Geek Rhétorique

Chapter 3: Aaaaaaaah! The Holidays!

At a first-screening of a film in hollywood last week, I overheard a well-known country singer complaining about how distant her geek boyfriend always becomes during the holidays. So, I felt it would be appropriate to say a few words to those non-geeks who may not really understand what a hectic time this is for us.

It starts slowly, about this time of year. One by one, the charities begin to call requesting special holiday software to sell in fundraising campaigns. Naturally, we comply, spending late evenings by the light of the monitor, devising yet another whiz-bang christmas doo-dad for which we receive merely nominal compensation.

Then the social engagements begin to pile up. Invitations from rock stars, local politicians, and fellow geeks holding galas, banquets, and weekends on remote tropical islands. Even if we only respond to a few of the most vital ones, we end up with a travel itinerary that bewilders.

Another holiday hazzard are those cleverly planted little mistletoe traps in unexpected locations. Many people attempt to bypass security in geek workplaces this time of year for the expressed purpose of surprising a geek in this manner. A successful ambush invariably results in at least 2-3 hours of liplocked embraces, which can really have an impact on our schedules.

My favorite part of the season is the annual holiday shopping extravaganza, which for me is usually either to London or Paris, but this year will be to New York for lack of time. It's a relatively relaxing weekend, spent with just a few choice geeks, fine food and plenty of hot toddies. In addition to finishing all our shopping in one weekend, we usually manage to take in a few exhibitions, plays, or concerts, if we can manage to get lost in the crowd without being recognized.

The public appearances, of course, are the most taxing, so I usually limit those to just two or three. So far this year, I've already picked out my costume for the Governor's Float in the New Year's Day Parade (see left), and I'm negotiating with one TV telethon and a radio station morning talk show.

So, wanna-be's, if your geek 'better half' isn't paying much attention to you lately, please try to be understanding, 'cause it comes with the territory. And Happy Holidays to All From Geek Chic!

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