That Old Jock/Nerd Rivalry Resurfaces

It's getting a bit late, but I have a little story to tell. In the beginning of high school, I started out as a bit of a jock who really loved nerd-life. I wrestled and played baseball and basketball. I quit sporting to pursue women, music, and video games, while reading comic books on the side. I remember the old jock/nerd rivalry really well, and I got into quite a few scuffles because of it. 11 years later, I teach college freshmen English, and I write about comics for a living. I couldn't be more proud. However, my nonsensical hatred for jock-kind was refueled tonight. 
 
My girlfriend and I spent the day house hunting and whatnot, and during the evening, we decided to go out to eat. Halfway to the restaurant, she called me and told me her father, their exchange student, and a couple of his friends were going to be there. No big deal. I enjoy hanging out with the future father-in-law, and I don't mind a couple of the teenagers coming in. We sit down at our table at the restaurant, and one of the exchange student's friends I have never met before. He was, for all intensive purposes, a jock. It really didn't matter to me, since I truly think getting involved in school activities is a good thing. We all chatted and I noticed this kid complained about everything. "These wings suck" was the first thing that popped out of his mouth. "Then why are you eating them?" I thought to myself. He was loud and a bit cruel to our exchange student. I thought nothing of it. My girlfriend and I began talking about taking our niece and nephew to see the new Justin Bieber movie, since they love his music. I have no problem with it. I'm not a fan, but whatever makes my niece and nephew happy makes me happy. This jock kid starts spouting off some pretty homophobic slang, even though I'm pretty sure Bieber isn't gay. I chime in and say, "I may not like his music, but you know what? At the end of the day his decisions and actions have no effect on my or anyone's life, so who cares?" He stops talking... Then comes what almost drove me to get into it with him. I jokingly said I wanted to quit working at the comic book store, which I work at one day a week. As soon as the words "comic book store" came out of my mouth, this kid started chuckling in this "I'm better than you tone." In my mind I thought, "really dude? now that you know I like comics, you want to have a bit of a giggle about it?" I flashed back to every single time someone who thought they were better than me in high school picked on me for my interests. Whether it was comic books, my blue mohawk, my love for Star Wars, or even the music I listened to. It almost always ended up in a fight, and overall, it was never worth it. Here's why...
 
I went to my 10 year high school reunion this past summer. I was excited to what everyone was up to. I don't really hold grudges, and I truly was excited to see people I just didn't get along with, since we've all matured and become filled with more wisdom. I started noticing a trend. Those people that walked all over everyone in high school and bullied people drew the short end of the stick because they continued treating people like garbage after high school. And in the real world, if you treat people like garbage, life treats you like garbage. And I felt bad for those people. I truly did because they never really learned acceptable social skills. But there's that old saying "what goes around, comes around."
 
I know there's a lot of high school students on this site who dealt with the same bologna that I, or anyone older, dealt with in high school. The best thing to do is ignore it. High school is honestly the worst four years you'll have to endure, and although life becomes infinitely more complicated after high school, it's so much more fulfilling, exciting, and pleasurable.  I'll take struggling over bills and arguments with my girlfriend over a prep rally any day. Just be yourself, hang out with your friends, ignore the jerks the best you can, and get through high school. 
 
Ok, it's 2:30AM... I have to work at the comic book store tomorrow... Hope you guys enjoyed this. Goodnight friends!

34 Comments
34 Comments
Posted by Mercy_

Seems like you know who you are and you're happy with it. More power to you. 

Moderator
Posted by inferiorego

For people thinking "TL;DR," here's the summary.
 
I wanted to slap someone 12 years younger than me for laughing when I said I work at a comic book store.

Staff
Posted by Precise

That's what happens when people are ignorant and just go for the first impression.

Posted by CATPANEXE

that's very inspirational and kind of you to share. thank you IF.
the world is sadly full of a lot of intolerant people, but as i always
say i know so many wonderful people, like the users here who
are worth more to me than 100 of those haters, making the cruel
ones invisible in the end of the day.

