Finding Your Tribe

I have a confession to make. Every year I feel more and more of a disconnect from geek culture. Which is odd since it’s a community I’ve felt a bond with since I ran around in my bathrobe pretending to be Princess Leia. And got mockingly called “computer girl” throughout school (who’s laughing now, jerks). I thought maybe I was getting too old for all of this, but then Claire snapped me out of it by pointing out all the awesome people older than us still having a blast at conventions.

I had to think a bit more, and I realized I haven’t found my geek tribe. The geek community loves labels. We love to proudly declare what kind of geek we are. This graphic from My Extra Life just scratches the surface of the different ways we classify ourselves. And this can be incredibly helpful. It’s awesome to just be able to go up to someone and say “I’m a gamer” or “I’m a Whovian” and know exactly what that means. But when you’re into a lot of things, but not deeply into them, it becomes hard to find where you belong.

I love digging through bins of used CDs to expand my music collection. I love buying my favorites on vinyl. I love finding new music, and talking about it. But I am not a music geek.

I am particular about how things  sound. But I am not an audiophile.

I love sci-fi, but once the book/show/film is done, I’m done. I am not a sci-fi geek.

I read all the time. But I don’t think of myself as a book geek.

I play video games. But I am not a gamer.

I work in technology, but I am not an early adopter. I don’t seek out the latest and greatest like I used to. I am not a tech geek.

I am in this weird sort of limbo. I have a lot of geeky hobbies, but I’m not truly a geek of any of these things. (Side note: The name “Pure Geekery” came from me having too many hobbies to list in my Twitter bio.) This used to make you just a general geek. But geek culture has gone pop. Where once being into various geeky things on a surface level still made you a geek, that’s now just part of the general zeitgeist. Being into Star Wars and computers and having internet friends isn’t niche anymore. It’s just the way things are. Being non-denominational geek doesn’t feel as much like a thing anymore. (It still is of course, it just feels different now.)

So where do I go from here? The answer is obvious, I need to find my tribe. I need to find a group of like-minded geeks. I’m thinking Maker Faire might be a great place to start.

4 Responses to “Finding Your Tribe”
  1. Andy Arenson says:
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