What is a geek? The word comes from the German word geck, meaning fool, and in the late 1800s the term geek referred to a performer in a traveling freak show-thus the term came to be used for a peculiar person.
The word has evolved to connote someone who is extremely knowledgeable-even to the point of obsession-about a topic. There are wine geeks, sports geeks, and Ringers*, each closely following the minutiae of their chosen obsession.
What was a derogatory term for the socially inept has now been taken back. Geeks are now eccentric, intelligent, full of enthusiasm, and sometimes a little awkward. That can be bad news, and it might make dating a little hard, but that’s why you want a copy of The Geek’s Guide to Dating by Eric Smith.
The good news for geeks is that their capacity for passion is a definite plus when it comes to the dating experience. Geeks can also be creative and remember even the most trivial of details, which can be a very good thing in a relationship.
Your particular geeky passion is something to keep in mind. Dating someone who loves science fiction might be great, but if not, you may still have other attributes in common-such as a mutual disdain for the “first” three Star Wars movies.
Knowing your geek type will help you access your strengths and weaknesses for dating. Are you a Pop Culture Geek, Technogeek, or an Academic Geek? If you are comfortable with technology, you can advise on purchasing electronics. Just be careful to not be snobby if she lacks your tech-fu, and remember that your date may be more knowledgeable than you.
Meeting a potential mate IRL** isn’t always easy. Geeks are lucky to have online channels available to connect and meet people with similar interests. There are MMORPGs***, social media networks, and online dating websites.
There are niche sites and more mainstream sites that cater to a general audience. Some charge fees like Match.com, but there are free ones-such as Okcupid and Plenty of Fish. There’s also Craigslist, but its pretty bare-bones and prone to serial killers.
You also have to look for opportunities in the physical world. Let’s start with some suggestions where you are almost guaranteed to find people who share your geeky interests. The comic book store is a bastion for geeks. If you see her freaking out over a TARDIS book light, make eye contact and smile.
Using the observations you’ve made about her interests, start a conversation, not a debate. Stating your opinion might come off as condescending. Ask her advice. If she’s looking at the manga, ask her what series she would recommend. Your favorite store can be more than just an establishment for getting your preferred books; it can also be a social gathering place.
Do you ask her out? There are a few important things to consider before you make your move. Are you prepared for a date? This step may seem premature, but what if she wants to hang out now? Have you gauged her interest? Throw out some casual questions: Is she dating anyone? Are there any red flags-such as recent breakups or demonic possession?
When asking her out, it’s easy to choke. You need to have a strategy. You are going to want to familiarize yourself with key moves, and practice them. If she says yes, it’s just the beginning of the game.
If she says no, take heart. You’re learning what doesn’t work. Maybe you’re mumbling. Maybe you shouldn’t have started the Star Trek vs. Star Wars debate. It’s OK. You’re building character…
*Nomenclature for LOTR fans (Lord of the Rings, a trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien)
** IRL means “In Real Life” YW
***Massively multiplayer online role-playing game: Are you sure you should be reading this?
Geeky, sexy? Or Nerd is the word? Comment and let me know. Don’t be afraid to be geeky. I met my wife acting in a ten minute play festival. She lit my cigar and it’s been burning ever since…