Posted by SC

Thats an awesome message inferiorego ^_^. I feel quite lucky almost, since the school I went to was filled with the kind of kids where there weren't really any social cliques. We were all sort of dumb jocks I think what one would call it with retrospect, but the kind of societal rejected ones, plus I left way too earlier, things probably get more complicated in the last two years right,  My understanding of the jock/nerd dynamic i have picked up and learned from TV shows lol. Probably not the best place for objective information lol I still have a fascination for larger and more normal schools though, American ones too. I feel the guy you speak about in your example, is one of those really entitled people. I can't feel that he is hurting on the inside in some way and probably has some authority figure who probably demonstrates the same less than ideal traits.  
  
I enjoyed your post, plus i don't know you well, so it was cool learning thanks. Night bro. 

Moderator
Posted by Billy Batson
    
this text
Posted by Chaos Prime

Great read :-)
It still bugs me that people take some sort of pride & satisfaction in being a Bully...

Posted by TypingKira

Great post man. Right on. 

Posted by EisforExtinction
@inferiorego said:
" For people thinking "TL;DR," here's the summary.  I wanted to slap someone 12 years younger than me for laughing when I said I work at a comic book store. "
I think you should have baited him more. Tell that you have a WoW Raid later tonight and that watching the directors cut of Lord of the Rings is the only way to watch it. Maybe pretend to speak Klingon or say lol or pwned. Tell him how you with Dragon Ball Z fan fiction and maybe ask him if it's believable to have Goku ride a motorcycle.
 
I recommend this because setting up a teenager to make fun of you is the funniest thing ever because they will ALWAYS disappoint you. Good one bro, you really burned me on that story I just served up to you on a silver platter. Older people will get that you're pulling their leg but teenagers are not smart enough to clue in. I speak from experience.
Posted by danhimself

I pretty much hate everyone who is a few years younger than me now....anyone where I can notice the generational gap when they start to talk....I just want to slap the sh!t out of them....good job on holding back

Posted by FadeToBlackBolt
@danhimself said:
" I pretty much hate everyone... I just want to slap the sh!t out of them....good job on holding back "
Posted by Silkcuts

Great Blog.
I love being a NERD, Nerds are taking over the world one comic book at a time.

Posted by TheSheepHerder

This is why I can't see this generation getting any better in the coming years.
 
Awesome post, Mat.

Posted by soundbite

It seems to me like this was more an jerkstore negative/hurtful thing than a jock thing,  You know, for intensive purposes.  That  guy's homelife must really suck to bag on anything and everything.

Posted by Shadowdoggy

I think it's because when you're young, you put so much credit into what other people the think 
the older you get, the more you realize that the only people you have to be concerned with are those closest to you  
also......once you're about 10 years out from high school and it's WAY in your rearview mirror, you start to realize that the jocks burned out at 18 
the nerds just keep getting better and happier as life goes on 
living well - it really IS the best revenge

Posted by ComicMan24

Nice post.

Posted by inferiorego
@danhimself said:
" I pretty much hate everyone who is a few years younger than me now....anyone where I can notice the generational gap when they start to talk....I just want to slap the sh!t out of them....good job on holding back "
Because I teach at a college, I see that gap EVERYDAY. I do not understand anyone born past 1987. When they talk to me, I feel like I'm a visitor from another planet. People thought I was crazy yesterday when I asked "What's Jack Johnson?" I guess he's a singer.
 
@EisforExtinction said:
" @inferiorego said:
" For people thinking "TL;DR," here's the summary.  I wanted to slap someone 12 years younger than me for laughing when I said I work at a comic book store. "
I think you should have baited him more. Tell that you have a WoW Raid later tonight and that watching the directors cut of Lord of the Rings is the only way to watch it. Maybe pretend to speak Klingon or say lol or pwned. Tell him how you with Dragon Ball Z fan fiction and maybe ask him if it's believable to have Goku ride a motorcycle. I recommend this because setting up a teenager to make fun of you is the funniest thing ever because they will ALWAYS disappoint you. Good one bro, you really burned me on that story I just served up to you on a silver platter. Older people will get that you're pulling their leg but teenagers are not smart enough to clue in. I speak from experience. "

I should have turned to my girlfriend next to me and announced loudly, "I can't wait for our first kiss. I want it to be memorable."
Staff
Posted by InnerVenom123

Nice job on resisting the urge to smack the sh-t out of him.

Posted by Jotham
@inferiorego: Well said.
 
