Monthly Archives: February 2014

Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Tick Off A Geek Girl

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Ninja snake

Beware the wrath of the Geek Girl.
Image by Lisa Kay Tate

Well, now you’ve gone and done it. You’ve somehow switched on the gamma rays and provoked the Geek Girl. This normally adventure-loving, laid-back, and usually even-tempered being is suddenly morphing into a steaming, livid, infuriated ball of fire.

In simple terms, whatever you did, you pissed her off and that’s never a smart move.

Here are some of the top reasons why:

We Are Brilliant Wordsmiths With a Penchant for Memorizing One-Liners.
Yes, this does include some of the world’s best insults drawn from sources as varied as Shakespeare to Star Wars, you warthog-faced buffoon.  We fangirls are so adept at crafting words, we can cut you to the quick without even resorting to Mamet-style profanity. What this means—and I’ll explain it in small words so you can understand it—is we can do it in public for everyone to hear, you miserable vomitous mass.

Ergo, if you decide to insult us in front of our family, friends, or anyone else, you will find yourself branded a “sanguine coward, bed-presser, huge hill of flesh, bull’s pizzle, stuck-up half-witted, scruffy-looking Nerf herder,” who’s “mother was a hamster, and father smelt of elderberries.”

Try and counter by using worn-out name-calling or dropping words like “bee-yatch” in the mix, then be prepared to be “weighed, measured, and found wanting,” because you are a sad, strange little man (or woman) and you have my pity.

We Don’t Need That Extra Excuse to Carry Out a Good Prank.
It’s not that we’re vengeful; we’re just more than willing to teach a little lesson to those in need of an attitude adjustment. Plus, I’ve always felt pranks are wasted on April 1, as everyone is pretty much expecting them. Of course, that has never stopped me from carrying them out each year. However, it is the prank of,  for lack of a kinder word, revenge, that is the sweetest and most unexpected.

Like The Count of Monte Cristo, we are patient and our tormentors’ comeuppance will be slow, well thought-out, and ultimately very satisfying. It may be an embarrassing and very loud computer hack in the office or a well-placed novelty “voice device” whispering random eerie remarks from your air vent. Perhaps you’ll encounter a full-size Slenderman cutout lurking quietly in the garage, waiting to be noticed at just the right moment. Who knew you were such a huge Justin Beiber fan? Everyone in your office, now!

We are waiting and ready to pounce like a Ninja toilet snake, which by the way, might even be waiting for you, too. If you’ve recently been an absolute jerk to a geek girl, including making the ill-fated mistake of pranking us first, it might be smart to look before using the “facilities” or sliding your arm under your pillow at night.

Trust me when I tell you: Don’t let your guard down.

Don’t Assume Your Company Is Preferred Over That Of Fictional Characters.
Geek girls like me have been well aware for years how utterly disgusting it can be for a partner to lust over the airbrushed, gravity-defying, over-endowed feminine ideal no human can ever match without computer or plastic enhancements. Knowing this, we would also never hold up our spouses to those unreasonable levels.

Does this mean we’d pass up the occasional mental journey aboard the Black Pearl, a light-speed scoundrel-heavy trek across the galaxies in the Millennium Falcon, or a tumble through time and space in the TARDIS? No, it does not. If our real-life romantic interest decides a little sympathy for a hard day is not necessary or that there are more important things to do than occasionally listen to details of a traumatic stressed-filled situation, then there’s a magical place in our minds where leather-clad Time Lords (yes, that one!), intergalactic smugglers, and sarcastic pirates are more than willing to extend their arm and take us away for awhile.

This just isn’t a warning for significant others. It’s for all you “overly concerned” friends, who worry we are spending too much time reading comic books and not “real women’s novels” or that we would rather see Pacific Rim for the fifth time than that sappy new rom-com even once.  It is these instances that we would prefer to hang out with our butt-kicking gal-pals lopping zombie heads with Michonne from The Walking Dead, climbing mountains and practicing archery with Princess Merida from Brave, or putting bad guys in their place through intelligence and martial arts with Melinda May in Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

So, next time our partner (romantic, business, or other) tries to over-explain why they should never be the one to perform a simple household or office chore, or our pals share a passive-aggressive sympathy for us actually opting to go on a family date night to The Lego Movie over a bland evening of “whine and wine” with them, you might notice us with a blank, faraway look in our eye.  This is not the look of complacency with a situation. It’s our escape through the rift into our other world where we are forever welcome—an exciting one, where they know us well and treat us right.

