There were thousands of people there and hundreds were wearing Star Wars costumes. I showed up in a costume that my friends in the college theater costume and prop department had helped me make. I looked awesome.

    I was dressed as Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica.

    Boy, did I get the stink-eye from everybody there.

  • emmalita

    You are awesome.

  • Morgan_LaFai

    Nerds, geeks, and dweebs are all socially awkward individuals but they have slight differences.

    Nerds are interested in science and maths, real world type things, but to such a degree that it makes little sense to a laymen. Hawking is a good example as are the boys of TBBT. Physicists, biologists, scientists in general but especially those who deal in theory, are generally nerds. You can get nerds in different fields, Daniel Jackson being a good example, but they are far less common.

    Geeks are interested in fantasy type worlds. And before someone yells at me I mean fantasy in the sense of fantastical not in the general meaning of scifi/fantasy used for books and telly. Anyhow, Lucas and Speilburg are good examples of geeks, though their ability to make the story real on screen might indicate some nerd tendencies. Anyhow, those with a love of scifi, gamers, etc. are geeks. For some reason computer people (tech support, programers, etc.) to fall into this category as well, though I personally think they should be nerds.

    Dweebs are the saddest. They have the same awkward qualities as nerds and geeks but without a redeeming passionate interest in something that allows them to find a group of people to hang with. I cannot think of a single famous dweeb. But imagine the truly awkward person who works at your nearby Kinkos or any number of fast food places. That would most likely be a dweeb.

    So I hope that clears things up for everyone.

  • kirbyjay

    WEll, I guess I'm not a geek after all because the only sci-fi that I was ever interested in was The Matrix because Neo was hot, and then 2 and 3 were so bad that I didn't like sc-ifi anything anymore. My only computer game is Scrabble, I think super heroes are kinda geeky and I grew up with pen and pencil and encyclopedias so my computer skills are limited.
    Kinda worried about those dweebs though, they're the ones that go shooting up places.

  • Brooke the Replicant

    I think I'm a dweeb. I lack the hobby devotion of a geek, and am not nearly as smart as a nerd.

  • calliope1975

    I'm the go-to person for my friends and family when they need useless pop culture information.

    I also have to bite my tongue when I'm in public and overhear people chatting about WRONG information. No, Batman is NOT part of the Marvel universe. But, I'd rather not be the crazy lady who stands up and yells thus I hold it in and seethe.

  • emmalita

    I also try not to be that lady. Sometimes I can't help myself. I'm passionate about Mexican and Tex-Mex cooking. When I overheard two women at the grocery store planning to make tamales by wrapping the filling in tortillas I had to interrupt. I apologized for being the crazy lady and then I explained the difference between a tamale and a burrito. I assured them that burritos were delicious and had all kinds of street cred, but they could not call something wrapped in a tortilla a tamale. I got a much better reception from them than from the man who couldn't tell the difference between pilaf and risotto.

    And I guess that's my geek and/or nerd moment.

  • Risotto is the cheese, right? Or is that ricotta?

  • emmalita

    That question does not bother me. You are either joking or you really don't know. Both are fine. But don't claim to have in depth knowledge of Mediterranean cooking and then tell me pilaf and risotto are essentially the same thing. It's like claiming to be a sci-fi geek and then insisting that Star Trek and Star Wars are the same thing. They have elements in common, but they are completely different.

    Ricotta is the cheese. Risotto is an Italian rice dish made with a specific rice cooked in a specific way so that it becomes sticky. Pilaf is usually rice, often with other grains as well, cooked so that each grain is separate. And you probably know all that but I can't help myself.

  • Maguita NYC

    Meeeaaawwww Emmalita! You are feisty when it comes to all things foody.

  • I actually didn't know that. I knew one was rice and one was cheese, but I couldn't remember which was which. I figured I could disguise my 'too lazy to look it up' as 'contributing to the discussion.'

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Risotto is a rice dish.

  • In the days before the internet, I was the IMDB for my friends and family. I would get phone calls asking me, "Who was that guy in that movie with that thing...?" I'd answer Yaphet Kotto. I miss those days.

  • huckleberry

    I also miss the drunken calls from friends at parties 400 miles away from me at midnight because they knew I would be able to solve their trivia question. I know sports fairly well except hockey but I believe the best two answers in the original Trivial Pursuit to hockey questions are "The Detroit Red Wings" or "Maurice "The Rocket" Richard"

  • My siblings and I used to play a game we called The Yaphet Kotto Game. You would name two actors and they would have to name an actor who had been in a movie with both of them. For example, if I said Roger Moore and Richard Pryor, you would answer...

