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He's a Magic Man, Mama...
August 29, 2011 5:31 PM   Subscribe

My Brief OkCupid Affair With a World Champion Magic: The Gathering Player. Jon Finkel's winnings topped $300,000 from 1997-2008, during his most active Magic: The Gathering years. These days, jonnymagic00 heads out on the professional poker circuit instead. But loyal Magic fans still have his back.
posted by misha (357 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite

 
The girl who wrote that article is a vile human being and deserves to be alone.
posted by empath at 5:34 PM on August 29, 2011 [128 favorites]


*inevitable popcorn joke*
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 5:37 PM on August 29, 2011


Well, she's no Black Lotus!


What.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 5:38 PM on August 29, 2011 [24 favorites]


I don't get it. So that was a turn off?
posted by liquorice at 5:39 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


My best friend and I always discuss the importance of having a "no man." Meaning the person (it can obviously be a woman) who cares about you enough to say, "Wow, NO. Stop. You are about to hose yourself." It can be a work colleague, a friend, your mom -- you should ideally have several.

Alyssa needs a much, much better no man.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 5:40 PM on August 29, 2011 [58 favorites]


But Jyhad/Vampire's still cool, right?

Clan Toreador represent!
posted by scody at 5:42 PM on August 29, 2011 [11 favorites]


Nice to know that this'll show up under her byline should any future prospective dates feel like taking her advice. Unless I am misreading and that's not her byline, in which case this is exceptionally lame.
posted by feloniousmonk at 5:42 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


She is really going to regret posting that. That was infuriating to read.

Full disclosure: I clicked on it while playing Magic on Xbox Live.
posted by pazazygeek at 5:42 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


I read this article earlier today with some of my friends, and we were kind of flabbergasted by her implicit assumption that everyone would agree that a champion Magic: The Gathering player is totally undateable. I guess it's fine if she doesn't want to date the guy. Her loss, right? But the "Mothers, warn your daughters!" is where I must part company!
posted by chrchr at 5:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Is there a page 2 that I have adblocked or something? What horrible thing did he do?
posted by Threeway Handshake at 5:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Malkavian here. Damn. I just totally counted myself out by admitting that. I lied. I totally lied. I'm really... checks page XX...
posted by headspace at 5:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


The tone of the article is so strange...at first, when she Googled him, it seemed that she was impressed with the fact that "world champion" actually meant something, that he has fame in his passion of choice, and that others respect him for it.

Then it makes that abrupt right turn into nastiness, which reads like it was written that way entirely for the effect of pissing off the internet.

Mission accomplished, I guess.
posted by xingcat at 5:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Wow. I expected something way longer and more interesting, like how she gave him the benefit of the doubt but then he turned out to be a controlling asshole or something, and I was ready to give her the benefit of the doubt, because gamers can sometimes be difficult people.

Instead I got a short and pointlessly nasty piece about omg nerd! Ew!

She sounds pretty awful. Jon can do better.
posted by pts at 5:44 PM on August 29, 2011 [15 favorites]


Spend 10,000 hours watching TV: You are a normal person, let's hang out.

Spend 10,000 hours reading crappy genre fiction: Hey, you read, that's pretty cool, I read too.

Spend 10,000 hours mastering an incredibly complex card game: You are a freak, do not approach me.
posted by 0xFCAF at 5:46 PM on August 29, 2011 [130 favorites]


I actually played in a tournament with Finkel in 1999 and was ahead of him in the standings until the last two rounds of day 1, when I stopped getting matched against scrubs and played the 1996 National Champion and then the #1 ranked player in the US at the time and lost to both, which kept me from making the cut into day two.
posted by empath at 5:47 PM on August 29, 2011 [14 favorites]


What a strange world, in which hedge fund managers are considered undateable by shallow people. I will say, though, that "one man show based on Jeffrey Dahmer's life story" would probably not top the rankings of my OKCupid first date options.
posted by Errant at 5:47 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Is that thing real? Are we in a weird experiment?

And, apologies in advance:

Alyssa needs a much, much better no man.

She keeps treating people that way and that's exactly what she'll have: no man. *sassy finger snap*
posted by villanelles at dawn at 5:49 PM on August 29, 2011 [26 favorites]


Dang, Jon Finkel! You dodged one hell of a mean, judgmental bullet!
posted by palomar at 5:49 PM on August 29, 2011 [23 favorites]


The one-man Dahmer show thing does kind of stick out like a sore thumb. I wonder what his side of the story is?

The rest of it...drivel.
posted by ostranenie at 5:49 PM on August 29, 2011


I'm happy for him, that he didn't end up wasting his time with such a shallow person.
posted by jenkinsEar at 5:50 PM on August 29, 2011 [7 favorites]


I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people I sort of know, including one of my co-workers

Infiltrated? Jesus.
posted by ian1977 at 5:50 PM on August 29, 2011 [35 favorites]


The internet owes Jon Finkel a better date.
posted by Kandarp Von Bontee at 5:50 PM on August 29, 2011 [47 favorites]


Her "larger point" fig leaf at the end is so inane, too -- a person's online dating profile often will not reveal the unfavorable traits of the author that will be turn-offs to prospective dates! Now I will publicly shame a perfectly nice-sounding dude to prove this to you.

I am with the contingent that thinks her main offense here was calling the guy out by name. You went out with a guy and he turned out to be this mega-nerd who wasn't to your taste. Fine, whatever. I don't sympathize but I can imagine a (different, better) post about that being funny. But there's no call to go after the guy in public for daring to go on a date with you. What the hell, lady.
posted by eugenen at 5:51 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


"Infiltrated" stuck in my craw, too. What a weird, damning word choice. Ugh.
posted by palomar at 5:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Alyssa Bereznak has done a very effective job of trolling the entire nerdosphere.
posted by dersins at 5:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


I have never played Magic (nor do I want to), but the guy sounds cool. And a one man show about Dahmer is a neat first date.

Obviously Alyssa Bereznak and I should never date.
posted by jeather at 5:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


She's an intern at Gizmodo. And, if my googling is right, a current or recent journalism grad student. This implies she's taken a writing class or two. Now, I don't know about you, but in my writing classes, I was often told to consider my audience. For example, I happen to think that Pomeranians are godawful creatures that should never have been bred and should all be sterilized immediately so there are no more generations of the yappy bitey things, but I would not write about that in, say, Dog Fancier Monthly. Writing on a tech and gadget site about how big of a turn off you find a hobby that an awful lot of the readership currently enjoys, or has memories of enjoying in the past? In addition to all of its other faults, that's bad writing.
posted by Tomorrowful at 5:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [36 favorites]


So what did I learn? Google the shit out of your next online date. Like, hardcore.

Here's hoping Alyssa Bereznak stays single and unhappy for a very long time. Come on Karma Gods!

Plus, truth be told, she doesn't have shit on Beejoli Shah's "Quentin Tarantino sucked my toes" friendsicles email.
posted by phaedon at 5:55 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Seriously, Finkel was a titan when I was playing magic. I haven't played Magic in 10 years and I still remembered the name on sight.

Also, re: the magic and poker thing -- the first time I ever saw anyone playing texas hold 'em was at Origins in Ohio. All the big name players were playing an ongoing high stakes game between rounds. And there were like 13 year old kids throwing down $500 bets like it was nothing. (The same kids that were carrying around binders with $5000 worth of cards in them).
posted by empath at 5:55 PM on August 29, 2011


She's an INTERN?

If somebody allowed an intern -- to whom you are supposed to be giving a GOOD and educational experience -- to publish that piece without telling her what would happen, they have done her a horrific disservice.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 5:55 PM on August 29, 2011 [58 favorites]


not only is the article anticlimatic about what's wrong with the guy, but actually after reading all the hate the article is anticlimatic too. I was expecting something terrible and mean but it's like two paragraphs about how she wasn't expecting this guy to be so involved in the Magic community.

Oh, ok?
posted by the mad poster! at 5:55 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I think the first post in the thread says it all.
posted by Renoroc at 5:56 PM on August 29, 2011 [7 favorites]


I mean, if it was Mike Long, then she could be as cruel as she wanted. But she's just being a judgmental jerk. Nothing wrong with Finkel.
posted by absalom at 5:57 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


If somebody allowed an intern -- to whom you are supposed to be giving a GOOD and educational experience -- to publish that piece without telling her what would happen, they have done her a horrific disservice.

