Sunday, April 12, 2009

Hierarchies of nerds

I play wargames. It's a pretty nerdy pastime. But it could be worse - I could be into model trains.

There's a model train shop nearby that I wander into from time to time. I really like stores that are full of really specialized equipment for hobbies that I'm not interested in. Quilting shops are pretty cool - I like all the little freaky tools that I have no idea what to do with. Fishing shops are also interesting.

While I was in the model train shop I got to chatting with the proprieter. He was a really nice guy. Somehow we ended up talking about a bloke he knows who builds model tanks. The model-train-shop owner was bagging out the model-tank-builder for being so nerdy. Apparently (he scoffed) the guy has several hundred model tanks that he has built. I wondered aloud where you would keep several hundred model tanks, and the shop guy said that they're probably all in his bedroom since he still lives with his mother.

I then expressed my amazement that there would even be several hundred different model tanks available to buy. The shop guy explained that there aren't, the tank guy just buys lots of the same kit and builds and paints them slightly differently to represent the various theatres of combat and years of operation that the tank had been used for. He had to do this, the shop guy explained, because he wasn't interested in any old tanks, only the tanks used by the USA in Western Europe in World War II. And the model-train-shop guy laughed at just how nerdy the tank guy was, shaking his head in amazement.

I wonder who the tank guy thinks is nerdy? Maybe stamp collectors...


Anonymous said...

Collectors of squirrel armour rank pretty highly on a scale of 1-to-Nerdy.

PTR said...

It's easy to make jokes about squirrel armour, but did you ever stop to think that if it didn't exist the fatality rate amongst duelling squirrels would skyrocket? They have to protect themselves somehow.

Just have a little respect. That's all I'm asking.