All the movies you watched in high school told you ‘nerds’ were the outcasts, but the truth is there are few things as wonderfully geeky and full of community as a fandom. People who are extremely passionate and excited about life are the only ones who can come together in all of their nerdy glory and geek out over a truly spectacular character, story, or idea.
If you’re any kind of person I want to be friends with, you at least heard about the 50th Anniversary special of Doctor Who that ran on Saturday. As I sat on the couch with DW fans new and old, sipping sonic screwdrivers and eating jammie dodgers acquired specifically for the occasion, I completely lost myself in the world of what will always be one of my favorite shows. It was epic, it was heartbreaking, but above all, it was unifying.
The beautiful thing about Doctor Who, and any story with a fandom like it, is that it unites. Thousands of people around the world watched their screens Saturday. Maybe you have nothing else in common, but if you can discuss which companion kicks ass and which Doctor is your favorite with someone, other things fall to the wayside.
When you’re 13 and you think being a ‘nerd’ is an automatic one-way ticket to social ambiguity, it’s hard to get excited about anything. When you’re 21 and you learn that geeking out over things that make you happy is actually a one-way ticket to friendship and a sense of community, ‘nerd’ is no longer a dirty word.
When you can make a friend simply because you have the same TARDIS phone case or because you off-handedly mention that your cat’s name is Stormaggedon, Dark Lord of All, you experience the true power of fandom.
Throw down your inhibitions and get excited about life. Whether it’s science fiction, fashion, English lit, math, whatever- find your fandom and prepare to expand your circle of friends. Share joy; that’s what life is for, and that’s what fandoms do. Geronimo.