Chicago Nerds Unite!!!

<p>Nerd pride!!!</p>

<p>Since there have been so many geek-bashing threads I thought I'd make a one that was pro-dork. Honestly, what is so bad about nerdy people? The majority of insightful conversations I've had are with people that could be classified as nerdy. I LOVE smart, nerdy mamma's boys! Anyway, I'm guessing that if anyone gets really desperate for a good party you could always go up to Northwestern or some other local school.</p>

<p>And here's another thing, how do you classify people as nerds, anyway? Everyone has weird traits. EVERYONE. For example, I wasted all of last Saturday trying to beat an old Super Nintendo game, I dance like the wettest nerd on earth at home when no one's watching, and also I happen to love Hilary Duff songs. (Stone me now, but know that somewhere out there, people do the same things.)</p>

<p>Admit it, everyone's a nerd deep at heart.</p>

<p>I associate the word nerd with corny wit, awkward inhibitions, and pursuits of learning only where there is a GPA attached to the pursuit.</p>

<p>Not a nerd, wouldn't socialize with one.</p>

<p>I don't think I'll touch this one!</p>

<p>I will tell you that my D asked me a few years ago if I was a nerd in HS. I said I was such a nerd I didn't even know I was one. In truth, the kids I hung out with were quite happy with their status as "non-populars".</p>

<p>Attending my 25th HS reunion a few years ago, I was struck by the continued difference between what we would now call nerds versus the popular crowd. The latter were, by and large, living in the town they grew up in, were often well respected local business people, but navigated in a small pond. The former nerds were all over the map. Many were successful professionals, many had moved about the country. Some had dropped off the map. But none would still be called nerds.</p>

<p>I agree with Brine here. Right on the dot. No way am I a nerd.</p>

<p>I have to agree with "nerd" as a pejorative. "Geek" would be the positive term for what has been described. There IS a difference between "nerd" and "geek." :P</p>

<p>Nerds tend to be associated with pursuing knowledge to the exclusion of everything else. They're often only capable of associating with one another, and often have the corniest wit (as Brine) said. I disagree that this species concerns itself with GPA -- that, I believe, is better ascribed to the "prestige whore" or "grade grubber," which may be a nerd or geek, but does not typify EVERY nerd or geek.</p>

<p>Geeks are often associated with science (especially computers). Geeks are the D&D fans, the computer programmers, the gamers (to a degree -- too far and you truly become a 'gamer' and not a geek, which is a whole other category), the total odd balls. Geeks have a life whereas nerds do not. Geeks are plenty comfortable associating with their kind, but are also capable of branching out and touching the outside world -- they're just not necessarily understood. The term "geek" originally referred to the carnival performers whose act consisted of biting the heads off chickens and eating glass. It eventually morphed into a word that identified someone who is considered to be odd or bizarre when compared to society as a whole. </p>

<p>Use of these terms may very. Nerd is almost always a pejorative (and when it's not, it's often being used incorrectly). Geek is positive when used among geeks, but is often a pejorative when used by an "outsider." The main difference between the two groups is the social life (as in, geeks have a twisted version of one, whereas nerds often lack one entirely), but the morphing of the words has tended to split "geek" into "geek" with computer/science connotations and "nerd" which is a geek with a humanities bent.</p>


<p>Move up the MG.</p>

<p>MG positioned ahead.</p>

<p>Intellectual! Why can't we just use the word intellectual? It carries a positive, higher connotation than words like 'geek' or 'nerd.' If it turns out that Chicagoans are just intellectuals, then I would feel happy there. If they are truly nerds or geeks then maybe I need to look somewhere else. But if it is the truth that the average Chicago student just loves learning, then please refrain from using those words. Why would we or any Chicago student want to self perpetuate such a derogatory reputation??</p>

<p>Where I come from --Oregon-- "nerd" is not a derogatory term. We also generally assume "geek" to have an arts connotative meaning, while we assume "nerd" to have an academia connotative meaning. E.g., drama geek, band geek, as opposed to lit nerd, chem nerd. Maybe it varies by geographical region, though.</p>

<p>Haha, I love that this thread has become a discussion of semantics :) I agree with elpresidente that being "intellectual" is probably preferable to being a "nerd" or "geek." However, I think one of the reasons I sometimes jokingly refer to myself or some of my friends as nerds is because using the title "intellectual" can sound a bit pretentious.</p>

