Years ago if you were a bookworm, band kid, or if you had a pair of glasses with dark, square frames, you could be considered a nerd.
Being a nerd could get you picked on, relegate you to a terrible school experience, and cause every member of the opposite sex to run for the hills.Nerds on television shows were constantly being made-over so they would appear acceptable and suddenly popular.
Right now it is hip to be square, and being a nerd or geek is in. People emulate the smart and science-ish, so times are not as hard for the un-mainstream. Find some cool geek sites HERE.
Not too long ago kids could be teased for staring at a computer screen for hours on end, or practicing the drums, or drawing in their sketchbooks. Parents worried that these kids were not outside until the streetlights came on like the other kids on the block. They did not want to play football, dodge ball, or ANY ball for that matter. They had puzzles to solve, codes to figure, and only so many hours in the day.
Geeks and nerds do not obsess about how they look, they do not stand in front of the mirror wondering if they are worthy. Drinking and smoking at night when they go out with friends? Probably not--they are more likely to be taking things apart and looking for new and interesting ways to put them back together. Happily, they are far too busy inventing, creating, and figuring to stress over image or trying cigarettes to fit in with the cool kids.
Some famous NERDS and GEEKS
Being a geek and a loner was one of the best thing that ever happened to the film world. Burton spent time alone as a kid developing and using his creativity. He had plenty of hours to delve into the dark corners of his personality. Without him or his wonderful geekiness we would not have Edward Scissorhands, Pee Wee's Big Adventure, or any of the other dark and delightful movies his nerd-brain invented.
Neon lights, remote control, the modern electric motor, radar, and arguably the light bulb are all attributed to Tesla. He was also the inadvertent father of radio astronomy and builder of the first hydroelectric plant at Niagra Falls. He worked on and held patents for information that would later be used to develop transistors which have revolutionized electronics, (thanks for the info Dad!), 100 years before the actual invention. The list goes on.
No need for an explanation here, many of you are probably reading this on an Apple product. But his geekdom started in a garage where he started his computer company in 1976.
During his time in high school, a local computer company offered the students computer time. A fundraising club used their proceeds to buy a teletype terminal for the students, and Bill Gates spent much of his free time learning there and working at the terminal.
So don't be concerned if your kids aren't the perfect definition of popular, or if they have interests that you might not consider mainstream.
They could be working on something to change the world. Be proud of who they are, pocket protectors and all.
And truly, the GEEK shall inherit the earth.