My dear friend is twirling in a dating spin cycle right now. She's had dates galore, and feels like she needs to start narrowing down her prospects, partly just to give herself a breather from all the action. The two leading candidates are a suave, passionate, activist-type, and a sweet, nerdy, shy lawyer.
I have made it very clear that I am rooting for the nerdy lawyer. In my book, nerds are always the way to go.
I think my adoration began freshman year of college when I took an Ancient Art History class. My teacher, Mr. F was a mousy little guy with glasses and pants that were probably a smidge too short. But oh when he would talk about art. He knew everything. He was smart and funny (nerd humor is one of my favorites, btw). I quickly developed a schoolgirl crush on him.
Then there was my American Studies teacher who was less outwardly nerdy, but still walked out on stage (class was in a theater) with toilet paper stuck to his shoe one day. I treasured that gem of a man.
Even when I went out with Dr. Hozienoggin, and he spoke of pheromones and ear wax on our first date, something about his nerdiness drew me in enough to go out a second time.
After insisting that my girlfriend make nerdy lawyer the front runner in her dating race, I felt compelled to get to the bottom of my nerd love. And I think I figured it out.
First off, dating someone nerdy can take the emphasis off one's own nerdiness. I'm more of a dork than a nerd (think Elaine from Seinfeld dancing) but I still love Jeopardy, compost, random facts and word puns. By pairing up with someone who is just one degree nerdier than I am, I suddenly become "the cool girl" and all my quirks are downplayed. [Note: When explaining this theory to Mr. W* he told me he was truly worried before our first date that I was going to be a huge nerd and he'd never be able to go out with me again.]
Second, nerds are smart—and that keeps life interesting. Why would you want to be with someone who was A) kinda stupid B) one-dimensional C) only interested in sports, when you could be with someone who read stuff online about how people are working on developing diesel fuel from algae? Now that's interesting sh*t!
Third, nerds seem to cherish their chicks. Remember the line in Revenge of the Nerds, "All jocks think about is sports, all nerds think about is sex"? Well, I think it goes beyond even the physical attentiveness and manifests as a general sweetness and appreciation of the female life form. Nerdy boys want to do right by you because they're so happy to have real, live you instead of their Princess Leia posters.
As far as I'm concerned, there's no disputing that nerds are a hot commodity. Forget the bad boys. Forget the Casanovas. I'll take a witty boy with glasses and asthma any day over the rest of 'em. And I'd recommend that my single girlfriends do the same!
*In Mr. Wonderful's defense, I should say that he's not a huge nerd. Does he own a weather radio for flying? Yes he does. Does he have a collection of remote-controlled helicopters? Totally. Can he build databases? Uh-huh. But he's not a nerd. Or, at least that's what he'd like people to think.