so: nerds and how I hate them (or at least hate Nerd Culture) and why. I hate recounting specific events in my personal life, but I hate being pass-ag and vague worse, and the thing I hate the most is not blurting out what I’m thinking to the entire internet, so let’s roll out some necessary context.
you know Teen Movie Script 3B where the teen girl realises the cool people are dickheads, stops trying to fit in with them, and accepts her true home with the geeks and her new geek boyfriend who’s loved her all along? ditching the plastics for the mathletes and then HAPPINESS, ACCEPTANCE.
can we make the opposite movie? because my high school life got so much better when I got frozen out by my douchey misogynist male nerdy friends (after I started dating someone in their social network and standing up for “vacuous sluts”, i.e. became impossible to parse as an honorary dude) and began prioritising my (already present) friendships with a bunch of popular, pretty, fashionable girls, most of whom went on to go to some form of art school and become well connected in various hip social networks. these friendships were really supportive and good for me in a time when I was pretty fucked up (not because of social drama but for other reasons). the interesting thing is that these girls were whip-smart as well as anything else, and also hung out with nerds to start off with in our early teens, but got sick of being constantly harassed and objectified and patronised by nerd boys. later, when I was eighteen and nineteen, they came with me to feminist events that I wanted to go to and told me they were proud of me when I started organising that shit and supported me in a million other ways, instead of, say, challenging me to give valid, current, and rigorously documented examples of “real” sexism. I still see these women sometimes. some I’m still friends with and some I’ve grown apart from, but they’re all awesome.
girls can be awful to each other but I eventually made peace with almost all the girls in my year, even girls who were very different to me. and I didn’t consider myself a feminist per se, it wasn’t some kind of big project, it just happened. this thing that all girls are always involved in complex psychological status anxiety warfare with one another and boys are bewildered on the sidelines is arrant nonsense.
if you were to say “ourcatastrophe is it possible you only felt comfortable in this social circle because you were at that time thin, fashionable, and basically conventionally attractive?” I would have to concede that I don’t know but I’d add that there was more body diversity and general acceptance of difference than you might think. but if you were to say “ourcatastrophe you are conflating issues, it’s not that you ditched the nerds, it’s that you started learning to prioritise friendships with women” then I would respond: you miss the point, which is that nerd culture is bro-centric as hell, and even if this was not your personal experience you have to admit it is certainly not inherently pro-lady.
what I’m trying to say here is that I am an inherently nerdy (i.e. obsessive, withdrawn, arrogant, science-fiction-loving) girl who found liberation not through embracing that but through expanding my interests and being amenable to changing myself and learning to respect people with different priorities and lifestyles and personal style. to not condemn cool things as vacuous or not my concern but to withhold judgement and give it a go. I think that’s actually, fortunately, a very common experience, just one that’s rarely represented well. I didn’t lose any part of myself through relaxing my intellectual superiority complex and rigidly puritanical sense of authenticity and I doubt that anyone ever will.