No doubt. Especially at a blog like gizmodo. You'd think they'd know better. I bet there'll be an apology.
posted by ian1977 at 5:59 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Um? How could you hate on that? I'd be excited if something like that happened to me!
posted by 200burritos at 5:59 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Oh, hey, she's the Ayn Rand ruined my childhood writer.
posted by jeather at 6:00 PM on August 29, 2011 [7 favorites]


I'd think finding out a potential date worked at Gawker Media would be a much bigger red flag.
posted by Metroid Baby at 6:01 PM on August 29, 2011 [80 favorites]


I mean, if it was Mike Long, then she could be as cruel as she wanted.

So true. What a ass that guy was. Didn't he get caught cheating? There were so many shady players in the top ranks in 1997/1998.
posted by empath at 6:02 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


From his Twitter page:

"Apparently I'm enough of a (grade d) celebrity that even my uneventful dates make the news."

He seems to be taking it well.
posted by UrbanEye at 6:03 PM on August 29, 2011 [15 favorites]


"Infiltrated" stuck in my craw, too. What a weird, damning word choice. Ugh.

Guys, he's literally Shadowmage Infiltrator.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:04 PM on August 29, 2011 [13 favorites]


This makes it harder for guys (and girls, I guess). The easiest way to get over the fear of asking somebody out is 'what's the worst that can happen?'. You figure if it goes badly they say no.

Then you end up in somebody's blog post, or song, or poem. Almost makes me glad I never went after that high school crush who now sometimes writes for Gawker.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:05 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


What an awful human being.

Has anyone started idtotallydatejonfinkel.com yet?
posted by schroedinger at 6:06 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


If somebody allowed an intern -- to whom you are supposed to be giving a GOOD and educational experience -- to publish that piece without telling her what would happen, they have done her a horrific disservice.

I have a feeling that italicized bit at the beginning was either an editorial insert to try to tone down the inevitable firestorm, or the result of the author being advised to do that for herself.

Actually, here's what I'm really wondering: How the hell did this even make it past the pitch stage? I mean, I don't know about Gizmodo, but I've got some friends who write for large-ish local blogs, and anything that substantial tends to get pitched before it's actually written/posted. It's often largely pro-forma, but for a longer piece and especially something written by an intern... I'm just trying to imagine an email that said "Hey boss, can I write something about how I think Magic the Gathering is dorky and stupid and this dorky stupid guy who made hundreds of thousands of dollars doing something he loves is dorky and stupid for doing so? Oh, and the thing he loves is something half your readers think is fun. Can I write that?" And then the reply was "Sure! Go right ahead."
posted by Tomorrowful at 6:07 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


The one-man Dahmer show thing does kind of stick out like a sore thumb. I wonder what his side of the story is?

Depends on your crowd. I met a very sweet, normal girl at a horror film festival and the next day we ended up going to the same rape-revenge film. I was more uncomfortable than he was. You can just chalk it up to geekiness.

OTOH it does sorta remind me of Travis Bickle taking that girl to a porno theatre.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:07 PM on August 29, 2011


Why I don't read Gizmodo anymore. Or any Gawker Media blogs, if I can help it.

If you're going to write incendiary linkbait at least make it worth reading, rather than '10 sureproof ways to piss off people who played a very popular card game.'
posted by Vhanudux at 6:08 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I mean, I don't know about Gizmodo, but--

Yeah, see, there's what's confusing you. If the intern had set herself on fire in a fit of self-destructive rage, they would've posted stills and put the video behind a paywall.
posted by verb at 6:09 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


The article has been edited at least once since the initial shit-storm that started on Twitter.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:10 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Also by Alyssa: How Ayn Rand Ruined My Childhood
posted by ReeMonster at 6:10 PM on August 29, 2011


Didn't he get caught cheating?

I do believe there was a strong bias that he was a cheater, but I don't know if he ever got an official smack down for it.

Normally I don't trash by reputation, but I actually say across from the guy at a midnight tourney at the 1998 or 99 NYC Pro Tour Event (I'd have to go check my shirt) and he was, indeed, every bit the asshole he was portrayed as. I had to watch all his moves, and he was the sort to play to every rule trick to stall out and extend games.
posted by absalom at 6:11 PM on August 29, 2011


Whoops, sorry didn't see your link jeather
posted by ReeMonster at 6:11 PM on August 29, 2011


Actually, here's what I'm really wondering: How the hell did this even make it past the pitch stage?

Well, exactly. Her byline somewhere actually says "editor," so I'm not sure if she's an intern anymore. But I've worked with interns, and one of the most important things you do is help them not get themselves in trouble. Even strong writers don't always know how to stay out of trouble when they're new. I mean, I understand what you're all saying about the fact that it's Gizmodo and stuff, but if this happened to an intern or a freelancer I edited in a situation where it so obviously was my responsibility to put the brakes on, I wouldn't sleep at night.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 6:12 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Alyssa Explains It All.

I actually feel kinda bad for her in a way. Naive?
posted by ian1977 at 6:12 PM on August 29, 2011


He seems to be taking it well.

He will probably come out of this doing way, way better than she will. I would hope there are at least a few glorious nerdy women who have taken this opportunity to ask him out - I know that by the end of the piece, I hated the author so much that I was ready to go on a date with the guy just out of solidarity.
posted by dialetheia at 6:12 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Didn't he get caught cheating?

I do believe there was a strong bias that he was a cheater, but I don't know if he ever got an official smack down for it.


He was caught with a copy of Cadaverous Bloom in his lap; a key card to his combo deck; Pros-Bloom.

IIRC, he was also caught with a stacked deck; something about a mathematically perfect distribution of Jackal Pup copies.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:13 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Depends on your crowd. I met a very sweet, normal girl at a horror film festival and the next day we ended up going to the same rape-revenge film. I was more uncomfortable than he was. You can just chalk it up to geekiness.

Er, more uncomfortable than she was.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:13 PM on August 29, 2011


I'm wondering if the one-man Dahmer show she refers to is real (it could be "Don't Feel: The Death of Dahmer") or whether it is a rhetorical device to suggest the Magic Nerd = Evil Murderer. Will do some more digging to see if such a show is actually playing anywhere right now.
posted by Joey Michaels at 6:13 PM on August 29, 2011


Here is an excellent translation of the article in question,
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:14 PM on August 29, 2011 [9 favorites]


Good lord, what a heinous, shallow husk of a human being she must be.

Finkel, if you're reading this, you dodged a bullet there, man.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:16 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Do many people think like this? I kinda got in the habit of hiding my nerdiness.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:20 PM on August 29, 2011


Naive? I doubt it. Think of all the nerd rage clicks this story is getting. It's on the MeFi front page. Think of all the GOOGLE RON PAUL rage the Ayn Rand one got. It was on the MeFi front page.

She's a professional troll. She'll have a good career.
posted by cmoj at 6:21 PM on August 29, 2011 [13 favorites]


All right, the show she is referring to is probably "Jeffrey Dahmer Live," which is currently playing at the Bowery Poetry club as part of the New York fringe. Its getting pretty decent reviews, from what I can tell.

I suppose its not the best show to take somebody to if you're in the critical 'getting to know each other' part of a relationship, but if I heard a play was well done and got excited about it, I'd want to see it. She could always choose not to see it, and then they both know their interests aren't compatible. That's sort of what dating is all about.
posted by Joey Michaels at 6:23 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm doing everything in my power to stay angry at this horrible woman long enough to figure out Gizmodo's horrible commenting interface so that I can tell her directly that she is, in fact, horrible.
posted by EatTheWeak at 6:23 PM on August 29, 2011 [8 favorites]


YEAH, judge people! More magic: the gathering nerds for me!
posted by the young rope-rider at 6:23 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


I really wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt -- like it was more about how she didn't really care for Magic and therefore realized they probably wouldn't have that much in common or whatever -- and I think she maybe wanted to make that point. Or something.

