Hardcore Nerds vs Fake Geek Girls: an Imaginary Conflict
Inflammatory rhetoric aside, when you define yourself solely by how “hardcore” your enthusiasms are, it makes sense that you would feel threatened by “casual” enthusiasts. After all, if just anyone can share in Your Thing, if no effort is required to seek out Your Thing, then your dedication to Your Thing doesn’t actually mean anything. But guess what? It never did.
You like things. That’s great. You hang out with people, IRL and online, who like those things just as much as you do. Also great. But no one has to earn the right to enjoy something. You don’t have to dedicate your life to video games to be allowed to play HALO 4. You don’t need to have read the entire western comics canon to say you like Batman. Batman is awesome, people like him, end of story. Nothing invalidates what you like or who you are. Nothing is “ruined” by having people who aren’t as hardcore as you enjoy the same things you enjoy. Maybe, at least on a subconscious level, you dove into geek culture as a haven from the world of hot girls and cool guys, a world that maybe wasn’t very kind to you. Geekdom was a safe place where the assholes couldn’t mock or reject you. I get that. I sympathize. But those days are over. Geekdom is a big tent now, and it’s only getting bigger. The good news is, you now have common ground with those people. They don’t hate Your Thing the way you expected (wanted?) them to. Your preconceved notions were wrong, in the best way. These aren’t “fake geek girls,” they’re girls who are cooler and broader of mind than you ever gave them credit for. You underestimated them, and you should fucking rejoice at that. Hot girls and cool guys showing up at comics and gaming conventions (in costume, no less!) doesn’t ruin anything. It proves you were right all along. This shit is awesome, and everybody who gives it a shot loves it. This can only possibly be a good thing.
Listen. No one is going to mock you for liking something a lot, when they themselves like it a little. I understand the urge to weed out the “poseurs” (and it’s not limited to geek culture at all; visit any political site, right or left, and you’ll see thread after thread of depressing infighting over who’s “real”), but I also recognize that it’s juvenile and destructive and rooted entirely in insecurity. Grow up, lighten up, and recognize that a party with more people is usually better than a party with less.