I spent many years thinking that I was different from others, mostly because very few seemed to share the same interests that I did. This was a time pre-Internet where the lot of the geek was to go out and find like-minded individuals (against the Geek Code article VII/b – “Thou shall not be inclined to meet new people”) or accept a life on hobby-solitude.
I could be a collector of ‘something’ as long as it was Panini stickers of footballers, and if I had an encyclopedic knowledge of any TV show there would be no outlet other than the odd question on a quiz. I could be obsessed by Jurassic Park but that was because of the dinosaurs rather than the exciting (if somewhat flawed) science behind it.
Until recently being a geek was being an outsider, all geeks felt like this until a few geeks decided that if they wanted a way of getting in touch with other geeks they would need to find their own way to do so.
It would need a medium that would not require physical contact, have a screen that could lighten a darkened room and be understandable and exploitable only by the geeks who built it. And so, as according to the Gospel of Geek, there was the time of darkness and then there was the word and the word was “screeeeeeeee-screech-screeeee-screeeeeeeech” and the internet was born.
Since that time being the outsider was now part of the inside track. It is more likely know that someone will proudly acclaim their geek credentials to be seen as part of the cool gang (although using the term cool gang is a one way ticket to said gang exclusion). Now when you hear someone calling themselves an ‘outsider’ it is most likely to be a white rich guy trying to act like having some vintage opinions puts himself outside of more modern thinking.
It is as though the promise that the ‘Geek shall inherit’ has brought in the nerd from the cold. No longer the outsider the geek is very much at the forefront of today’s world.
Tell us about the experience of being outside, looking in — however you’d like to interpret that.
Source: The Outsiders | The Daily Post