The End of Geek Culture

What is the essence of being a “Geek?”

Here are some common mistakes:

  • Purchasing and displaying a “Geeky” brand of printed materials
  • Wearing T-shirts displaying “Geeky” fictional characters or phrases
  • Wearing a particular shape of “Geeky” eyeglasses
  • Memorizing trivia and dialogue from “Geeky” movies
  • Participating in “Geeky” games that are definitely not physical sports
  • Attending “Geeky” pop culture events with 150,000 other “Geeks.”

In other words, spend your money in a certain way, and you’ll be a “Geek.”

Oops, someone forgot:

The essence of “Geek” is being a Social Reject.

(Have fun arguing about the definition all you want, but it all comes down to that.)

So it seems Wil Wheaton, Felicia Day, and Olivia Munn are confused.

You can’t be Extremely Likable, a.k.a. Popular, a.k.a. Famous — and also be a Social Reject.

Therefore, if people pay money and stand in line just to meet you and tell you how awesome you are, you’re not a Geek. You’re just another Mainstream Celebrity.

Of course, there’s nothing inherently wrong with any of these so-called “Geeky” things, either. At least in my opinion. I have nothing against the people named above, because I’d be happy to play D&D with them. Like them, I’m thrilled to watch any corporate-funded sci-fi / fantasy / adventure movie. My studio has a life-size Stormtrooper poster on the door. I even wear black-rimmed glasses.

But I am most definitely a Social Reject. A Social Reject from Geek Culture, because I’m not on T.V. And I’m not on T.V. because I’m not good looking and / or funny enough. I’m not into offensively playing games of Social Dominance. It’s High School all over again. And isn’t making up for High School what Celebrity Geek Culture is all about?

Help me, Sylvester McMonkey McBean.

(P.S. I wrote a 30-minute animated TV show pilot about this.)

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Creativity: Crop Rotation, Pt. 2

I’d like to expand on an old blog post called Creativity: Crop Rotation. (http://www.carlkingdom.com/creativity-crop-rotation)

Especially if you live in Los Angeles, there’s a lot of pressure to give yourself an Industry Designation. You’re supposed to decide on some narrow job description like Guitarist or Photographer — and make sure it’s clear on your business card and in your email signature for the next billion years. You’re expected to climb that ladder, work it into every conversation you have, just in case a stranger can get you a gig doing it. And never do anything else, unless you want everyone to think (know) you’re an amateur.

If you happen to love doing more than one thing, it must mean you’ve FAILED at one of them, right? Or the thing you did AFTER the other thing is because no one thought you were any good at it and you gave up.

In 2008, I took a lot of interest in programming WordPress sites and CSS. It fascinated me. So I bought some books, learned it, and did it for a living. It was extremely funny to me that a client once asserted that I couldn’t know anything about audio because I was just “a web design guy.” I didn’t bother correcting him.

Over the years I’ve studied and succeeded in graphic design, music, marketing, advertising sales, writing books, directing videos, editing, producing, photography, web programming, animation… so when someone at a party asks me what I do, I can’t give a simple answer. (If they instead asked me my favorite food, I could at least answer with one word: Burrito.)

I get good at things because I get serious. I honestly don’t think I have much talent, and I beat myself up a lot for not being good at socializing or meeting people. But what I can do every single day is study a subject until I understand it. I buy books, look up the definitions of words I don’t understand, read websites and forums, watch training videos, listen to podcasts, ask advice from experts, and go to stores & seminars where I can experience the subjects up-close. I believe I’m capable of mastering something if I just invest the time.

I master things and move on, then learn how to mix them together.

Frank Zappa called this “The Direction of Many Things.”

I have no idea what I’ll be doing in a year or five years. Hopefully something where I can keep doing many things in parallel and series, because I enjoy it.

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Are You An Introvert? Take This Test. 99% Accuracy.

Hooray! The answer is Yes!

Why?

Because you wanted to know. Extroverts don’t care!

(Well, sometimes they do. 1% of the time. But only because they want to know what’s wrong with you.)

So you don’t really need to wonder anymore. You don’t need to take all these Myers-Briggs personality tests. It’s the opposite of what Louis Armstrong said when he was asked what Jazz is. “If you gotta ask, you’ll never know.”

If you gotta ask, you already know!

-Carl.

P.S. My 10 Myths About Introverts has been read by over 1 MILLION people, so I know what I’m talking about. Also, that Frank Zappa image above is from my Business Lesson With Frank Zappa Cartoon. Someone else posted it on YouTube, not me.

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