“You are geek,” Akemi informed me.

Me?  A geek?  Surely she was mistaken.  I’ve never played World of Warcraft.  I’m not technologically savvy.  And my facebook timeline isn’t one endless stream of Dr. Who-related updates.  But, upon further reflection, I can see how certain of my interests, past and present, could lead the dispassionate observer to conclude as much.

Geek?  Pseudo-geek?  Misunderstood innocent?  You decide…

1COMICS!

Like many kids, I grew up reading comic books.  Unlike many adults, however, I continue to read them.  Sure, my tastes may have changed, but still, every Wednesday I’m like a kid in a, er, comic shop.

1DUNGEONS & DRAGONS

I may have never played World of Warcraft, but I was a huge gamer when it came to its predecessor, THE role-playing game of the 80’s, D&D.  While my charming goblin thief, Delfoss Draco, ran roughshod over unwary NPC’s, my parents fretted over all that time wasted (and classes unwittingly missed).  My best friend’s folks, similarly frustrated, responded by locking up his Dungeon Master Guide and player stats in the family safe.

1SCIENCE FICTION (LITERATURE)

I was introduced to the classics by my mother who sought to foster my love for books at an early age.  While my elementary school classmates were playing hockey, I was home reading Asimov, Bradbury, and Clarke.

1SCIFI TELEVISION

Sure, looking back now the productions were mighty cheesy, but there’s something endearing about those old scifi shows that cause me to stop and watch every time I’m channel surfing.  Brain and brain. What is brain?

1SF FILM

Yes, I was a huge fan of SF films, especially the grandaddy of them all – Star Wars – which I must have seen about twenty times as a kid. When I wasn’t going to the movies, I was staying at home, catching the Saturday creature double feature that spotlighted the very best (and worst) in Hollywood scifi.  Anyone remember Battle Beyond the Stars?  The Green Slime?  Gamera?

1ANIME

What started as a practical exercise – a desire to learn Japanese AND identify some potential live-action t.v. properties – turned into a expensive, time-consuming hobby.  My anime library now boasts over 3000 titles.

1COLLECTIBLES

My crawlspace is packed full of toys, action figures and, of course, a staggering number of supervillain statues.

Hmm.  Now that I think about it, yes, I do have some Geek Cred – certainly enough to help me get by in the event I need to go undercover among them.

P.S. Luis811 – I’m not ducking your questions.  It all comes down to timing – when I decide to do a mailbag and how far back through the comments section I decide to go.  But to answer your last question: Yes, I have seen Phantasm.  And the ending did scare me as a kid.  But

46 thoughts on “April 17, 2013: Geek Cred!

  1. “Sure, my tastes may have changed, but still, every Wednesday I’m like a kid in a, er, comic shop.”

    Well duh!!
    Yes, you are a kid in a comic shop.
    Also, you are a kid in a candy store.
    You are a kid in a bakery.
    You are a kid in a restaurant.
    You are a kid with a camera.
    You are a kid in a book store.
    You are a kid in Tokyo.
    You are a kid out walking your dogs.
    You are nothing but a big kid!
    I agree with Akemi. Geeeeeek!

  2. I think you’re a special kind of geek who has the discipline to find satiety on the topics some of us get so enthusiastic over, we end up spinning our wheels and just can’t look as cool doing it.

  3. It’s okay, there’s nothing wrong with being a geek. I long ago embraced it and frankly think non-geeks are kind of lacking something. Celebrate geekdom!

  4. Erm…Joey? If you’re not tech savvy than you’re not a geek. Sorry. You are, instead, a nerd. 😀

    (No worries, you are in good company for I, too, am a nerd. Nerds are better than geeks because geeks tend to be a bit uppity and know-it-all-y…while nerds are just uptight and know-it-mostly.)

    das

  5. i’d say you are a geek. a lot of people are under the impression that “geek” only applies to people who full-on, love, collect and/or quote everything sci-fi/fantasy/comic book/game related. there are many levels of geeky-ness.

    and about anime, i hear you, my brother is into that. like the saying goes; anime. crack is cheaper. (and my brother adds; less addictive)

  6. You’re a geek… sorry!

    You have a Facebook page?? I recently found a fan page created by someone for me… CRAZY.. I may email you (unless you tell me not to) but could use some advice with all the craziness and how to deal with people who want to get a little too close and how you dealt with finding people saying stupid things about you even if you don’t know what the heck they are even talking about (does that make sense?) One of my friends found a thread on a site asking for help finding me… Oh good lord I need a break and it’s only been less then a week.

