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June 13, 2012

It’s Chic to Be a Geek

by Logan Fleck

Do you remember those iconic films and tv shows that often depicted nerds being plagued by ritual and undiverting humiliation? Not too long ago, it was common belief that a nerd’s day would consist of tightie-whitie wedgies during history exams, 3pm “after-school meetings” (we mean the dreaded ones at the playground that almost always ended with a black eye),  and swirlies (aka shower by toilet bowl cleaner). For a long time, nerds (in one way or another), had it pretty damn rough. Just ask the George McFlys’ and Steve Urkels’ of the world, they’ll tell you!

It used to be that those super tech savvy guys – you know the ones constantly hunched over in front of their computer and who only showed the slightest expression on their face when they finally broke the code they’d been obsessing over for 7 hours – were typically presumed to have little to no social skills, not a lot of friends, and very little sexual experience. However, in recent years many of those nameless zit-faced kids have grown up to become revolutionary icons. Do the names Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, or Bill Gates ring a bell? Not only have these guys become sickly rich and ridiculously famous in their adult lives by being technological pioneers, they’re also really really really big nerds. But, thanks to blokes like Steve Jobs for transforming the way we go about our ordinary lives, because the tables have finally turned and geek is now chic.

No longer is obsession with technology just a nerd pastime and no longer are gadgets, gizmos and all the widgets in between just means to an end. On the contrary, technology (and all the nerds that build them) have ultimately become the driving force behind modern innovation and the shaping of our cultural psyche.

While they may wear high water pants, play Dungeons and Dragons, constantly take things apart and put them back together, and get bashful when speaking to others (and this does not include talking through an earpiece to their Warcraft teammates), don’t ever underestimate the power of a nerd because ultimately they hold ALL the cards. Just imagine how boring our future world would be if it was void of teleportation, time travel, robots, hoverboards, and an elevator to the moon! Nerds, in every form, are essential for the earth to go round. Because without the coders, the hackers, the gamers, the robotics engineers, the astronomers, the chemists, the biologists, and so on, you could just kiss goodbye all those awesome things that the scifi books and movies promised us! Umm… Did I mention this also includes a cure for cancer?