  • Mrs. Julien

    I used to play a game with friends where one would have the TV Guide (print media!) and read out the movies. The others would have to guess the year, listed lead actors and the number of stars it had been given. Our default actor was Adrian Zmed. We called the game "SUPERIORITY DANCE".

    I also used to be extremely good at watching a movie for about 10 seconds and knowing what it was, even if I had never seen it.

  • Brooke

    My husband loves to wait until I'm in another room then switch through the channels while I guess what is on from a small snippet of dialogue. Sometimes just a bit of music from a particular show or movie is enough. I rarely get it wrong because my head is filled with useless knowledge.

  • blacksred

    This is me! It could be the most obscure movie, during the slowest point of a direct to dvd movie with no stars and I can casually glance at the screen and be like oh thats dog dag christmas with the guy from step by step. My husband gives me this weird look and slowly steps away from the remote.

  • huckleberry

    Richard kiel, too easy.

  • Well played.

    Marlene Dietrich and Tommy Smothers.

  • basse buus

    We do this game at introduction week at Film and media studies at University, but it is of the 6 degrees variety where you have to get closest to 1 degree. It gets crazy competitive. I thought it would be fun to try with my not-film-geeky friend, but I could only use actors related to Easy A because otherwise she couldn't play...

  • pnnylne

    I don't think I have an essential nerd/geek story. I love the hell out of campy movies (Polyester/Crybaby, etc), musicals/Jazz standards (I randomly sing Getting to Know You/Honeysuckle Rose/Beginning to See the Light for reasons), and I LOVE history (byproduct of being a Poli Sci major). I have documentaries on Prohibition/The Dust Bowl in my Netflix Queue as we speak.

  • Bodhi

    The Dust Bowl is REALLY good & *might* have made me cry a few times

  • Mitchell Hundred

    Neither of these are particularly nerdy, but here goes:

    I have a favourite type of history. It is social history.

    Once I noticed someone saying that they couldn't enjoy Return of the Jedi because it was too unrealistic for the Ewoks to have defeated Imperial troops, so I spent about fifteen minutes coming up with a plausible explanation for that phenomenon. I prefer Episode VI over Episode V, and would rather not admit that it has any significant flaws.

  • Mitchell Hundred

    Just remembered something else: if I am bored and there are drawing materials around, I will almost always attempt to draw the Watchmen face. I am getting downright not terrible at it.

  • googergieger

    I've always been a nerd and I have huge pop culture knowledge, I've always been cool to boot as well though. Good looking and not giving a fuck and all. I mean during high school it was mostly good looking and trying not to kill myself, but for the most part my life has been the former.

    Anyways my ultimate geek/nerd story? I once did an impression of Steven Segal in front of the rifftrax panel in a room full of a thousand peeps and the rifftrax gang. At comic con.

  • Giroux IA

    That time when all my "normal" friends thought a friendly game of Star Wars trivial pursuit would be harmless fun. Within 20 minutes a new "Lee must answer all the questions on the whole card" rule was ratified in order to keep the players from throwing beer bottles at me in frustration. The game broke up 15 minutes later and Star Wars trivial pursuit was never spoken of again.

  • ZombieNurse

    I often wore a Next Generation insignia pin on my clothes during my junior and senior years in high school. It made the "bleepbleep" hailing sound when you pressed it. Sexy! I also wore a pseudo OS uniform in one of my senior portraits.

    As an aside, I wore the pin so often, that I managed to lose/break the pin backs that held the thing on, and had to make due with erasers stuck on the prongs. My classmates had a habit of slapping the pin as they passed me in the hall so that they could hear the sound. They did this so much that the pin backs went all the way through the erasers and made me bleed.

  • linnyloo

    I made my own Bajoran earring! And I proudly wore my "Starfleet Academy" sweatshirt until it got all holey and stained.

  • In high school there was no mystery about my nerdly status given the presence of braces, an enormous perm, and the fact that I willingly played the trombone for 6 years (how else to get to sit next to Scott Fogel, dreamy tuba player?).

    Now I'm more of a closet geek. I look/act like your average SAHM who caravans her kids about in a white minivan, supports the local bake sales, and goes to the gym in matching athleta gear. All of which is a thin veneer to mask the fact that I'm an avid fantasy/sci fi reader, maintain and will back up the fact that Blade Runner is the greatest achievement in movie history, and while having kids prevents me from maintaining my gamer cred, I was a dominant online presence in civilization games during my grad school days.

    I'm like a geek sleeper agent awaiting the day my secret geek powers are needed by the PTO board.

  • You want to talk about suddenly alienating everyone in a group? Reference A Song of Ice and Fire.

