Montag, 22. Februar 2010

Punch a Nerd

One of the things I hate most about working where I work is the incredible amount of nerds I have to deal with. I recently counted and came to the conclusion that about 30% of my co-workers are nerds.

Today one of them, a guy (I'm not sure if "guy" is the appropriate term) looking like an amphibian version of Prince Valiant – so we'll call him Valiant Frog or, abbreviated, Froggy – noticed I was reading Clive Barker's DAMNATION GAME. He walked up to me and said: "Clive Barker, hm?" in a nerdish-insinuating way. I don't know what these guys insinuate, and I don't care, but they nevertheless do it with every fucking sentence that passes their nerd lips.

I pretented not to hear him. So he said it again. "Clive Barker, hm?" Louder. So that I couldn't possibly miss it, no matter how deeply immersed I was in my reading – and I was very, very deeply immersed, because "Damnation Game" kicks ass, which is why Froggy pissed me off so much at that moment.
"Yeah", I mumbled. "Clive Barker."
"Is it good?" Froggy asked, like he hadn't read it, but I knew he had. He has read every single horror , fantasy and science-fiction novel out there, seen every movie and listened to every soundtrack. He also knows not only the title of every 70s or 80s hard rock song you can possibly imagine, but also the interpret, the exact year of its release, the album on which it was featured, the name of the producer and what the band had for lunch when they recorded it. I have no proof, but I have reasons to assume he owns every single Warhammer 40,000 figurine and every issue of "White Dwarf". He can't fool me.
"Yes", I muttered.
"Have you read 'The Hellbound Heart'?"
"Not yet."
"'The Books of Blood'?"
"They're great. It's been a long time since I've last read something by Barker blablablablablabla..." – I lost track here.
He went on blabbering about whogivesashit for a while. I stared out of the window and tried to ignore him.
Nerds like Froggy can't be shooed away. No matter what you say, they won't fuck off and let you in peace. The only chance to make them leave you alone is not to acknowledge their presence. They are social-emotional autists and assess every sign of attention aimed in their general direction as deep concern for their nerd shit.
He eventually fell silent and just stood there. That's even worse than being talked to by him: when he just stands next to you and stares at you and waits for God knows what, because he doesn't know when a conversation is over and that if it is, you usually walk away and find something else to do. And with every second he stood there I got more and more angry, to the point of blank rage. When I couldn't take it anymore, I jumped up and beat the shit out of him.
I got an admonition for that. But it was worth it.

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