When I decided to start this blog, it didn’t take too long before the name Plant Geek Girl came to mind. I know several people who would define me both as a geek and as fairly obsessive about gaining as much knowledge as possible about gardening. But then I started thinking … what does the term ‘geek’ actually mean these days?
I’ve been called a geek (and a nerd) before: at high school, university and in my life since I graduated from the latter. For a long time, I had the idea that I was more nerd than geek; geeks understood computers and Warhammer, read comics and watched science fiction.
Back then, I read a lot of fantasy, watched some science fiction, could follow a conversation about video games or Pokemon (and even sometimes contributed to these discussions) and had several friends who liked all these things.
I eventually married a guy who likes video games and sci-fi, played Dungeons and Dragons for a while, and started playing board games like Elder Sign and Citadels (while spending a lot of time explaining to people that playing board games did not mean I spend my weekends playing Cluedo and Monopoly. There’s nothing wrong with these, but there are so many new games to play now!).
But my knowledge of these topics is still woeful compared to others around me. And I still get confused by computer hardware.
Here’s the thing – being a geek (and a nerd) doesn’t necessarily mean you’re into all of those things. There are several definitions of ‘geek’ out there, including, according to dictionary.com, ‘digital technology expert or enthusiast’, ‘one who is perceived to be overly intellectual, unfashionable, or socially awkward’, or ‘a person who has excessive enthusiasm for and some expertise about a specialised subject or activity’.
There’s a similar definition of ‘nerd’ as well, with slightly less emphasis on the technology side.
So. Excessive enthusiasm about gardening? Check.
Some expertise about plants? Working (really hard) on it, which partially explains the excessive enthusiasm.
Socially awkward? Sometimes…