But it was really judgmental -- not "He has a interest I don't share and maybe I could've found that out had I looked him up on Google beforehand" but instead "He has an interest that I find really immature and he's dumb for liking it." (And that she was kind of name-dropping the fact she went on a date with him? Weird. So we should be impressed she doesn't like him?)

If enjoying playing Magic: The Gathering (nevermind being good at it ...) is the worst thing about a person? Well, you should meet some more people.

But then, what do I know? I hang out at comic book conventions (Small Press Expo in less than two weeks!). Of course, I'm a woman, though ...
posted by darksong at 6:24 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


She's a professional troll. She'll have a good career.

Probably not by pissing off the largest group of NoScript / AdBlock users on the planet.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:24 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Add bookmark > Geekery > Nerd self-loathing.

*sigh*
posted by jiawen at 6:25 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


As a kind of gross contrarian and trendster, I am taking her side in this. The plan is, we're going to dig up the worst comments on her we can find and package them with this story so we can invent a "feminism" angle. From there, we just frame it and distribute it to some sympathetic blogs and bingo.

lol im from new york
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 6:25 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


I think Jon Finkel is going to get a super hot magic playing girlfriend out of this whole deal.
posted by pazazygeek at 6:25 PM on August 29, 2011 [19 favorites]


Here is an excellent translation of the article in question,

That's the last link the post.

She was terribly ungracious, and her editors did her and themselves a disservice. Finkel will get lots of dates, and Alyssa will remain in internet infamy.

All's well that ends well.

For what it's worth, though, I'm sure all of us have a Rubicon we won't cross with potential dates; all the more so when the potential match is the world champion at it. Most of MeFi tends to skew nerdy, so her revulsion at dating a MTG champeen strikes a chord--but I'd venture that few here would date the certified Ke$ha tribute band champion, or whatever else doesn't strike your fancy.

Hopefully, though, most of us would have the good sense not to blog about it.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 6:25 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


How the hell did this even make it past the pitch stage?

An unimportant intern on Gawker has given herself a terrible reputation as a shallow, judgmental idiot and all they have to show for it is tens of thousands of pageviews?
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 6:26 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


No online dating profile in the world is comprehensive enough to highlight every person's peccadillo, or anticipate the inane biases that each of us lugs around.

I think when the writer admits that her disinterest is shallow it's up to the reader to understand that the rejection is not a criticism, nor all that personal. I suspect there's a lot of baggage in the reactions here. It's a normal human thing to reject or be rejected all the time, and taking it personally even on someone else's behalf seems a lot weirder to me than her self-avowed single instance of shallowness. Often these things aren't about the specifics (hobby or even the Dahmer show), but just the convenient excuse to surface the unconscious lack of attraction.

But then, writers probably understand the impersonal nature of rejection too well to even understand how oversensitive most people are to it.
posted by BrotherCaine at 6:26 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm doing everything in my power to stay angry at this horrible woman long enough to figure out Gizmodo's horrible commenting interface so that I can tell her directly that she is, in fact, horrible.

Don't bother, I tried earlier and they deleted my comment. You'll just be giving them an extra click that they want anyway.
posted by mattholomew at 6:27 PM on August 29, 2011


That's the last link the post.

Ugh. "My bad", as the kids say.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:27 PM on August 29, 2011


Do many people think like this? I kinda got in the habit of hiding my nerdiness.

Many people are shallow, yes. I mean, he also went for someone much younger and...er...blonder than, um, him. (No, really, he's about my age; she's got to be ten years younger. Dudes who want to date a lot younger have, in my experience, to deal with a lot more shallowness.) And she unsurprisingly turned out to be kind of creepy.

Someday I will write a book about dating, as soon as I evolve a really catchy phrase about "don't be shallow, stay away from the dumb end of the media pool because it will only depress you, and remember that you'll probably be most successful in a relationship with someone sorta-kinda your equal in terms of smarts, skills and looks". I mean, unless this Finkel dude has some large obvious drawback that both he and the writer are keeping secret, I can't seriously imagine that he will find it impossible to meet some nice women. He's got to be fairly bright and focused and seems to be of average good looks.
posted by Frowner at 6:27 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I don't understand either -- I don't think the author is an awful person... just maybe from some other species, where having been the best in the world is understood to be somehow bad.

If an ordinary human woman was on such a date, wouldn't she be like "Oh crap! I'm on birth control!" Right?

Because -- Jon Finkel!? I would go get younger, more attractive, and join OKCupid right now if I thought there was a snowball's chance this could happen to me.
posted by pH Indicating Socks at 6:28 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Yeah, inviting her to the Dahmer thing was probably the bigger turn off. But at the same time, if you weren't a nerd, would you be interested in dating someone who is into some geeky pursuit - to the point that it's their career if you're not interested in it.

Also, I think you guys are way over-estimating the static she's going to get for this. Some magic the gathering fans are going to be mad at her, but I imagine that there are probably more people out there who think it's as lame as she does.

I mean come on
Finkel will get lots of dates, and Alyssa will remain in internet infamy.
Internet Infamy? Really? Is it really going to impact her life if Magic: the gathering fans on the internet don't like her? On the other hand, editors of blogs will know she can troll for hits and gin up controversy. That's going to be more helpful for her then not being liked by MTG players.
posted by delmoi at 6:28 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


I played around with a few weak jokes, but I don't have it in me. This is ugly and it makes me sad. The fact that it made it to publication makes me think somebody's got it in for either the author or Jon Finkel and I'm sorry I was party to it.

I mean, I know fuck-all about Magic: The Gathering, other than that it involves cards, but learning about somebody else's weird hobby, whatever it may be, is a golden opportunity to get a view on a part of the world I know nothing about, and if I have the opportunity to learn from a pleasant, attractive person with a job and at least a passing interest in the theater, that person gets a goddamn gold star, not a red flag.
posted by EvaDestruction at 6:29 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


I'd venture that few here would date the certified Ke$ha tribute band champion

Do you know her? Could you introduce me?
posted by chrchr at 6:30 PM on August 29, 2011 [10 favorites]


Is it just me or is there a bumper crop of (usually) women bloggers on sites like the Awl, Gizmodo, etc. who have, like, been the foster child of Magic Johnson for a year during their teens AND by mistake won the Central Asian Pastry World Cup while backpacking through Kazakhstan AND embarrassingly threw up on Naomi Klein during their college commencement address at Columbia AND almost died at age eight when a roller coaster in Kentucky derailed AND through a little pluck and determination worked as Bill Gates' personal assistant AND randomly had a casual sex encounter once on craigslist with the woman who designed Facebook's logoff page AND choked on an apple while giving their master's thesis, had to go the ER and came out of it with a slightly droopy-- yet strangely sexy-- right eyelid?

It's like there's this whole little army of online people who have basically done nothing but lived in New York City and be'd privileged but have an overabundance of quirky and sensationalistic personal stories to tell. Manic Pixie Nation!
posted by threeants at 6:32 PM on August 29, 2011 [94 favorites]


I think when the writer admits that her disinterest is shallow it's up to the reader to understand that the rejection is not a criticism, nor all that personal. I suspect there's a lot of baggage in the reactions here.

I've rejected a lot of women in my dating life. Very often, that rejection was based at least in part on what they're into and what the do for fun/money. I have never, though, used a platform with a wide audience to publicly declare that those women should be shamed of what they do, and to sneeringly deride them for not "warning" me in advance about their awful, shameful, stupid hobby that made them three hundred thousand dollars.

It's not about her rejection of him. It's about how righteously proud she is of that rejection, and publicly, and moreover in front of a "public" that is particularly likely to identify not with her, but with the guy being rejected publicly.
posted by Tomorrowful at 6:33 PM on August 29, 2011 [27 favorites]


Yeah, inviting her to the Dahmer thing was probably the bigger turn off.

Honestly, the fact that the Dahmer thing wasn't the lead is what really struck me. That's not the kind of thing you do on a first date! Once you get to know the person and realize that she is fascinated by serial killers, then you take her to see that play.