Which brings me to my next brief reason…

Screen shot 2014-02-07 at 5.50.22 PM

Apologies to the fan artist known as “The Untempered Prism” for using her beautiful work (inset) as a tool to work out my frustrations, but in all fairness that little blonde companion was dressed suspiciously like me. Original image can be seen on her DeviantArt page.

We Know Photoshop and We’re Not Afraid to Use It.
Just because I would never think of being unfaithful to my spouse, ditching my friends, or inflicting physical harm on someone out of anger, doesn’t mean there isn’t a little alter ego of myself getting back at the offending parties in the wonderful world of digital manipulation. One nice holiday portrait can be cut and pasted into a pile of space debris, a disembodied head post-zombie massacre or even into a nice tasty snack for Jabberjaw.

Make us angry enough; we’ll even become the subject of our improvised art. If we can place a head on a stake in the midst of Mordor, then how hard is it to re-color some fanart and give The Doctor a more worthy companion?

I love my husband and my friends, but there’s no telling what that naughty little digital me would do when she’s angry…very angry.

We are Generally Easy-going, Happy and Fun-loving.
I think it can safely be said, judging by the first four reasons I’ve given, that geek girls are imaginative and playful. We use any situation to siphon the joy out of life and spread it to all those around us.

One might wonder exactly how this final reason is even a problem. Well, it’s simple: If you’ve made a geek girl angry, you must have really, incredibly, remarkably screwed up.

Seriously, what did you do?

We enjoy good-natured ribbing and fun, can let minor discrepancies slide (who hasn’t forgotten to take the trash out?), and can actually understand how you can, on rare occasions, spend more than three figures on a video game, as long as it’s a limited edition with a great Assassin’s Creed statue.

If you’ve dug deep enough in our inner-core to cause our ire to erupt, then you must have gone way, way too far. If you have messed with our family, destroyed our confidence, or emotionally or physically hurt us or anyone we love, then you have done the near impossible and made…us…MAD.

To that I say both “congratulations on your achievement” and “run,” because Dr. Banner has summed it up splendidly: “Don’t make me angry. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.”

Make-Believe Sports You Can Actually Play in Real Life

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sportsI’ve always been taken aback by the generality that the stereotypical nerd is an out-of-shape, sedentary group that sits in front of a computer screen gaunt and greasy-haired playing on-line games by the hour. This may be a reality for some individuals, but this computer-glued society extends far beyond just the geeky.

I’m personally a big advocate of the old-fashioned notion of actually getting outside and, well, moving, and a great way to encourage physical activity is for it to involve the imagination. The geek world has this concept down pat, as groups like Society for Creative Anachronisms and other LARP (Live Action Role Playing) groups spend most weekends outdoors in simulated battles or competitions.

Others are catching on, too. It’s getting harder and harder to find a 5K or even half-marathon, which doesn’t adhere to some kind of theme where you can chase monsters, run in cosplay, scramble over combat-style obstacles or be doused with powdery color like speedy members of Oozma Kappa from Monsters University.

Even fictional sports and activities have made their way off the page or screen and into parks, fields and gymnasiums.  Here are five

Quidditch. No matter what one may think of Pottermania, the idea of quidditch is pretty awesome. A game that takes on a near FIFA frenzy among the wizarding world is the sport-of-envy among muggles everywhere. J.K. Rowling herself took quidditch so seriously she created a “textbook” for it, Quidditch Through the Ages.

Muggles have not only taken up this sport, they have taken it over, as the nonprofit International Quidditch Association, founded in 2010, reported the coed sport is now played at more than 300 universities and high schools throughout North America, Australia and Europe. According to IQA information, the sport was first adapted for real-life play in 2005 at Middlebury College in Vermont, and today the association sanctions at least 25 quidditch events around the globe including the World Cup, International Open, Global Games and QuidCon. The goal of IQA is to encourage young people (or people of all ages for that matter) “to lead physically active and socially engaged lives.” The play is similar to the books, only it’s played on the ground, and the sentient golden snitch ball has been replaced by a human snitch, an impartial player who make his way through the field with a flag football like tail to capture.quidditch

Who is currently the best quidditch team?  According to the IQA rankings as of January 2014, The Lost Boys of Southern California has the lead over University of Arkansas Razorback Quidditch, NYDC Capitalists and Baylor University.

Zombie Hunting. Everybody loves zombies, and from Shaun of the Dead to AMC’s The Walking Dead, people seem to know a good set of rules of how to actually take out the undead creatures, and how stay safe (for those who don’t know yet, go for the head).

Thanks to goal-setting sports like Zombie Runs, people can actually put themselves in a zombie apocalypse scenario. The original The Zombie Run, offers regular 5K Zombie Run events at more than 25 cities throughout the United States as well Zombie Run Extreme, with obstacle courses and a Black Ops night run series that boasts “300 zombies, 10 obstacles, fire, smoke, mud and 3.1 miles of insane terrain.”

