Happy hours, role-playing parties and other celebrations abound on May 25 to celebrate the diverse imaginative interests and societal contributions of geeks and nerds everywhere.
The fan observance known as Geek Pride Day has been celebrated in one form or another since 2000, when Boston radio host Tim McEachern organized a festival celebrating computer geek activities and interests.(1)
Celebrated in 2006 throughout Spain and on the Internet, it eventually caught the attention of the mainstream media.(2-4) In 2009, Science Channel celebrated with a day of programming.(5)
May 25 coincides with three hallmark celebrations among science fiction and epic fantasy enthusiasts:
- The anniversary of the first Star Wars film, released May 25, 1977.
- Towel Day, a fan observance celebrating the life and works of the late science fiction author and humorist Douglas Adams (1952-2001).
- The Glorious 25th of May, a fan observance for devotees of Sir Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series of epic fantasy novels.
Opinions vary about the cultural meaning and significance of the terms “geek” and “nerd,” but most agree the terms describe individuals who are highly knowledgeable and passionate, even to the point of obsession, about an obscure or unconventional topic.(6)
“Being a nerd, or being a geek…is not about
what you love, it’s about how you love it.”
Regardless of whether you call your self a geek or nerd, Geek Pride Day is a reason (or excuse) for people of all ages and backgrounds to gather and celebrate what they love about being a geek and/or nerd.
- Liane Gouthro, “We’re geeks and we’re proud,” CNN.com, April 4, 2000, accessed April 24, 2013, archives.cnn.com/2000/TECH/computing/04/04/proud.geeks/idg/index.html.
- Pablo Romero, “Some ‘geeks’ proud,” Elmundo, May 26, 2006, accessed May 26, 2006, http://www.elmundo.es/navegante/2006/05/25/esociedad/1148589040.html.
- David Ramos, “May 25: Geek Pride Day,” 20minutes, May 25, 2006, accessed April 24, 2013, http://www.20minutos.es/noticia/122796/0/dia/orgullo/friki.
- Javier Salas, “Pacman and sleeves take to the streets: The revenge of the geeks,” Telecinco News, May 26, 2006, accessed April 24, 2013, http://www.informativos.telecinco.es/concentracion/orgullo_friki/comecocos/dn_25946.
- Nar Williams, “Geek Pride Day! Join Me On Science Channel!” narwilliams.com, May 24, 2009, accessed April 24, 2013, http://narwilliams.com/blog/2009/05/24/geek-pride-day-join-me-on-science-channel.
- David Brooks, “The Alpha Geeks,” New York Times, May 23, 2008, accessed April 24, 2013, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/23/opinion/23brooks.html.
- Wil Wheaton, in response to a question from Jennifer Black-Moir, Calgary Comic Expo, April 27, 2013, accessed May 14, 2013, http://wilwheaton.net/2013/04/being-a-nerd-is-not-about-what-you-love-its-about-how-you-love-it.
- NerDC.net, “NerDC.net petitions White House for National Geek Pride Day,” Press Release, April 25, 2013, accessed April 25, 2013, http://www.nerdc.net/nerdc-net-petitions-white-house-for-national-geek-pride-day.