Tuesday, April 3, 2012

How To Deal With Nerds

Recently, I have switched from a nerd school with 69 kids in my grade, and 300 in the whole school, to a much larger school with almost 500 in my grade alone. This drastic change has made me realize some things. 1) People my age, and some adults, are quite dumb. 2) Cigarettes smell of the color yellow. And 3) Most people don't know how to deal with me, or nerds in general. So, I thought I'd give the Average Joe some tips. Fellow nerds, please feel free to add on.

  1. We don't like our cheese moved. We are very set in our ways. If you try and secretly mix up our schedule, we will know. Schedules send off pheromones, when they change, so do the pheromones. We will smell that. Fear and chaos will ensue. Small ones will curl up in to balls in the corner, and wimper. Large ones will fight and yell.
  2. We're very bad at social cues. Once, in fifth grade, our teachers made us a poster with social cues on it, because we were so bad at them. Especially the ones that involve talking, pauses, and verbal hints. Quantum physics? No problem. Understanding body language? No entendemos.
  3. We're usually quite anal about things. Refer to point 1, we like things just so. I, for one, always sit in the same spot. At lunch, I sit facing the gym, on the far right seat, in front of the window-thing. That's where I always sit. In every class, I sit in the same seat. I don't care if it's my assigned seat or not. Once I find that I enjoy that spot, it becomes my spot. I've been known to fight with my brother over a seat, because I have claimed it as my seat.
  4. We will fight you over everything if you're new to us. Just ask our long-term Spanish sub. We did not like her. Maybe because she broke rules 1 and 3, or maybe because she was evil, or maybe because she was new and we did not trust her. However, you may earn our trust by fighting back, but still letting us know we won. It shows a sense of dominance and willingness to lead, without overthrowing our ruling. You can also just woo us with treats. Our teachers were yelled at for feeding us because "we weren't monkeys." They fed us just the same, because we just work better with Skittles in our system.
  5. We will fight you over everything if we don't like you. It doesn't matter who you are. It's nothing personal. We just like to debate, and will debate quite a lot if we don't like you. We might even make threats on your life. Don't worry, we won't go through with them, most of the time. And we do that to people we like, too.
  6. We will fight you over everything if we believe you are wrong. We enjoy having the world being just-so and always right. We're incredibly anal about things, and don't like it when they're upset.
  7. We believe that we are always right. Due to our "higher mental capacity," we believe that we may rule the world. If you challenge that belief, we will, rather like the 18th century church, fight you, shut you down, maybe even put you under house arrest for challenging our beliefs. Nothing personal. It's just how we are.
  8. We get bored easily. My notes are filled with doodles, because of boredom. I often zone out, talk, or just doze if I get bored in my class. Coming from a school where somebody was set on fire, we launched rockets, and put holes in the ceiling, it's hard to live up to it. However, making us take notes on "e, aste, o, amos, asteis, aron" for the thousandth time will cause us to hurt you.
  9. We talk a lot. It's just how we work. We're little chatterboxes. And often spout useless facts that nobody really cares about, but we feel should be known. We're used to companions who also know useless facts, and competing to see who knows the most irrelevant stuff. Don't feel bad if you are ignorant to the fact that pigs are the fifth smartest animal, we will only ridicule you in another language.
  10. We normally don't cope well with conventional teaching. Referring to rule 8, we are easily bored. So, what works well for the average student, probably just irritated us in sixth grade. Teachers, don't take it personally. Nerd teachers are just better.
  11. Trying to herd nerds (teehee, a rhyme!) is like trying to herd cats. We are easily distracted and amazed by things, and will wander off. We often don't stay on the same subject for long. (Whether to inability or distaste, I haven't figured out.) We think in odd little paths. So you may be trying to educate us on RNA, and we may be talking about whales. It's okay. Just ignore us.
  12. We normally don't cope well in large groups with children our own age. period. Many of my friends have figured this out. I'm oddly shy. For my first few weeks at my new school, I wouldn't talk to anybody, look at anybody, and kept to myself. However, my friends are very good, once they learn my quirks. Ben will let me hide behind him, while he introduces me. He also knows that, when I scratch my upper arm/elbow, and refuse to make eye contact, that I feel awkward. If I've first met you, I probably won't give you a full sentence, much less a conversation. Also, I have a habit of just looking at my friends with a frightened-puppy look, hoping they'll speak for me. It confuses newcomers, but I really am not trying to be rude. I'm just trying to figure you out before I speak. One kid walked up to my table at lunch, he was quite nice. I would only smile and give him bits of a sentence. He looked at my friend, asked what was wrong, my friend very kindly said that "she just won't talk to you when she first meets you. Don't take it personally. She wouldn't talk to me for at least a week after she met me." I really wouldn't. The only person I've started talking to immediately from day one, was Ben. I don't know why, I was just instantly comfortable with him. He's special. I'm even like that with family members. 
So, please, don't get offended or irritated by nerds. We're just quirky and different from other kids. We mean well. Once you become our friends, which is quite easy, we will love you for all time. Rather like puppies, we're loyal and quite affectionate. You just need to take time to become accustomed to us.

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