The concept of the zombie run is often simple.  “Human” runners traipse through a series of obstacles while being constantly pursued by zombies.  Runners wear a flag-football style belt with flags attached the zombies try to take. Many runs award prizes in various categories to the “survivors,” and all those who complete the run.

For the less fitness-inclined, paintball scenarios and special events are popping up all over challenging savvy “game hunters” to take on zombies…who are often armed themselves and fighting back. A little out of character for a zombie, but still challenging and fun.

The AMC’s Walking Dead even recently got involved in its own “sports craze” as it airred the “Zombie Bowl” to compete with football on Super Bowl Sunday and will run every “Humans versus Walkers” moment from the first two seasons through the entirety of the game.

Calvin Ball. How can a game where the only rule is there are no rules not be a blast to play?

Here’s the twist…there actually are rules, or at least guidelines.  Calvin and Hobbes fan sites have gathered many of the “unofficial” rules on game play.  A few that have been touched upon in the comics include:

•Rules cannot be use twice.
•The game can never be played the same way twice
•All players must wear a black mask…oh, and never question the mask
•Any new rule made up must be accepted
•A player can never repeat a play they used in previous game.
• Since the game is called Calvin Ball, some sort of ball should be used. The type of ball used is up to the players and it could be anything from a soccer ball to a superball.

As for even vaguer suggestions regarding the game, players can use flags, posts, capes or any other form of prop or costume they deem fit, spontaneous singing, dancing, crude poetry or any other quirky antic can be evoked at any time, and scoring isn’t limited to numbers (e.g. “The score is still Q to 12!”)

The best way to play this is to just dive in. Find a spot, grab some black masks and a ball and enjoy this exercise in spontaneity and creativity. If nothing else, it will have everyone laughing by the end…whatever that may be.calvinball

BASEketball. As much as I hate to admit it, the barely amusing and over-the-top disgusting movie starring South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker spawned a pretty cool game idea that could be enjoyed by people of all ages.

The game is played by taking the baseball field layout —three bases and a home plate — and moving it onto a basketball court setting. Movement around the bases is based on sinking free throws from the various bases. Easy enough, except for one catch. Players on the opposing team are encouraged to “psyche out” shooters through smack talk, and outrageous behavior without actually touching the player. The “psyche out” tactics in the movie were pretty raw, but kids can still have fun trying to distract players without resorting to R-rated methods.

Although there is no official league for this sport, it has become a popular driveway sport and Wikihow has put together some easy rules for two or more players.

• Jedi Sparring.  Jedi training is serious business. Take the discipline and chivalry of European fencing, mixed with the Japanese kendo style moves, plus the slight chance of accidently dismembering one’s opponent with just one “touché,” and there’s lightsaber battles. These battles have been the saving grace in even the worst of the movie franchise’s prequels, and even non-Star Wars fans have likely found themselves waving around a wrapping paper tube while murmuring “bzzzzzzzz.”

Thanks to some ambitious participants of the LARP (Live Action Role Playing) world, weekend sword battles can become light saber battles with a little adjustment. This isn’t just a bunch of kids smacking each other around with plastic toy lightsabers — although that’s fun, too — this is as organized as an intergalactic renaissance fair.

One group that has received much online attention is California’s West Covina LARP, who decided in late 2013 to bring Star Wars LARP options to the world of role-playing to their area. Hoping to see Star Wars LARP go national, their battle options have included, unsurprisingly, Jedi vs. Sith but also less predictable scenarios such as Sith and Jedi Against the Zombie Apocalypse.  They take their safety as seriously as groups like Amtgard, and they make sure everything from the foam lightsabers to blasters and other weapons pass safety checks before battles.

They also welcome all ages, although Sith, Jedi and other assorted aliens under 18 have to have parent/guardian permission.

I enjoy sports, but couldn’t be happier with the trend of “themed” or “make-believe” sports springing to life on the playing field. Geeks like me, we like to get out and play, we are just very creative when we do it.

MORE Quotes for Your Nerdy Valentine….on GeekMom

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sexy tardisLast year’s “Quotes for Your Nerdy Valentine,” was so popular, I gave it an upgrade for the site GeekMom.com. Now there are more quotes from Doctor Who, Big Bang and other geeky sources joining the original list, as well as a second downloadable template to tempt the geeky love of you life, family and friends.

You can check it out here at GeekMom.com or the original post here at lisathegeekmom.com or ihogeek.com.IMG_2322