The trouble with geek friends

Geeks have intense interests. They border on obsessions. They know EVERYTHING about those interests. And argue vehemently for them, about them, and against others. These habits bleed over into other non-geek areas such that it felt like an intrinsic part of the culture.

For decades I doubted you could have geeks without arguments, so I find it interesting when I run across people discovering a community and getting turned off when arguments break out. They just wanted to find others who love the thing. Love led to arguments in my teens through twenty-somethings. It took making enough non-geek friends in order to realize just how skewed my understanding of reality was.

The trouble is, you better not have feelings. For they will be stepped on. Eventually. Well, unless you fall solidly on the autism spectrum. For the segments of geekdom who do, they might not be aware how they make others feel without very direct response. I am calling them arguments because to outsiders these discussions seem full of anger. to strong geeks, this is how we discuss.

It seems theoretically possible for people to get along wonderfully well. I have seen it more with children who sometimes treat their beloved things as malleable. They love them, but they can alter these impressions when they need. By shifting their opinion, they remove the conflict. Older humans are a bit more rigid.

As an introvert, small talk is meh. I much prefer deep conversations. And geek friends bring depth. Find their interests to bring out a conversation. That is easy. And to my mind a rewarding part of socialization. Finding people who wanted to talk about deep things is how and why I cultivated so many of my friendships. Having broad but deep interests allowed me to engage on many things.

Displaying confidence in so many different things is why people considered me intelligent. Given my social circles, I figured this normal so just average.

No worries. People self-select into geekdom. Either they acclimate or they move on to another group. They will keep their interests either way.

 

 

Cognitive dissonance of UGA and Falcons fans

It is funny to me how many rivalries UGA football has:

  1. Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate
  2. World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party
  3. Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry
  4. “Grown Man Football” with Missouri
  5. with South Carolina
  6. with Tennessee
  7. fans talk about hating Clemson
  8. fans talk about hating Alabama

Since Atlanta is the closest metropolitan area to UGA, there is a strong crossover of fandom with the Atlanta Falcons NFL team. The funny thing is that all those rival teams have quality talent, so some of the players are going to end up drafted into the NFL. So, the odds are a player UGA fans hated for hurting them as a college player could become a beloved player for the Falcons.

That is how the NFL draft cookies crumble.

Nerducation

Nerds are a special breed. Not all of us discover we are one at an early age. Some may even deny it for a long time.

So the late bloomers who discover they are a nerd have a lot of catching up to do.

Step one: What do you love? Make wishlists.

Step two: Work your way through the lists.

Step three: Just understand that you are an individual and likely finicky. Just because it was recommended does not mean you will love or even like it. Feel free to skip something that turns out to be not enjoyable.

Sports Announcers & Hot Hand

It seems fairly common for sports announcers to contradict themselves. One minute, “Team X cannot catch a break,” and the next, “Everything is going their way.” During the first case, they were up by a sizable amount but a few chances in a row went bust. They were never at risk, but eventually, the other team just got exhausted trying to catch up and the game ended in a rout.

Basically, these are people who are believers in the Hot Hand Fallacy. Worse, they perpetuate it by extolling it to anyone who listens. It seems all over sports.

Successful teams or individuals often are described as always are even though they do sometimes lose. And those who are normally winners suffering a loss seems shocking even though over the course of a season it is more normal for even the best teams to lose from time to time. Teams are always trying to get better, so the mix of who is most competitive changes year to year. So, the advertisement thing to prevent financial gambling seems to apply to sports:

Past performance does not guarantee future results.

It applies over a season, between periods, and between plays.

Unwritten Rules

A while ago, a baseball player coworker and I had a conversation about the unwritten rules of baseball. These are expected sportsmanship behaviors. When players are perceived to violate these moral guidelines, the other team may result in retaliation. Teams can end up in brawls on the field over the escalations started by someone violating an unwritten rule.

Apparently I left the impression that baseball is the only sport with unwritten rules. He sent me the unwritten rules of the gym.

Soccer has them too. In futbol (soccer),

  1. If a player is injured, then the other team should put the ball out of play or give the ball back to the team with the injured player when it restarts.
  2. Players who score against a former team return to the center circle to restart without celebrating.
  3. Offer a hand to help an opponent stand up.

There are unwritten rules everywhere. And we are expected to abide by these social conventions or we are jerks who deserve to be snubbed or attacked for failing to be a decent person. This like…

  1. Let others out of an elevator or train before you get in.
  2. Leave a one urinal buffer zone.
  3. Texting in the presence of company.

The problem I have with unwritten rules is the passive-aggressive escalation and retaliation aspect. Rules exist to set the expectations of behavior. Writing them down ensures everyone knows what are the expectations of behavior. The authorities (referee, police, HR) can punish people for failing to abide by them. Leaving them unwritten just means one party can take advantage and the aggrieved party breaking written rules in retaliation to feel even more upset they got unjustly punished.

Trumped Up Cards Winner

My grandmother loved games. She and I and others would play all the time. If she was bored, then her go to way to break the lull was “How about we play a game?” I inherited most of her games.

My dining room has a shelf full of them. They include the inheritance, a few I’ve had all along, and recent games I have played and really enjoyed. A couple are some that looked amazing. Trumped Up Cards is one of the last. It really was fun to play as it reflects the candidate well. AND includes sources.

Anyway, I apparently posted a photo from playing it which was picked as a winner.

I will get a free box for winning. I plan on donating that to a local game store The Rook & Pawn.

1996 Olympics

445289440_4d226f2576Twenty years ago I was able to watch some soccer Olympic events in person. We watched the first women’s tournament where the US played Sweden. And Nigeria (who eventually won) play Japan. These were all at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando. It made me happy two teams we watched went on to win both the men’s and women’s tournaments.

Also, we drove from Orlando to Atlanta and back. While in Atlanta we watched some Judo and volleyball.

Blog It; Or It Didn’t Happen

This blog is often my external brain. If I find something interesting, then I ought to blog about it. Later, when I need to reference it, then I can find it here.

Failing to write it down can result in spending lots of time trying to reinvent the wheel.

I guess part of the problem is a fracturing of my media creation. Sometimes I tweet it. Sometimes I make a Facebook or Tumblr post. Stuff gets spewed everywhere.

Nerd

I gladly embrace being called a nerd. Not always. There was a time when I solely thought of myself as a geek and distanced myself from nerds.

A jock-y coworker professes to hate nerds. Even as he works with computers all day, enjoys checks, and spends hours figuring out how to improve his strength numbers. Don’t call him a nerd though.

He also describes me as the biggest nerd he knows. Possible. But, that just means he needs to get out more. This city easily contains a hundred people way further up the scale than I am. Enough to have a local convention. If I had gone to the engineering university, then I would have been around people way, way beyond my level of nerd-dom. He thinks though, if I had gone, then it would have made me worse. Probably have to agree.

This all came about because he said they are more airplanes in the sea than submarines in the sky. I responded that is true in the real world, but not necessarily true in anime worlds. He was appalled that I could like anime. If only he knew “like” is probably an understatement.