Year of the Nerd

So, because I need a new project to help me procrastinate better on all of the other projects, I'm going to do this thing. Maybe. Because I told you, I'm really bad at commitment.

I recently attended C2E2 and I realized something. I consider myself a nerd, but it's kind of by default. I grew up surrounded by fantasy art and D&D and comics and sci-fi because of my dad. I never really went through the process of discovering these things, and thus really appreciating them, because they were always just there. I moved away from them during high school (and into Gothdam, which just seemed like a natural progression when you've been surrounded by skulls and dragons all your life), but eventually drifted back towards my roots and surrounded myself with gamers, comics aficionados, and fans of fantasy art. Still, I was never very participatory.

I went to cons for the travel and the parties, I played games because games were being played, and I read some graphic novels because they were around. When I'm hungry, I still to this day think "Warrior needs food badly," not because I played Gauntlet, but because I was around when others were playing it. It's not that I didn't like games and comics and fantasy art -- I did and I do. But I don't feel like I've ever really appreciated them, or in all honesty, know that much about them. It's like the fact that I've lived in Chicago for 20 years and have never been to the top of the Sears tower -- I've always been a resident, and never a tourist, and I feel like I've missed out on a lot.

So, I think I want to make up for lost time, go back and experience some of the things I missed. I want to play some old video games, read the entirety of Sandman, maybe read some superhero comics and some classic sci-fi, watch Dr. Who (new or old or both, I don't know), play board games, and whatever else I can think of that I wish I'd done over the past 25 years. Why? Mostly just because.

You, imaginary reader, can even participate if you like. If I do this (see commitment disclaimer above) I'll write about it here, and tweet about it on Twitter, and if you have suggestions on what I should do next, you can let me know. Or just tell me what a poseur idiot I am, whichever.

My first stop is going to be Super Mario Brothers. With a little help (thanks Jeff!), I've figured out how to play the game through an emulator (Nestopia) and I've even ordered a USB controller that should be here on Monday. I've already played around a little bit with the game using the keyboard, and so far I'm every bit as bad at it as I remember. If you're interested in doing this yourself, there's a great guide for this on Lifehacker that was also very helpful.

Year of the Nerd -- Game On!