Being A Nerd

April 30, 2011
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March 6, 2009

I stared at the mirror blankly, trying to figure out what my overall aura seemed to be. I began experimenting with my natural state, trying to impose myself as a chill, yet bold student. Removing my wry expression that of ‘how impossible this task seemed to be?’ I just started to pull up my collar and my neatly tucked shirt. The person I saw was strange and looked uncomfortable in his position, with his plain khaki pants and his neatly combed hair. The contrast between sections of his body looked almost intentional, as if he had desperately wanted to change his appearance. Actually, he looked quite…nerdy.

“Ah, this won’t work,” I sighed. My efforts were progressively becoming difficult.


My name is Robert, and I am a nerd.

Nerdishness is the result of clash of social awkwardness and intelligence. The problem is that kids my age value only one side of me. As the sympathetic onlooker might wonder: ‘why is your life like this?’ Yet the answer is simple. I am an open textbook, waiting as another kid walks by to pick me up for their math homework, and after that, I just get hurled into a shady locker, both figuratively and literally. The fact is, being a nerd is asking to be blacklisted in culture, and becoming a social reject in life. However, it is also a continuous stream of pressure from one’s peers, for getting a single question wrong almost always jeopardizes the little reputation that a nerd has. Some would say that this is an exaggeration, yet I have to admit again that this is my life, which is a bittersweet triangle of nerdy ways. The onlooker comes to ask: “what triangle? What are you talking about?” I would laugh at such a question, however my humor is funny to myself, and not to those around me.

I never questioned my knowledge, but felt assaulted by ignorance of social norms or so-called ‘cool’ behavior. I never ran from it, however I realized that I was embracing a concept that defied the mainstream fervors for melodrama. After all, social smartness was nothing but hyped up melodrama. It was like a shadow, stalking me wherever I went, countering my desires to become one of the popular kids. And when I realized my mistake, it was too late to turn back. Society controlled my nerdy self, putting me in my rightful place. It was too late to change into a humoring individual who was adored across the school; I have to live with my growing shadow, which will always be bigger than me.

So truly, the first side of my nerdy ways is intelligence. And so my life began.


January 5, 2009

I left the school bathroom after lunch to head back to science class. The teachers treated the minds of these incompetent students like squirrels; being careful not to move too fast as it would startle their minds. I refused to indulge in the stupid remarks made by those in my class, as I realized that stupidity was the basis behind popularity in such natures, and furthermore, acting like a complete lunatic was cool. Staring at their futures, I preferred to retain my intellect instead of adopting their wild behaviors, yet that did not take me very far in social records; I just really made the locker look like a prison.
I arrived back into class and took my seat as the ever so burly Mr. Smith began drawing diagrams on the board.

“Now, I would like you to notice that the atomic mass of this particle has decreased after alpha particle decay.”

A student snickered in the back of the class. “He needs to reduce his atomic mass.”

“What is going on back there?” Mr. Smith asked.

The student got up. “Nothing Mr. Smith. Just talking about atomic mass.”

“I hope so.” He paused. “Well, this is the basic alpha decay, however in one of the beta decay forms, a neutrino is emitted. Can you please explain to me as to what it is?”
I raised my hand as he called on me. “A neutrino is an atomic particle that has no charge and means small neutron. However, neutrinos do not react the same way as other atomic particles do. In fact, they rarely interact with anything.”

Students rolled their eyes or laughed at me. They showed little appreciation for my knowledge or understanding of the universe. I lacked those vital popularity skills, so either I was an outcast or cool. And now more than ever, I was an outcast.


As much as a nerd would try to manipulate the situation, the charade of insults would be unstoppable. Accusations would be hurled, and eventually, a nerd would hit stage two: acceptance, when all your aspirations of popularity become unattainable. Either way it goes, you will always come back to your nerdy state, and it stays that way for the enjoyable years of life. I tried to change everything, and nothing worked.

And then I met Brad, a chill, yet intelligent guy who was everything I wanted to be in my life, being an indifferent character with a charismatic attitude and an intelligent mind. Strange that a nerd like myself was to meet such a witty individual, yet I fail to regret it. Being friendly with a cool kid was an inspiration in my steps to becoming cool, and luckily it made feel better. It also made me overconfident, which led me to side two of the triangle, excess of seriousness.



February 7, 2009

I came back to science class to find that they were introducing machines. Mr. Smith was trying to gauge the understanding of the class by asking questions relating to machines, and Brad was first.

“So Brad, what is a machine?”

“A machine is anything that makes human work simpler.”

“Could you please elaborate?” the teacher responded.

