Dating for Dorks continues. See the last couple posts for more on this subject.
Often times, us dorks think that we have to hide our nerdiness from women.
If we could, we would put all our toys, video games, comics, DVDs and D&D books away in some iron clad chamber where they would never be found.
For the non-geeky reading this, I want you to understand what it feels like.
Believe it or not, most people think geeks are lame
The stereotypes of people that like geeky stuff are pretty bad. Imagine comic book guy from the Simpsons, or a D&D nerd, or some weird kid that watches too much anime.
The thing is, geeky fanaticism for comics or star trek is just as geeky as going to a football game, dressing up in your team’s colors, and playing fantasy football. It is the same as a woman getting dressed up with her friends in dresses and heels, going to watch the Sex and the City movie and drink Cosmos.
D&D and Star Trek get looked down on by society far more than football and Sarah Jessica Parker do however. Us dorks have years of social retards and [fairly true] stereotypes that helped shape what people think of our hobbies.
All of this can make a guy fairly defensive or cautious with this stuff. I have read threads on comic book discussion forums about guys that were scared to tell their girlfriend that they read comics, and threads asking other people if and how they hide their hobby from people.
The key to making women comfortable
What I have discovered is that women will be just as comfortable with my dorky hobbies as I am. That is really all you need to know.
I’ll expand on this anyway though…
My dorky hobbies are just one part of my life. I have plenty of other stuff going on in my life, as I talked about in my last post. I don’t hide the fact that I have these dorky habits. I tend to keep a couple graphic novels laying around on my coffee table, I’ve got an awesome Batman with a Green Lantern Ring action figure on top of my fridge, a Cobra Commander figure in front of my computer monitor on my desk, and I even still have a copy of Iron Man #128 in my liquor cabinet.
Like I said, I don’t hide it. I don’t, however, flaunt it outrageously. I keep all my comics put away in my closet, along with most of my other stuff. I’ve just got a few of my favorite things out around my apartment, but most of it is put away where it belongs. When a woman walks in to my apartment, she isn’t walking in to Sean’s Amazing Dungeon of Comics and Toys.
Clearly, I’m not hiding all of this stuff from people. I don’t even talk about it unless they ask. If they do, I don’t make a bigger deal of it than it is.
The important thing for her to know isn’t that I am a geek, but that I am secure with myself, and that is why I don’t make a big deal about it. If she asks about it, or it comes up, I mention it, and maybe joke about it a little bit.
Her: “You read comics?”
Me: “Yeah, I love all that geeky shit”
Her: “How many GI Joe figures do you have?”
Me: “Well, I have to have enough to recreate the assault on Cobra Island [with a smirk]”
The 2 things NOT to do
There are two things I don’t do, and that is to try to downplay it or explain it. Both of these responses display a little bit of insecurity about your habits and hobbies. The insecurity is far less attractive than liking comic books and GI Joe ever could be.
When someone downplays something they will try to excuse it, or make it seem like an accident. They might say something like, “oh, that’s just some old junk”, or I tried it out, but I don’t really like it that much” or something like that. Don’t downplay your habits.
The other response that shows some insecurity is to try to explain it. If a woman asks me about my comic book hobby, and I were to try to explain to her that comics have really matured and that there is a lot of really good stuff out there and it’s not all just kid’s superhero stuff, then I would be trying to make excuses or explain it.
This is just a way of being defensive about something, and defensive behavior is almost always insecure behavior.
If you like something that is pretty dorky, or have a collection of the geekiest thing imaginable, be secure about it, and drop the need to defend, explain, or downplay it.
What if she doesn’t give up on it?
Often times, just being comfortable with your loves and hobbies will be enough for a woman to be comfortable with it.
From time to time, a woman may push the point though, and really dig into you about it. They may challenge you, call the hobby immature, whatever. The trick in these situations is to banter. In particular, the two types of banter I would use would be to self-deprecate and to exaggerate on the point.
When I say self-deprecate, I mean to take what she is saying about you that may be thought of as lame or dorky, and make it worse. Take it to the next level of dorkiness, and describe yourself as that. Exaggeration does pretty much the same thing. Here are a couple of examples of what I mean.
Her: Why do you have that figure? [pointing to Cobra Commander]
Me: Oh, that’s Cobra Commander. He’s there as a reminder that I should be taking over the world.
Her: Wow, you are a dork!
Me: If you think this is bad, you should see my place when I have the Star Wars bed sheets on.
Her: You know these kinds of toys are for kids, right?
Me: Well, they were out of the special limited edition variant, so I had to get this one.
All in all, the point of all of this is that you should be secure with yourself, secure about what you like, and not let anybody throw you off of that.
In the next post I will talk about sharing your dorky habits with women, and whether you even should in the first place.