The True Nonconformists

It’s confession time. I love Swatches. I’m not sure why I do, but I do. I own six or seven of them. Most of them have dead batteries and a couple have badly mangled bands. I found my first swatch the other day in a drawer. Other than a dead battery and some scratches, it looks fine.

There was a place in Tucson that sold used Swatches for $20. They had the older, more collectible ones for more, but I only wanted the $20 ones. I bought three or four there. Then, last week, I saw on our little employee site that we could get a selection of Swatches for $15 a piece – all brand new. Of course, I went nuts, buying two before I remembered that my birthday is next Thursday and I should probably wait. Me, wait? Oh no. I got this one and this one (it’s not pink in person, all orange). They arrived yesterday and I couldn’t be happier.

And then, I went into a meeting today and someone said, “Hey, nice watch. Lose a bet?” No, no I didn’t lose a bet. You’re just old and don’t get it, man. Swatches are my youth reclaimed. They’re cheap, durable and keep good time. They’re interesting to look at and are more fun than your chrome hunk of metal that probably loses minutes every week. My watch is cool. My watch is orange as hell and has a picture of mountains on it. Oh, and it only cost $15, which means I could go buy another one next week without even thinking about it.

Did I take too personally? Yeah, probably. But, as much as I tend towards conformity, there are times I just don’t do things like other people do. Ok, that’s complete BS. I’m a nonconformist. But, in saying it, I know you’re thinking of those goth babies with white faces or long-haired greasy guys in record stores railing against the system and the man. I’m not that kind of nonconformist. I’m a geek. I just don’t care what everyone else is doing. If I like something, I’ll do it. If I think something is stupid, I won’t do it.

I’m not sure how this turned from my new watches to a post on conformity, but hey, here I am. Let’s go all the way. Nerds and geeks are the only real noncomformists left. Most of the other noncornformists I’ve met or still know may not follow society’s norms, but they definitely conform to their own little group’s ideas. Take the goth babies for instance. They wear black, they wear makeup and pierce themselves. If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen most of them. They listen to the same music, worship at the altar of the same authors, etc. Nerds and Geeks? If you’ve met one, you’ve met a truly unique individual. Their geekiness and nerdism surfaces in weird and wonderful mutations that change with the frequency of batcrap in Carlsbad. Embrace the Rainbow of Geekhood. We’re out there, weird as hell, and really don’t care what you think about it.