Episode 67 – Scienced!

May 28, 2010

Somehow, nothing says “nerd” like “science” does. No matter how chic geek may get, a lab coat is never going to be a good look.

What I want to know is why in movies—usually pretty old ones—do mathematicians wear lab coats. Are they afraid they’re going to get numbers on their tweed? Or chalk dust? Okay, chalk dust is a valid concern. I don’t imagine many mathematicians want people to think they stuck their elbow in the huge pile of coke sitting in the middle of their desk. Unless they’re scenester mathematicians. Who’d probably wear lab coats. And listen to ArcAttack.

What is it that makes science so particularly nerdy though? Probably that it’s hard work and people are lazy.

If people can’t understand something from a 30-second soundbite, anyone who does understand it is going to be a nerd in their eyes. On one level, all being a nerd means is to put an effort into something. Whether it’s Star Wars trivia, thermodynamics, baseball stats or Arthurian studies, if you know more about it than can fit on the back of a cereal box, it’s nerdy.

People don’t like other people to be better than them. And arguably someone who can splice some genes together is better than you. So you’d better call them a nerd.

If you can splice genes together, and you’re looking for someone to splice genes with, you might want to try these pick-up lines at whatever nerd-ass gene-splicing bar you hang out at:

50 nerdy pick up lines

Science Pick Up Lines on Facebook.

Apparently Mandi and Drew Barrymore have something in common…

GalacTALKa returns from another hiatus with spoiler-heavy discussion of the first 4 proper episodes of season 4. BSG is getting better again.

Episode 66 – Pinball Wizards (TPAGS)

May 21, 2010

The Toronto Pinball and Gameroom Show should really call their show Flipper Con. But then, maybe people would think it was a Thalidomide convention. Which wouldn’t be right at all. Though I wouldn’t have been surprised if there had been such a show in one of the pavilions next door. The International Centre is a kind of creepy labyrinth made of corrugated metal, dusty asphalt and misery.

Jakob relives childhood glories from his days in the Rebel Alliance

Inside pavilion 4a though, was the antithesis of misery. Inside this makeshift cathedral was the glorious, blinking, chiming, flashing Xanadu that is pinball.

Like any true nerd-dom, pinball surpasses mere diversion and entertainment and becomes a religion. Mandi and I mingled with the flock, the laymen, the devout and the Papacy of the Church of the Silver Ball. Some, like us, were there to decide if this was a faith suited to our lifestyles. Others were there to learn how to better suit there lifestyles to the higher calling of the gleaming orb.

After three and half hours of solid play, I left with strained forearms and frazzled synapses. If I’d sinned at all this week, my penance was paid.

Though there were many Williams games at TPAGS, there sadly wasn’t any Funhouse. In my top three favourite pinball games, if not number one outright. That Rudy creep can sure talk up a storm.

15 Best Google results for “nerd hurdles” that have nothing to do with our podcast

May 19, 2010
  1. “It is in fasion these days to be a nerd. Well to be a geek. Truly, I don’t understand … Instead of jumping life’s hurdles, do they just walk around them? …”
  2. The Nerd life is a complex life. Especially in todays high-paced connected … Steps not taken and hurdles not cleared within a certain time …”
  3. Nerds love puzzles. Libraries love nerds. … And this project was realized by a group that had to jump over numerous hurdles. …”
  4. Nerd is short for nerd stance, and nerd stance is short for my short-duration …. isn’t the gear hurdles that I have to jump over. …”
  5. ” am the nerd sitting outside the coffeeshop groking brain network dynamics …. rather diminishes the power of selection to overcome phylogenetic hurdles. …”
  6. ‘Nerd’ and ‘douchebag’ aren’t mutually exclusive…”
  7. “I think it’s unfortunate all the hurdles female players so often face…. the adoration of thousands of faceless nerds on the Internet …”
  8. hurdles – existing organizations defend their positions – apparent lack of alternatives for … the knitting nerd who got a tattoo of a knitting ball …”
  9. “5 Best Tax Nerd Blogs: The First Annual Rick Moranis Awards …. several tax-collecting hurdles…”
  10. “… I didn’t want there to be hurdles like registration forms and email … and other hurdles slow down adoption….”
  11. “She identifies herself as “a nerd for valuing books, for reading them, Some of those hurdles stemmed from Sugar Loaf not owning the wastewater treatment …”
  12. “There are hurdles that have to be scaled to successfully hack the PS3. ….. me your retarded and have no idea what a electronic nerd can do
  13. I want to be a bad ass cav scout, not a nerd. …. You have a lot of hurdles to pass before even considering what you’ll look like on graduation day. …”
  14. “I am a trek nerd and pinball nerd so it combined two of my life’s passions. … forecasting must have one of the lowest performance hurdles in the game. …”
  15. If I found another nerd who was never married, no kids, …. Because we want to eliminate any hurdles that may exist in getting a marriage …”

