Friday, March 30, 2012

The Attention Whore Conundrum

First, the definition of Attention Whore from Urban Dictionary because one of the definitions of nerdy is also pedantic.

Attention Whore:

Label given to any person who craves attention to such an extent that they will do anything to receive it. The type of attention (negative or positive) does not matter.
You're such a GD attention whore!

I really, really would love to see this terminology fall into disuse on the internet, if only because it seems to be completely overused.

Posted a picture that could be recognized a female: ATTENTION WHORE!
Posted a comment that indicates gender: ATTENTION WHORE!

We are human beings (that need attention) on the fucking internet (where it is easy to get attention). Why the hell can't people just accept that this is the function of the damn internet and get the fuck over it?  If you don't want to give someone attention, then just ignore it, don't turn into a shit flinging monkey.

*Deep Breath*

I just wonder if these are the same people who go to conventions to tell people they suck? Are these the same people who follow an artist or actor so that they can post their vitriolic distaste for their work or existence? 

Those people confuse me.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Geeks are so Mainstream

Hey, you. Yeah, you there, no, you the person who is raging about there not being any "real" geeks or nerds anymore and who thinks that we should be trapped in a narrative that puts people into a permanent high school dynamic, that's right, I'm talking to you. Stop it.

Millions of people all over the world watched Star Wars. A huge number of those people loved it or at the very least enjoyed it. Star Wars is un-fucking-believably popular not because of people who make it a point to know about every detail of the world but because of everyone who saw the films and enjoyed them. Almost everyone I have ever known has seen this movie. It has entered pop culture and even people who have never seen this movie know the characters and are familiar with the basics about it. Star Trek, Babylon 5, Buffy all of these shows were on national television. Millions of people watched at least some if not all of these shows and many, many more.

Just because you call yourself a Geek or a Nerd, you aren't special. Lots of other people like what you like, too and even if they don't know as much as you or didn't watch as many episodes or didn't go to that convention last month, those people still have just as much right as you do to label themselves any way they want to. What people mean when when they say "You aren't a real, Geek/Gamer/Nerd" is "You aren't a Geek/Gamer/Nerd the way I am or I find acceptable." This is hardly a standard by which legitimacy can be determined.

If a cheerleader wants to put on a pair of thick black glasses and call herself a nerd, I say, more fucking power to her. If she wants to post pictures to the internet about it, so what, that's what the internet is for! If someone who is popular and accepted in her school is calling herself a Nerd/Geek or whatever, then that means that we won.

When I was in public school, being a nerd or a geek was a sure way to be bullied, tortured, harassed, assaulted or generally made miserable. Now it is becoming accepted, Nerd is a point of pride. Does it end bullying? Fuck no, but it takes one more tool away from the little shits who think that calling people names is funny. It doesn't matter that I was bullied or that you were bullied if what we are doing is turning around and bullying people because they aren't fitting into our stereotypes properly. Why the obsession with being an outcast? Accept that people don't think it's that weird to watch Sci-Fi shows or play video games and just be fucking happy.

I am.

Oh and by the way, Hipster is not synonymous with condescending, arrogant asshole. Just like Geek isn't synonymous with intelligent, tolerant, awesome person. Both are just references to what part of pop culture a person identifies with, that's it.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Riding a Purple Magic Pony

Recently my husband got his dream job ruling over the data farms as a Linux Sysadmin. I get to hear all about what he does at work and as someone who was a former Apple employee and PC technician, I don't know a damn thing about Linux and this is largely an ignorance I have cultivated. I am a hardware person, I love the parts and the puzzle of putting them together and getting them to work. Learning Red Hat seems like choosing to learn an obscure foreign language I'll only ever speak with my husband, never mind that actually sounds kinda cool. Off to borrow his books on Fedora Core.

Ok, I'm back.  Red Hat also apparently is really awesome about spreading around the free marketing swag. One day, Colin was sick and lost his chance at a red felt fedora just like the one on the Red Hat Fedora logo. He didn't quite degrade to lip quivering but there was definite shoulder slumping. Today he came in with a ball cap, a pen and a mouse pad. I made sure to look appropriately impressed by his swag.

Colin: You know, Red Hat is really good about swag, we all got some really cool stuff.

Me: If you're into that sort of thing, yeah.

Colin: Yeah. You know what I never see? The Windows admins never get Microsoft swag. I find that odd.

Me: Yeah, well even if they got it, they probably wouldn't wear it.

Colin: Why not?

Me: Well, you wear that stuff and think it's cool because it's relatively uncommon for people to use linux. So, it's like showing off that you can do something awesome that not that many people can do.

Colin: And the logo is cool.

Me: Yeah, much better that multicolored geometrical shapes.

Colin: I suppose that's true.

Me: Linux geeks are all proud to show off their Linux flavor logo just like Mac geeks are all happy to show off the Apple. What has Windows got? Also, it's dead common. Very difficult to be proud that you can do something everyone can do. I mean it's as if Linux admin's ride a silver surfboard to work, Mac admin's ride a purple pony that can do magic and Windows Admin's drive a car.

Colin: So even if it's a Maserati, it isn't a purple magic pony or a silver surfboard that can go through time and space.

Me: Yep. I mean, would you wear a T-Shirt proclaiming by inference that while the rest of the world is filled with magic ponies and silver surfboards that the only thing you can make work is a car? That's pretty weak sauce.

Colin: Admittedly, getting those silver surfboards to work is a total bitch sometimes.

Me: When when you do, it's cool.

Colin: It can even be fucking awesome.

Me: My Point. Purple magic ponies on the other hand are dead easy.

Colin: I suppose that explains why you ride the Ponies.

Me: Too many years of driving a car.