Episode #311: How Does an Average Joe Become a Geek
How to Become a Geek
The word "geek" is used to describe a type of person that is unfashionably nerdy, intellectual, and extremely passionate about their interests. Although it was once intended as an insult for introverted science-types and fans of Star Trek, more recent times have made it a lot cooler to consider yourself "one of the geeks". Generally speaking, geeks make up for their social awkwardness by having an immense passion for the things they're interested in. There's no way to completely transform yourself into a geek, but if the thought of becoming one has ever crossed your mind, it means there's some part of you that already fits the bill. Becoming a geek means being proud of the things you're interested in, and considering your hobbies an inalienable part of yourself.
Embracing Geekish Interests
Cater your geekdom to your specific interests.There is no such thing as a typical geek. There are geeks of all different interests, from all walks of life. Are you passionate about computers? Congrats, you're a computer geek. What about math, or music, or architecture, or history? Technology-oriented interests may be favoured in geek culture, but the fact remains that you can fit the identity to match your own however you want.
Subscribe to a specialty magazine or journal.Nuts & Volts, PC World, Mac World, and Cinefex all fall under this category. Read from cover to cover and in each issue, pick out at least three words you've never heard of before. Memorize these and try to use them often. You'll find you learn more if you actively take notes during your pleasure reading, and learning words will help you big time when you're discussing matters with your fellow geeks.
Develop your skill with computers.No matter what your other interests are, virtually all geeks are united by a common interest in computers and technology. Even if you consider yourself a klutz when it comes to computers, being a geek comes with the expectation you should at least be able to work your way around a PC, Mac (or Linux!) relatively comfortably. Magazines like PC World will get you learning fast. Your local community college may offer night courses in computers as well, which would be a good idea if you're planning on taking being a geek seriously.
- While all kinds of technology are considered important to the geek culture, computers earn special credit. True geeks will go out of their way to learn the ins and outs of using a PC. Don't hesitate to try out different browsers, media players and play around with coding.
- Many self-proclaimed geeks are computer programmers by trade.
- Computer wizardry is by no means a requirement to be a geek.
Stay up to date with technology.Even if technology isn't your forte, it doesn't hurt for a self-respecting geek to stay up to date on the hottest trends in tech. If people know you're a geek, chances are they're going to approach you asking for technology advice at one point or another. Even if you're not a master at apps and computers, knowing more than the basics will take you far in your geekdom. Look at magazines for the latest tech and check online electronics publications for reviews and specs.
Pick up bits of sci-fi and nerd trivia.Shortly after computers, geeks are most associated with their obsessive knowledge and passion for science-fiction and fantasy. Whether you're talking about video games, films, TV or books, geeks are all over anything that speculates about far-distant lands and strange new worlds. If you have any interest in being a geek, it's possible and even likely that you already have an interest in some of these franchises.Star Wars,Star Trek,Lord of the RingsandDoctor Whoare a few of the most important. Dive into this media and read up about them online for trivia. Trivia can come in handy when you're hanging out and want to impress friends with your knowledge.
- A true geek will hold his own tastes as more important than any social expectation. If you like sci-fi and fantasy you'll fit right into geek culture, but even if your tastes lie elsewhere, there's so much diversity that you'll always found other people with likeminded interests.
- Traditional geek interests include Dungeons and Dragons, science-fiction, fantasy, comic books, video games and computers. Less common interests include board games, history, antiques or conspiracy theories. The list goes on. Some things are more common amongst geeks, but nothing is prohibited, so long as it doesn't hurt anybody else.
- Anime is a very popular subject for geeks as well, and attracts its own specific kind of geek.
Rebel against the establishment.Ultimately, a true-to-form geek may appear meek on the outside, but he should have no qualms with shaking up the order and rebelling against the status quo. Geeks are outsiders by definition. They are more passionate about their interests than what is normally seen as fashionable, and their interests themselves are very nichey. Being a geek, you shouldn't let yourself embrace certain values simply because you think you're expected to by society. Part of the fun of being a geek is knowing that you stand apart from the mainstream.
Looking Like a Geek
Embrace "geek chic".Since geek culture has become popular and accepted as fashionable, there are fashion outlets that cater specifically to it. This doesn't just include clothing, but gadgets and home decorations as well. Geek chic is a fashion style that references geeky interests (like science fiction) in otherwise fashionable clothing styles. Bolster your wardrobe with some of these clothes. You'll still look fashionable to the mainstream, but the people who get the references will be able to see you as a fellow geek.