The fact that she's all: "Ew, nerds," is kind of silly and sure to inspire some hilarious nerdrage, but all I can think is: Way to bury the lead.
posted by asnider at 6:33 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'd venture that few here would date the certified Ke$ha tribute band champion

if I did, and she was nice but we didn't share any interests, I wouldn't ask her on a second date, but I also wouldn't go to a website that caters to fans of shallow contemporary pop music and write a LOLKe$ha fan style article about that date. I also wouldn't name her in any entry I wrote about the date. In fact, I'd probably friends lock anything I wrote about that date at all. Truth be told, odds are pretty good that I wouldn't write about that date because, you know, why?
posted by Joey Michaels at 6:34 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'd like to thank this woman. I will now be sure any and all women I have any interest in dating will know I'm into Magic: the Gathering (17 years and counting). Seems like a good litmus test, after all this.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:34 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Honestly, the fact that the Dahmer thing wasn't the lead is what really struck me. That's not the kind of thing you do on a first date!

Well, it was on the second date that he tried the Dahmer show, but dating etiquette suggests you should wait for the third date before taking your new friend to a serial killer related event.
posted by Joey Michaels at 6:36 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


(I mean, if you're serious about her)
posted by Joey Michaels at 6:36 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


These days, jonnymagic00 heads out on the professional poker circuit instead.

I had no idea Jon Finkel got David Williams started in the poker world. I also had no idea David Williams played Magic: The Gathering. In fact, I had no idea that Magic: The Gathering and Professional Poker had such close ties. Just think-- if Gizmodo Troll hadn't written that article, this post would've never been made and I wouldn't have learned something new about poker. Thanks, Gizmodo Troll!
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 6:37 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Probably just a forced meme at this stage, but infamy, yes.

She's whipped up a shitstorm and her name will be associated with this forever--her best hope is that it just moves down the Google results.

Truth be told, odds are pretty good that I wouldn't write about that date because, you know, why?

Right, that's what I said above. I'm amazed she pitched the piece and doubly amazed it got posted.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 6:38 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Manic Pixie Nation!

man it attests to the broken nature of a cultural milieu when tone-heavy voyuerism is such an important genre
posted by the mad poster! at 6:38 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Most of MeFi tends to skew nerdy, so her revulsion at dating a MTG champeen strikes a chord--but I'd venture that few here would date the certified Ke$ha tribute band champion, or whatever else doesn't strike your fancy.

Brushing her teeth with a bottle of Jack? hell yeah I would.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:39 PM on August 29, 2011


Also, seriously, if the certified Ke$ha tribute band champion is reading this, I will take you out wherever you like.
posted by threeants at 6:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Honestly, the fact that the Dahmer thing wasn't the lead is what really struck me. That's not the kind of thing you do on a first date!

It was a comedy cabaret, part of the new York Fringe Festival. Seems personally reasonable as a date option, if you look at the actual show and not just the subject. Middling reviews. But ultimately a comedy, albeit a dark one. Perhaps he just wanted to be adventurous. I suppose they could have gone to see some middle of the road, mindless Hollywood popcorn flick, but that sounds like a shitty date to me.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:45 PM on August 29, 2011 [16 favorites]


If the random internet person I was on a date with ended up being some mega-nerd who made like $100k on his/her hobby every year...

Well, I might poop a little.
posted by Winnemac at 6:46 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Well, I might poop a little.

So..just one date then?
posted by DigDoug at 6:47 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Huh. Apparently, being mean about other peoples' tastes is just kind of her thing.
posted by EatTheWeak at 6:47 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


you cant fucking brush your teeth with booze it doesnt work okay
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 6:47 PM on August 29, 2011 [9 favorites]


Man, I hope she is good at making coffee and copies because no editor is going to let her near a story without a name change first.

I have a feeling this a professional troll piece that was published purely for the shock value by a stuck-up princess and an editor who truly didn't give a shit because, hey, it was an editoral and her views don't reflect those of Gizmodo. Either that, or they were looking to ruin her for years to come.
posted by lpcxa0 at 6:48 PM on August 29, 2011


you cant fucking brush your teeth with booze it doesnt work okay

wouldn't the alcohol kill germs?
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:48 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


It was a comedy cabaret, part of the new York Fringe Festival. Seems personally reasonable as a date option, if you look at the actual show and not just the subject.

OK, fair enough. In that case, I am leaning more toward nerdrage, since she obviously omitted details in a deliberate effort to make it look OMG WHAT A FREAK! HE TOOK ME TO A PLAY ABOUT JEFFERY DAHMER'S LIFE!
posted by asnider at 6:54 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wouldn't hit it.
posted by Eideteker at 6:55 PM on August 29, 2011


Perhaps we can help her with her Google results.

ALYSSA BEREZNAK is a poor excuse for a writer and journalist.
ALYSSA BEREZNAK is a shallow, judgmental talentless fool.
ALYSSA BEREZNAK is an internet troll.
ALYSSA BEREZNAK does not think before she writes.
ALYSSA BEREZNAK is a hack.
ALYSSA BEREZNAK is a reputational risk for your publication.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:57 PM on August 29, 2011 [12 favorites]


I'd tap that.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:57 PM on August 29, 2011 [32 favorites]


I assume she is the Workshop deck in a relationship.
posted by Dark Messiah at 6:59 PM on August 29, 2011


> Perhaps we can help her with her Google results.

That's kind of a shit move.
posted by Horselover Phattie at 7:00 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


I'd tap that.

Close this entry. Nothing better will be written.
posted by Joey Michaels at 7:01 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Sooooo... that means he's single, right? If someone took me out to a comedy show based on Jeffrey Dahmer, he'd be guaranteed a second date on that choice alone.

I dated someone off of OKCupid who had won serious money from some international Magic: The Gathering tournaments. This article offends me on so many levels.

And like someone else said, it's not about the fact that she rejected him based on his hobby. It's about the public hatred she spewed trying to get a leg up in journalism. I think it's unlikely she really is as hateful of a person in real life, even if her actions are malicious. It's just really cool to be edgy and mean and trollish online. I've met some pretty pleasant people that turn into total misanthropes online because they were manufacturing a reputation. The harder the hate the more popular, right?

(This atittude is why I ignore most of the internet.)
posted by subject_verb_remainder at 7:02 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


That's kind of a shit move.

No, it isn't. You know what's a shit move? Going on a date with someone, and then when you didn't like the guy or thought he was too nerdy for you, writing an article on Gizmodo about it, naming him, making fun of him, and linking to stuff about him in order to jack up your fucking Google ranking.

Maybe if we try really hard, she'll get her wish.
posted by Mikey-San at 7:06 PM on August 29, 2011 [21 favorites]


...a good mana is hard to find?
posted by threeants at 7:06 PM on August 29, 2011 [8 favorites]


Fuzzy Monster, there is a big overlap between M:TG and the younger online poker players. David Williams tweets his Magic tournaments more enthusiastically than he does his poker, and, at least before Black Friday killed online poker in the US and a lot of people moved out of the Panorama Towers in Vegas, there were regular games that included people like Justin Bonomo and Scott Seiver. Brock Parker, Ike Haxton, Adam (Roothlus) Levy - all Magic guys.

Gary Wise wrote a nice piece for ESPN about the M:TG/poker crossover.
posted by catlet at 7:08 PM on August 29, 2011 [7 favorites]


- Honestly, the fact that the Dahmer thing wasn't the lead is what really struck me. That's not the kind of thing you do on a first date!

- It was a comedy cabaret, part of the new York Fringe Festival. Seems personally reasonable as a date option, if you look at the actual show and not just the subject. Middling reviews. But ultimately a comedy, albeit a dark one.


Sounds like a good date to me! Might as well go ahead and filter out the people who wouldn't think so early on.
posted by naoko at 7:11 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


This guy appears to be well off and judging by his Twitter obviously doesn't give a fuck. This girl is trying to pay off a Journalism degree student loan being an editor for the Gawker network, which as far as I can tell basically involves having the pay and respect of a low-tier Midwestern secretary except you also have to afford living in New York, and also wade up to your neck in shit all day long. I know it's, like, the most terrible article ever but considering that Gawker compensation is pretty much entirely driven by pageviews this whole thing seems counterproductive.
posted by nanojath at 7:17 PM on August 29, 2011


That's kind of a shit move.

Perhaps. But she unreasonably humiliated an apparently perfectly innocent guy for no good reason other than she thought he wasn't cool enough to bask in her personal magnificence. She misrepresented him and his actions, and ridiculed him in a public and widely trafficked forum.