  7. Yes, you are a geek. Take pride in it. When you see the number 42, you know it’s far more than a baseball player’s number, no matter how good a player and how extra dinars a man he was.

  8. Lol, there’s nothing wrong with having a bit of geek in you, I don’t think there are any Scifi writers or producers who aren’t geeks out there. And I think in this day and age, with anime being so popular, videogames being so popular, and manga and comic books in general being mainstream in most countries, you’re not alone there. Then of course you have the Scifi fans, who love that stuff, and the people who enjoy making in it, and acting in it too 🙂

    Anyway, this Boston stuff, I hope they catch whoever did it. I still for the life of me can’t imagine why anyone would want to do such a senseless act to those poor people. I’m honestly confused, it’s so senseless. Whoever did it is evil.

  9. @das: Wait, I thought it was nerd status that required tech savviness. Wait, that’s not a word. um… tech savoir-faire. There, that’s more wordish. Regardless, either “geek” or “nerd” is a title that can be worn with pride. And Spock ears.
    – KB, who prefers “geek” but answer to either.
    P.S. So… I’ve been away from this blog for no good reason for months and now I see something about Joe moving to L.A.??? Or was that just musing?

  10. Crap. Explosion at a fertilizer plant in Waco, Texas. I assume it’s accidental, and not any sort of attack, so let’s not get crazy. Still, many homes collapsed, also part of a nursing home and possibly an apartment building. It started as a fire, and the explosion killed first responders (2 confirmed dead, but I suspect there will be many more by morning). Here’s a video of the actual explosion – it’s not graphic but it is shocking. Also, I assume that the people in the video are okay, otherwise the video would not be on youtube. I wouldn’t post it otherwise.

  11. But Joe, you *are* tech savvy. You can get photos and videos off your camera and onto a computer and edit them and post them on a blog and I’ll bet you don’t need a cheat sheet to do any of those things!

    I’ll save you a seat here in the geek row.

  12. @ sorrykb – How the heck do I know? I was making that crap up! ‘Nerd’ just sounds less cool than ‘geek’, and I’m just trying to keep Joey humble because that’s what I do here. 🙂

    das

  13. Consider me to be the “Auntie”-Geek!
    I was reading CLARKE and VERN as a very young child.
    I still remember when “Classic”-TREK was first Aired!
    I was obsessed with spending my Allowance on getting the entire BATMAN-Card collection — which, over the decades has been misplaced… aarrgghhh! – Although, I *did* get to meet Adam West in a restaurant about 12 years ago! A Lovely Man…
    Up until 2000, I think I probably had a copy of EVERY STAR TREK Novel… [I’m actually a “character” in 3 of them!]
    “Used to” have THE original ENTERPRISE & KLINGON Cruiser Models — the Cruiser was my 13th B-day prez!
    I *still* have an X-Wing Fighter Model Kit from ’77 that is still “IN the Cellophane”!!
    And, all of those various Action Figures…
    Most of a ’77 SW PRESS-KIT!!
    The “LIST” goes on… and will have to be “reviewed” when I get around to doing up my “WILL”… Now, if I can only “decide” on WHO to Leave IT all to!!

  14. oh! And I’ve been HUGGED by “MR. SPOCK” too!! — yeah. It don’t get any better than that!

  15. It’s funny, in the dorm I live in, this one individual who prides himself on being very sharp (a second year law student) found it “ridiculous” and “shocking” that I would write sci-fi. Seriously, am I not the gal on this floor who generally is watching something on “Space” (generally Stargate or Star Trek, or on Sunday my double dose of Doctor Who & Orphan Black) and generally wearing a sci-fi related piece of clothing (one of my 2 Doctor Who t-shirts, my SGU cap which is more grey than black seeing I wear it so much, or my T-Fury “Leaf (on the wind)” shirt which arrived today). I take pride in being called a geek, as it proves I’m looking at the future. Haven’t been to the comic book store lately but I have a collection back at my mum’s place, lol.

  16. Greek cred??? I think I took that class in college!
    …oh wait, you said Geek cred …yeah, I think I took that too!

  17. You’re a geek. There’s many definitions for geek. To me a geek is someone who doesn’t quite fit in with what are accepted as a social norms. That could be the kid who chooses to go to the library at lunchtime rather than play games in the playground, the teenager who spends his entire allowance on Magic The Gathering cards or the adult who spends hours building stuff in Minecraft. (That’s me! Any other Minecraft players out there?)

    Geek activities are generally associated with fantasy and sci-fi but that’s only because fantasy and sci-fi don’t fit in with social norms. I’m not sure who exactly defines what these social norms are but I’m proud to call myself a geek.

