“Lesser artists borrow, great artists steal.”
– Igor Stravinsky
“Obama was the best thing for black nerds everywhere. Finally we had a role model, before Obama, we basically had Urkel.” – Jordan Peele http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/31/showbiz/rise-of-black-nerds/ (Comedy Central sketch show “Key & Peele”)
From Urkel to Donald Glover (not related to )
You’re probably wondering “what on Earth is a Blerd and is it contagious?!” and I’m here to tell you in a word yes. Blerds are a subgroup-within-an-ever-growing-minority-made-up-of-minorities. Confused? Here’s the blue pill: Blerds are Black Nerds (right now you’re probably speaking in the vernacular of Keanu Reeves in every movie he’s stared in: “whoa” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PkFyGNjaQ8k). Blerds are considered to be African American intellectuals who are not afraid to show their interest in all forms of intellectual pursuits ranging from science, speculative fiction, sci-fi and fantasy. You’re probably also saying: “so what’s the big deal and what’s with your fixation on obscure references to the Matrix”? (to answer the latter, a cry for help… but that’s a story for later). The answer is a bit more nuanced and it may be important to taking into consideration that Blerds can be thought as being on the opposite side of the spectrum of what is considered being black in American society (having subpar intellect, hyper sexualization, predilection to violence, preternatural athleticism, etc).
A New Hope or Divisive Classification?
Don’t get me wrong, there’s practically never a time when being thought of a smart is a bad thing. Being smart, even to the point of being socially awkward (i.e. geeks and nerds) is the new jock popularized in mainstream media by shows like The Big Bang Theory http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Big_Bang_Theory. Black Nerd classification may even be a step forward to a progressively forward thinking post-racial society; where it’s socially acceptable for a black person to freely express their intellect and true self, no longer relying on coping mechanisms like the Cool Pose http://books.google.com/books/about/Cool_Pose.html?id=bD-PkgpWErUC. But is there a need for this special designation? Can a person who society quantifies as black just be nerd? Are Blerds accepted with open arms among their fellow nerds? If you’re looking for places to freely express your inner Blerd, here are some places of reprieve: Blerds on Nerds http://blerdsonnerds.libsyn.com/, Black Nerds Network GROUP https://www.facebook.com/groups/BlackNerdsNetwork/ and ventures started by entrepreneur and co-founder Kat Calvin of the company Blerdology.
Side Note: The BBs (Bald Blerds) Trend or Troupe?
Shaft http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaft_(2000_film), Marsellus Wallace http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marsellus_Wallace#Cast, Morpheus http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morpheus_(The_Matrix), Mace Windu http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mace_Windu and Nick Fury http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nick_Fury_in_other_media#Film … notice anything all these fictional characters have in common (aside from the fact that 3 of them have been played by Samuel L Jackson)? The BBs may be closely related to the Magical Negro http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=magical%20negro and can make for a great drinking game anytime they appear in a movie.