At least what I said about her is true.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:17 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


She's a few basic lands short of a deck.
She just made my banned list.
She's the Homelands of OKCupid dates.
He should have mulliganed that hand.
posted by Durin's Bane at 7:24 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Yeah, she struck me as a prime example of "If everyone else in the world is the problem, you're actually the problem", embodied.

This guy actually sounds super cool. Were I (or he) to swing in compatible ways (I'm assuming he's also hetero), I would totally date him.
posted by rollbiz at 7:26 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Is it possible that the Dahmer tickets were really hard to get or perhaps really trendy and obscure? In other words could it be that just having the tickets was meant to be impressive? (And he was nerdy enough to get the wow factor but not nerdy enough to see that it would go over as a weird gesture.)
posted by oddman at 7:31 PM on August 29, 2011


This is all a much bigger deal on Twitter than anywhere else, it would seem. This little kerfuffle barely even shows up on Google, but the Twitterverse is raging.

True to form, her latest tweet is equally moronic.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:31 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I married a Magic player. They're not so bad.
posted by rebel_rebel at 7:39 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


True to form, her latest tweet is equally moronic.
dudes, i don't think it's bad to be a dweeb. i just dont want to date someone i can't relate to. not an attack. more a cautionary tale.
The moral is: don't date writers.
More specifically, don't date writers who write about their personal life.
Even more specifically, don't date Alyssa Bereznak.
posted by grouse at 7:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Girl who works for free at famously low-paying media website complains that guy who made six figures playing a card game is rife with personal failings.

I will never get the internet.

(FTR, I managed to get my first date off of OKCupid because the girl mentioned she played M:TG in her profile and I brought up how I've been trying to get back into it. To be fair the date was awful and we literally never spoke to each other afterwards, but still.)
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:44 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


caution: you might have dinner with someone!!! THINK TWICE LADIES
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:45 PM on August 29, 2011 [20 favorites]


i just dont want to date someone i can't relate to.

How the fuck do you know if you can't relate to them unless you date them ?

But I get that it is cautionary - if you date people who have experiences that differ from yours, you might learn something. Knowledge is like kryptonite to Communication Arts graduates.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:49 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


[we don't use MeFi to Googlebomb, period. Sorry.]
posted by jessamyn at 7:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


The Twitter thing is fascinating; here's Bereznak from the 18th, tweeting in response to her coworker (and her coworker's fiance) appearing on the cover of the NYT Weddings section:

@KatHannaford aww how cute! i hope me and my OKcupid date can be as happy as you two one day. 18 Aug

(And yes, this is the same guy, KH responds to Bereznak's tweet by describing him as "your world champion".)

The Jeffery Dahmer play on the second date (and it doesn't look like much of a comedy to me) is potentially a little creepy, but IMO no more so than literally tweeting about your wedding plans after only one date, especially when the dude's main notable feature is enough of a deal-breaker to write an article about him by name on a major website.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 7:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [11 favorites]


Lovecraft in Brooklyn: wouldn't the alcohol kill germs?

Only if you look like Mick Jagger.
posted by dr_dank at 7:53 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've also seen it posted all over Google+.

I think Gawker was going with the "controversy breeds page views" take on this, but as a lot of people have already said, know your audience. Mocking a gamer, by name and openly on a very public website, whose worst trait seems to be asking you out on a non-traditional date is cruel as well as shallow.

Also, the name-dropping while openly belittling the person you are name-dropping is just weird. I guess she is just very status-conscious and elitist? How can it be that this woman has never been called on her arrogance? Has no one told her how ugly her attitude is? She must be utterly captivating in every way IRL, to feel she can just go through life spewing this kind of stuff and no one will think any the worse of her.
posted by misha at 7:56 PM on August 29, 2011


Man, fuck Gawker. I need a greasemonkey script that just removes Gawker links so that I can't click on them and give those assholes pageviews.
posted by graventy at 7:58 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Huh. The story's #5 on the reddit front page now (link to the gizmodo page, title "What did I learn? That you're a shallow bitch.").
posted by Perplexity at 8:00 PM on August 29, 2011


I guess I don't understand why others don't understand why the writer was "allowed" to do this. You couldn't design a better article to infuriate several key internet demographics. A controversial opinion by a female writer about nerds and dating? A big social media kerfluffle? Rage, clicks, comments, the mashing of keyboards, a trending topic?

Today Ms. Berenzak is Gawker's most valuable employee and I hope someone is buying her a nice lunch.
posted by chaff at 8:01 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


She's whipped up a shitstorm and her name will be associated with this forever--her best hope is that it just moves down the Google results.
Again, seriously? Why do you people think she cares about 'nerdrage' against her? I don't understand it at all. what difference could it possibly make to her that all these MtG players hate her now?
Man, I hope she is good at making coffee and copies because no editor is going to let her near a story without a name change first.
Right, because if there's one thing blog editors hate it's causing a lot of notoriety and getting a lot of traffic because of it!
Either that, or they were looking to ruin her for years to come.
Unless the vast majority of people out there are offended by people making fun of Magic: The Gathering then no, no it will not.
I guess I don't understand why others don't understand why the writer was "allowed" to do this. You couldn't design a better article to infuriate several key internet demographics. A controversial opinion by a female writer about nerds and dating? A big social media kerfluffle? Rage, clicks, comments, the mashing of keyboards, a trending topic?
Yes, exactly. Some of the comments in this thread are just mind-boggling. Some of you are taking this way more seriously then it is.
posted by delmoi at 8:04 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Huh. The story's #5 on the reddit front page now (link to the gizmodo page, title "What did I learn? That you're a shallow bitch.").
Because reddit has such a healthy attitude towards women.
posted by delmoi at 8:05 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


How the hell did this even make it past the pitch stage?

Somebody at Gizmodo knew what would happen, didn't like her, and decided to hang her out to dry.

I don't know her - for all I know this is somebody with a mentor who, unlikely as it is, needed to learn the hard way - but whenever I hear about the new girl (because it's usually a girl, for some reason) being given just enough rope to hang herself that's how the story played out.
posted by mhoye at 8:07 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Honestly, I think Gizmodo is thrilled. They get pageviews! Attention! Links! Rage! And more bling for their asshole hat.

There's no downside for them. They—just like Gawker—could care less if they alienate half of their readers, as long as they can cash in the big advertising bucks. And for a person like Ms. Berenzak, this is just the reputation she wants. She doesn't want to work for a good publication. She wants to rule the gossip blogs, and this is a great way to get started.
posted by good day merlock at 8:16 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]



I guess I don't understand why others don't understand why the writer was "allowed" to do this. You couldn't design a better article to infuriate several key internet demographics. A controversial opinion by a female writer about nerds and dating? A big social media kerfluffle? Rage, clicks, comments, the mashing of keyboards, a trending topic?


In a few days the most sexist comments will be picked out by some blogs and we'll have another big discussion over sexism in geek communities.

And honestly, I really don't think this will hurt her. I don't agree with her. I wouldn't date her. But even as a geek, if I became a pariah among WoW fans or MtG players I'm not sure i'd be bothered.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 8:19 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Wow, Gawker. Hope the pageviews this shitstorm generated were worth all the ill will and brand damage.
posted by The Lurkers Support Me in Email at 8:25 PM on August 29, 2011


Even better, what do you bet Jezebel has a manufactured counter-outrage post tomorrow? How dare those mean nerds pick on this fair daisy!?! See? Sensitive guys are really just jerks underneath.

Man, they could keep this going for weeks just like the iPhone 4 thing they trolled Apple with.
posted by bonehead at 8:28 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Spend 10,000 hours mastering an incredibly complex card game: You are a freak, do not approach me.

I can't honestly say I'm surprised that an intern j-schooler thinks putting time and effort into really understanding a complex thing is unappealing.

It saddens me, but watching CNN it's utterly unsurprising.
posted by mhoye at 8:30 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm going to read in-between the lines here, a few facts:

- Jon is now a hedge fund manager, that means $$$$ and i'm guessing the author is what they call a "gold digger".
- He has dated so many people that he has also dated people she knows.
- She is comes of as very shallow but sort of impressed by him.

