Hey, geeks. I know you have that big raid with your guild slated for this weekend, but you're going to have to reschedule. You've got other plans.
1. The movie premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, part 2.
2. The first public performances of Predator: The Musical at the New Rock Theater.
3. The Nerdologues present: Your Stories, an evening of geeky storytelling starring YOU. Read on:
The Nerdologues are a monologue and sketch comedy group centered around geek culture. I had a few beers with members Kevin Reader and Chris Geiger, and believe me- they're the genuine article. Kevin loves museums, archaeology, gaming, and poetry. Chris dives into comic books, video games, and conventions. The rest of the cast includes an engineer, a neurology PhD student, and more. Though I'd only heard of The Nerdologues 2 weeks ago (Boobs of Khan!), their "dysfunctional family" has been writing for a year and a half.
The group goes back and forth on their definition of nerd. The current verdict: You're a nerd if you have “something that you’re really fascinated with that makes you feel ostracized.” You need "somewhere to go where people get it.” The Nerdologues are looking to create a safe, social environment for Chicago's geeks through their upcoming 4th show- a "no-name Wootstock," if you will.
The stories presented at a Nerdologues show are deeply human. Topics include middle school torment, Mortal Kombat on one's wedding day, and true MMO addiction. “It really resonates with people," says Chris. "It’s something you don’t see on stage a lot."
The stage isn't the only thing the group concentrates on. If given the opportunity, they set up old-school video games, board games, and loads of conversation before and after the scripted stuff- "something to plan a night around." The goal is for all in attendance to feel "a part of something." The next show of this kind is planned for late September/early October; watch this blog for updates.
This weekend's shindig, Your Stories, is a different beast. The event is similar to an open mic night, with guests sharing their own experiences. The pair explains, "We don't even perform, we just give it all to them." The result is inspirational. "It makes us want to go back and write the next show every time we see it.”
Geek Girls are particularly encouraged to participate. Kevin elaborates, "I think sometimes consumer nerd culture feels like a boys' club." Some of his favorite stories have been presented by women; he especially admires the geek-loving girlfriends of the world. "If you’re a geek girl and you’re dating a geek guy… get them out of the house. Make them leave."
Interested? Your Stories goes down this Sunday, the 17th, at the Pub Theatre, 3220 N. Lincoln. The show begins at 8:00, and storytellers can sign up via e-mail, Facebook, or in-person. If you can't get your courage up just yet, these gatherings will continue on the 3rd Sunday of every month.
That's all for now, folks. I've got to find my Hogwarts robes for this GEEKend!
Next Time: Ken Goldstein shows us The Way of the Nerd!