my first love: making fun of nerds

today’s blog challenge prompt is “your first love”. i’m just gonna go ahead & say that i am not comfortable writing about lovey-dovey relationship things in public forums, like on blogs or in zines. nor am i comfortable when i read these kinds of things written by other people. obviously i don’t hide the fact that i am in a relationship. why, according to some disgruntled blog readers, i never write about anything else! but it seems unseemly or lacking in self-awareness to write about these topics in great detail.

i am generally not a fan of talking about my relationships or hearing other people talk about their relationships. there’s something about a new relationship, or an established relationship being taken to another level (when a couple moves in together or gets married or whatever) that makes the people in the relationship feel that they are the first people to ever be in a relationship. it’s…boring, to be frank. your relationship is never as exciting to other people as it is to you.

i also think most relationships are kind of (or very) dysfunctional, because most people are kind of (or very) dysfunctional.

it’s really hot in kansas today–over 90 degrees. i woke up sweating. i told jared that we don’t have to live this way. we have an air conditioner & i intended to turn it on after he left for school. living with jared is sometimes like living on a 19th century homestead somewhere on the prairie. it’s not that he likes to suffer, but for some reason, he would rather organize a tenuous warren of open windows, box fans, ceiling fans, & curtains than just turn on the air conditioning. i don’t know if it’s because he worries about the energy bill (though i think running six fans probably costs just as much, if not more, than one window air conditioning unit) or the possibility of weird air conditioning chemicals affecting the environment or just the weird feelings of hardiness that come with getting through a 95-degree day without submitting to the air conditioning master. i don’t mind hot weather as much as i used to (i think kansas has broken me in that respect–there’s just no escaping it), but i am going to use the air conditioner sometimes. like on days when it’s not going to dip below 80 degrees until after 10pm.

(this is the part where jared interjects, “once again you are apportioning me this bizarre interior life that has no relationship with reality! we only ran four fans last night, including two ceiling fans, & they weren’t even all four on simultaneously! why must you persist in your hyperbolic fictions?”)

it’s nice weather for watching “treme” though. we rented it last night at the video store. i wound up having a long conversation with the clerk about how to avoid giving birth to a child that will grow up to be a nerd. jared joked about renting that terrible children’s animated movie about mystical owls or whatever, & i said we would have to watch enough animated crap with anthropomorphic animals once we were parents & that we didn’t have to suffer yet. jared said there were steps parents could take to avoid having to see awful children’s movies, like only letting their children watch PBS. i pointed out that children raised on PBS generally grow up to be adults who love “dr. who” & that is something i’d rather avoid. the clerk overheard us & started telling us about how much she loves “dr. who” & how her mom had knitted a super-long “dr. who” scarf for her (the clerk’s) brother when they were kids.

my friend leah has this genius theory that what masquerades as social justice activism on the internet is basically a social fallacy about how nerds are oppressed. on the internet, making fun of someone is tantamount to oppression. even if you are making fun of someone for something that is really just a choice or a preference, like loving “dr. who” or being an adult baby fetishist or something. (“dr. who” fans being outraged about being linked to adult baby fetishists in a single sentence in 3…2…1…) i really feel that it’s true that you cannot have a conversation on the internet about, say, the objectification of women in superhero comics, or the dearth of fictional TV characters that have abortions, or ANYTHING without people fighting to the death for people who are oppressed by their lack of real life social skills.

this is linked to people who insist that some people don’t have any social justice outlets in their “real lives,” in the towns where they live, so they HAVE to devote themselves to signing fake internet petitions & spend six hours a day curating their comment profiles on various blogs because it is their activist outlet. these people are likely to insist that they have never met another feminist or anti-racist activist or “fill in the blank here” in real life. i’m sorry, but i have to laugh at these people. surely if they spent less time online, they would meet all kinds of interesting people in real life. maybe the people they meet would not be as perfect as the people they are interacting with online, because online, you can micro-manage every detail of your persona & smooth away the lumpy bits that don’t fit your presentation, but real weirdos are usually better & more interesting than manufactured avatars that share your obsession with cirque du soleil programs or “bonanza” trivia or whatever.

i just read the wilder life by wendy mcclure, all about her obsession with the “little house on the prairie” books. one oldster that is also into the books tells wendy that she thought she was pretty badass for having been born before TV was around, but then she thinks about all the technology that was developed to radically change people’s lives during laura ingalls wilder’s life & she is chastened. it made me think about how the internet didn’t exist when i was a kid–or at least, it was not accessible to a nine-year-old living out in the country in ohio somewhere. i guess scientists & really hardcore nerds were probably testing out the information superhighway in like 1990, but it was still a foreign concept to me & most other average americans. someday i will tell my children about how i resisted getting an e-mail address until i was in college because i thought the whole internet thing was going to be a flash in the pan, like laser discs or those toasty sandwich makers piled in enormous stacks in every thrift store in this great land or the spin doctors. they will listen with the same sense of dumbfounded pity i felt when my mom told me about the first time she ever saw color TV.

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

One thought on “my first love: making fun of nerds

  1. Snackmasters. The weird sandwich makers are called snackmasters. Anyway, they’re as much of a fad as this newfangled air conditioning device that you’re so high on these days little lady.

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