So my conjecture is that Jon is playing the field like a poker/magic pro on okcupid and when this became obvious to the author she decided to write a nasty little piece about him, while not admitting that she's a gold digging herself.
posted by jonclegg at 8:32 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


She obviously has the right to date who she chooses, hell, write an article about it but this part really bothers me.

I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people I sort of know, including one of my co-workers. Mothers, warn your daughters! This could happen to you. You'll think you've found a normal bearded guy with a job, only to end up sharing goat cheese with a guy who takes you to a one-man show based on Jeffrey Dahmer's life story.

Suddenly she is insinuating that people need to be warned about the guy, and he has infiltrated himself into other dates. Does she think he is dating these women because they are people she sort of know? I don't get it, he plays magic so he is dangerous?

This is really saddening.
posted by Ad hominem at 8:34 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Reader, I blogged about him.
posted by smithsmith at 8:36 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


dudes, i don't think it's bad to be a dweeb. i just dont want to date someone i can't relate to. not an attack. more a cautionary tale.

What is the tale cautioning me against? Dating people whose hobbies I don't know in advance?
posted by asnider at 8:42 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Huh. The story's #5 on the reddit front page now (link to the gizmodo page, title "What did I learn? That you're a shallow bitch.").

Yeah it was ugly on reddit, but this is like proof positive for a a lot of guys over there that everything they have always suspected is true.
posted by Ad hominem at 8:51 PM on August 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


I don't get it, he plays magic so he is dangerous?

of course he's dangerous, dude's a fuckin' planeswalker
posted by the young rope-rider at 8:52 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


Yeah it was ugly on reddit, but this is like proof positive for a a lot of guys over there that everything they have always suspected is true.

Yeah it took me ages to realize it was personality, not geeky hobbies, that was a problem. This sort of thing just leads to more self-hating geeks.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 8:55 PM on August 29, 2011


[we don't use MeFi to Googlebomb, period. Sorry.]

Duly noted, and I apologise.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:58 PM on August 29, 2011


Yeah, fair enough not wanting to date someone who doesn't share your interests and then writing a big article naming them and making them sound like a serial online stalker who "infiltrates" his way into dates with other people you might know.
posted by Wataki at 9:10 PM on August 29, 2011


This is why I get so fucking pissed when I go to the mall and see "I <3 NERDS" t-shirts. No, you don't, in fact, love nerds, you love half-literate bros who wear ironic glasses and dress preppy and play Call of Duty, not guys who spend 40 hours a week hunched over a soldering iron and PIC chips, neglecting personal hygiene as they build and program robot tanks. Not guys who have a cogent opinion on the Tanenbaum/Torvalds debate. Not guys who maintain spreadsheets for corporate finances and coordinate Zero-space raids.

Every morning, I wake up next to a girl whose idea of a good time is figuring out how to draw cool patterns on her graphing calculator. For whom the highlight of PAX was finding not one, but TWO Doctor cosplayers (10 and 11) to take a picture with. Who can tell the difference between YM2610 and YM2151 music by the extra square channels. I can't imagine having to go on a dating site, and taking my chances with hateful pinheads like Berenzak. Forever alone, etc.
posted by jake at 9:12 PM on August 29, 2011 [28 favorites]


For whom the highlight of PAX was finding not one, but TWO Doctor cosplayers (10 and 11) to take a picture with.

To be fair, The Doctor is wildly popular in Britain and related countries and the new Doctors are getting huge. That could also apply to the 'fake nerds' (myself included, since I have the math skills of a doughnut).
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:16 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I don't know how big this is on twitter, but there were 4 or 5 unrelated discussions of this going on in my twitter feed tonight.

1) Does anyone have a link of the original, unedited article? Someone mentioned up-thread that the article was edited several times: What changed?

2) I think the main reason this got big was that it does play on geeks fears, as Ad hominem and Lovecraft In Brooklyn pointed out. "Even geeky women like professional bloggers won't date us!" is a pretty scary thought, and something a lot of geeks, myself most definitely included, carry around somewhere deep inside us.

3) Her twitter profile is, and I quote "NYU grad student. Former @Gizmodo intern. Forever suspended from the food coop." so I'm guessing she has moved up the chain now.

4) Twitter seems to have settled down a bit, at least in my D&D and RPG corner. However it has produced a rather amusing (Well, the better one at least) showing of geek pride.

5) Kotaku has a counter article up, which I thought was pretty good. It also mentions that this went up on Jezebel first: Soooo it didn't get enough rage there, so they moved it? o.0 I guess they are in it for the pageviews.
posted by Canageek at 9:17 PM on August 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is why I get so fucking pissed when I go to the mall and see "I <3 NERDS" t-shirts. No, you don't, in fact, love nerds, you love half-literate bros who wear ironic glasses and dress preppy and play Call of Duty, not guys who spend 40 hours a week hunched over a soldering iron and PIC chips, neglecting personal hygiene as they build and program robot tanks. Not guys who have a cogent opinion on the Tanenbaum/Torvalds debate. Not guys who maintain spreadsheets for corporate finances and coordinate Zero-space raids.

That sure is a big ol' ball of stereotypes you're packing there. (Though, dude, neglecting personal hygiene? Not something to be proud of. It takes minutes a day for basic hygiene.)
posted by kmz at 9:18 PM on August 29, 2011 [8 favorites]


5) Kotaku has a counter article up, which I thought was pretty good. It also mentions that this went up on Jezebel first: Soooo it didn't get enough rage there, so they moved it? o.0 I guess they are in it for the pageviews.

Isn't Kotaku another Gawker blog?

The fact that you don’t know when you’ve had too much alcohol already says a lot about you. Any guy will tell you that there’s nothing more unattractive than a drunk girl falling all over the place and having no idea how stupid she looks. The fact that you don’t know your limits when it comes to alcohol — or that you might have even deliberately got yourself drunk — doesn’t make you look very credible.

Wha? Yes, how dare someone 'deliberately get themselves drunk'.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:19 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Nothing says undateable more than "will blog about your date", except perhaps "will blog about your date so she can pay the rent". Yikes.
posted by effugas at 9:22 PM on August 29, 2011


No, you don't, in fact, love nerds

I wear that t-shirt. It is the truth. I take your point, but you might want to watch where you're splashing that brush.
posted by jessamyn at 9:25 PM on August 29, 2011 [24 favorites]


I've never been interested in playing Magic, but I am seriously impressed by someone who has taken the time and effort to become that good at anything.
posted by jb at 9:27 PM on August 29, 2011


The more clicks you get on Gawker the more money you get. She's not so dumb. It is terrible that she's so mean spirited and judgemental when talking about someone else on the Internet though, thank God we're not like that around here.
posted by joannemullen at 9:27 PM on August 29, 2011


...neglecting personal hygiene as they build and program robot tanks.

To be fair, I hate going to cons and meeting guys whom neglect basic personal hygiene. I'm strongly in favour of passing minimum personal hygiene standards for conventions and such, as frankly it kills everyone else at the tables enjoyment when we can smell you from across the table.

-----

I also showed this article to a non-geek (Well, very focused academically, but doesn't go on the net much, or play any games) to get an outside perspective and her only comment was "honest opinion: i don't expect much from a person who gets drunk and go on random dating stires" [SIC] which I found rather interesting --Nothing about his hobbies or such, just the drinking.

----

Lovecraft In Brooklyn: I have no idea if it is owned by the same company. I don't read any of the big blogs, just a few small ones run by various gamers and geeks I've met online in various places. The largest would probably be Stargazer's World.

I do agree that people whom deliberatly get drunk are annoying.
posted by Canageek at 9:27 PM on August 29, 2011


That sure is a big ol' ball of stereotypes you're packing there. (Though, dude, neglecting personal hygiene? Not something to be proud of. It takes minutes a day for basic hygiene.)

Dude, those "minutes" are minutes not spent on your robot militia, and presumably nobody else is around to smell you, because, you know, you're insanely focused on your work and have no time for interruptions of any kind.

