Ever since I was a little girl, I loved nerds.
The thicker the glasses they wore, the better. Even more attractive than coke bottles was social awkwardness. At eight years of age I loved my men weird and near-sighted.
When most of my peers were carrying notebooks featuring the profiles of NKOTB, I was doodling the name, “Mrs. Emmett Brown” over and over in my notebook. A few years later, I would lay my plastic figurine of Jeff Goldblum as Dr. Ian Malcolm on my pillow and whisper made-up paleontology talk in his dog-nibbled ear. At sixteen I would catch myself losing complete control of my bladder while watching David Byrne dance in the concert documentary Stop Making Sense. Every time he would flail his arms around or choreographically trip, I’d seal clap in delight.
Even now, my boyfriend is what I describe as a “nerdy cowboy.” Social discomfort is not something he suffers from, but what he lacks in awkwardness he makes up for in his math degree and his desire to move to space. He never leaves home without a pen in the pocket of his pearl snap shirt. I love it.
Before I met my nerdy cowboy, I used to dream of marrying Rick Moranis. When it wasn’t Rick, it was Harold Ramis. When it wasn’t Rick and Harold, it was Pee-Wee Herman, which kind of goes into a whole new territory of parental concerns for their child’s future.