- "Geek chic" options can be found in cosmetics as well.Certain brands of makeup will be coloured or themed after a pop culture reference, likeStar Trekeyeliner for example. There's not a lot of difference between that and regular cosmetics, but purchasing something that's based on your favourite sci-fi or fantasy franchise can be a bit of extra fun.
Wear ironic humour t-shirts.Your clothing should offer some indication of the person you are and what you value most in life. There are tons of cute t-shirts you can buy online that have tongue-in-cheek references to pop culture.Star WarsandDoctor Whoshirts are very common in particular. Wearing a shirt like this is a casual clothing choice that will fit you right in with the rest of the geeks. While the majority of people you cross paths with won't get the reference, fellow geeks almost certainly will. Recognizing a fellow fan can lead to great new friendships.
Consider donning glasses.For ages, glasses have been seen as the go-to symbol for geeks and nerds alike. Whether you wear glasses or not, wearing them carries the association of being more intelligent than the average person. Although it's not recommended you wear glasses if you don't have a proper use for them, trading your contact lenses back for glasses can be a smart move if you're embracing your geeky side.
- Non-prescription glasses can be worn by would-be geeks without a need for them. If you really want to complete the typical geek look, you might think about adding a pair of clear glasses to your wardrobe. This is not recommended however, as geeks with legitimate prescriptions may be offended by the fashion choice.
Show confidence as a geek.Above all else, geeks are an attractive bunch because they simply don't care about what the rest of society makes of them. They love what they love. They are who they are. In order to be a true geek yourself, you need to embrace this mentality as well. Take full confidence in who you are, and reflect upon all the things that make you worthwhile.
Getting Involved in Geek Culture
Accept that geeks are social creatures.If there's one major difference between geeks and nerds, it's that geeks like to celebrate their niche-interest passions with likeminded folk. Keep in mind that geeks are social creatures by design and definition. Even if you're incredibly introverted, you can stand to gain a lot by talking to other people and sharing the things that make you tick.
- Overcoming shyness isn't easily done. Luckily with a common interest ready to talk about, it's a lot easier to break the ice. If you feel timid at first when talking to someone new, remember that they have at least one thing in common with you. If need be, you can just talk about that the entire time. Most geeks won't complain about discussing their interests one bit.
Join web forums.Part of the reason geeks have become so cool is the rise of the internet. Now, no matter how specific and obscure your interests are, you can meet likeminded people at the touch of a button. Joining web forums is invaluable when you want to meet friends locally or from abroad. Join multiple forums based on each your interests and comment on threads you think look interesting. You'll start meeting a lot of people really quickly this way.
- Social media outlets like Facebook have in-site groups that you can join for the same purpose.
- Keep in mind that talking over the internet is no replacement for in-person socializing. With any luck, you can meet people locally using the internet.
Attend conventions.Conventions are like big parties for geeks. Whether the convention is for anime, science fiction, comic books, video games, or computers, attending one of these events is sure to be a memorable experience. Although you'll only stand to get a lot out of going if you have a vested interest in the subject at hand, they're a great opportunity to meet people who are into the same kind of stuff you are.
Game together.Gaming is a widespread phenomenon these days, but it used to be privy to geeks and nerds alone. Nonetheless, video and computer gaming remains a tried-and-tested favourite amongst geeks. If you have any geek friends who might be interested in playing a game with you, set something up and play. It's a good idea to have live microphones working; that way you can talk to your friends while you're playing together.
Consider the risk of alienation.Although you might get closer to people with the same interests through geekdom, you'll probably end up alienating yourself from the mainstream of society. Even if you're totally functional in society, there are going to be people from the mainstream that will judge anyone who shows an unfashionable interest in something unfashionable. Fortunately, you're not alone. There are lots of other geeks out there to band together with. You can look to them if the loneliness ever starts to get to you.
- Being a geek is arguably more difficult if you're a woman. There are some men in the subculture that will take exception to women trying to join in. Don't let yourself be riled by these individuals, and know that they are the exception to the rule.Most geeks would be all too happy to have you as a friend.
QuestionCan I be a geek without wearing glasses?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerOf course you can! Glasses are only necessary if you need them to see. Your interests are what's important.Thanks!
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