    I think Felicia Day says it best here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WUU4L0QzA0E

    And if you think you’re a geek then you should definitely subscript to the Geek and Sundry YouTube channel. Or not. Whatever.

  18. Yup…I would say you were a geek, but that isn’t a bad thing. Geeks are smart. Have you watched the Big Bang Theory?

  19. Joe – Geek Cred? I used that exact phrase when explaining to my daughter why I now have a framed poster of the Dr. Who Van Gogh painting of an exploding Tardis.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004CZAO28/ref=oh_details_o05_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I believe my phrase was “I have to maintain my geek cred” and my daughter cracked up at the notion of the existence of geek cred.

    I never got into comics, but I have 2 action figures: Captain Jean-Luc Picard and Colonel Jack O’Neill. My daughter gets the geeky stuff a bit because we used to watch Stargate together. In fact, Jack was Barbie’s boyfriend for awhile. He lived in the Dreamhouse and rode around in the pink corvette quite a bit. If you asked RDA his opinion of that, do you think he would say something along the lines of “Well, it’s nice to get out of the box occasionally I suppose.” ? ** Mailbag question **

    I never played D&D, but did play some C64 based RPG games that are similar called The Bard’s Tale 1-3. Our best character was a level 255 male dwarf paladin by the name of Bill The Cat. We named our bard Joan Jett as she was the most bad-assed female musician we could think of and we felt we should have at least one female in the crew since it was an option. We also figured she could really rock a lyre.

    As for literature, I was into a shade different stuff. Less Asimov or Heinlein and more Tolkien, Douglas Adams, Anne McCaffrey, Robert Asprin, Piers Anthony, Frank Herbert, Terry Brooks, and Madeleine L’Engle.

    Last November, a co-worker asked me why I was so into the book I was reading that I read it at lunch. I explained that The Dresden Files is about a wizard based in Chicago (where I live) and that to foil a series of bad guys, he had reanimated “Sue” from the Field Museum and was currently riding north on Michigan Avenue on a live Tyrannosaurs Rex toward Northwestern and I really want to know how this works out.

    He then asked me “What, are you some kind of Geek?” I quoted Leonard from The Big Bang Theory when he and Penny were pretending to have just met and she asked the same question, by responding “Some kind of geek? I’m King of the geeks.”

    Like I tell my daughter, whatever you are, own it.

  20. I think DnD officially secured you in your geek coffin. And there were plenty more nails to come after that… 🙂

  21. Geek indeed.

    I began with Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, when I was ten. I’m geeky, but like you my gaming was D&D, and not any of the online stuff. First person POV games make me queasy, like motion sickness. But oh yes to the rest, except anime, which never really grabbed me. The “guest bedroom” is lined with action figures on the walls, although my collection is rather spotty and includes Dr. Frank-n-furter and RiffRaff.

    Thinkgeek.com is my go to gift source.

    San Francisco, most assuredly.

  22. Joe, I think you have plenty of geek cred. Those are all activities I usually associate with geeks. And I’ve done them too. So, I guess I’m a geek right along with you. 🙂

    Have a great day!

  23. Revel in your Geekdom, Joe. Many of my newer friends find it funny that I’m a “geek”. For perspective, I’m just under 6′ tall, 230lbs, shaved head, tattoo sleeves. I’m into 4 wheeling, hunting, guns, BBQ and turning wrenches. You know, a “guy’s guy”.

    But if you walk into my house you’ll see 6 Master Replica’s light sabers, a framed piece of the original canvas Iris from SG-1, a framed resin Apophis crate marker from SG-1, a framed resin Gate replica that I crafted and painted myself, and a bad-ass collection of Blu-Ray movies ranging from the complete Lord of the Rings and Alien, to Star Wars, Stargate and Star Trek. And that’s just in the living room.

    You and I are about the same age, so we grew up with it. It’s something that was kind of unique to our generation. I still remember seeing Star Wars in the theater for the first time when I was 7. And vaguely remember the next 7-8 times.

    I just started reading comics again about a year ago. Albeit more of the horror variety: The Walking Dead, Crossed.

    It’s absolutely AWESOME being a geek. And I make no apologies for it. =)

  24. Joe I was just looking at last years Akemi bd post, and man, that was so awesome, so I am looking forward to what you have ‘cooked’ up this year, and I bet Akemi is also.
    ~ and thinking about your collections, how can you move with so much terrific stuff, storage, moving pods, wow, makes my head hurt thinking about it. and yard sale is probably not the way to go.
    So on the geek thing, yep I reckon you are one, and a cool one. I grew up Star Trek, Star Wars, some comics, read a lot of books, so maybe I am only part geek, but its fun and makes me happy, so a good thing.!
    @line noise, thanks for the link, I miss the show Eureka. Felicia is funny.