    If it's not 50 Shades or Real Housewives, it is apparently not up for discussion.

  • I haven't found myself getting alienated but I definitely get blank stares because while I adore my Mom buds, not a one of them know what Valar Morghulis means. I loaned GoT Season 1 to a friend who refused to watch it because she was horrified that the neighbors would see it through her window and think she was watching porn. *SIGH*

  • Kati

    I get horrified looks when I gush about how good Hannibal is. I've learned to instead make noncommittal noises when talk inevitably turns to the latest season of The Voice or Survivor.

  • emmalita

    You live in the wrong neighborhood.

  • llp

    Or, you know, until the kids leave the house. Geek sleeper agents, represent!

  • Clancys_Daddy

    For third grade science I built three dimensional molecular structure models out of tooth picks and gumdrops. Yeah, I became a biologist.

  • Milly

    I would imagine that most people are geeks/nerds about something in particular whether it be comic books, science fiction, sports stats, fashion houses, automotive exotica etc etc. Geek and nerd are given as identifiers to the enjoyment of items that are outside of the norm (but are ever less so year on year)

    My worry is that I am not THAT involved in any particular field, but I dabble in many. I may identify as a gamer but I dislike RPGs and MMOs, which, in many eyes, would discount me from any such designation ("How can you be gamer if you dont like zelda, FF, oblivion" etc etc), I may identify as a footie geek but I refuse to go to Liverpool games due to the introduction of a priority ticket scheme in 2001. I may identify as a lover of ska music, but I'm not able to discuss the minutia of little known acts from Jamaica. And so on.

  • Gamers who don't like Zelda - fist of solidarity!

  • Milly

    Thank you! I feel like my dislike of specific games is taken badly by certain elements, particularly when I reply that my favourite genre is FPS.

    I get the bro, mountain dew, XTREEEEEM, bro, etc comments about the preference but remind people of Doom, Quake, Wolfenstein etc etc

    But then I get my second strike; I don't like Half Life. My third is that I think Team Fortress is average at best.

  • Alex Kuhn

    I have received ONLY ONE* of those "warning" emails from my internet service provider telling me my IP address was flagged for downloading copyrighted material.

    The title they listed as evidence? Puccini's opera "Madama Butterfly" starring Placido Domingo and Mirella Freni.

    People argue a lot over whether or not others have the right to claim "nerd" or "geek" status lately. While I'm not brave enough to stake my claim as a certified nerd, I will say that I've always had a very uncool taste in music (I no longer get control of the satellite radio in the car because my husband doesn't see the fun in "Guess the period/ composer."

    *I will not say whether there have been more offenses than this one, just in case some of you are Super Secret Undercover MPIAA Investigators

  • Kati

    I am a high school chem/environmental teacher married to a civil engineer, so I guess those count as my nerd bona fides.

    Growing up, I truly thought I would never find someone to marry. I finally became unawkward in college, so dating wasn't an issue, but I couldn't imagine finding someone who, when presented with my inner landscape, would not only accept it, but would embrace and celebrate it. Things I enjoy include reading, sci-fi anything, witty irony, comic book characters, and (God help me) any and all 1950s movies, especially Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals.

    Nerd story #1 - I had been dating a boy for several months that I more than cared for, so I decided to go out on a limb and divulge my guilty love of musicals. He asked me which one I loved the most. Oklahoma, I replied. Imagin my surprise when he belted out a tune from the show - not "Oklahoma!", not "oh What a Beautiful Mornin'", but "Surrey With a Fringe on Top." You bet I married him.

    Nerd story #2 - my husband and I constantly speak in movie shorthand, using snippets of dialogue while talking to each other. We also have a list of what we consider to be "essential" humorous movies for our kids to see before they finish high school (Three Stooges, all the Mel Brooks movies, Animal House - the basics). We knew our tutelage had sunk in when I dropped a pan on my foot one night and screamed "AAAAGH!" While my husband got ice, my son (7 at the time and eating dinner) said "Write the home office and tell them I said AAAAGH!" Between bites of her dinner, my four-year-old girl said,"Tell him I said ow. Got it!" Pride won over pain that day.

  • Pajiba_Pragmatist

    Would you have married him if he had sung "Poor Jud is dead"?

  • Kati

    Since neither of our names are Jud, and that's a slyly funny song, I'd have to say yes. It proves that he's watched the whole thing instead of going with the obvious choice.

    It also didn hurt that he had (has) a butt to die for.

  • John G.

    Hey Mrs. J, a non-Saturday, non-EE post. Congrats!

  • Rebecca H.

    I changed my major to Latin. Boom.

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