I have a new piece of artwork hanging on the wall in my office. This past Christmas my daughter gifted me with a poster that many of you may have seen before-a clever assembly of quotes from various science fiction and fantasy series that forms a statement about its fans.
This mass-produced copy of a somewhat popular poster, though, means more to me than just a cute quote or novelty art piece. To me, this picture represents a statement that it’s okay to like the things I like, to be interested in the things that interest me, and that I’m not alone in my opinions. This series of quotes contains memories of family time, of trips to movies and listening to books on tape, of nights spent in together in front of the TV and competitions to see who could finish the next book first.
But above all, this poster points out that it’s okay to be geek and nerdy, because we are people too. In the not-so-distant past those who share our interests may have been teased and ridiculed, but as “geek” has moved firmly into the mainstream those same interests are now considered acceptable, to the point that many closet-trekkies and vamps and cosplayers have now come out of the figurative closet, and feel free to express themselves.
These days I care far less about other people’s expectations or negative views than I did growing up, and mostly relish in being myself. (Such comes with age and supposed maturity.) Still, I am glad that I have family who share the same interests as me, and together we can debate over whether the next superhero or wizard movie will be worth the trek to the movie theater, or make recommendations to each other about books that we are sure will find an appreciative audience.
There are so many things about this world that need work and change, but it’s nice to know, that sometimes acceptance can still be found. That there is hope for all those kids who had the oversized glasses and maybe weren’t very popular in school or were more interested in drama than playing sports. It’s okay to be us.
I hope that those who read this post take comfort, and find comradery for your own inner geek, and I hope you feel free to express yourself, as only you can. Let me hear from you how you make out. Bonus points for those of you who can accurately name the source of all these quotes!