Hello, I am failtuna, well that is my online alias. my real name is Rhys Walton from the good old United Kingdom -England to be specific-, I am an aspiring journalist/blogger who is looking for some attention! I also enjoy playing, collecting, reading and writing about games. I have an extensive video game collection. I currently live in the UK
We all have interests, whether it be sport, music, games, niche pornography, reading or something totally different. What you’ll also find with having any interest are other people who share the same or similar interests. Everyone loves a good chat about their latest purchase of a book/ticket/game/DVD. But in this day and age, you are not allowed to enjoy what you enjoy, oh no, because someone who doesn’t enjoy it will always go out of their way to tell you why you are wrong for enjoying it.
I’ll come out and say it, I’m a MAN OF THE INTERNET, by that I mean I take an interest in anything that would be considered “nerd culture” (Man of the Internet sounds much more badass though.) I’m not ashamed of this, I enjoy watching entire series of Star Trek and playing obscure NES games, when I’m not fantasising over my favourite Anime character that is, and I’ve found many like minded individuals –not in person of course, that would involve going outside...
And we can talk for hours about our various interests, with no fear of judgment. Only on the internet of course, if I even mention my level 80 Paladin in World Of Warcraft in the real world (IRL as I would say) I can expect to have the crap beaten out of me by some uneducated brute who is in romantic love with “Shola” or some other footballer, whose name wouldn’t sound out of place at a Klingon battle ceremony.
Ahh, good old football fans. The Catholics of the hobby world. When they aren’t gathering in their decedent cathedrals to worship Ball and Foot, they are preaching the latest scores and telling the parable of “that miracle goal.” They spend time distancing themselves from us ‘nerds’ when, in actual fact, they are exactly the same, if not worse. I have friends who go to conventions dressed as characters from their favourite game, comic, film etc. This is known as “Cosplay” you know who else likes to dress up as their favourite characters? You guessed it, football fans. Yes, really. How do you identify a football fan? The gormless look on his face? No, it’s the replica strip they wear with the name and colours of their favourite team on. Is this any different to me walking down the street wearing a Star Fleet uniform? No. If you wear an Alan Shearer football shirt, you are wearing a goddamned Alan Shearer costume. Football fans are just closeted cosplayers. What really irritates me is that they are allowed to get away with this. I have to hide my “nerdiness” like school boys hide their crotches in the changing room shower, while the football fan parades up and down the lockers, footballs on show for all to see.
Another stereotypical nerd hobby is videogames. Again, many parallels can be drawn between the world of virtual reality, and football. I know the entire roster update for the latest Street Fighter in the same way a NUFC fan knows the name of every current player in the team. The difference is, if I bring up games in conversation, the subject is quickly brushed over. If football is brought up, the conversation can last an infinite length of time –I say “conversation” it’s more a series of noises and grunts. If I talk about the tech specs of the latest console I purchased, I’ll be branded a “geek” and sent away to cry into my Anime Girl body pillow. But the common or garden football fan is free to talk about the offside rule and toe punts without fear of ridicule. Football even has videogames! The long running FIFA series releases the same game every year, but of course, these manly men of football wouldn’t be caught dead talking about the gameplay of a videogame, they talk about the games as if they’d been watching “the match” and they act as if they are the manager of the actual England team.
I’m not saying my hobby is better, but it is. The reason it is better is because I don’t try to hide what I do behind a wall of lies. I am not insecure about my interests. What I want to know is, who came up with this idea of what nerds are, and what made the football fans exempt? Did some beefy man declare that football is the only hobby allowed to act “nerdy” without being bundled into the nerd culture? It’s not like other elements of nerd culture haven’t leaked into the mainstream, sci-fi films were once only enjoyed by the minority, now everyone has seen Star Wars, and films such as Avatar – which technically exists in the same canon universe as the pop culture classic Alien- can become one of the highest grossing films of all time. You can’t honestly tell me that the basement dwellers made that happen.
It’s about time the nerds stopped hating on the football fans for being elitist with their fandom, and it’s about time that the football fans stopped pretending their sport is anything more than a “fandom” in the same way that Doctor Who or Twilight is. And hey, at least we still have the furries to hate on together.