What does that even mean, fake geek girl? This term gets thrown around by pimply adolescents and man-boys alike. (Because if you feel the need to put down a woman for not fitting your mental Ramona Flowers fantasy, you are not a grown man.) Just to clarify, no one has called me this to my face, but it happens to other women all the time. And sometimes, the perpetrator is a fellow woman!
But I’m sure I fit the bill for anyone who likes flinging that epithet about.
The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy is one of my all-time favorites, but I found the books tediously boring. Tolkien wrote them for the linguistics, not to entertain his readers. I love what J.J. Abrams is doing with the rebooted Star Trek franchise, but I have no patience with the bad special effects of the original series. Out of all of the TV versions I saw because my dad enjoyed them, TNG is the one I liked. Oh, and Star Wars? I prefer the prequels to the original trilogy because, again, I have little tolerance for old school film tech. And I loved Attack of the Clones. Even with the terrible chemistry and even worse dialogue between Anakin and Amidala. (Heck yeah, speeder chase!)
I am a total Wheel of Time fangirl, but I’ve never read Dune. Despite Tom’s efforts to the contrary. I didn’t read Harry Potter or The Hunger Games until they were popular.
I don’t watch Doctor Who. I thought Firefly was just okay.
My favorite console game is Wii Fit Plus. The only MMO I’ve ever played is World of Warcraft. I’m completely addicted to it, but it’s really the only non-casual video game I like to play. Plants vs Zombies and Words with Friends don’t generally qualify as “real gamer” cred either.
And when playing dice-and-paper roleplaying games, my characters tend to be Ultra Female. In Dark Heresy, I played the only real female class, the Sisters of Battle. My first Sister died after sacrificing her virtue to obtain information for the group. My second Sister (since my first one was killed) used her feminine wiles as aptly as her bolt pistol. When playing a Star Wars campaign, my character was a pampered holovid starlet. My mage in World of Darkness was gorgeous and independently wealthy. And she was totally crushing on her equally beautiful mentor. (Yes, they got together.)
I haven’t read any comic books. My entire knowledge of the Marvel Universe has come to me via screens large and small.
So there you have it. My geek cred isn’t over the top. I don’t like all of the geeky things that Real Geeks are supposed to like. Should I confess that I’m just a pretender when I call myself a geek?
Well, that’s not going to happen. I got my “geek cred” the hard way, being called a geek and a nerd all throughout school. I got picked on for my lack of fashion sense and for being a favorite of many of my teachers. I read science fiction after I outgrew The Babysitters Club. But I came late to the party when it came to owning my geekiness. I just wanted to fit in when I was in school – and geeks weren’t chic until years after I graduated.
I am a geek, and I will proudly call myself a geek. After all, the dictionary defines a geek as:
: a person who is socially awkward and unpopular : a usually intelligent person who does not fit in with other people
: a person who is very interested in and knows a lot about a particular field or activity
…And I’m nothing if not socially awkward! And intelligent, thank you very much.
And you know what? No one has the right to call me or anyone else a fake geek girl. If a woman self-identifies as a geek, she has her reasons. She is not fake because she doesn’t happen to like the same geeky things as you do. So quit it.
Update: This post is not actually supposed to be about me. As I said, no one had ever really called me a fake geek girl – until the comments section here. I used myself as an example to illustrate the point I was trying to make: let’s stop being dismissive about other people’s identities. If someone says they identify as a geek (or a gamer, or a whatever) it’s not any of our business to rain on their parade.
P.S. Thanks for the traffic, despite the ill intent of many of your visits. My analytics look great, and you help prove the point I was making about judgmental people.
Tags: feminism, games, geek, video games