1041 Kobayashi Maru.

This is one of those titles that, as a nerd, it’s hard to believe I haven’t used before. In point of fact I hear this phrase so much I’m kind of sick of it in real life. Kobayashi Maru is one of those phrases that has crossed over into the mainstream enough that people will fling it out when they want some nerd cred, but don’t actually give two shits about Star Trek. It has become one of those Big Bang Theory kind of phrases. Having never actually seen an episode of BBT I can only guess that they’ve used it. I only invoke BBT because it strikes me as the kind of show that courts nerds while actually laughing at them rather than with them. At the very least they walk the line and, in their defense, nerds need to be laughed at. If you don’t constantly laugh at them and/or bully them they will grow up thinking fedoras are acceptable headware for any occasion with any ensemble. HATS DO NOT WORK THAT WAY.

Anyway, some other phrases/concepts that have crossed into this territory are Schrodinger’s Cat, the Eye Of Sauron… I’m sure there must be more, but I’m too distracted to think of them. Any suggestions for the list?

People have been posting a lot of toy fair stuff recently. I haven’t followed that stuff for a long time, but now I follow people that do so it’s like this weird window on a past version of myself.

My Transformer collecting has slowed to almost nothing. My goal, if you want to call it that, is to have a decent version of the primary cartoon characters from Generation 1. Ideally they’ll be more or less to scale with one another. The problem has been, and continues to be, that Hasbro never does one style long enough to complete even the original cast. Even then actually finding the toys in question is a massive hassle. Out here they stopped restocking Transformes even before Christmas. Just quit outright. at both of the locations I “frequent”. One of them had a box of the new Fall Of Cybertron guys and that’s it. I didn’t want any of those guys either. The only thing they keep getting are tons of these little Battle Beast looking Bot Shot things. They are always fully stocked, and I can’t tell if they’re actually selling any.

Transformers isn’t the only brand that I’ve seen this with Star Wars sells so poorly they still have stacks of the ones from the rereleases of Episode 1. It’s really sad. I think I’m starting to bond with some of the pegwarmers…


In fairness to BBT, the one who’s a real “nerd cred” nerd (Sheldon) is also a huge asshole to the rest of the cast, and they know it. Now that I think about it, he’s a bit like Basil Fawlty with a Ph.D.

Well now I’m curious about it again…

Up to you! Honestly it’s not as hilarious as Fawlty Towers, but it’s far from the “nerd blackface” people have smeared it as. Just bear in mind that it’s more in the style of older sitcoms like I Love Lucy than newer ones like The Office and Community.

It’s pretty good, largely because it’s more of a sitcom in which the majority of the cast are nerds, than a “nerd show.” Most of the nerdy/geeky/sciencey stuff never gets explained, lending it a Simpsons-style “it’s funny, but it’s even funnier if you’re smart” feel.

Example: “I feel somewhat like an inverse tangent function approaching an asymptote.” “Are you saying you’re stuck?” “What part of an inverse tangent function approaching an asymptote did you not understand?”

Being a nerd, how would we know the difference? I was 25 before I encountered someone that had NO IDEA who Medusa was. That blew my mind. Explaining it was a lot of, “You know who it is… You know… snakes for hair?” to a whole lot of nothing. Apparently that was a nerd thing. Or at least a well-read thing. I couldn’t understand how they didn’t know what it was.
Something else– RPG. That term in general is something that I’m stymied when people don’t know but, there it is. LARPing has only in the past few years passed into the nomenclature. Mostly I like to poke fun at things involving FOX. Not going to touch the News aspect of that, but there’s still plenty to go on. Like how everything on their channel gets canceled. But only if it’s actually good.
These are things we take for granted in conversations. Like, Cthulu. Chances are, your friends know what Cthulu is but go outside your group and you’ll have a harder time of it. Try explaining steampunk to people. Try explaining anything nerdy to the non-nerd public BESIDES Big Bang Theory and you’re met with the vaguest of looks and remarks like, “Oh. You mean like Batman?”. I continually had to explain to people growing up that cartoon and comic were not interchangeable. Imagine my surprise when, in Japan, I had to explain the difference between anime and manga TO A JAPANESE PERSON and then again later to my British roommate.
Things we care about seem second nature to us just as things they don’t care about are going to be out in left field. I don’t know how to field-dress a deer and I’m sure there are people out there that think that makes me a dumb-fuck. I probably would be in that situation.