But yeah, I'm sure all the girls I see wearing the "NERDS R SEXY" shirts they got at Hot Topic are actually attracted to guys who own a full suit of Stormtrooper armor, and totally cruise the UNIX club for eligible bachelors. Sorry for making such crude assumptions.
posted by jake at 9:28 PM on August 29, 2011


Whoa, dude. Easy.
posted by joe lisboa at 9:29 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


A couple months ago I met a dude via OKCupid who used to work at WotC. And various other RPG stuff over the years. I gave him my IM earlier than I should have, which resulted in many iterations of this conversation:

him: *yawn*
me: ...

him: Still sexy?
me: Uh, yeah, I guess. Working on [some project].
him: Cool, can I see?
me: Sure. *link to screengrab/photo of wip as appropriate* What're you working on?
him: Can't tell you.
me: um ok. Really? Nothing?
him: Nope.
me: ...

him: Still sexy?

I was delighted the first time my phone's notification sound went off after I blocked him, because I knew whatever it was, it would not be him.

I guess my point here is that even if you're a hardcore geek who does things like dress up as GLaDOS to do a striptease to 'Still Alive' with blinky lights driven by firmware you wrote yourself (the project I was mostly working on during this time), other geeks can be pretty damn boring. It is quite possible that Jon Finkel has all the social acuity of a frozen haddock. Of course it's also possible that Alyssa Bereznak is a shallow woman with no class; you'll note that I didn't name names when I wrote about my little OKCupid mistake...
posted by egypturnash at 9:29 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Jon is now a hedge fund manager, that means $$$$ and i'm guessing the author is what they call a "gold digger".

jonclegg, I'm guessing you don't understand the concept of "gold digger" very well.
posted by faster than a speeding bulette at 9:30 PM on August 29, 2011


Ugh, what a gross person. (The author, I mean.) I and a bunch of my friends played Magic in middle school, and one of the reasons we stopped isn't because it was nerdy, but because it's fucking hard to be really good at it. If I found myself being approached by a Magic tournament champion, I'd be super excited because it would mean they're probably brilliant.
posted by Nattie at 9:36 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wear that t-shirt. It is the truth. I take your point, but you might want to watch where you're splashing that brush.

I wear it too, and it is the truth. We're not typical, and I've seen (met and gotten to know, not just seen, it's not a superficial appearance thing, that would make me a hypocrite) a lot of people displaying "nerd pride" who have no business doing so, co-opting the most superficial parts while still ostracizing (and subtly mocking) the poor virgin neckbeards who actually walk the walk.
posted by jake at 9:37 PM on August 29, 2011


I wear it too, and it is the truth. We're not typical, and I've seen (met and gotten to know, not just seen, it's not a superficial appearance thing, that would make me a hypocrite) a lot of people displaying "nerd pride" who have no business doing so, co-opting the most superficial parts while still ostracizing (and subtly mocking) the poor virgin neckbeards who actually walk the walk.

Sorry, but stuff like this is why I don't spend as much time in geek culture anymore. I like geeky/nerdy things but I'd rather not be a 'virgin neckbeard', and when I do display stereoscopically Goony/virgin neckbeard traits I like to get called out on it and improve. I've met heaps of people with geeky interests who are socially confident and enjoy going out, drinking, and dressing okay. Nothing wrong with acting otherwise, but you can't draw such a firm distinction.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:39 PM on August 29, 2011 [17 favorites]


I do agree that people whom deliberatly get drunk are annoying.

Ha geez. You're not gonna like our house rules for Magic games then.
posted by EatTheWeak at 9:40 PM on August 29, 2011 [7 favorites]


On the plus side, some rather amusing things have come out of this:

"I am not a nerd, I'm a 12th Level Paladin @alyssabereznak #NotRightForAlyssa" --Scott Rouse

“My Brief OkCupid Affair With a World Champion Magic: The Gathering Player” UGH UGH UGH

And sadly I seem to have not retweeted or favourited the rest of the amusing ones, *sigh*
posted by Canageek at 9:40 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oops, I was looking for the punker-than-thou thread, not the nerdier-than-thou thread. Carry on with the purity tests.

Oi!

*exits*
posted by joe lisboa at 9:41 PM on August 29, 2011 [6 favorites]


Everyone is talking about how this lady is foolish, and made a mistake by writing someting dumb.

But she just made me open, and read a Gizmodo article, and it seems this thread is going pretty strong, and it is on the front page of reddit, and it is doing whatever, wherever people react to these sort of things.

I think this lady know her audience well.
posted by St. Sorryass at 9:43 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


you know, we shouldn't stereotype nerds just as computer and science types. Nerds come in all flavours - like history nerds, and literature nerds and mythology and dead language nerds. Similar in their habits and often quite compatible, just occupying different ecological social niches.

/married to massive history and public policy nerd - he has the pocket protector and suspenders of the classic '50s nerd.

See this excellent documentary focussing on different types of nerds - I'm a Booger type myself
posted by jb at 9:45 PM on August 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Heh, found my first reactions to it in my tweetstream while finding those links:

*sigh* Finally gave in and read that #Gizmodo article. What. The. Hell. She didn't date him just because he played MtG? I mean, she didn't mention if he was obsessed with it or anything: I can see not dating obsessive people, I know gamers who drive me up the wall by talking about charop and rules and such, and know women whom have hated D&D after hearing boyfriends drone on about it. But she doesn't mention him having been obsessed with it, just dropping the fact he was the world champion at one time. The. Hell.

Which still sums up my reaction pretty well. There are lots of reasons not to date most geeks: The fact we are geeks isn't, in my opinion, by itself, one of them.
posted by Canageek at 9:51 PM on August 29, 2011


I've met heaps of people with geeky interests who are socially confident and enjoy going out, drinking, and dressing okay. Nothing wrong with acting otherwise, but you can't draw such a firm distinction.

Right, I do all of those things as well. My entire career depends on my ability to network and schmooze at parties and be charismatic. It's something I've had to work unbelievably hard at, for an extremely long time, overcoming a ridiculous amount of discomfort and self-doubt.

So when I see articles like this one, I cringe because were I -not- as confident as I currently am about the fact that I program 6502 assembly for fun, this kind of article would've driven me even further into my shell and reinforced my belief that the cool kids are a bunch of assholes, and aren't worth hanging out with anyway. Which is exactly what my mom used to tell me when I'd come home covered in bruises. The co-opting of "nerd culture" by kids who happen to play Xbox is just salt in the wound, but it's still annoying.

you know, we shouldn't stereotype nerds just as computer and science types. Nerds come in all flavours - like history nerds, and literature nerds and mythology and dead language nerds.

I agree, that's an excellent point, and I'm only using my own sphere of nerditude as one example, since I know it well. But I think the gist of this whole issue seems to be: Having an obsessive interest or hobby is still a ripe target for mockery, and the bullying continues into adulthood.
posted by jake at 10:00 PM on August 29, 2011


Oh you guys. This is a first! Normally when the Metahorde gets outraged about something mean a chick did to a dude I am kind of like "...okay." and a little bit rolling my eyes at the pain.... BUT THIS SHIT WAS TERRIBLE!

I mean, yes, she's shallow and mean, but more importantly WHY WAS THE ARTICLE SO TERRIBLE? There are all these details - a professional Magic The Gathering player, serial killer theater, "hedge fund uniform" with earrings, he also dated some acquaintances of hers, her initial reluctance to try internet dating - and you think they are going to add up to something, and have dramatic irony and basically this is going to be an amazing story, something like:

*Internet dating, what's going on there? I thought it was for freaks and losers.
*But I gave it a shot, because honestly, I was probably just being shallow.
*So I meet this guy, and he's a little weird (takes me to this Dahmer show) but... you know, I'm trying to be more open to new experiences, so I go out with him again.
*Then it turns out that he's a professional Magic The Gathering player.
*Here's a part in the article where I talk about going off to do a lot of research about Magic The Gathering...
*And a digression where I call my older brother who is a Marine in Afghanistan, and he turns out to be a huge Magic The Gathering fan who knows all about this guy I'm dating, and I trust HIS judgment, so...
*I go out with the guy again, and I keep finding him slightly creepy BUT by this point I am talking myself into thinking that I am shallow and lame and judgmental, so I squash that little voice.
*And then he starts inviting me to Magic games...
*And the more I find out about these high-level players, the more I realize that everyone is fooled by their nerdiness but really this is like some kind of mobbed up situation, they are very very serious about this and the betting is huge.
*Here is a story about meeting a guy who loses his house betting against the guy I'm dating.
*Also there is a digression about how I met some guys in an airport bar and they insist that people have been disappeared over tournaments gone bad.
*And then there's this part where I try to talk to the guy I'm dating about all of this but he has a really bad connection because he's "on someone's private submarine", and that's when I realize that I may be dating a Bond villain, and we have all been fooled by his mildly geeky hobby.
*Wrap up the article with a then-vs-now thing about how you gotta be careful out there, just because somebody's geeky doesn't mean they're nice. FOR GOD'S SAKE PEOPLE GOOGLE YOUR INTERNET DATES, LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES!!!!
*PS I am writing this under a pseudonym out of fear for my safety. All names have been changed.

