About the Manual

The Nerd Manual is meant to be both a useful resource for nerds and a guide for the people involved with nerds. If you're a nerd you can find information here that will help you improve your life and perhaps better understand yourself. If you're close friends with, dating, or married to a nerd, I want to give you insight into things nerds do that a lot of people have difficulty understanding.

I hope to avoid offending anyone--either nerd or non-nerd--but please understand that the manual will get into some sensitive topics, stray into contentious territories, and even use stereotypes to illustrate points. It's OK to disagree with something, but keep your comments civil.


Nerd Q&A: Are You Offended?

Vasilis - Nerd Broche
Just in case anyone else was wondering:

Does it offend you if someone calls you a nerd or geek?

Not at all. 

Some people might feel hurt because of the negative connotations associated with those terms. Other people might be downright offended at being called a nerd if they identify as a geek (or the other way around). 

I'm fine with people calling me either nerd or geek because I identify with both. I realize that these terms have negative origins in the previous century, and some people still use them as an insult, but I have always taken them as terms indicative of intelligence and passion, so I have no problem with the words or even the people who use them.

Side note: if someone calls you a nerd or geek with the intent of insulting you, consider the fact that nerds and geeks pretty much control all the information on the planet, so you've just been equated with the most intelligent and potentially powerful people on Earth. That's a fairly poor insult, but a nice compliment. Maybe smile and say, "cool." Then walk away.

I openly call myself a nerd, associate freely with other nerds, and talk with both nerds and non-nerds about my nerdy interests.

I don’t call myself a geek because my interests are so varied that I don’t think I’m quite passionate enough about any single thing to qualify as a geek, but when people say I’m geeky I take it as a compliment because they’re implying that I know a lot about whatever I’ve just said or done.

If another nerd or geek calls me a nerd or geek…that’s like a professional acknowledging another professional, and I take it as the ultimate compliment.