We Came To Terms

October 11, 2012

It’s been a wild ride, but I feel I’ve come to terms with Coming To Terms. Or if I haven’t exactly been able to reconcile that everyone on the internet is some kind of insane, perverted imbecile, then I’ve definitely become desensitized to it. Lately bizarre search strings have seemed a little too normal for comfort. It’s hard to come up with jokes when I see “handsome boy rape by tentacles” or “interesting skull related news” and only think, Huh, it’s just completely normal search terms this month. Nothing odd here.

Part of the problem is writing about weird search terms is it creates a vicious cycle of people arriving at our site via those same weird search terms. Thus  “robert duncan mcneill gay” earned itself another 62 hits over the last 30 days and the list is pretty much exclusively populated with variations on “very sexy rape” and “seven of nine camel toe” or references to assorted “real nerd vs. fake nerd” memes.

So here ends the Coming To Terms segment of our blog. But to commemorate the three years of madness, we’ve put together a compendium of the weirdest and wildest search strings. It’s going to make its physical debut in “classic black and white” at CANZINE 2012 on October 21st in Toronto or you can download a free, full-colour PDF of it HERE. But you should still come to Canzine and say hello.

And as not to leave you in the lurch, here’s the remaining few scraps from September and October…

Read the rest of this entry »

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Episode 156 – don’t believe the HYPE

October 10, 2012

Click here to download the hype

If your wish is to lead a happy, fulfilled existence, then a Taoist master might instruct you to live without expectation. It’s certainly an endeavor worth attempting so long as you don’t expect to feel happy or fulfilled. But at the very least you won’t be quite so baffled by how a great percentage of the population seems to believe The Godfather is the best movie ever made.

Perhaps it’s not truly the worst film ever made, but by the time Mandi and I got around to watching Coppola‘s gangland classic, there wasn’t even the glimmer of a chance it could live up to the hype. Our preconceptions indelibly coloured our viewing experience.

The Godfather didn’t just have to live up to the hyperbolic praise of its fans, it had to live up to our own deeply personal and unique judgements of what an “unsurpassed masterpiece” is (or just what a good mobster movie might be). Inevitably, it didn’t score well on either of our subconscious checklists. Because of the hype, it’s a film I find I’m personally incapable of judging on its own merits. I can’t be objective. The hype, in this case, is insurmountable.

Similarly, I suspect that if I’d somehow never heard of The Dark Knight and rented it on a whim one night, I’d have probably thought it was pretty good. A bit hokey and maybe  Heath Ledger‘s performance is a little too absurdly over-the-top… but hey, it’s a goddamn Batman movie. That’s all completely to be expected. I’d probably have enjoyed it instead of being deeply irritated by the mediocrity of the “best film ever.”

I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say we’ve all had a viewing or reading experience ruined by hype a few times in our lives. Plenty of terrific (or at least perfectly decent) films, books and television shows just don’t have a chance living up to our expectations—including, not un-ironically, Great Expectations.

Luckily, no one over-hypes Nerd Hurdles.

THE NERDS KNOW: For those of you hoping we’d talk about Star Trek more, we spend most of the episode responding to Chris Lockhart‘s email regarding our Voyager episode. Send in your feedback and questions to nerds@nerdhurdles.com.


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