“Umm… a microwave. Makes it easier to heat stuff, thus a machine. An AC cools the room automatically and constantly, thus a machine. In fact, machines exist everywhere like my sweatshirt zipper. See, up and down,” he said while zipping his zipper up and down. The class started to laugh.

“Brad, you obviously have not read the prerequisite. Go outside with Robert so that he can help you. I do not accept simple answers.”

Brad and I began to walk outside when Brad stopped and turned back.

“Why are you coming back in Brad?” the teacher asked in a slightly agitated tone.
“I forgot something.”

“What did you forget?”

“I forgot my compilation of table of contents, index, glossary, and appendix which is displayed in either a hard cover or paperback form which is organized in several chapters which are broken into sections which have a series of question as well as a chapter review which may also be conveyed through related pictures via the sensory root of vision, sometimes touch.”
Startled by his response the teacher asked again. “What did you forget?”

“Books.” The class began laughing hysterically at the remark.

“Then why didn’t you say it simply?”

“I tried, but you said that you didn’t like simple answers.” Everybody, including myself, was laughing. And then Brad ran out, me accompanying him.

I closed the door and was talking to Brad while we sat.

“You have to show me how to do that.”

“How to be funny?”


“Try to destroy the teacher using your intelligence.”

“That’s not really my style though.”

“Well who do you actually want to be friends with?”

“All the ‘cool’ people.”

“Alright fine, leave me behind, all alone…”

“No! I didn’t mean it that-“

“It’s a joke! That’s your problem! You take everything too seriously! You just have to relax, and show that you aren’t concerned with every little thing. If you show that you are relaxed, people with think that you are cool. Act like a gangster too, saying ‘Yo’ and ‘What’s up’, it always works.”

Humor, the enemy of being a nerd is frankly, something that I fail at. My humor would be defined as indifferent, and all my attempts at humor have been futile. Now Brad wanted me to act like a gangster, which was completely out of my range of humor. He wanted me to become a completely different individual altogether, but then again, who was I to doubt such a witty friend.

“Alright, I’ll try it,” I responded slightly casually.

“Dude, your voice is wavering.”

“Just nervous.”

“Jeez! Just go and do it.”

Before math class, Brad and I stood in the hallways as a plethora of people began heading to their lockers. I messed up my hair and loosened my collar buttons.

“Brad, who should I talk too?”

“Umm… start with that girl,” he said, pointing to a girl at her locker.

“Are you sure about this?”

“Yeah, just go. I’ll be waiting at the other end of the hallway.” Brad began walking to the other end of the hallway.

I popped my collar and rubbed my hands together nervously. Through the hundreds of people walking, I could see Brad ushering me. I took a deep breath and began walking to her. I stopped at the locker next to the girl’s and stood there blankly for two seconds, confused. She looked up at me, and I hesitantly began.

“Uh…umm…well…uh…good morning- wait uh… what is…up…. and…yo,” I finished clumsily.

She looked awkwardly at me, bent back almost as though I had committed a crime. I obviously made a blunder. “Hi to you too…” she said perplexingly.

I began to walk away. I came to Brad, who was laughing hysterically.

“DUDE! You were so funny! You were so funny because you messed up so bad!”
“Wait, what?”

“You failed! That’s not how you talk man! I could see you stuttering from here. You have to be relaxed, or you will be really awkward. You don’t formally walk up to them and say that. You just pass by and say ‘yo.’ Got it?”


Brad snickered. “Try with a guy this time, it would probably be easier. Maybe with that one, over there,” he said, pointing.

“Brad, but that’s Jake!”

“I know, just go and do it. It’s good practice.”

“Practice! He is the most cool-”

“Just go!”

I prepped myself for one of the most important moments in my career as a student. If I mess this up, it would completely ruin my reputation. My thoughts were racing, and I could feel adrenaline pumping. It felt strange to feel this for a conversation, however I realized this was important.

I walked up to Jake, and it was the moment of truth. “Hey, and yo. What is up?” I said with confidence. I felt as if everything was perfect, but something was wrong.
All his friends around him snickered. “So Robert, wanna be part of the gang here, right kid? To get in you just have to sign your name in this locker,” he said as his friend opened it. There was a list of names on it, including Jakes under the title: Gang.
“Here’s a pen kid, Just sign right inside,” Jake said. I began to lean in which, was probably the biggest mistake.

All of them began to shove me in the locker.

Brad came running and attempted to push them aside. I was in the locker before he could stop them, and the metal door was closed. Jake and his friends left, and Brad lay crumbled on the floor. He slowly got up.

