Monday, April 20, 2015

Nerds are the unpopular underdogs, you morons

Someone made a documentary about the White House Correspondents Dinner and called it "Nerd Prom." I have no idea whether the movie is any good (it might be!), but as I have said before, the "nerd prom" nickname for what is essentially a gathering of privileged rich and powerful people is completely ridiculous. The event is about as far from nerdy as something can be.

The only interesting thing about the "nerd prom" phenomenon is that it is more evidence of one of the strangest cultural development over the past twenty years: the triumph of nerd culture. These days there is some cachet in being called a "nerd." That is very different from when I was growing up in the 1970s and 80s. By calling their ridiculous vapid event a "nerd prom", the Wolf Blitzers of the world are trying to say that their event is important to smart people and that there is something obscure and meaningful about a bunch of celebrities, media personalities, and powerful politicians, including the president of the United States, laughing at each others' bad jokes. If this is a nerd event, then the word "nerd" has lost all its meaning.