Or, the good ole days when you had to painstakingly convince some moron that, no, Widescreen does NOT cut off people’s heads feet– you’re actually seeing MORE of the picture. I had a diagram for that. Kind of like this: http://dvdmedia.ign.com/dvd/image/lotr_comparison15.jpg only with Dragonheart on it. Cuz dragons.

One argument I’m very glad I don’t have to have anymore…

Now I just have to deal with people who still think 3D is a neat idea (It is, or rather, it can be, but it serves no real function in movies which are *controlled shots*, and have *no interaction*, and thus can be shot to show depth without it).

That’s one argument I’m very glad I don’t have to have anymore…

Now I just have to deal with people who still think 3D is a neat idea (It is, or rather, it can be, but it serves no real function in movies which are *controlled shots*, and have *no interaction*, and thus can be shot to show depth without it).

I want 3D to die… and not just because tickets are over $13 a person now. Mostly it’s just the crappy gimicky “it’s coming straight for us!” stuff.

And they do the oddest things with camera focus. OMG the council scene in the new Hobbit. Could he background have been blurred any more… in HD. Seriouslly, you shoot on some of the gorgeous sets and locations and deliberately go out do the way to blur it out.

It’s not as bad in 2D, but in 3D the human brain is so used to picking its own focal distance that to encounter an area that refused to come into focus when focused on… *insert Mr. Incredible breaking car door window face here*

You’re not always seeing more of the picture. It depends what the original was shot in. Older stuff is likely to have been 4:3.

I’m speaking of the olden times when widescreen was a rare breed and everything was Pan and Scan to fit our tiny-ass 4:3 tvs. Back in the days of VHS and shitty dvds where they touted “animated menus!” and “previews!” as special features. And everything was uphill. In snow.

There is a TV on in my ‘office’ all the time, I saw something scrolling across the bottom of some news channel, yesterday, the day before, ‘has bla bla bla jumped the shark’. I work at a rather nerdy company, and knew that maybe two people out of the fifty or so in the room with me, had any idea WTF that described… not even nerdy per say, it just hurt to see mainstream news using something NO ONE had any idea WTF it meant. It made me sad.

“Oh and for the record, there was an episode of Happy Days where a guy literally jumped over a shark and it was THE BEST one.”

1st of all, nice comic, cool character moment…

Then, gotta agree with you about BBT. Avoided it like the plague, finally saw about 5-10 minutes of it a few weeks ago. It is horrible, your analysis of it is correct: “I only invoke BBT because it strikes me as the kind of show that courts nerds while actually laughing at them rather than with them.” Being a nerd, it still took me a while to get your use of the slippery slope fallacy in defending shows such as BBT. Hats off to you. A well crafted paragraph! I don’t know how to classify your reverse argument-or if there may already be a term for it.

@ manekochan
I saw some people make references to Cthulu last year, when it was blatantly obvious that none of them knew who Lovecraft is, let alone read any of his stories. It is kind of strange. I wonder what pop culture reference made them aware of the concept.

As far as Cthulu is concerned, my sister is aware of it through facebook and twitter. It’s become a BBT-type of “nerd cred” that seems confined to the internet. I’ve also seen Elder Gods, Great Old Ones, and R’lyeh thrown around.

@ Crave
Some other things: The One Ring, Pokemon, and Spock

I admit to being a new-comer to Lovecraft but I knew who he was pretty early on if only because Stephen King mentioned him in interviews (my mom was a huge Stephen King fan) and I think he may have been on some “top 100 book list” I tried to get through in junior high. :p I didn’t get that far down the list.

