I Love Geekology 101 began as a way to explore all this great stuff. All of these things I enjoyed continuously got shoved in this little area labeled “guilty pleasures”, and one day when I was
wasting time exploring interesting things on the internet, I came across an interview with Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters, Nirvana, etc.) in which he said something about not having “guilty pleasures” if you like it then just let it be a pleasure.
Why it clicked for me then, I’ll probably never know, but it did. All I knew was that I was tired of trying to fit the expectations of others. Instead of trying to fit an image, I was just going to be me. Too loud, too geeky, too independent, too curious, too nerdy, too idealistic, it didn’t matter so much anymore. (I really sucked at curbing all the “too” stuff anyway.) It was time to actually live the advice I was always giving people.
It forced me to take a good long look at my life, and what I liked, what I loved, what I hated, and what I wanted. That was
terrifying interesting. A lot of changes got pushed through in those first 24 months(ish). I changed jobs (and industries). I learned how to say “no” when I needed too (sometimes). I became a lot more honest with myself and everybody else.
One of the things I came across when I started I Love Geekology 101 is a quote from Tom Waits.
“My kids are starting to notice I’m a little different from the other dads. “Why don’t you have a straight job like everyone else?” they asked me the other day.
I told them this story:
In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, “Look at me…I’m tall, and I’m straight, and I’m handsome. Look at you…you’re all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you.” And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, “Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest.” So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.”
― Tom Waits
My head had already figured out that withstanding the looks that said “really?” when I admitted to enjoying things like renaissance fairs takes fortitude, but I hadn’t quite gotten around to the fact that there is strength in the strange. Oddballs, misfits, and outcasts acquire a toughness that, I’m discovering, a lot of mainstream people don’t have. They’ve found the courage to love what they love, no matter what others think. They’re brave enough to seek out others who like the same things, and build their own communities. (Isn’t the internet wonderful!)
In an honest moment with myself, I admitted the childhood dream of being a writer never went away. No matter how often I told myself it wasn’t practical, that idea persisted.
Well, how does one become a writer? For starters, you have to write. Every day. No matter what. When the words flow like water, when they’re glacial, when you’ve written your characters in a corner and your plot is knotted and tangled, when you’ve had to scrap 90% of your pages…again, you have to write.
All of you help me do that. Writing for this blog has never felt like work, and every post I write for you helps me work on all of my other projects. Even when I can’t get a decent sentence down for one of my stories and my characters are insisting they are really reluctant heroes and not villains (not that I’m bitter, I like the guy…now), I never run out of things I want to explore with all of you.
So, thank you. Thanks for every post you read, every “like” button you click, and every comment you post. Thanks for helping me be brave enough to explore some random topics, and get over the oh-my-God-somebody’s-actually-going-to-read-this fear that used to grip me whenever I hit that
terrifying that big, blue “Publish” button!
‘Til next time,