Years ago I remember being at a function and talking to a girl. The party wasn't my element at all. I needed white denim and a burberry shirt to fit in but other than that nothing out of the ordinary. We were talking about the party, our hobbies, etc. We were clear opposites. She asked me what I like to do in my spare time I said read, watch anime, go to concerts. I was hoping the question wouldn't come up after I gave my answer but it did. I sighed in my head before she asked it too.

"What's anime?"

Now I can give the real definition of it which is a Japanese style of movie or television but the easiest way to explain or dumb it down to people who don't watch it at all is to give an example of it. The easiest example is Dragonball Z because it's the most popular one in the country. Once you say that, the pussy flees from you like a thief in the night. She looked at me weirdly and before I tried to force the convo any further I told her have a good night and walked away. She was judging me. No use in trying to get her number and build something. I just walked away.

This happened another time when I was texting this girl and she asked me what I was doing and I replied "Watching Attack On Titan." She asked what it was and I told her it's an anime and it's on Netflix. Watching Anime is a "fad" these days so I thought she'd at least know what anime was. I'm going to assume she googled it cause she replied back "OMG You're a nerd" with that yelling emoji. I really felt offended. So offended to the point I never texted her back again. I just ignored her ever since. I was salty. After giving that text thread some thought I realized she's right. I am a nerd and you know what? I don't give a fuck. I'm proud of it. 

Nerd by definition is someone who's always studious and shit but in today's society Nerd is basically the opposite of popular people. Nerds used to look like Lewis Skolnick from the classic film "Revenge Of The Nerds."  Not anymore because Nerds have evolved. I'm not Urkel nor do I have a pocket protector. If you don't do anything that's deemed "Cool" you're a nerd. I want to go to Comic-Con someday. I want to go to Tokyo just to thrift, take a picture with a Gundam, and bask in anime heaven. Those aspirations makes me a nerd. 

This isn't just with anime. This includes RPG video games, anything  Sci-Fi, wrestling, comics/mangas, superhero movies. If you're passionate about any of those things you're considered a nerd. On my snapchat (SkinnySantiago) I make snaps of me watching anime all the time and I swear to the lord I can just FEEL the fucking judgement without hearing it from a few people who watch my snaps. I know they think I'm weird. I know they're thinking "Why is he watching these weird cartoons?" In the black community it's DEFINITELY weird to like what I like. There's nothing weird about it or me. I just have a different hobby than you. That's it. 

I'm sorry I'm lame to you. I'm sorry I don't dress like Fabolous or wear the latest shit. I'm sorry I'm low maintenance. I'm sorry I don't listen to rap music everyday or know every popular song. I'm sorry I don't watch love and hip-hop or Empire. I'm sorry that you don't think I'm "hip." I'm just me. We just have different interests. It doesn't mean we can't hang. It doesn't mean we don't have anything else in common. I like making money just like you. I like going to parties drunk just like you. I like dancing just like you. I like making great memories with friends just like you. I like to travel just like you. I like sports just like you. Why judge? 

When I see comments like "Playing video games is childish" or "Grown men watching anime is stupid" they really get to me and under my skin (which is rare) because those same people who judge my hobbies do more immature shit than I do. I don't judge you for spending stupid amounts of money on bottle service at clubs just so you can flex with bottles in your hand for people on the net. Anime is fiction. You're correct but Love and Hip-Hop is fiction also. Which is more immature? Me watching a Japanese animation that has in depth writing or you watching a scripted show with grown women throwing drinks on each other over dick and petty differences?

This has effected my dating history also. Which I never really understood but I don't care. I'm a man when it's all said and done. Take away all the hobbies, I'm still a man. I do man shit. Another person disrespect me or mine I handle it like a man. Run up on me wild and you'll get your issue fucking with me. Never had a problem pleasing women. I take care of my business. Me being a nerd don't change none of that. That's like me saying I'll never date a woman who watches "Real Housewives Of Atlanta." You know how foolish that sounds? What does that have to do with the kind of person she is? Nothing at all. I don't care if a woman I'm interested in hobbies differ from mine. If I did then what we have is meaningless and has no foundation. I wouldn't want someone to like everything I'm into anyway. That would be boring.

I remember I dated a woman who asked me why I listened to Linkin Park. Hybrid Theory is one of my favorite albums ever and she couldn't grasp a black man listening to it. She looked at me like I was a nerd. I guess a black man listening to rock music is nerd shit. I don't think that but she did. At that time I realized that we need to open up our minds more. Being in a box is not fun at all. Reminded me a lot of the time where I was listening to N.E.R.D in high school and people judged me for it. 

I like being a Nerd because my nerdy side is very creative, heartfelt, shy, peaceful, passionate, and chill. So I never understood the hate we get. I don't think I would have a good sense of humor if I wasn't a nerd. This is a part of me I always tried to hide when I was in middle school just so I can appear cool and get the girls I had crushes on. There's nothing cooler than just being yourself and that's what I would tell a 13 year old me if I could. Pretending to not watch Pokemon or Wrestling is stupid. They're both great. Except wrestling. Wrestling isn't too great today but the era of wrestling I was pretending not to watch was the greatest. 

I'm still going to keep watching "One Piece" and "Inuyasha." I'm still going to like to wear black concert t-shirts and flannels instead of what rappers wear. I'm still going to play Zelda. I'm still going to argue loudly in public about which is better D.C or Marvel. I'm still going to be the guy who points out the superhero movies flaws because they didn't follow the real storyline from the comics. I'm still going to be a nerd and proud of it. =)