  25. @das

    This Venn diagram should clear things up.

    http://www.greatwhitesnark.com/2010/03/25/difference-between-nerd-dork-and-geek-explained-in-a-venn-diagram/

    Science fiction isn’t even a common factor, just a common tendency. I’ve known people whose obsessions were antiques or children’s books or politics or re-enactments. The proof was in the degree they were willing to define enthusiasm for themselves, not based on what’s popular. Except be careful with the politics one, sometimes they’re just jerks.

    For small children, it’s harder to be sure how their traits will play out upon maturity, so below I have provided a way to more clinically assess their appreciation for an independent perspective.

    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/832171.Dr_Xargle_s_Book_of_Earthlets

  26. @Line Noise, I’m addicted to Geek and Sundry’s channel; my new fave on it is Space Janitors.

    Cowboy Bebop remains my all time fave TV show. I don’t read comics like I did as a kid, but my dad loved comics all his life.

    I’m loving Defiance as well and I hope it lasts, its nice to see aliens on TV again.

  27. @ DP – Well, that certainly does clear things up – I am definitely a nerd (I would have been a geek but it doesn’t include social ineptitude). I thnk my nerdiness is stronger on the obsession side than on the intelligence side, though. 😛

    shinyhula – I really enjoyed Defiance, too, but I fear all the guys I liked in the first ep won’t survive to the end of the series. One hottie is dead already. Oh well…I suppose I should learn to watch tv for something other than sexy guys. 😛

    das

  28. We in the U.S. are going through some hard time’s right now. Thank you all for your support.

  29. On the fringes of geekdom, like me. Speaking of old horror movies, have you ever seen ‘The Creeping Terror’? It’s made even more cheesy by the fact that the sound editor, in fit of anger at the production company, erased half the dialog that was recorded. They fixed it by adding in narration. The monster looks like a brocade rug with sweeper hoses attached to it! I love that movie:)

  30. There’s an unseen spaz-axis to the nerd-dork-geek-dweeb Venn diagram.

    Adding anxiety into the mix can turn obsession born out of fascination into being too afraid to look away to live the rest of the life normally. And that might not even mean the world is scarier than the obsession. If the boogeyman was standing in front of you, the only thing scarier than looking at him would be losing sight of him.

    I just had to order my son off of Minecraft to take advantage of rare kite-flying weather. That may seem like a no-brainer, but there are times where forcing him to look at the rest of the world can exacerbate his anxiety too much and make the problem even worse. Sometimes the answer isn’t to force him away from it. And, yeah, that’s not a solution at all, that’s why it’s dysfunctional.

  31. Joe you’re an otaku with multiple topics interests so you’re a geek. Your secret is safe with us. 😀

  32. One of my vets, who always seems very reserved and quiet came over one day and we were walking/talking about stuff, when she followed me into my closet. All of a sudden, she squealed, totally in awe, and said “Deni, you have a REAL bat’leth? That is so cool!” Never knew she was a closet geek/nerd. We’re everywhere… 🙂

  33. @Joe:

    It certainly seems that the definition of geek has changed since I was in high school (where geek and nerd were considered synonymous) and in it’s earlier meaning I resisted being called a geek because I felt it didn’t describe me (my interests were too broad and I wasn’t socially inept as far as I know 😉 ). Mostly the people who wanted to label me a geek did so only because of my interest in engineering and not much else.

    I think DP’s Venn diagram helps, so now maybe I am a geek but not a nerd?

    @sylvia

    Thanks! I’d put up a blush emoticon if I knew how!

    @Das:

    If I was a spy, I wouldn’t be able to tell you, but it would explain my frequent international travel 😉

  34. @dasndanger

    That explosion thing is crazy, those poor people. Glad a lot of people managed to get out of there alive at least, here’s hoping they make a full recovery, and my heart goes out to the families of the deceased.

    What’s crazier though was the people stood there in the general area filming the fire before the thing literally went Boom majorly. I think in that situation, if you can’t help anyone, if you’re in the general area as a citizen you should run the opposite direction not film. Those explosions are deadly :/

    @General comment here

    In general I usually just associate Geeky and Nerdy under the same umbrella lol.. Sorry if my comment made no sense to some.

  35. I’m a geek, you’re a geek, hell we all are. Embrace Your Geekness Day is July 13, 2013. Put it on your geek calendar.

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