I'm TheManchild, though I go by many names. Two, actually. Although it's only really one, because TheManchild is not a real name. So um, well, sorry for wasting your time.
I guess I kind of like video games. It's the only thing I'm really interested in apart from occasionally farting. I believe that might is right, that survival of the fittest is our only calling. I guess that makes me something of a paradox since I'm located somewhere between pond scum and bong water in the proverbial food chain.
My favorite games are the ones that make me feel superior to you for having played them. Games like Larry's Quantum Physics Adventure, which I just made up now. But if you question me on the subject matter and probe my understanding of it, I won't respond. I'm just kind of a dick that way.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of some of my favorite things to waste time on.
You know, in between farts.
Ecco the Dolphin
Dem Sega Mickey Mouse Games
Sonic the Hedgehog
Super Meat Boy
Star Control 2
Galactic Civilizations 2
Alien Motherfucking Soldier
So Jim Sterling wrote something or other about whatever the other day, some thing about girls and games and there was a video. Oh wait, no; it was a video he made. It was everyone else who wrote something in response to the video. People were offended or upset or just plain didn't think Jim was right in his viewpoint about how the fake nerd girl business is a pile of bullshit; it's a phenomenon that, yes, probably exists, but that people are working themselves up about because...
Well, I talked to a friend of mine who also happens to have a vagina. It's no coincidence either; she was born with one. It just kind of happened that way. Nature is funny sometimes. Every once in awhile, her and her boyfriend and some other guys they know and myself get together and play games. And that's about it. We talk on the internet about various things, but sometimes we talk about games. She is a girl who happens to be a nerd. She's a "real" nerd girl, since we have now established that there are "fake" ones.
I asked what her honest opinion on the whole thing was, and we discussed it for awhile. She said, quite frankly, that it annoyed her. It bothered her to know that there were chicks out there pretending to like games for whatever reason; male approval, peer approval, or just tagging onto new trends. It bothered her because they are fake, disingenuous.
She wrote one or two paragraphs explaining her stance, and her reasons made sense. I then asked her, just how much of a big deal is it, really?
Not much. It's a minor annoyance.
It seems to me that the people speaking out the loudest against "fake nerd girls" fall into one of two categories; and by one of two, I mean both of the categories I am about to describe.
2) Males who genuinely have some ire or sexist leanings towards women
For anyone who would call me a "white knight" for merely pointing this out, or for rushing to the defense of women everywhere; fuck yourselves in the mouth. You are part of the problem. People use the "white knight" call out more often as a defense for their assholian brand of sexist slander, and in very few cases is the white knighting thing true. I am just as willing to call someone a cunt if they are being one, whether they actually have a vagina or not, so let's get that straight right now. Girls are generally either embraced or totally raked over the coals and lambasted when it comes to the gaming "community" by and large, so if someone wants to rush to their defense even out of some vague attempt to gain their respect, I actually understand that, and I'm okay with it. For all the dickheads I have seen out there treating women like shit on so many online games, and in so many forums largely dominated by neck bearded, borderline asexual man babies, I can handle a little chivalry and inverted sexism if it means cutting chicks some slack in an overly caustic environment which can barely handle their very existence much of the time.
Most of the people getting really upset are guys. There are girls out there too, and Jim Sterlings argument that it really shouldn't bother anyone is something I basically agree with. The reason? I can't imagine it being difficult to ignore the few "sluts with controllers", as a picture someone posted in another blog suggested. I mean, really, apart from some pictures on the internet, or the odd ill informed YouTube channel, where the fuck are these people? Are they invading games of Dota 2 and Team Fortress 2 in swathes? Are they ruining high level Diamond League Starcraft 2 play? The REAL nerds, the people who grip and hold onto that title like a badge of honor, if they are indeed as hardcore as they think, should be too busy involving themselves in their obsessions to worry about these people hiding somewhere in a corner.
