Remember the days when you and a couple of friends knew about a certain game or band? Remember how you felt? It was like you knew a secret no one else knew; and if that secret was ever let out to the public then the value of the secret would just become another norm with no special purpose to hold on to. Remember when the internet was just starting up? This whole nostalgia for the early nineties is not a superiority complex, but one of authenticity. What I miss is our authentic geek culture that was helped and destroyed by the internet. The internet, my lovely reader, is why geeks no longer exist.
Now, I donít want to be hypocritical, so I will admit that the internet can be used for good, and for the most part it is. But, it seems that the internet has a dark side, a side full of information on our finger tips, a side that allows anyone in, a side devoted to equality, a side full of, as Holden Caulfield would say, phonies
. These phonies are the hipsters of our generation.
Yesterday I was walking down Union Square and notice something strange: things that were once geeky are now cool. My observation of this was a man wearing an oversize Metroid shirt along with Buddy Holly like glasses with ripped up jeans. This, my lovely reader, is what disturbs me, no itís not the ripped up pants that he probably over paid for, but itís the shirt. Letís all be honest here. When games like Metroid, a game that has more of a cult appeal even though it is one of Nintendoís major franchises, is being worn as a fashion statement in a trendy part of the city by a person who never played the game, yet alone doesnít even know what a Metroid is, is just heartbreaking. Now, I know what my fellow reader is thinking: Venus, how can you judge someone like that? You donít know him. Yes, this is a legitimate question, but letís be real here. Was any of this present when we were growing up?
I can fully see that the hipster may be me for seeing something I like being embraced by the masses, but the geek culture is something different than music or films. Growing up we were made fun of for our hobbies. We had a small group of friends (if any) and we were defiantly not the popular kids in school. Some of us were socially awkward and used video games/comics/anime to escape the horrors of the real world. This is why I take this subject seriously, but letís all get back to reality here - not every geek is like that, some geeks had a great high school experience, and others had no problem with the opposite sex. I will admit that I never had any problems with girls, but the girls I was interested in were far away from being ďcoolĒ. They were girls that were isolated from the rest. They were like me, geeks.
The internet has provided us with a wealth of information, but I long for the day when only a few played Earthbound, or saw Ninja Scrolls. I can totally see how this may be immature and even a bit stupid, but there was something cool about it. This feeling of being part of a club is something my friends and I used to enjoy. We felt superior to the rest, it is a bit pretentious, but I donít care Ė I loved the feeling! I also must emphasis that itís not only geek stuff, but other mediums as well. For instance, because of the internet anyone can say they know who Franz Kafka or Albert Camus is, but Iím constantly disappointed when Iím talking to someone who says ďyeah, that writer is cool,Ē but hasnít read or forgot
about their work. This is what I mean that the internet has birth a special species of phonies. Instead of trying to look cool by agreeing with me, why wonít you just be honest and open up?
Unfortunately, our own culture has turned its back on us. We have gamers who poke fun of others if he/she plays Halo or Call of Duty. We live in an age where people pride themselves on only playing indie games. Weíre falling apart. Iím afraid to say this, but the hipster apocalypse has come. And guess what? They've won. Maybe these sub-groups of gamers always existed, but the internet has shed a light to it, or maybe it's just that I'm over thinking things. I may be generalizing here, but there is no denying what is happening. It's not only the way they dress, but the attitude they have of pretending to know something they have no idea about!