When geeks get some support

[after being trapped by the Initiative, thinking Buffy’s behind it]
Spike: I always worried what would happen when that bitch got some funding.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Initiative

If you are a geek, I’m not telling you anything new when I say that school can be … gruesome. Going to school every day — ostensibly a place for learning, yet also a place of psychological and even physical pain — it can be … hell on earth. It can make you question whether to continue going to school, or just … take a different path.

And yeah, there are those who tell you that “it get’s better“. And in a way I agree. But in another way, I think you should be prepared to be amazed.

Seriously.

I recently watched an university debate. One person was … a geek at school. He was factual, well spoken, to the point. The other person was … well, whatever happens to jocks when they move to the university. And it wasn’t pretty. Physical strength and the threat of a powerful father might have some sway at school, but they look kinda ridiculous in a university debate.

And at some point during that debate I couldn’t help but wonder — yeah, that’s how it’s supposed to be. The quality of arguments should count, not physical strength or the influence of one’s family (which usually is limited geographically). And yeah … once you get beyond that constant feeling of threat that you might have experienced in school, and take stock of the knowledge and skills you have acquried … waow. Just waow. And even better once others who think like you support you. Hello afterburner!

Because while the world in school might be the world for those involved, it’s just a small stepping stone. Once the children become adults, physical power stops being relevant. Threats of powerful relatives evoke pity, not fear. And who cares that the other person is stronger once you can use the power of the law against physical threats. Then even bullies learn to obey the law. And in that debate, being smart counts, especially if you learn to ignore the physical strength of your opponent.

And isn’t that a world to live for?

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