As the bandwagon rumbles past, I feel I am reasonably entitled to jump on board, snuggle into a corner and pull a (probably flea-ridden) blanket up around my knees. As we bounce down a road that hasn’t even heard of the concept of surfacing, I am jolted into a blog-posty state.
Along with many other of my comrades-in-arms across the world, I have decided to join in with the concept of Speak Out With Your Geek Out.
So, let’s begin with first principles. The definition of ‘geek’ as per the Internet. And believe you me, it’s worth it.
I’ve always remembered that.
Back to the definition:
2.a peculiar or otherwise dislikable person, especially one who is perceived to be overly intellectual.
Where is this notion that geeks (or nerds, but again, we’ll come to them) have to be peculiar or dislikable, just because they’re computer enthusiasts or experts? Christ on a motorbike, I think that people who obsess over the football are peculiar and/or frequently dislikable, but I bet they wouldn’t like it if they were called geeks. Although the worst ones aren’t generally perceived to be overly intellectual either.
Also, what the fuck does ‘overly’ intellectual mean? My cats are more intellectual than a sandwich (although that may be arguable). From the sandwich’s point of view, does that make the cats ‘overly’ intellectual? Surely ‘overly’ is relative?
Back to the definition – and this one is my personal favourite.
3. a carnival performer who performs sensationally morbid or disgusting acts, as biting off the head of a live chicken.
So in summary, a ‘geek’ is an overly intellectual, peculiar, dislikable person who is a computer enthusiast (or expert) – at least when they’re not biting the heads off random poultry. I’m glad we sorted that out. Another mystery solved!
This bit’s really interesting though, ‘cos it’s all about the etymology. Not entomolgy, because that’d, like, be about bees and shit. Or bee shit. Or, whatever.
1915- 20; probably variant of geck (mainly Scots ) fool < Dutch or Low German gek
To summarise the summary, a ‘geek’ is an foolish, overly intellectual, peculiar, dislikable person who is a computer enthusiast (or expert) – at least when they’re not biting the heads off random poultry.
My, I’m glad I don’t know anybody like that. Wait. Nearly all my friends are like that! And please note. FRIENDS. I have them. THEY have them. We all have friends. So listen, kids. ‘Geek’ is just a label. But don’t think you can save yourself from the chicken liberation front by changing it to ‘nerd’. That’s even worse. Look at this:
So now, not only are you the Clever Terror of the Barnyard, but you’re ugly to go with it.
‘Nerd’ is probably the better choice for people with keen interests in their hobby, but I find it interesting that the definitions are presented that way round. When someone says the word ‘nerd ‘ (hey! That rhymes!) to me, I think of someone who’s mad-keen on something they really enjoy. When I hear the word ‘geek’, I think of someone who’s bloody clever and maybe a bit socially awkward – but not necessarily the kind of person you don’t dare talk to for fear of them spitting feathers at you. Literally.
AS I FAIL AT BEING EITHER A GEEK OR A NERD, THE FORMATTING IN THIS POST WENT A BIT MAD. AND YOU KNOW WHAT? I JUST DON’T CARE.