Sunday, April 23, 2006

I Am Such A....

Sometimes when I comment on a blog I make a statement that is so confessional of some pathetic part of my personality, that I end the post with my personalized trademarked catch-phrase: I am such a dork™.

A classic case is when Ces from Drink At Work talked about his favorite Christmas present of all time, I chimed in about mine which was a model of a B-52 bomber. One time I made a joke on the Achenblog that referenced BOTH a Robert Henlein novel AND Star Trek. Sometimes I'll just reference some really obscure piece of trivia about history or philosophy.

I know that "dork" is a very vulgar word. When Dad Gone Mad discussed obscure vulgar words, I confessed to this childhood incident:

My brother used to dare me yell "DORK" as loud as I could. My dad anrgily explained what that meant and why he never wanted to hear it again. Now that's about the mildest thing you can scream.

My dad was right. "Dork" is a vulgar synonym to "penis". "Dorkhead" and "dork-breath" mean the same as their "dick-" versions. In context though, a dork is different from a dick. A dork is a clueless loser while a dick is an annoying asshole. Completely different connotations. For example, in Dibert, Wally would be a dick and Asok The Intern would be a dork. I personally identify with Dilbert who is the poor befuddled nerd.

I knew that the word geek had it's origins as "circus geek", meaning someone who bites the heads off of live chickens in a circus sideshow. The origin of nerd is more obscure, but I figured it couldn't be vulgar since it was used so much on Happy Days. This website lists the most poular theories.

So what's the difference between being a nerd and a dork? I was very intrigued when I ran across the The Nerd? Geek? or Dork? Test. I think you get 10 dork points just for taking the test.

Modern, Cool Nerd
73 % Nerd, 52% Geek, 47% Dork
For The Record:
A Nerd is someone who is passionate about learning/being smart/academia.
A Geek is someone who is passionate about some particular area or subject, often an obscure or difficult one.
A Dork is someone who has difficulty with common social expectations/interactions.
You scored better than half in Nerd and Geek, earning you the title of: Modern, Cool Nerd.

Nerds didn't use to be cool, but in the 90's that all changed. It used
to be that, if you were a computer expert, you had to wear plaid or a
pocket protector or suspenders or something that announced to the world
that you couldn't quite fit in. Not anymore. Now, the intelligent and
geeky have eked out for themselves a modicum of respect at the very
least, and "geek is chic." The Modern, Cool Nerd is intelligent,
knowledgable and always the person to call in a crisis (needing
computer advice/an arcane bit of trivia knowledge). They are the one
you want as your lifeline in Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (or the one
up there, winning the million bucks)!


Thanks Again! -- THE NERD? GEEK? OR DORK? TEST
My test tracked 3 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 81% on nerdiness
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You scored higher than 78% on geekosity
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You scored higher than 82% on dork points
Link: The Nerd? Geek? or Dork? Test written by donathos on Ok Cupid, home of the 32-Type Dating Test

While this test classifies me as a nerd, based on those bar graphs, I could go any which way with those categories.

In the future, I should be more accurately saying either "I am such a nerd" when I point out some arcane historical fact, and say "I am such a geek" when I have an obscure fact about a television show or movie and say "I am such a dork" only when I reveal some embarassing fact about my life. Trust me there are plenty of all of those things to go around.

Afterall, I am such a...(you fill in the blank). And that's fine with me.

Now, don't leave me hanging here. Let me know where you fit and whether you're okay with it.


Jamy said...

Not surprisingly, I scored as a pure nerd. 98% nerdiness, 14% geekostiy, and 1% on dork points.

I think I hide my nerdiness well, but if you do things like skip high school, it's sort of a no-brainer.

Anonymous said...

The transformation of "dork" from obscene genital reference to mild epithet for a clueless type is a linguistic phenomenon called the "dysphemism treadmill" (see wikipedia for more info).

Another good example is "scumbag", which I (aged 31) think of as an extremely mild description of an unpleasat person, but which originally referred to a used condom, and many older people still associate it with that original, more taboo meaning. There was a recent brouhaha when the NYT crossword included "scumbag" as an answer to 43 down (the clue was "Scoundrel".) The story is here.


Your Mother said...

I too share in the category of Modern, Cool Nerd
78 % Nerd, 73% Geek, 47% Dork; my bars were higher than yours were:

You scored higher than 84% on nerdiness

You scored higher than 96% on geekosity

You scored higher than 85% on dork points

I'm fine with these results. Because now I belong...

2fs said...

78N/30G/30D: pure nerd. I'm not obsessive enough about particular things (or about the right particular things: if there were a subcategory specifically for Music Geeks, I'd've scored higher in the geek category...).