“Wait Robert, I’m getting help!”

And then side three hit me: seclusion. Nobody was there to help me, and I was more alone then ever. I was a nerd.


I stared at the mirror blankly first, trying to figure as to what my overall aura seems to be. I began experimenting with my natural state, trying to impose myself as a chill, yet bold student. Removing my wry expression that of “how impossible this task seemed to be?” I just started pull up my collar and my neatly tucked shirt. The person I saw was strange and looked uncomfortable in his position, with his plain, kaki, pants and his combed hair. The contrast between sections of his body looked almost intentional, as if he had desperately wanted to change his appearance. Actually, he looked quite…nerdy.

“Ah, this won’t work,” I sighed. My efforts in this area were difficult. I began reciting my speech that I had been working on for class president, hoping that I would possibly win. The speech was first period, and I didn’t have time to practice before at all. This was my moment, and I was prepared to… lose.

As I arrived at school, I went to my class, and began prepare my speech and order everything together. I was last to go, and I waited anxiously for such a time. When they called my name, there was a light clap, and everybody was snickering at me. And at that moment I began to recite my speech.

“Equality is something we all understand. It’s what formulated all the nations we have lived in, and what has brought people together. At this school, I have seen this differently. I am a nerd, which is not ‘cool’ to all you people. It is socially awkward to talk to me, and you find me strange. Being equal is about splitting this divide, popular or not popular. Smart or dumb. Funny or serious. Equality is not the idea of treating everyone the same, but understanding how other people react to what you do. Understanding how they feel. Understanding how they would view the world. Equality is beyond treating everybody the same; it is a bond between gaps of our life, a bond that can shape our school and beyond. Thank you.”

Nobody clapped, or moved. Everybody was paralyzed, staring at me, thinking. And then suddenly, the oddest thing happened, somebody called me cool.

“Hey Robert, that was hip!” People laughed, and more joined in. More began chanting, and it evolved into a synchronized chant. Everybody was calling me cool.

And at that moment, I was a nerd.

Join the Discussion

This article has 31 comments. Post your own now!

Beingme123 said...
May 6, 2012 at 6:17 pm
Hmmm....nice idea but weak execution
Paradox:)(:132 said...
Sept. 20, 2011 at 9:39 pm
its alrightt i guess
BRoyalEdwardian12 said...
Sept. 20, 2011 at 9:36 pm
baad story man, with little development
Rob399 said...
Sept. 10, 2011 at 7:20 pm
Average story, nothing special.
2009Sorter said...
Jun. 24, 2011 at 9:21 pm
Awesome story that reflects a nerd
oscar wwww 5 said...
May 22, 2011 at 12:26 pm
this is amazing the only problem is the author is a rele funney awesome kid so i dont know where he got the idea for the story this kid is soooooo cool
RChander replied...
May 22, 2011 at 12:34 pm
Thanks a lot!
VTn:P said...
May 21, 2011 at 7:34 am
Nice story. Like the theme. There are a few minor errors, nothing big, you might want to go through and edit it. Otherwise, really good storyline. If anything, maybe add a bit more action? Just a suggestion, it really doesn't need more but it might make it a bit more exciting. If anyone (other than RChander) disagrees, please reply to this comment, I don't want to mess up the story for him.
RChander replied...
May 21, 2011 at 10:30 am

Thanks for the feedback. I knew that there will be errors, and I will also be sure to add more action in the story.


gangsta300 said...
May 20, 2011 at 6:38 pm
Nice story!
JAYZEE1126 said...
May 15, 2011 at 8:07 pm
Wow!!!...amazing job:) 
RChander replied...
May 16, 2011 at 1:41 pm
Thanks all of you for your comments!
EmmaM97 said...
May 15, 2011 at 1:49 pm
Nice Job Rohan! Really well written, intriguing and humorous
kelsey4 said...
May 15, 2011 at 10:57 am
awesome story!!!!
savvyman543 said...
May 14, 2011 at 10:03 pm
Outstanding story! Very realistic! 5 Star writing!
alexrox78 said...
May 14, 2011 at 9:06 pm
This is really good. Nice job!
Alexa C. said...
May 14, 2011 at 7:43 pm

Good Job Rohan!!!

That was really good... Keep writing

RChander replied...
May 16, 2011 at 1:43 pm
Thanks for your comments!
Reeses said...
May 14, 2011 at 9:42 am
This was a great story, and the word choice was amazing. Nice job...
averyj97 said...
May 13, 2011 at 10:30 pm
Good job Rohan!! Loved it!
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