Remember when being a geek was such a bad thing that’d get you beat up or stuffed in a locker as if on a 90s family show?
I mean, Steve Urkel, had it down to a science; his big glasses, suspenders, and high-water pants became nerdy staples. When he became Stefan Urkele’ we all swooned because he was so cool.
But now, geek is the new chic and it’s even celebrated. We’ll take Steve over Stefan because Steve was authentically himself with all his stalkerish, intelligent, accident-prone, romantic antics.
But the wave changed directions in the late 1990s.
From Urkel to Ugly Betty, being geeky has become kind of cool and likable. It’s less about persecuting the socially awkward and more about letting people embrace their individuality, even with all its oddities.
Fashion trends even began to lean towards the geek chic look and lean towards popularizing it into a new hipster trend.
Geeks became our favorite characters, providing laughs, knowledge and comedy. Lisa from the Simpsons, Chuckie Finster on Rugrats, Arthur, Dexter’s Laboratory, even that idiot savant Pinky on Pinky and the Brain, we began to really really love geeks.
In fact, the wildly popular magical Harry Potter franchise is worth an estimated $25 billion. (For those fluent in wizarding currency, that translates to about 52 million galleons, 11 sickles, and 15 knuts).
Geek Squad became a whole brand and even a business that fixes technology devices. Wearing skinny tight high-waisted jeans wasn’t so bad (ok but not nipple high like urkel), and wearing glasses a fashion statement that can show your personality with zanny designs, shapes, patterns, and colors for the visually impaired population.
With social media becoming the way to gather and communicate, groups for every kind of odd passion and obsession a geek could embrace. People have the means to find their people, indulge in their niche, and have a community to share it with. So geeks not being social isn’t really a thing anymore.
July 13, is #EmbraceYourGeeknessDay, and we celebrate all that’s geeky, dorky, quirky and, eclectic folks today.
So Happy Embrace Your Geekness Day from the video gaming, cosplay enthusiast, plant obsessed, cat loving, poetry writing, and techy graphic designers at Octane!!