<p>Haha, and whats wrong with being a little pretentious? We are going to one of the finest Universities in the nation.......I don't see why we should stoop to nerdiness.</p>

<p>One of the problems people cite with the University of Chicago <em>is</em> that pretentious attitude. :p</p>

<p>I don't favor intellectual for several reasons:</p>

<p>1) It makes you sound like you're coming off far too seriously. "Geek" and "nerd" are off-handed, rather flippant and jesting appellations, whilst "intellectual" comes off as a serious reflection of your self-estimation. That can make you seem really insularly academic (which you could see as good or bad, but which I see as bad because it reflects a certain distance from your fellow human beings).</p>

<p>2) It takes too long to say! ;p in-tel-lect-tchoo-all. "Geek" and "nerd" are snappy one-syllable things!</p>

<p>(removes tongue from cheek)</p>

<p>That's interesting, Zachwithoutanalias; it may be regional! Or it may be that there is no real definition, and the whole thing varies by even so much as a group.</p>

<p>I come from Oregon too. Maybe thats the way it is at your school, zachwithoutanalias, but it is certainly not that way at mine. Nerd certainly does have a negative connotation, no matter how tongue and cheek the usage.</p>

<p>I don't get it. Is being a mature, goal oriented adult, who does not wish to continue childish behavior and games, who wants to be the best the he/she can be make you a nerd? If that is so, the Chicago has plenty of them. D and I just returned from overnight, and I was very impressed with the students I met there. And they have fun - much of it good, clean fun - no drinking to tell the stories of how stupid one looked the night before, and of actions that would be better not disseminated. That is not to say that there is no drinking - the college does not control what goes on in the dorm rooms, so long as the doors are closed. But I met wonderful, erudite, fun-loving students who I would happily have as a neighbor. They had a sense of responsibility - that doesn't make you a nerd - just a decent adult.</p>

<p>I am not a nerd, geek or an intellectual. My sole purpose in life is to find the perfect shoes.</p>

<p>I enjoy the occasional "intellectual" discussion, enjoy debates and read a lot. I am reasonably ambitious as in i want to do well, but i have no idea nor care where i will be in five or ten years. I have a problem with grammar as displayed by my previous sentence.</p>

<p>What does all this make me to an american? =)</p>


<p>I dare say that most folks on these boards would be hard pressed to find the grammar problem in your sentence. (OK, "nor" is misused. It is a correlative conjunction: "neither....nor" but a common mistake, and tolerable).</p>

<p>So, to me, you sound "normal" for whatever that means.</p>

<p>lefay8, I commend you on your goal! I'm with you...we'll have to make a field trip to Marshall Fields next year : )</p>

<p>I agree with elpres here. Geeks and nerds, in my mind, are people who are nervous and couldn't handle social situations in a graceful manner. I am always against calling intellectual, mature, and hardworking people nerds since they are, duh, intellectual, mature, and hardworking. </p>

<p>Nerds and geeks have no pride and please don't smear your weakness on Chicago's name.</p>

<p>undecided, I completely agree about "intellectual." It sounds stodgy and old and boring. When I think of the word I always picture some bald 90-year-old guy wearing glasses (with chaints attached, no less) and a pinstriped suit with his nose buried in some classic novel that you know you should get through some time but can't because it's so boring (i.e. Moby Dick, Robinson Crusoe, Tom Jones, etc. etc.)</p>

<p>hey, I liked Moby Dick...</p>

<p>I agree that the term 'nerd' is often used with derision and that it contains a derogatory meaning. However, I have never found the people who are brilliant and academically motivated to be socially awkward, provincial, or isolated... I really haven't met a truely streotypical nerd that the society depicts and condemns... My group of friends and I are very seriously about our responsibilities and are determined to do our best academically and extra-curricularly. While we are certainly not a part of the popular crowd, we have our shares of laughes and good times by pursuing various(sometimes eccentric) interests, leadership positions, and passions..etc.. We are perfectly content to be ourselves and proud of our cool nerdiness. The U of C has appeared to be the best match for me since it seemed like the place filled with cool, confident nerds who learn for the true love and joy of learning and who find satisfaction and comfort for being themselves. I sincerely hope that many people I will meet will have 'cool nerds' in them and that the U of C is where 'the conformity and streotypes go to die'.</p>