By: Dani Kessel
There is a 6 year old YouTube parody of “Talk Dirty to Me” by Jason Derulo called “Talk Nerdy to Me” posted on KFaceTV’s YouTube channel (watch it here). I swear, when it came out, I listened to it at least 100 times. It’s been years since I last thought about or listened to this song, but it popped into my mind a few weeks back.
My bestie Jaymie was excitedly gushing to me about the magic system she’s developing and implementing into a book series she’s created. She’s worked hella hard figuring out all the rules, guidelines, and functions of her fantasy world. I was absolutely engrossed in what she was saying. Her passion for the topic enthused me. Then, she abruptly stopped and apologized to me for talking about the topic too much. She didn’t have anything to apologize for. I was a happy participant in the conversation. I couldn’t blame her though because I often apologize for going on nerdy, excited rants. It’s because someone (actually many someones) has made me feel bad at various points in my life for being passionate about nerdy, obscure, or seemingly unimportant things. I’m positive most nerds and geeks have been through this. It’s disheartening to think your interests don’t matter.
But that’s when I thought about the “Talk Nerdy to Me” video. I’m covered in nerdy tattoos, my apartment walls are plastered with paraphernalia, and I am obsessed with my fandoms. I want to hear people go on rants about their niche interests. I want to hear excitement bubbling up as someone talks faster and faster. I want people to talk nerdy to me!
And, I don’t think it’s just me. I’d bet most individuals want to hear your rant about the motives of MCU Thanos vs. Marvel Comics Thanos. They want to know about that computer you’re building. You can talk to them about the mechanics of white matter and gray matter in the brain. Your interests will usually be significant to those who love you. People care what you think.
Nobody should ever have to apologize for their nerdiness.
John Green said it well.
He stated: “Nerds like us are allowed to be unironically enthusiastic about stuff…Nerds are allowed to love stuff, like jump-up-and-down-in-the-chair-can’t-control-yourself love it. When people call people nerds, mostly what they are saying is, ‘You like stuff,’ which is just not a good insult at all. Like, ‘You are too enthusiastic about the miracle of human consciousness.’”
There is so much joy in nerding out. It isn’t just good for the person excitedly gushing though. The choice to talk nerdy and allow others to talk nerdy benefits everybody! We foster a community. We allow others to discover new interests. It’s an act of positivity. Jaymie explained this phenomenon by saying, “When we emphasize what we love, it collectively lifts us up a little.” I believe her words to be true. We all should contribute to an accepting and empowering environment.
If you’ve ever been belittled for being a nerd, I want you to know that you matter. Your interests matter. Your over-the-moon, enthusiastic rants matter. Don’t ever allow someone to make you feel like your interests don’t matter. Because, even if they don’t care, there is a whole community of people like me out here just waiting to hear you explode with excitement.
Thanks for taking the time to read this article in the Breaking Down My Thoughts series. What is a topic you are passionate about and would love to discuss? Let’s get a conversation going in the comments section. If you enjoyed the content, feel free to like it and share it with others.