Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Welcome home!

So... I'm fifty-one years old and I'm wearing a black t-shirt dress with a weird kind of imprint on it of Dr. Who's ship, the TARDIS, sort of splattered on it will bleach, black Chuck Taylors and toting a Hello Kitty backpack. As this is not an unusual outfit for me, I have always felt (and probably looked) kind of out of place at most places I find myself.

I normally attempt to dress appropriately for actual occasions – heck, I even wear nice dresses to our church, which is one of those casual come-as-you-are places... But most places I go have no dress code per se. Nonetheless I do believe I'm the only mom who has attended a St. Thomas More school function in Chuck Taylors.

Appropriately dressed
That is all to say ... That today is a different kind of day. Today, I blend right in. In fact, you might even say that I'm a tad underdressed. You see, I'm not sporting a Wonder Woman costume, or any other similarly revealing or flamboyant garb. I'm not all steampunked out or dressed in Lolita fashion, though I find it sooooo cute... if a little disturbing. 

The Lolita look - cute,
if a little disturbing.
And if this all mystifies you, then you have obviously never been to a comics convention... which is where we are. I feel as if I am with MY people. the only time I feel more at home is at church... Or that one time I went to a convo called Mythcon for academic fans of Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and that crowd. 

The new "coolness" of nerdiness has brought a new mix of human traffic to events like Comicons. It's actually kind of popular now to claim nerd status... Nerd. Thick, geeky glasses are hip. Liking Doctor Who is cool - the current Doctor Who wears skinny jeans like a hipster. I can't say I'm a huge nerd. But I do love Doctor Who and Tolkien and Game of Thrones and Harry Potter and stuff like that. I've always been a big reader. That said, when I took one of those Facebook quizzes to discover my "nerd quotient," I scored quite low. So I have to say, I recognized only the most obvious costumes at the "con."

See? Doctor Who is
a hipster now.
I was reminded of this video where a live-in-his-parents-basement, low-on-social-skills, hard-core-gamer type nerd rants about a hipster girl who has claimed I be a nerd. I found it poignant, sort of. I guess for him it's a bit like me and my friends back in the 80s when the sorority girls started to like "our music." To walk by a sorority house and hear the Psychedelic Furs or the Smiths blasting out of it... it was like a blow to the heart.

Not that there's anything wrong with sorority girls... but how could they possibly understand? Speaking for the outcast... Why does the pretty, popular peoples' embrace of "our" culture disgust us? Or do we just feel robbed of the only cache we thought we had... Our knowledge and enjoyment of some arcane body of art or information? We may not have looks or social skills, but we do have our superior taste and intelligence... This attitude that we had... well, it's the exact opposite of evangelism, isn't it?! Or maybe it's just about semantics – one's preferred definition of the word "nerd." (As in, "Hipster girl, if you were really a nerd – my definition of a nerd – you would not enjoy it.")

I have no direction to go with this, just making some observations... 
My people... I love them!
Comic cons are really fun... I saw Storm Troopers and Ghostbusters (AND their car!) and Doctor Whos and Batmen and Poison Ivys and Jokers and Riddlers (or as Bill called him when he was little, Wrigglers) and Jack Sparrows and the Batmobile and the Mystery Machine (the Scoobie Doo gang's van) and the Back to the Future car... and lots of silly, creative merchandise... We watched artists draw and met authors and just generally milled around with like minded souls... People who love a ripping, larger-than-life story, with an unrealistically muscular, impossibly flat-abbed hero or a crazily large-chested heroine... these fellow nerds and sci-fi geeks... My people... I love them!