Geeks, nerds and women
Ok, badMike, in addition to accusing me of lusting for Janeane Garofalo, suggested that she was the ideal girl for a nerd.
Well, the first simply isn't true, but I appreciate brunettes.
But I want to discuss the second in some detail.
First, if anything, a woman like Janeane Garofalo would appeal to geeks, not nerds. Why?
Well, the difference between geeks and nerds are worldiness. Geeks like odd, hip things, like Steve Earle, manga and Lupin the Third on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. They cackle at Sealab 2120 and love Aqua Teen Hunger Force. They wear soccer jerseys and build computers and appreciate sushi. I would be, by most definitions, a geek.
Nerds think chess is a great way to spend the day. They have collections of Isaac Asimov and Piers Anthony and think D&D is better when you dress up.
Geeks want partners, nerds want to be worshiped.
Take programmers. A lot of them, not all, have real issues with geek girls because they challenge them. Because they're not geeks, but nerds. Their world centers around them. They don't care about the outside world and get all moody when challenges. Nerds redefine passive agressive into an art form. They have been raised to have people fall at their feet for their intellect. Intelligence isn't a good thing, it's the only thing.
Simply put, a nerd would no more date Janeane than watch a football game in a bar. She would never make the cut. Because nerds want women who cannot challenge them, who are deferential to them, who accept their world view and wacky ideas. They may be the most lookist people on earth. Don't bother with intellect or humor. A nerd wants a beautiful woman who isn't going to play his games and compete with him. Even if they are the goofiest fuckers in the room, they are going after with either the mousiest woman in the room or the most beautiful one. Not that she would date them, but that is what they feel they deserve.
Geeks, OTOH, like smart funny women. They aren't totally threatened by someone who likes to mock soap operas and read comics.
The thing about geek girls and women is that they ARE smart, they are funny and oddly enough, tend to really like to be girlish. They're really secure in their feminity in a surprising way.
OK, if you haven't guessed, my partner on the site, Jen, would qualify as a geek woman. The wicked intelligence, the interest in odd things and the girlishness. Now, I freely admit that the one time she caught me short was her deep interest in Medieval warfare. We were at a book club meeting, and she went on about medival warfare and I was, well, stunned stupid. Not threatened, not mortified, just surprised. I never though people were interested in that kind of stuff outside wargamers. Then there was the deer hunting game, but that's another story.
Anyway, the fact is that geek women are empowered women, both with clothes on and off. They're really interested in their own sexuality and their own feminine appeal. It's not like they want to be one of the boys. They're as good as the boys, but they still sneak off to Lush and Sephora. They're smart all the way around.
Now, the last thing a nerd wants is an empowered woman. It's hard enough dealing with his peers, he cannot handle the demands a geek girl would make in his life. He can try, but in the end, his inner dick comes out and he has to assert his always threatened manhood.
While nerds want to be worshiped, geeks live to be understood.
If you've ever seen Ghost World, then you'll get that. Geeks want people who understand them, or at least their passions. The kind of people who watch a truly atrocious movie and laugh at the screen. They want people who will figure them out, not worship them.
So no, Janeane is not the kind of woman a nerd could get, or even want. He's thinking about how much better life would be if Tera Patrick was his wife or if he could just convince Charlize Theron to dump her latest boyfriend.
posted by Steve @ 1:22:00 AM