@EisforExtinction said:
" @inferiorego said:
" For people thinking "TL;DR," here's the summary.  I wanted to slap someone 12 years younger than me for laughing when I said I work at a comic book store. "
I think you should have baited him more. Tell that you have a WoW Raid later tonight and that watching the directors cut of Lord of the Rings is the only way to watch it. Maybe pretend to speak Klingon or say lol or pwned. Tell him how you with Dragon Ball Z fan fiction and maybe ask him if it's believable to have Goku ride a motorcycle. I recommend this because setting up a teenager to make fun of you is the funniest thing ever because they will ALWAYS disappoint you. Good one bro, you really burned me on that story I just served up to you on a silver platter. Older people will get that you're pulling their leg but teenagers are not smart enough to clue in. I speak from experience. "

Genius.
Posted by Anthony Robson92

Well said.
Posted by Vitality

Shouldn't care what others think. 
  
No matter how the story played out...that person got to you enough to create a topic about him.
Posted by InnerVenom123
@Vitality: And now the internet is laughing at him. 
 
Revenge complete. :)
Posted by danhimself
@inferiorego said:
" @danhimself said:
" I pretty much hate everyone who is a few years younger than me now....anyone where I can notice the generational gap when they start to talk....I just want to slap the sh!t out of them....good job on holding back "
Because I teach at a college, I see that gap EVERYDAY. I do not understand anyone born past 1987. When they talk to me, I feel like I'm a visitor from another planet. People thought I was crazy yesterday when I asked "What's Jack Johnson?" I guess he's a singer.
 
you probably wouldn't like Jack Johnson but he's one of my favorite singers....kind of a hippy singer
Posted by King Saturn
well idiots come in all forms... Jocks, Politicians, Evangelicals, etc. 
it seems you just happened to catch the Douche Bag Jock this time...
Posted by GTG12

Not all jocks are like that.
Posted by Primmaster64

Well that kid is an idiot. Nerds and geeks rule the world.

Posted by GTG12
@Primmaster64
 
Really? Obama isn't that much of a nerd he played basketball  in college but he did if i remember go to an ivy leauge school.
Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

I always wanted to know is American School really like what you see in movies and stuff? with the different groups? You know the cheerleader/plastics, jocks, nerds, preppies, greasers?

Posted by GTG12
@spiderbat87
 
Yeah sorta but my point is not all jocks are db's and the same goes for any other class. But yeah there are many groups at my school.
Posted by Static Shock

When I was living in Jacksonville, FL, I was constantly bullied and made fun of in middle school (6th and 7th grade). It started out mild, but when people started to notice the situation I was in, it got worse (monkey see, monkey do; people started to follow suit with the bulling and ridicule because they noticed that I didn't stand up for myself). Some days, I would go home crying, wondering why people continued to mess with me for nothing. Hell, I even faked sick to evade some dude that was threatening to beat me up for my money. I moved to Atlanta, Georgia when I started 8th grade, and I didn't experience what I did in Florida. So, things were easier. In high school, there wasn't much of what I experienced in middle school, but people were still disrespectful, nonetheless. It was to the point where people would say things just to bait you into a fight, just because it was convenient to them. Then again, there were fights everyday when I was in high school. I learned to 'toughen up' a little, and as result, no one was actually able to take advantage of me like people did in middle school. So, when people ran their mouths, I shut them up. When people wanted to fight, I fought back. I could have handled things better in high school, and like Infeirior said, it's better to ignore such people than to lash out at them. 
  
Even in your adult years, people will still try to bait others with snide remarks and condescending tones of voice because they believe themselves to be superior. At that point, why even bother with people that refuse to grow up?
Posted by Static Shock

Anyway, in response to nerds and geeks, there's a reason why Bill Gates is one of the wealthiest individuals alive.
Posted by ARMIV

Man, people like that...well you certainly showed that you're a better man than I am.  
Even though I went to a charter school, I still might get into words with chumps like that. 

Posted by inferiorego

UPDATE: I ran into that kid a couple more times since then, and he found out I was a comedian, and he started sucking up to me a bit. I honestly don't know why. I should have let him know that 75% of comedians are huge comic book nerds.

Staff
Posted by Static Shock
@inferiorego said:

UPDATE: I ran into that kid a couple more times since then, and he found out I was a comedian, and he started sucking up to me a bit. I honestly don't know why. I should have let him know that 75% of comedians are huge comic book nerds.


O_o  
 
Seriously.