You may have read the last blog and inferred from it that I have no sympathy for the technophile, or that my heart doesn't relate to the fashionably challenged. You could not have been more incorrect. I AM a technophile, and while I do not entirely enjoy Star Trek, I really am a fan of most things "Nerdy".
Thus my invigorating visit to ComiCon 2009. I am most fortunate to have a nerdy friend who likes those things as I do. His name is Mark Hall. I am also very fortunate that his wife loves him so much that she came to me to ask about what she should get him as a Father's day gift. She asks, because he has pretty much everything (the man has a Han Solo desk for crying out loud). After saying I had no idea, I remembered that we had attended a couple of conventions here in the ATL, and really wanted to go to the "Big One" in San Diego. I mentioned this thinking she'd shoot it down, but she liked it, and a few weeks later I was standing on the curb of the San Diego Convention Center on the fringe of the third grandest collection of eccentrics on this continent (besides LA or Capital Hill *snare fill*). I won't lie, I loved it. I was in my element. I know these people. They are my brothers and sisters. So we spent two days gawking, pointing and geeking out over all the new cool things that Imagination had brought to us this year. Mark found some things to buy, I found some things I will get from Mark when he runs out of room, and overall we had a really great time.
I'm going to post a video later, so I won't give away too many details, because this is about what I learned. There's always this tongue and cheek attitude when we talk about these kinds of things. The news will cover it, but pretty much as a sideshow and the reporter will have a half smile when doing the story. Let me say that there's nothing wrong with any of that, its all in fun anyway, and should be handled as such, but there are people who are very passionate about this. We were caught in a friendly discussion about The Watchmen that turned into a one sided profane hallway sermonette about how bad it looked and what music they used. (Side Note: We just stood there, and listened because we were standing in line with no where to go. I was laughing because of the look on Mark's face, but I had heard it all before, having gone to a very nerdy college.) People spend hours in their homes and create outfits so they can become someone else for a couple of days. Fans wait for hours just to catch a glimpse of someone they really like from TV or movies. This is their life. They may have a job, a girlfriend, but when they get an email or see the trailer for the new movie coming out, they tingle. The light begins to burn brightly, and they can hardly wait to share it with everyone around them. The pinnacle of this escapism was when we were walking the length of the convention hall, and a line of teenagers was running down the building, blaring dance music. They ended at a certain point, gathered in a circle, and begin to dance with no thought of who was around them. It was like they had been released from prison, and I think that there, they had been. You have to wonder that in school, when they're not in such a close group, how quiet they must be trapped inside themselves, because if they try to escape, they will be gently reminded (with a wedgie) that there's only one way to be, but no one seems to be giving lectures on what that is. God brought it all to me while we were cruising in the airplane back to our home in Atlanta, and it flooded me. I realized that people who dress like Storm Troopers on the weekend are no different than a girl who gives her love away hoping that she'll get it back. Or the guy who gives away his dignity hoping it will return in the form of respect. While most of that happens on the weekend as well. When we walk back in to work, or school or church, it might help us to point at someone and shake our heads to bury the shame of who we are, but it's not the right way to do things. A guy may not be able to throw a football, and a girl might not be able to match her rouge and lipstick, but what unites us is the very Thing that gives us life, and I feel like I have a responsibility to bridge that gap and let both Jocks and Geeks know that we can let go of all our disdain and thoughts of revenge, because we are the same. There is God there is everyone else and that is all. This goes for the bullies as well as the victims with thier heads in trash cans or toilets. I hope we can all look at each other with the eyes of God who sees everyone as they are, and not who they're dressed like. The next time you see a nerd or freak or geek, try to look past the black raincoat or thick makeup or confusing t-shirt, and see them as a human who needs love just like you do. And geeks, this is a two way street. If you expect love, you must give it. It will take courage, but people (all people even the ones who hurt you) were created by God, just like you, and they go to sleep at night feeling the same way you do. Imagine what would happen if the world got tired of being lonely, and started making contact.
"If we could read the secret history of our enemies, we should find in each man's life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility."
-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.