I think that Jim probably overstated the prevalence of the bitching; at least I did until I saw all of the responses in the comment boxes, in the blogs, all pointing out why he was wrong and quickly flocking to defend their view which mainly consisted of "uhhmm ahhhh it's just annoying goddammit! They took our jerbs!" It just kind of irritated me to see that anyone wanted to fucking bother to refute a well rounded argument because it did exactly one thing, and one thing only; it exposed their own prejudices, whether they were well meaning or not. It showed their pettiness and inability to simply look away, to ignore a minor "problem" that they need not concern themselves with at all.
I don't want to be called a nerd, a geek, or even a gamer. I don't feel the need to be identified in that way, nor do I find it offensive when that "title", which others bestowed on me as a derogatory term, is being adopted by people who are simply trending, and who will eventually move on to the next big thing or simply be exposed by natural causes for the frauds that they are. I think that the successful nerd girls are the most heinous in the eyes of the green eyed monsters that seem to hate them so much; "that fucking bitch, she doesn't even like video games and yet she makes money off of being hot in front of a camera while sit here and play for ten hours a day?"
Yeah? And what's your fucking point? People exploited your hobby in order to make money, using their sex appeal and business savvy in order to do so. Tough shit, assholes; its a hard world sometimes, and this sort of thing goes on everywhere. Even within this very industry, a few sexy "nerd girls" are hardly a part of that much bigger "problem", if you want to call it that. There is a lot more insidious dog shit going on behind the scenes than a playboy model posing nude with an Xbox controller on her crotch. And that other stuff, stuff that is actively hurting our hobby, like shitty payment and subscription models, forced DLC, and all sorts of other nonsense perpetuated by the big giants, has no redeeming quality; you can't even masturbate to it. I've tried. All that came out was blood. Blood and sadness, and of course, all of my fucking money.
I think it's jealousy, some of it; attention being lavished on other people in a sub culture which has generally been maligned, and is still largely misunderstood. But I honestly have little sympathy. I went through an extremely abusive childhood in my school years and was called out, insulted, and physically abused on a daily basis for being into geeky things. You don't see me bitching. The growth and popularity of this thing I love, for all the negative things that have come of it, like dumb ass award shows on TV with rappers and all the cunts who would have picked on my back in school have actually done a lot of good things for my hobby; the money being thrown into the industry has helped to allow for smaller developers to exist to get a bigger piece of the pie, more games every year, better quality in games as a general rule (oh shit, you know it's true; just look at the Atari days and NES days and try to tell me there wasn't just as much, if not more utter crap being pumped out on a daily basis due to a lack of quality control.) and people generally being more accepting of video games as a staple of pop culture. So before anyone accuses me of just not getting it; trust me, I get it. I went through it just as bad, and maybe worse than other people did. But I'm not gonna blame the current generation for that; that was just a case of being alienated from the mainstream for loving something that was so decidedly out of it during that period of my life. The times are a changin'.
This change is good for me, and it will be good for my kids who will ultimately be playing games at one time or another. They will no longer have to feel completely like outsiders. So if a few good looking girls want to exploit rabid nerds (coming from the same group who will ultimately judge them, ironically enough) then so be it.
Yes, I understand why it is annoying. I even managed to hold a woman at gunpo- I mean, talk to a friend over a cup of coffee, who happens to be a female, to get her own opinion. And as someone who is unquestionably geeky, even she found it annoying. I am not getting upset about that fact. I was annoyed when I saw Geoff Keighley surrounded by a bunch of Mountain Dew and Doritos shit, or when I heard a bunch of jock fuck nuggets talking about how "badass Halo was, yo". But I shrugged, and went back to doing what I did best; playing video games. Talking to other people who weren't those people, and just doing my best to stay absorbed in the things I love, regardless of the taint of the outside world otherwise "ruining" it for me. It wasn't ruining anything, it just kind of annoyed me.
But only a little bit. And that's all it really should be; such a miniscule annoyance that it is barely worth mentioning, bringing up, or blogging about...