Episode 65 – TCAF / indie and web-comics (Jeph Jacques)

May 14, 2010

A full-bred normie isn’t going to be able to tell the difference, but there’s two types of comic nerd. There’s the Nerd Store superhero/fantasy comic nerd and there’s the emo, existentialist, confessional scribbles, indie graphic novel nerd.

Sometimes the twain shall meet, but at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) 2010 (May 8-9), it was heavily weighted towards the latter. The scene was decidely more Dan Clowes and less Stan Lee. Simply stated, you will never find a more wretched (awesome) hive (reference library) of scum (awesome people with great taste) and villainy (awesomely talented and creative people).

Including  Jeph Jacques, creator of the uber-popular webcomic Questionable Content who was good enough to spare some time to speak with us for this episode.

Other indie- and web-comics/artists we reference during the episode are:

I’m Crazy by Adam Bourret. “I’m Crazy is an auto-biographical graphic novel, dealing with, among other things: histories, secrets, obsessive compulsive disorder, drugs, gay romance, hallucinations and insanity. It’s all true provided you’re willing to be a little flexible.”  This is the comic Mandi calls “I’m Gayzy!” and it’s hella impressive.

Wondermark by David Malki. This is where the “beard book” we mention comes from. His table didn’t have visible pricing or Jakob would have bought one of his beautifully bound books (which look 100 times more expensive than they actually are it turns out).

Kate Beaton. She creates the popular, quaint and charming Hark, A Vagrant! Her fans are horrible people. The one we met at least.

A Softer World. We didn’t mention it. But we should have. Ironically, Jakob has, despite being a fan, never visited this website and only knows this webcomic from its print collections. Can you say luddite?

This Will All End In Tears by Joe Ollmann. This is the book Jakob couldn’t finish because the art makes him feel physically ill. Which you can’t tell by the cover, which looks pretty nice. Except for the typography and the font.

100 Demons by Lynda Barry. This is the other book where Jakob doesn’t like the art.

Hint: he was, sadly (for Jakob), not there.

Episode 64 – May The 4th Be With Us

May 7, 2010

We were sick when we recorded this episode on May the 4th, Star Wars Day. Not having the energy to work up to tackling this venerable topic was probably the only way we were going to work up to tackling it. In roughly the same frame of mind as Luke when he was half-dead and delirious in the Hoth tundra, we dove headfirst into this Sarlac pit. We give this beloved franchise about as much respect as a Wookie feels for himself after waking up in bed with a  couple shaved Ewoks and a killer hangover.


Coming To Terms: “i was a real turd in a hot tub… “

May 5, 2010

sexy hurdler: “Sexy Hurdler” was by far the most popular search term getting people to The Hurdled Nerd in April with a whopping 129 hits. That doesn’t include all the variations like “sexi hurlde.” Unfortunately, they’re not looking for our Sexy Hurdles episode, they’re looking for her. Or perhaps her.

Read the rest of this entry »

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