How do you express your geekery? Do you own obvious paraphernalia like a Horde-symbol bumper sticker, in-joke tshirts like the dps/ups pun, or less obviously related items like a gift from a guildie? Rather than physical indicators, do you mix nerd lingo into your everyday speech or talk/post about geekdom in non-nerd spaces? How do you advertise your nerd tendencies? Does it help you to attract new nerd friends?
The title of this post really is a misnomer. I don't have an inner geek. I have an outer geek. I have geek written all over me, and I have to say I am not ashamed to show it. But what exactly defines a geek?
|I think the pi and number plate says all. No this is NOT my car. Image from Wikipedia|
|But this number plate is damn funny. Image from Wowphiles.com|
The word geek is a slang term, with different meanings ranging from "a computer expert or enthusiast" to "a carnival performer who performs sensationally morbid or disgusting acts", with a general pejorative meaning of "a peculiar or otherwise dislikable person, esp[ecially] one who is perceived to be overly intellectual".
So I'm a computer games enthusiast, trekkie and sci fi nut, all of which classify as geek. I'm going to talk about how I show my World of Warcraft geekiness.
So do I own any World of Warcraft Paraphernalia? Well, I have a horde T-shirt. I wear it to work a lot and I wear it out. In fact, for guild meetups I wear my horde T-shirt. Hmm. I don't seem to have any pictures of it. If I wear it to work, nobody really notices it anyway, since I have to change clothes at work. I do consciously wear it out when I go pickup my WoW expansions when they release it at midnight - not that anyone has ever come up to me while we're all lining up for our copy of Cataclysm/WotLK/BC but just in case they did... at least they know not to ask me if I'm a Nelf hunter.
And what are children if not extensions of ourselves, right? When my children were younger, I dressed them proudly in this:
And Lacrox gave me the plushies as a gift. Nawwwwww. He kept the pets, he had no use for useless stuffed toys. Erika calls them lion and birdie.
At work, I openly talk about World of Warcraft. People at work play it, and I even logon at work sometimes and play (hey, it's more productive than reading the paper or playing the stock market IMO). Everyone at work knows I play. Usually it's associated with some eye-rolling, but everyone just takes it in stride I think. After all, before WoW, I used to talk about Star Trek and all my Star Wars Lego. But we're not talking about that kind of nerd stuff today.. back to WoW. In terms of everyday language, I have been known to accidentally let slip certain things which sometimes people go "Huh?"
- I often speak emotes. I say "slash cry" or "slash sigh" when I'm disappointed in something at work. Oops.
- I have been known to point at the clock and say "Oh look it's 13:37!" People ask me what's so important about that time? I just say "Oh.. nothing...."
- I say "W00t!" a lot. But I think people seem to know that's a kind of "Yay"... I wonder if they really know that it's short for "Wow, loot!" from D&D
But I do talk about WoW with WoW playing colleagues a lot. Yuda/Bladewind, who works with me, often gets accosted by me in corridors or at lunch and we sit down and talk WoW stuff. People listen to us talking and often say it's like we're talking a whole different language - raiding, tanking, spec, DPS, boss fights ... I can understand why people just go "Say what?" when they try to listen to us talking. In terms of attracting new nerd friends... I think because people know I play, other people who play come up to me and ask me about it, especially if they play. I've never had someone come up to me in the street while I'm in nerd gear and ask me about anything, but I have often wondered if I heard someone talking while I'm out about something in World of Warcraft, like raiding, would I stop and ask them if they play Alliance or Horde? Or whether they've done Heroic Zon'ozz? Maybe... but I'm not sure.
So one last geek thing - not WoW related. I do have this shirt. Maybe not the bust that goes with it, but I wear this around the house mostly. Otaku (おたく) means "geek" in Japanese, and Onna Otaku is "girl geek".
So I'm proud of my geek. I think it defines me. But wow, if I had boobs that could fill out that top, I think I'd give geeks a good name everywhere.