The geek shall inherit the Earth - part 1

There was a time when geeks, nerds or whatever you prefer to call them were generally laughed at and even my own brother liked to say that I was a boffin. That wasn't a compliment at the time, he thought I could solve complex computer problems but couldn't even tie my own laces (actually, that was nearly true, I learned to tie laces about 14 but couldn't really code until 17).

I just remembered what the other brother did when I was in Junior school. I couldn't remember what was left or what was right (I was a late starter and very shy). I imagine people thought I was a bit daft, but I prefer to think I was preoccupied with other things. Anyway, my brother (lets call him Terry, because that's his name) got a marker pen and wrote on my shoes L and R for left and right to help me. I was delighted and thought 'what a practical idea' or 8 year old words to that effect. I do recall my mother not being impressed which I couldn't understand.

The trainers (not sneakers!) looked like this (mockup, they are long gone) I wore these to school as well, pretty much everywhere

I only got the joke decades later and when I remembered it I laughed. I was surprised my mother let him do it but as I recall, he had already marked up my footwear by the time she found out and we were quite poor, so a new pair of shoes was not an option. In case you are like I was and still don't get it, it's an implication that I was so stupid that I couldn't figure out what was left or right and is a common meme.

I'm not sure what the point of this post is. It's somewhat cathartic to remember this stuff but also to think about what's happened since and take pride in my achievements.

Addendum: Two hours later and I think I've figured out the moral of this story, being a geek was not a bad start in life, not a bad start at all. We all have to put up with some ridicule, better to laugh with others at yourself and not take it all too seriously.

I've enjoyed writing this post so much, I think I'll make this part 1 and do some more in future.

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Ryan O'Neill

Mostly about tech, working for myself and my thoughts.

Ludlow, Shropshire, UK