Picking at the bloated carcass of geek culture...occasionally!!!

Geek youth

In Uncategorized on September 10, 2009 at 3:43 pm

Sorry I’ve been away.  This blog has been a whole lot less daily than it should be.  My apologies for those whom count on it for 2-3 minutes of wasted time a day.  I have been busy with a new demanding endeavor: student teaching.  I’ve been starting early, going all day, then preparing for the next most of the evening.  Any other time I try to spend with my wife and our new TV addiction.  So, this blog has suffered.  I am sorry.

So, the topic today are some of the young people I see around me on a daily basis.  I feel like I can spot the fledgling geeks pretty easily.  Whether it is a dragon T-shirt, an intelligent but awkward demeanor, or even a Twilight sticker on a binder, I feel like I can pinpoint those students my 8th grade self would have gotten along with.  Unfortunately, I feel it is impossible to communicate with them about it.  Here’s why.

For one, as much as I would like to think it would make me “cool,” I’m pretty sure it would make me lame.  Like, if I said “Hey, are you Team Edward or Team Jacob?” to a young lady, it would no doubt be met with a “um…whatever” versus the “awesome, Mr. Brown gets me.  What an inspiring teacher!”   It’s true.  No matter how great I think I am, to these kids I am old and lame and they are right to think that.  It’s pretty sad to try to look good to a bunch of middle-schoolers.

Secondly, even if I thought it might be nice for a geek student to be “gotten” by an adult in their life, I wonder if the seal of approval from a teacher is really any good.  I’d like to think I can be a good role model for my students but it shouldn’t be because I like their taste in video games.

So, I leave it alone, so far.  I’m working on trying to be a better teacher for everyone, not just a better geek for some.  This is why my posts might be a little further and far between,  Time will tell.

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  1. In 8th grade I had a substitute teacher for 3 months while another teacher was on maternity leave. He was about 24 and on the first day he said “listen, I’m different from your stuffy old teachers. I remember what it was like to be in 8th grade because I was your age not that long ago.” I remember thinking how funny it was that he’d just proven the fallacy of his his own statement. I wanted to say “at 24, you’re twice as old as us. You think you can remember what it was like to be us but you will never know what its like. Compared to 13 year olds from [the early 80’s], we’re fucking aliens. We have nothing in common with you that we don’t also have in common with the older teachers.” He never figured that out and he spent the whole time he was there trying to make us think he was cool.

    On the other hand, there’s a certain continuity in geek culture. I believe that geeks keep their roots in a way that popular culture doesn’t. Too bad you can’t let the kids see a D20 book in your backpack and ask you about it. You could start a role playing game club and ruin those poor fuckers’ chances of dating forever.

  2. I think what you’re looking for is not a connection, so to speak, but a bit of validation. You want thm to acknowledge you as the Geek Moses or Geek Fonzie.

    “World of Warcraft? Ha! Let me tell you about a little hing called AD&D, kids. Back in my day, we had to imagine our games… in our heads!”

    “Ooooh…”

    “That’s right. ALL in our heads. Hear, let me make so recommendations for you…”

    And from then on, as you walk don the hall… You’re Fonzie.

  3. I love the geek Fonzie. What’s his catch phrase sound like? nnnnggggghAYYy-hyuk!

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