So, today… I have a bit of a confession to make. Are you ready? *Takes a deep breath* I’m a nerd! There! I said it! Man, that feels good to get that off my chest. I love Battlestar Galactica… and Catan and Digimon and Beast Wars and Disney movies and comic books and the Marvel Universe and… oh man, if you ever have a question about X-Men, talk to this guy. I can literally tell you anything and everything about X-Men that you ever wanted to know! And yes, they did butcher the third movie in that franchise (even though it was entertaining)…
But I’m getting way off topic in my own nerdy-imaginings, so more-to-the-point! I also love sports (I swam competitively for a good decade, I love watching and playing hockey, baseball, curling, golf, you name it!), music (Rock and Top 40!), partying and shopping and… ok, so maybe we’ve all grown up and developed a little beyond the parameters of our grade- and high-school counter personalities and their restricted boundaries.
But let’s think about this chronologically shall we? In elementary school, particularly in the younger grades, no one really cared about intelligence. Everyone mainly cared about girls having cooties and avoiding having to be a partner with that one kid who always smelled like soup. Taking a big step forward to those “middle-school” years though, popularity really starts to become more of an issue and our concept of a social hierarchy begins to establish. You were either one of the cool kids or you were a friend to one of the cool kids. In fact, It was around the time of grade 5 or 6 that I remember Pokemon becoming “uncool” to watch or play… I think I will come back to this issue later on.
So with our sense of social hierarchies established, we also begin to come into our own; we develop personalities and intelligences which are slowly becoming separate from that of our friends and much of the social order is tossed into upheaval! You get to high-school and your ex-best-friend is now your enemy! Chicks become sluts, dudes become douchy “bros” and everyone sort of carves out a niche for themselves for the next 4 years.
But what does this have to do with nerds? Well, once graduation hit, we all (well, most of us) travelled out into the world to become doctors and astronauts and scientists and… English majors. University, College, hell, even the army for some. But let me show you a little mathematical equation below of how I see the progression from high-school to, well, after-high-school:
Nerds & “Uncool” People = they went to College & University
“Cool” People = they went… well, nowhere.
(and yes, I do know that there are always exceptions to the rule)
Pretty simple, eh? I mean, have you noticed (and this is speaking from a University experience of course) how many “nerds” are actually at university? Except the best part is that “nerds” have now become the new “cool” people! Remember those guys and gals in your first year residence who drank all night, slept all day and never went to class… only to wake in your 2nd year or even 2nd semester to find them long gone?! It’s because they weren’t nerdy enough! They were those “cool” high-schoolers that thought they could continue their prom-king-football-jock status right into university. It didn’t quite work out for them like they planned though.
Pokemon, Digimon, card games, board games, philosophical talks, Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, all-nighters (which don’t involve alcohol), Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys, memes, musical theatre, volunteering, Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings marathons, going to class, reading, writing, frigging exercising! This is but a short list of the extensive nerd-like items which have become cool since university! And, in fact, we’re so cool now that we’ve even turned some, if not all of these, into fracking drinking games! If you have not played Dratan (aka “The Settlers of Ireland”) then you haven’t lived!!! (That, by the way, is a combination of the lovely board-game Catan, with the Kings drinking game… it’s really simple to make, ask me if you want to know how!)
I also said I would get back to Pokemon, but let’s be honest, the minute I said it, you all thought: “Man, I was just playing Pokemon Yellow on my Emulator this morning!” It has become popular again and we don’t have to worry about what the cool kids think! You know why? Because we are the cool kids now. In fact, we’re something better — something more — than the “previous” cool kids. That’s because we’re going to go out and change the world! We’re future scholars, doctors, astronauts, cowboys, scientists, vets, economists, etc etc etc. and we can still say that we <3 Pokemon!
And of course, we’ve also shattered those lovely little boxes that people like to place their peers in. You’re either a popular kid or a jock or a nerd or a… Stop! After four years of university, I’ve discovered that you can be the popular kid AND the jock AND the nerd AND the sexy cheerleader, all rolled into one!
So to all my lovely friends, I say this: embrace your exceptionally-nerd-tastic self and let your inner-Power-Ranger show (did you see what I did there? did you?)!! So for now, I will leave you all with a lovely little quote that I found on the internet… I expect that if you are a nerd, like myself, you will fully appreciate its value.
“My Pokemon brings all the nerds to the yard, and they’re like, you wanna trade cards? Darn right, I wanna trade cards. I’ll trade this… but not my Charizard!”