My whole family keeps telling me how funny BBT is and how much I would “love” it and then I explain to them my reasoning about how much I am offended by it and they respond with, “That’s so Sheldon. You’re totally Sheldon,” or something to that effect. >:(
My opinion of BBT is best relayed in this quote comparing it and the IT Crowd: The thing about IT Crowd… it’s a geek show made BY geeks for geeks. Big Bang Theory is a show ABOUT geeks written by people who THINK they’re geeks FOR the people who make FUN of geeks.

Yeah – I’m a nerd – overdegree’d you might say. I’ve watched BBT a few times and having hung out with a LOT of people who are at the actual level portrayed on the show I can attest that only one of them was as weird as any of the characters on the show – and their weirdness had nothing to do with them being a nerd. The only actual nerd on the show is Mayim Bialik and while the rest of the cast is having fun playing characters they could never understand in real life, if you watch carefully you can tell that Mayim is actually having a blast doing a lot of subtle tounge-in-cheek caricaturing of the foibles she has actually observed.
I think you have accurately captured what differentiates very smart nerds and geeks from the rest of the herd; they take for granted that everyone knows as much as they do. It doesn’t tend to be a case of “oh – I’m so smart and you are dumb”; it’s more a matter of “I assume everyone else is as smart as me until proven otherwise.”
I read lots of Lovecraft when I was in junior high. Trying to explain it to other people was awfully difficult however because – let’s face it – Lovecraft MEANT the stories to leave you feeling like the world was not really understandable and a lot was going on that was impossible for humans to understand because it involved creatures and beings beyond human comprehension. I read the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy while my classmates were reading Nancy Drew and other “young adult” books. I read Animal Farm for a class in 9th grade and then read 1984 for myself because it was by the same author and then read Brave New World because it was mentioned in the book review for 1984. I just like picking up lots of information and it constantly catches me off guard when someone doesn’t know what I’m talking about.

Yes, the “nerd trend”, as I have heard some reference it, is really freaking annoying at times, especially the permutations that spring from its combination with various other trends. I simply hope it will die.
If not, true intelligent semi-outcasts should kill it with every weapon at their disposal. The 90s established that a fake version of something was not okay. So whose genius idea was false nerdiness?

Maybe it’s just me, but I like BBT because they have great ideas for how to be complete assholes to your bestest friends. Some of the pranks are downright amazing.

Not sure how you feel about 3rd party Transformers but if you’re looking for a consistent look you might want to consider FansProject or Mastermind Creations. While the toys are a bit more expensive than a Hasbro/Takara item the level of paint and detail you get overall-not to mention characters it’s doubtful Hasbro will take forever to get around to-really look great and are well made.

Fansproject is coming out with their take on the Stunticons and Menasor while Mastermind creations has crafted a super poseable Sixshot homage figure called Hexatron.

Hope this helps!

I love the fact that he uses that reference. It’s fitting since he’s basically doing an allusion to the fact that he is cheating to beat the scenario. (Manipulating everything to get it done) And even basically telling her he’s doing it in such a subtle way that he can gloat about it later xP.

I’m not particularly sure how I restrained myself from the first time I read this, but god carol is cute in this one. Shes really her own breed of adorable, but sadly to be her type you have to be kind of a masochist while at the same time showing traits above average of everyone else around you. In the words of Keima “her specs are totally out of proportion”. I’d totally go for the Carol route, but I lack any kind of factors to actually maintain someone like her

Just wow. Carol in this page, panels 3 and 4 specifically, is one of the most endearing, heartwarming things I’ve ever seen. I’m not really sure I can even put into words (beyond the obvious, anyway) how much she tugs at my heartstrings here. This is totally the kind of thing my family and close friends would do.

Probably my favorite page thus far.

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