Enter Stage Left: The Geek by
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(7 Stories)

Prompted By What We Wore

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In the 70’s, we didn’t have cell phones (of any kind!).  There was no Internet.  A computer was something largely out of science fiction, or something you might use at NASA and if so, it was large, expensive, and had the processing power of your (non-Apple) digital watch today.

I remember playing a lot of video games.  It started with Pong by Atari.  Then Space Invaders, Asteroids, and Centipede.  I spent every quarter I had on a game, which was about an hour at the arcade on Saturdays.  If I paused a lot between them.  That was my introduction to geek culture.

Then, in 1982, my parents bought me an IBM PC.  It had no hard drive and two floppy drives.  I used it to write reports but also started getting into writing programs for it.  I played text-based games like Zork (which I managed to acquire for free somehow) and bought early issues of PC Magazine and drooled through the pages as if it were porn.

At my core, I was always a geek.  I wore glasses, poorly fitting pants, and was picked on in school.  I valued my schoolwork and self-taught myself a musical instrument.  Soon after getting the PC, however, I started JV sports, became more “cool”, and focused on getting into college, which required (or so I thought) a lot of extracurricular activity.  The geek was being repressed.

That repression went on until 1989 when I completed my coursework to be a Mechanical Engineer even though my school practically invented modern Unix (X11, actually, for the über-geeks among you).  However, as with other aspects of my life, I eventually came out of the closet and embraced my geekdom.  I played catch up with 10 years of computer technology and am a software professional today.

I feel like I’m home again.

Profile photo of Dean Ebesu Dean Ebesu


Characterizations: funny, well written

Comments

  1. Profile photo of John Zussman John Zussman says:

    How does it feel to be one of the Cool Kids now?

  2. Profile photo of Dean Ebesu Dean Ebesu says:

    I don’t think the 20-somethings I work with would use the word, “cool” for me…. more like, “grandpa”! 🙂

  3. Profile photo of Constance Constance says:

    Woo hoo! Space Invaders!

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