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“Nerds” in wargaming!

The middle aged man, of average height and average build pulled his knapsack tight to his shoulder. Someone in the queue had spoken to him and confusion reigned. Should he ignore the interloper or run? Could he bear to answer or even speak? The answer was “ no”……

The inquisitor was of course myself. The startled prey was that most inelegant of things, the adult male wargamer with no social skills whatsoever. I always wince when non- gamers call me a “nerd” because in my eyes at least, I‘m not one. God forbid that anyone would actually like the term? But, they do….

“The revenge of the nerds is the creation of new, reinvented social institutions for social failures—people like me, who had no friends in high school. The outsiders”. Curtis Yarvin

Outsiders literally… erm…outside!

As I spend many evenings surrounded by who others may call nerds, it was time for some self- examination. I write a blog so I’m not that ashamed of my hobby. It doesn’t really bother me that space dwarves are in a desperate struggle against elf pirates on the LGS table next to me. Would I introduce my hobby to a work colleague? Probably not! Do I take a deep breath in before passing the Pokemon and Yugi- chai tables? Sometimes…

“The eternal dream of the nerd, who would not be a nerd had he not in some sense socially failed between 10 and 20, is not to succeed at being human—not to catch up to the default social world, to learn its secrets and be admitted to its citizenship, to rise in its conventional ranks—but to skip being human—and jump directly to some kind of para-human, trans-human, posthuman or just superhumanexperience.” Yarvin again

I believe getting to know the people is the key. Do they really think that they are superior to “ normies”? I see myself as a normie and someone who lives at home with their mum,when they are in their forties, is not likely to be one of the Illuminati!

“Are you in a Freaky Friday social group, even in your 20s? Here is one epiphenomenon of Freaky Friday societies: low social parallax. How many crowds are you part of? How many disjoint social sets are needed to count your friends? Outside your family, does everyone you know know each other, or are they strangers to each other—besides you.”

Curtis has hit the nail on the head. I am now resolutely not a nerd. I move in other circles and each group or circle I move in keeps me alive to other viewpoints and more experiences than a cult would allow.

Marine commanding 28mm marines!

So, if you are asked if wargamers are a “nerd society“ then it’s a resolute “no!” We may have different interests than most adults but shouldn’t we be proud of that at least. The last thing we would want is for all that energy from free radicals such as ourselves, be corralled into a nerd rabbit hole. We are wargamers because of the stories and history we wish to reenact and perhaps capture some of that spirit!

Required reading for this Christmas! And not a nerd in sight!


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