After some time without a post (sorry about that), with a new job hunt and some vacation time, I’m back with another TableTopTake review. This one for the Star Wars Rebellion game. A long time ago in a galaxy far far away the Empire was […]
Tag: Luke Skywalker
One of the great gaming systems Peder and I got to try out at AcadeCon (and the last to talk about in our lineup!) was one that we’ve been wanting to try for quite a while – Star Wars: Age of Rebellion! Really, we were looking […]
Or: How I’m Nerdy about Star Wars and Sports
So, to some people, this concept might seem kind of absurd or obvious, but too often, there is a line drawn between liking Star Wars and liking sports. There are some who believe that if you like sports, you really can’t be a true fan or as much of a fan of Star Wars as they are, because they don’t waste their time with stupid sports. And some people on the other side of the equation believe that if you really like Star Wars but don’t like sports, that probably means that you are living in your parents basement and have no social life.
Neither of these are nice or accurate things to say about someone who likes Star Wars and not sports, or vice versa. There have been issues for a long time between those who are considered the “jocks” and the “nerds.” One side bullies the other physically, and the other side bullies the other mentally. Both of these things happen way too often, and too frequently, both sides fail to realize how similar they really are to the other. I’m fortunate that I know and enjoy both football and Star Wars quite well. I haven’t read a lot of the Star Wars books, but I want to read some of them, and I never played football in school, but it would have been cool if I had been able to. So I’m coming from a point where I can say with confidence that while I’m not a true expert, I’m a nerd who nerds out over sports as much as I do over Star Wars.
With the Super Bowl happening last weekend, it brought up a few things for me, and way too often, I saw my nerdy, non-sports-loving friends complaining about how much stuff there is around the Super Bowl, and how people expect them to care, and how noisy Super Bowl parties are. It also then made me think of when Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out a month and a half earlier, and what that was like as well. When the Super Bowl happens, there are advertisement telling you to stock up for Super Bowl Sunday, get that new TV, get your snacks ready, get your beer, and get ready to enjoy the game. This can be seen as annoying to people who don’t care about it. Why should I be bombarded with something I don’t care about? But before Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out, there was another massive advertising blitz — you could get soda cans with Star Wars figures on them, there were many advertisements for Star Wars products on television, and even your clementine oranges were being brought to you by BB-8.
So, then, leading up to the Super Bowl, people at work talk about who is going to win the game, what is going to happen in the game, and where they are going to be watching it. And in the weeks leading up to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, people at work talked about who Kylo Ren is, who Rey is, what the storyline might to be, theories about why Luke wasn’t in the trailer, and when and where they were going to be watching the movie.
Starting to see some similarities?
So now comes game day for the Super Bowl, and release weekend for the movie. People show up at your neighbor’s to watch the game, and you can hear them through the old apartment wall, even though you don’t care to be hearing it. And the weekend prior to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, you watch some of the original trilogy with your friends (and, if you are brave, the prequel trilogy), and your neighbors end up hearing the party you have.
Finally, the Super Bowl is done and you’ve seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens. What do you do now in either case? You talk to your coworkers about it. You try to be nice to anyone who might have had to DVR the game, but you’ll probably accidentally spoil it or they’ll have it spoiled online. You talk to those who have seen The Force Awakens about all of the surprises, and you tell those who haven’t gone yet that they should see it, without accidentally spoiling it, even though it’ll probably be spoiled for them online.
But you really don’t like sports, and you don’t want to hear anything about it — what do you do? Do you complain to your friends about how annoying it is? Do you say how stupid it is that people watch grown men play a game (even though you know you’ve watched TableTop)? Do you post comments on Facebook and Twitter saying “Oh, is there something big happening in sportsball today?”
The answer to all of those questions is no, you don’t. Because you know how annoying it is when people call Star Wars dumb; you know how annoying it is to have something that you like labelled in a derogatory way; you know that you watch things on TV and online that other people don’t care about as well. You let other people be nerds in their own way; you let them play their fantasy sports while you read your fantasy novels. If they talk to you about it, you listen politely like you’d want them to do if you talked to them about your favorite fantasy novel. You let them geek out over the game like you geeked out over Star Wars: The Force Awakens. You do that because you want the same respect when you geek out over what you care about.
But maybe they don’t listen, or they change the subject when you bring up something nerdy. Maybe they use negative terms towards something you love. Maybe they seem annoyed when they can hear your movie marathon. So it’s okay to just poke a little fun at them, at least to your friends, or maybe put something up on Facebook about it, right? Most of your friends really don’t like sports anyway.
Don’t be a bully. Don’t cut down what other people like, and if someone cuts down something you like, just walk away and don’t complain. Why? Because that’s how mature, smart people handle situations like that. You lead by example instead of being passive aggressive about it; you don’t make fun of people behind their backs, and you don’t post derogatory terms in your Facebook posts.
We are nerds! We are supposed to be smart, and now that we are starting to get our culture much more widely accepted, let’s not undo that work by showing how not-smart and petty we can be. I’ve borrowed this line from The RPG Academy before about role playing games, but it is very true about everything nerdy: “If you’re having fun, you’re doing it right.” So let the people who love Star Wars have fun and do it right for themselves, and let the people who love the Super Bowl or other sports have fun and do it right for themselves, too.
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