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Blog Posted in avatar   Gavin Harvey's Blog

8 reasons why nerds will rule the world

By Gavin Harvey
Posted Jan 21, 2013 in Entertainment
A while back, us nerds of the world were given a hard time. We were the ones who had glasses, bad acne, and spent the weekends on our own in our Buffy-postered rooms, playing Dungeons and Dragons and obsessively watching all the special edition bits from the Star Wars reissues.
In other words, we were outcasts, social lepers; destined, it seemed, for a life of mockery, public humiliation and bullying.
Well, the tide has a unique and interesting way of turning, my friends. And whilst one definition of nerd is a “foolish or contemptible person who lacks social skills”, another is “an intelligent, single minded expert”, and never has nerdy chic been more popular than now!
No longer are we picked on; we’ve been given our own modern makeover – we’re socially acceptable (although that was never our intention). In some circles, we’re positively revered.
So here I fly the flag for the nerds of the world and offer you eight good reasons why it’s cool to be a nerd in the 21st century.
Nothing To Prove
I’ve always maintained that the most dangerous people are on the planet are the ones who think they’ve got something to prove. Usually it’s ill-founded, self-deluding, rooted in insecurity, and inevitably very dangerous – to themselves and to others.
How else can you account for the cornucopia of perma-tanned creatures of TOWIE and Geordie Shore? Nerds have nothing to prove to anybody. If one wants to listen or learn, we’re quite happy to share our knowledge or enthusiasms. Otherwise it’s live and let live.
It’s Not About Image
Ironically, the nerd concept is one that has manifested an image of its own that is being adopted by people who want to appear nerdier – particularly the de rigeur nerd glasses, implying a kind of quirky, socially awkard, outcast aesthetic. Well, or ‘geek chic’ as the fashionistas call it.
But despite the pillaging of this look, the real heart and soul of being a nerd isn’t about trying to ‘look’ any particular way at all. It’s not about the way you look, it’s about the way you are, how you communicate and how you live your life, without any sartorial limitations or expectations. Take it or leave it.
No Trouble
A brief stroll and cursory glance at your local town centre on a Friday or Saturday night will tell you all you need to know. Rarely do brawls or kicking-out time altercations involve a Klingon-spouting, lightsaber carrying Dr Who fan. I rest my case.
This is perhaps the one stereotype about nerds that generally does hold up – but as far as stereotypes go, it’s not a bad one, is it? We don’t just have an aptitude for remembering the plot inconsistencies of Dr Who episodes, you know. We’re intelligent people because we pay attention at school, go on to get degrees, read a lot, go to galleries and exhibitions, and watch plenty of intellectually stimulating TV programmes and films.
We’re Rich
A skim through some of the most successful and richest business men of all time shows that geekdom reaps its own rewards. Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg are just two examples of how those formative years of being a young outcast can sometimes lead to global domination on a Bond-villain scale. And money. Lots and lots of money. And, if you’ll excuse the superficial materialist in me, who doesn’t want a piece of that?
We Never Forget
Nerds have got excellent memories – and we’re not just talking about remembering how to reconfigure your hard drive or the labyrinthine plot points of Dune. Because we’re quite disciplined by nature, we have very organised and methodical brains and have no problem remembering engagements, birthdays, anniversaries or important dates. If we say we’ll be somewhere, we’ll be there.
We’re Confident
We might not possess the most graceful or tactful social skills in the world but, despite popular belief, we’re generally pretty confident with ourselves. Most of us are intelligent, knowledgeable, hard-working individuals with a quiet, unassuming self-belief and assurance. Our image belies our inner confidence.
Sci-fi Is Cool
Once resigned to wobbly sets, incomprehensible jargon, those pastie-headed Klingon types, and costume-clad conventions, sci-fi has acquired a cultural status that is now almost as nerdy as nerds used to be. Games of Thrones, the new Star Trek movies, graphic novels – they’re no longer just for the fan boys sporting plastic swords and towels doubling as cloaks. Sci-fi has entered the social spectrum in a big, very un-nerd like way.
So whilst we nerds might not know much about the latest clothing fashions, top-40 hits and contemporary dining furniture trends, we’ve still many great and enviable attributes that will ultimately make the world a better place.
Are you a self-professed, loud and proud nerd and how do you think we’re having a positive effect on the world?

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