HRH Courtney, Queen of Everything said...

I am a modern cool nerd.
78 N, 60 G, 39 d.

I thought I was a geek. Oh well...

Anonymous said...

"Outcast Genius"
91 % Nerd, 56% Geek, 52% Dork

I want extra nerd points for mentioning that the word "acquaintances" was spelled wrong in the quiz.

I also would point out that this test relies on self-reporting, so it's fair to say it indicates I am an "outcast genius" in my own opinion.

I'm okay with that--"alienation" is one of my favorite concepts.

Anonymous said...

That was one long test, I was tempted to bail out when I got to page two, but I stuck with it for you.

I'm Joe Normal, which is represented with a Snoopy picture, which is odd, because Snoopy is the coolest ever! I'm:

39 % Nerd, 4% Geek, 21% Dork

And if you visit Lam(b) today, you'll see I have a really cool Granny which must be why I'm so normal, it is in the genes, the coolness must cancel out most of the geekey-ness in me i guess.

Mooselet said...

I, too, an am "Outcast Genius". Bwahahahahahaha!!!!
65 % Nerd, 56% Geek, 65% Dork

Yet I scored higher than 98% than other mid-30's females on dork points, and 83% on geekosity. Is that good??? I am geeky when it comes to medieval royal English history - I got grumpy with the movie Elizabeth, for example, for being so inaccurate. So I thought I was more geeky than dorky.

Turns out I'm trying to take over the world! Bwahahahahaha...

J.Po said...

Pure Nerd (but borderline): 52% Nerd, 8% Geek, 13% Dork. Scored higher than 38% on nerdiness, 8% geekosity, 10% on dork points.

Guess it's not time to change my business cards just yet..

Impetua said...

Well, because I'm not a geek, I don't actually remember what my stats were exactly. I think about 28% geek, something like 68% nerd, and a whopping 98% dork.

But, I think that maybe I just *think* I'm a dork, I don't know that I'm really all that socially inept...

So, I'm a candidate for the Tri-Lambs.

J.Po said...

On second thought, what makes you a Modern, Cool Nerd when you're way higher than 53% on Nerd and have robust Geek and Dork elements? I have only a track of Geek and Dork, which I would think would be the least desirable of the three. Wait...maybe it's because I'm overanalyzing the scoring methodology...damn you, test!

Anonymous said...

I had no idea that's what dork meant. My goodness! I love life. I learn something new every single day.

And my results:

Joe Normal
39 % Nerd, 8% Geek, 0% Dork
For The Record:

A Nerd is someone who is passionate about learning/being smart/academia.
A Geek is someone who is passionate about some particular area or subject, often an obscure or difficult one.
A Dork is someone who has difficulty with common social expectations/interactions.
You scored less than half in all three, earning you the title of: Joe Normal.

This is not to say that you don't have some Nerd, Geek or Dork inside of you--we all do, and you can see the percentages you have right above. This is just to say that none of those qualities stand out so much as to define you. Sure, you enjoy an episode of Star Trek now and again, and yeah, you kinda enjoyed a few classes back in the day. And, once in a while, you stumble while walking down the street even though there was nothing there to cause you to trip. But, for the most part, you look and act fairly typically, and aren't much of an outcast.

I'd say there's a fair chance someone asked you to take this test. In any event, fairly normal.


Anonymous said...

Outcast Genius.
86 % Nerd, 52% Geek, 52% Dork

My percentile rankings were:
Nerdiness 95%
Geekosity (what a cool word) 78%
Dork Points 87%

I'm pretty comfortable with all that, actually.

Anonymous said...

You will be happy to know, your mother scored as a pure nerd. I guess it runs in the family.

Anonymous said...

47 - nerd/26 - geek/39 - dork. Hmm, I consider myself much more of a dork than a nerd. I wonder if I would've earned bonus dork points for proceeding directly to the Pro Wrestling quiz, and scoring a highly-respectable 63% on it. (It was a tough quiz.)

Anonymous said...

Pure Nerd:
65% Nerd, 43% Geek, 47% Dork

Anonymous said...

Joe Normal, I am. So take the results with big grain of salt, especially considering my user name. I thought dorky came from "door key" children. I read that somewhere, I didn't come with it on my own. That was when children with moms that worked full-time were the "strange" i.e. different ones as opposed to now, when stay-at-home moms are rare. And that is not an inflammatory statement supporting either side; I honestly thought that is what dorky meant. No idea about the whole penis thing.

Anonymous said...


Mine says "100% Dorktard".


Anonymous said...

I came out as "pure nerd" but as I'm a faculty member I should hope that I would be passionate about learning.

I would rather have been a "boffin" why doesn't that word get any use anymore?

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