Keep Your Pants On: Don't Go Changin' To Try And Please Geeks

Keep Your Pants On: Don't Go Changin' To Try And Please GeeksKate Kotler and Elliot Serano write for Bleeding Cool

Welcome back to our regularly scheduled geeky dating program… uh, column. We apologize for the delay between columns.

Kate has been crazy-busy, slammed with a new "writing day job" and spending time (watching Doctor Who naked) with her new geeky guy friend. Oh, swoon.

Meanwhile, Elliott has been spending countless desperate and sleepless nights trying to recreate the experiment from "Weird Science" that allowed Anthony Michael Hall to recreate his own Kelly LeBrock. All he has to show for it is a dozen half- melted Barbie dolls and even more electrical burns.

This week, we hear from Badass Geek Girl, who is seeking advice on how not to intimidate the geeky guys she's interested in dating:

Dear KYPO,

It might sound silly but I have found that a lot of the geeks I have been really interested in have been intimidated by me because I am not what you "expect" a geek to look like. Along with my passion for games, comics, movies, and learning new coding languages I am also into pin up modeling, rock climbing, cycling and other, physical activities that involve adrenaline rushes.

No joke. I was once told by a geek I was starting to date that he just didn't think a girl like me would be into a geek.

So I am curious how I keep from intimidating a geek I am interested in?

Non-traditionally geekily yours,

Badass Geek Girl


Kate says,

Oh man. No offense, BGG, but your query makes me want to take my expensive eyeglasses off and then bang my head against a wall.

Seriously, what do you "expect" geek girls to look like? Let me circle back to something I said in a previous, very heatedly debated, GGotS Reports column about the stupidity of stereotyping what a geek girl can and cannot be:

"This isn't new. This exact same freak-out by so-called geeks, bemoaning the death of our subculture and bawwing about "popular people" perverting what it means to be geek seems to happen at least once a year. Usually when an attractive (and therefore, popular) person asserts some sort of claim to "geek cred."

Last year it was outrage that foxy, scalding hot women like Michele Boyd, Clare Grant, Milynn Sarley, Rileah Vanderbilt (better known as TeamUnicorn) would dare to pose as geeky girls in the GeekandGamerGirls video, because EVERYONE knows that it's IMPOSSIBLE for geek girls to also be hot.

Whaaa's that you say? Geek girls aren't hot? Huh, news to me. So what's up with all the geek girl fetishism then, fellas? 'Splain that, would ya?"

Let's address this for the last time: Geek girls come in all shapes and sizes. We can be average to super-smokin' AMFG hawt. We enjoy a wide variety of activities, including some sports. We don't all wear glasses, not all of us are good at math, many of us don't like cats of the LOL (or real) variety, some of us may even prefer Star Trek to Doctor Who or Battlestar Galactica to either…

I want to make this dilithium crystal clear for the last time: There is no one way that a geek girl must be or must look to qualify as a geek.

For example: I love indie comics and pretty much despise traditional superheroes. My best friend love love LOVES the capes. She's an amazon woman at 5'10" with perfect 20/20 vision. I'm a wee one at 5'4" and wear Coke bottle bottom glasses. She speaks French, I speak Pig Latin. Really the only similarities between us are that we (at the moment) both redheads and that we are friends.

Yet, we are both extreme geek girls, fo' true…

Personally, unless you're putting potential dates into a headlock (which some people might find sexy) or forcing them to partake in dangerous, adrenaline inducing sports with you, I'd worry less about what is wrong with you and focus more on what the F is WRONG with THEM.

Seriously, hon – like the Billy Joel song says, "Don't go changin' to try to please me…"

You don't want to have to date someone who you – at the offset – have to compromise who you are for, it's only going to piss you off and make you resentful later down the road.

Besides, who wants to date someone who is intimidated by your very presence? For realzie – I know I don't. It is a qualifier that you must be able to go toe-to-toe with me in all departments (sarcasm, geek knowledge, passion for Doctor Who, sexiness, etc.) in order to ride this ride… and, let me tell ya, very few can hang, let alone stick around long-term. Which is just fine with me, as it weeds the mouth breathing idiots out by natural selection and frees up time I can spend knitting or reading comics. /rant

The only real thing that I could advise you to do beyond this would be this: Keeping in mind that you have had experiences with men being "intimidated" by you, if you see a guy you like who isn't approaching you for some reason, be the brave one and initiate conversation with them.

In the end, I think you should just be who you are. Eventually you'll find a geek guy who isn't so much of a wimp that they're all a-scurred by the big, beautiful, bad ass geek girl who likes to wind down from rock climbing by playing chess… naked.

Good luck, hon!

Elliott says,

Before I get into the geek guy's perspective, please allow me to echo Kate's sentiments by saying that you should never have to change who you are to get a guy. Also, the whole argument that "geek gals" have to conform to a certain "look" annoys me so much that I usually wanna punch somebody who tries to make it, so I'm just gonna agree with what Kate on that as well.

Having said that, I would ask you to take some self-inventory and consider this: Just how approachable are you?

I mean, from the way you describe yourself you come off as a very confident (and I assume attractive) person, qualities that – quite frankly – can intimidate some folks. Yeah, even the most self-assured dude may think twice about sidling up to you and striking up a conversation for fear of getting shot down. I often do the math in my own head, calculating the odds of success versus going down in flames when approaching a gal. (God, I hate doing math.) So you may have to go an extra mile to help make potential suitors feel a bit more comfortable approaching you.

Are you outgoing with men? Do you smile and engage them in conversation? Are you a bit flirty? All these things can help some of the more timid fellas get past their jitters and feel like they stand a chance to get to know you.

See, I've heard the "I can't meet geeky guys" lament all too many times from my female friends, and yet when I observe them in social situations they go into them with their shields up as if preparing to fight off a Klingon Bird of Prey. Yeah, you may have to deal with a couple mouth breathers at a party to get to the nice guys, but by being defensive from the get-go you can also ward off a potential hook-up with that decent guy who'll treat you with respect.

Also consider that not every geeky guy out there necessarily wears their geek colors for all to see. Just like you, they may appear to be somewhat cool and part of the 'norm' crowd, but is really a closet "Farscape" fan looking for someone to watch their fancy new complete series blu-ray set with. You won't know until you chat him up and get to know him. And you won't get to chat him up if you dismiss him out of hand.

I know this is easier said than done, but I'm sure you've got the stones to do it. And remember, they're more afraid of you than you are of them. J

Happy hunting!

Got a geeky dating problem you need help with? Email Elliott and Kate at! (Or, ask them in person at the upcoming KYPO panel at C2E2 in Chicago, Illinois — April 13-15th.)

Until next week, KYPO!

(Said like "Kapow!" But, don't say it too loudly or with too much enthusiasm, ladies – you might scare off those dainty and withering geek guys* out there with your sheer awesomeness.)

*Disclaimer: Not all geek guys are "dainty and withering" – only those who are intimidated by strong women, as demonstrated in this particular column.

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.

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