There was a time, when being a nerd was not cool at all. These days, it seems like being a “nerd” or a “geek” is pretty socially acceptable. My whole life I’ve pretty much been a nerd of some sort, and while there were times when it made life hard… but mostly I am glad for it.
I think most people in the social media space, or bloggers, consider themselves to be nerds of some sort… I mean writing about yourself on the internet was pretty nerdy at one time! With Facebook, Twitter, etc… I think it is safe to say that it’s mainstream now.
There are many different kinds of nerds…
Computer Nerds: Programming geeks, internet geeks, forum geeks, hardware geeks etc…
Social Media Nerds: Bloggers, Facebook power users, Twits, Dating-site geeks, the social media nerds that join every social networking site…
Music Nerds: Piano geeks, musical geeks, musical theatre geeks, composers, DJs etc…
MacGyver Nerds: DIYers, LEGO geeks, Robotics geeks, A/V geeks, etc…
“Fandom” Nerds: Sports geeks, WoW guild members, Twi Hards, Star Wars geeks, Trekkies, etc…
Gaming Nerds: Board game geeks, Xbox, Playstation, PC… you name it…
Academic Nerds: Book nerds, Smart geeks, PhDers… etc…
I think I’ve been a geek in just about every category there at some point in my life… I’m not really embarrassed of it anymore, but let’s face it… it used to be hard to be a nerd!
So, this blog post is for all the nerds out there! I want to explore some of my nerdy past, and I hope you share yours with me
Let’s start backwards with those categories.
I’ve always been an Academic Nerd. When I was younger, I used to read a book a day. I spent most of my days in the school library. I was a Librarian’s Assistant at one point, haha. I still love reading even though I don’t have as much time for it anymore. I cared a lot about school. I studied a lot. I got straight As. I was made fun of in elementary school and high school like most nerds. I graduated from university with an Honours Business Administration degree from Ivey at Western. I generally preferred studying to partying.
I love Science World, the Planetarium, the Aquarium… anything science-y and geeky!
I played innertube waterpolo in university. Haha!
I’ve always been a Gaming Nerd. When I was little I used to play Pacman and Hangman on my old 486 computer. I played King’s Quest, Monkey Island, and all the old Sierra Adventure games. I played Math Blaster.
Eventually, I got an Xbox, and then an Xbox 360. I was part of an Xbox gaming clan for many years. Yes, I even went to Xbox gaming conventions. I pretty much played my Xbox 360 all through university, even when we’d have parties over at our place.
I love all kinds of games. Fighting games, shooters, music games, MMOs, RTS… you name it. The game I’m looking forward to most right now is Gears of War 3. I worked in the video game industry for several years.
I even got into shooting rifles because I loved gaming so much. No, not at animals or people. Just targets.
I love trivia games. I pretty much live for Cranium.
I dressed up as “Cortana” from Halo for Halloween.
I’m a bit of a “Fandom” Nerd too. I’m a big Twilight fan (a “Twi Hard”)… I set stalked, I blogged about it, I read Twilight sites every evening.
It’s no secret that I’ve been a huge Canucks fan since I was little.
I’m a bit of a Star Wars geek. I own Star Wars LEGO. I decorated our kitchen in university with Star Wars comic books.
Yes, I even visited the Star Wars store in Aberdeen, Washington. I think the store owner’s Carrie Fisher tattoo is pretty rad.
I thought getting a Star Wars 3D puzzle for Christmas was awesome.
I’m a bit of a MacGyver Nerd. When I was little, my dad cut the telephone line to our modem in my room because I surfing the internet too much. I found his soldering iron in the garage and I soldered all the wires back together and got on the internet again.
I used to patch cables from my computer to an old TV and an old VCR to do old school video editing. Yes, I was even part of the Robotics club in high school. And yeah, I loved the LEGO Mindstorms kits and frequently built robots with my little brother.
Believe it or not, I was also kind of a Music Nerd. I played piano and went to piano theory classes. I got up to Grade 7 RCM in piano. I kinda hated it though. I was a big Musical Theatre geek too. I played dress up. I played silly roles for musicals in high school. I was a geek.
I consider myself to be a bit of a Social Media Nerd. I started a home grown blog (no WordPress or anything like that back then) in 1998 when I was 14 and had my own photo blog for several years! I had a 6-digit ICQ number. I met my first boyfriend in a Yahoo! chat room when I was 12. That was kind of awkward. I still use IRC, and of course I’m on the mainstream social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr etc. I’m not as much of a power user anymore, but it’s still fun.
And last, but not least, I am definitely still a big Computer Nerd. My computer is still my most valued material possession in my life. Here’s a shot of the old computer I built when I was younger. I had a blast going and getting all the parts and putting it together myself. I still build my own computers (I need a picture of my new one!).
I buy shirts off ThinkGeek. Yeah, I have a “No, I will not fix your computer” shirt.
When I went to university, I actually hand-packed my hard drives for my carry-on so I could bring my desktop computer, instead of buying a computer on the East Coast or getting one of those new-fangled laptops
I thought visiting Microsoft was the coolest day of my life. Bill Gates is my hero.
I drove all the way to Portland to pick up a Zune when it launched! I love my Blackberry, and I own a ton of different gadgets and techie tools. I even owned a Palm LifeDrive at one point… haha. I’ve gone through 4 different sets of the Logitech diNovo Keyboard/Media Pad.
I usually have 25+ tabs open in my Firefox. I love video editing. I love PhotoShop. I used to design and build webpages and graphics for money. I used to FXP and I still FTP. I’ve been a member of several internet forums since I was 12 years old.
I’m a bit of a photography nerd too.
I met people from internet forums when I was only 14 years old. I still meet people from the internet and internet forums. Hopefully I get to meet all of you soon too!
Phew! That post turned out longer than I meant it to. Guess I’m a bit geekier than I thought. I’m sure most of you reading this are pretty geeky yourselves. As you know, it can be hard, especially when growing up. But these days I think it’s easier to be a nerd and easier to be proud of it!
I’ve had my lunch stomped on, I’ve had people break my glasses, I’ve been called four-eyes, I’ve been called a bookworm, and I’ve definitely been made fun of for all my nerdy things throughout my life. I’m sure most of you can relate… it just makes us stronger! While I’ve had my share of self-esteem issues because of it… today, I feel very comfortable and strong in my own skin. I’m really thankful for all of those experiences growing up.
So let’s celebrate our nerdiness! Who else is a nerd? What kind of nerd are you? Please share your story!