In honor of SuperNerdSaturday, and the random events last night, I thought I'd share a bit of my nerdy history, the whimsical and embarrasing progression of the very shy nerd girl I was into the very loud sometimes awkward nerd-queen I've become.
It happens from time to time... I'll see someone that I haven't seen in eons - someone from my childhood, my "before" time in my very segregated life, and I'm always amused by the results. Sure, most of us look back at our awkward teen years with fond self-deprecation. But how often is our recollection accurate? Thinking back to Middle School, I have a perfect picture in my mind's eye of how I looked and behaved. Always shy, an outcast, I would cry if I got less than an A, and had none of the social skills my peers were honing. I remember distinctly having anxiety about going to school, being singled out, and needless to say, my self-esteem was utterly lacking. Moving when I was 14 to a new town was a fresh start - the beginning I desperately needed to break free of the fragile self-image I loathed, and the uncertainty I carried with me close to my heart. So an evolution began, from shy to outgoing, withdrawn and uncertain to smiling. It certainly didn't happen overnight... I'll gladly admit with pride that my inner geek has always been an integral part of the curious formula that is Anti-Stepford. In my new town, I tried to impress upon my new friends the depth of un-cool I had in my old school. Seriously. If they thought the new me was a nerd, it was nothing in comparison to gangly pre-me.
So now, 30 years old, I laugh occasionally at myself and my adamant claims of uber geekdom. And occasionally, someone will come along to remind how true my memories are.
Recently, I was promoted from shot girl extraordinaire to bartender at The Guru Room, and I'm tickled, I tell ya, to help the revelry and fill such a coveted position. All of these years of being a lush are finally paying off - I rock. (No, really, I do.) Its a clever disguise, really - bravado and self confidence and cleverly applied makeup. But hey, it helps with the tips, and my secret Clark Kent-esque alter ego feels all the better for it. Last night, four lovely ladies approached the bar, and with only minor goading, decided on shots. Recognition flickered on their faces, and mine as well - some memory so subtle that unless it was voiced would go unmentioned. "You look familiar..." I said cautiously to one, and the logical jump to place these faces clicked into place in an instant. Girls I had known since I was a child - elementary school and middle school - even into high school - but hadn't seen in 15 years.
There was laughter and amusement, which gradually led to the inevitable... but, you don't look like you! I wouldn't have recognized you! and my favorite - not to be mean, but you were kind of a nerd...
indeed, girls, I was. still am, truth be told. there was an unmistakable warmth to this impromptu reunion, and a disbelief on all parts, I believe. but it was a nice reminder of who I am, who I've been - and who I'm becoming...
and seriously, if you don't believe me - the proof is in the picture. I was the epitome of un-cool.
shh... don't tell ;-p
Listening to: Tori Amos - Leather