But instead it's just "LOL I DATED A GUY AND HE TURNED OUT TO BE A NERD LOL BEWARE THE IDES OF MARCH OR SOME SHIT LIKE THAT."

Ugh. She should be ashamed, yes, of her lame personality, but mostly of her terrible writing.
posted by thehmsbeagle at 10:30 PM on August 29, 2011 [39 favorites]


Honestly I thought this piece was pretty funny, these lines in particular:

Maybe I'm an OKCupid asshole for calling it that way. Maybe I'm shallow for not being able to see past Jon's world title. I'll own that.

"I'll own that." I love it! You could just append that to anything and it would make you sound edgy and deep, instead of like a massive jerk. For example: "Some might call me opportunistic and cynical for accusing my political opponents of being covert Communist sympathizers. I'll own that." Or maybe, "Perhaps suggesting that the citizens of France eat brioche during a famine seems unrealistic and out of touch. I'll own that." Guys I am totally about to make so many super insightful points about our shared humanity.
posted by en forme de poire at 10:38 PM on August 29, 2011 [27 favorites]


Dude, those "minutes" are minutes not spent on your robot militia, and presumably nobody else is around to smell you, because, you know, you're insanely focused on your work and have no time for interruptions of any kind.
Do you even realize how ridiculous that sounds. I mean, if a guy can't take five minutes for personal hygiene how are they going to have time for a girlfriend? I don't think most women want a boyfriend who spends all their time in the dungeon painting figurines only to come out for five minutes a day to have sex with them while smelling bad.
So when I see articles like this one, I cringe because were I -not- as confident as I currently am about the fact that I program 6502 assembly for fun, this kind of article would've driven me even further into my shell and reinforced my belief that the cool kids are a bunch of assholes, and aren't worth hanging out with anyway. Which is exactly what my mom used to tell me when I'd come home covered in bruises. The co-opting of "nerd culture" by kids who happen to play Xbox is just salt in the wound, but it's still annoying.
Well, we're talking about dating here. The fact of the matter is that people who are anti-social in some way aren't always much fun to be around. This girl was using MtG as a heuristic for that cluster of personality traits and that was probably unfair. But that doesn't mean that people who do have those traits can't be obnoxious.

These days, the definition of nerd-dom has expanded to include just about everyone. Ann Hathaway was on the daily show the other day claiming to be a "nerd" because she played scrabble. I mean, come on. And that is somewhat annoying. But if you look at people who are 'otaku' (in the sense it's used in Japan, not the US) then sometimes they're not all that fun to be around. In fact, now that nerd-dom has metasticised so much you have 'nerds' (by today's standards) who would have hated 'nerds' from 20 years ago.

In fact, someone mentioned the reddit post. Two months ago this was on the front page, and they were all laughing at the fat loser playing Yu Gi Oh against a six-year old, even though the OP was a player who brought his step-daughter to a tournament.

So basically just because the definition of nerd has expanded doesn't mean you don't have to take baths to be popular.



--

Wow, Gawker. Hope the pageviews this shitstorm generated were worth all the ill will and brand damage.
Seriously? Gawker has destroyed it's brand a million times over.
Suddenly she is insinuating that people need to be warned about the guy, and he has infiltrated himself into other dates. Does she think he is dating these women because they are people she sort of know? I don't get it, he plays magic so he is dangerous?
Again, this guy has a magic card named after him named 'Shadowmage Infiltrator'

Also, I found this tweet kind of funny:
Oh God. Someone please explain what #NotRightForAlyssa means? I assume there's an Alyssa who's like a bitch or something? I must know.
Any guy will tell you that there’s nothing more unattractive than a drunk girl falling all over the place and having no idea how stupid she looks.
That is completely ridiculous. Not every dude is the same, and a lot of guys like drunk girls.

Also, yes, Kokatu is another Gawker site. of course they are already milking this for hits on their other sites!

posted by delmoi at 10:51 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Any guy will tell you that there’s nothing more unattractive than a drunk girl falling all over the place and having no idea how stupid she looks.

That is completely ridiculous. Not every dude is the same, and a lot of guys like drunk girls.


Yeah it's pretty hard to phrase this without being skeevy, but some people who enjoy the going out and getting drunk thing. Or even playing D&D/Mage/Vampire while drunk.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:55 PM on August 29, 2011


here's a comment from someone who supposedly went on a date with him 3 years ago, it's copied and pasted by the source link didn't work. The girl did Google him and was actually psyched about dating the MtG world champion, but the date didn't go well.
posted by delmoi at 11:07 PM on August 29, 2011


Well, the dude doesn't look like a forever alone neckbeard (I can use that phrase, I am a neckbeard). He doesn't even look particularly nerdy. Maybe that is why she is so put off, he is a nerd disguised as a normal guy.
posted by Ad hominem at 11:10 PM on August 29, 2011


OH NOEZ where will he find a shallow potato-faced hack to love him now?
posted by klangklangston at 11:17 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Do you even realize how ridiculous that sounds. I mean, if a guy can't take five minutes for personal hygiene how are they going to have time for a girlfriend?

I dunno, ask your local dreadlocked hippie.

Yes, of course I realize how ridiculous it sounds. It's hyperbole. But my point is, not everyone wants to have to be "on their A-game" around the clock, and not everyone wants a super-clingy girlfriend or boyfriend who won't let them have any time to themselves. Having an obsessive, extremely time-consuming hobby doesn't make you a creep, nor does it preclude a happy relationship. Except, to some people like our Ms. Berenzak, it does, even retroactively! She is a schoolyard bully.

On my drive home, I figured out why I hate the "I <3 Nerds" branding. Every now and then you have your Jessamyn type, who really means it. That's awesome and happy and I wish there were more of it. But for your average superficial high school kid, it's a form of mockery and a sort of power game, like a prom queen taking the ugly dork to the prom, giving him false hopes. It just brings up really bad memories of insincere jerks pretending to be nice to me, and laughing behind my back. It just seems ..... mean-spirited.
posted by jake at 11:32 PM on August 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Gizmodo mean girl bashes OKCupid date for no reason

Its on CBS News, not onion. WTF?
posted by hal_c_on at 11:36 PM on August 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Fuzzy Monster, there is a big overlap between M:TG and the younger online poker players.

They do get shit for it there as well though.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:47 PM on August 29, 2011


Her conversation started by mentioning that her brother is a gamer. I feel sorry for him. If he didn't know beforehand what his sister thought of him, he sure does now.

So is this what happens when you are raised by an objectivist?
posted by eye of newt at 11:52 PM on August 29, 2011


Watch YouTube personality Boogie2988's rant on this matter. He gets pretty passionate.
posted by Leisure_Muffin at 11:53 PM on August 29, 2011


Might be worth sending your feedback to tips@gizmodo.com. I believe that goes to the editor's inboxes, or at least as close to their inboxes as you can get publicly.
posted by sophist at 12:03 AM on August 30, 2011


Her conversation started by mentioning that her brother is a gamer. I feel sorry for him. If he didn't know beforehand what his sister thought of him, he sure does now.

So is this what happens when you are raised by an objectivist?


I'm guessing a seriously nerdy guy probably also went through an objectivist phase.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 12:03 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Watch YouTube personality Boogie2988's rant on this matter. He gets pretty passionate.
Wow, what woman wouldn't want that guy interested in her.
posted by delmoi at 12:07 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


And her quickmeme has been born.
posted by incessant at 12:08 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


I mean, she didn't mention if he was obsessed with it or anything: I can see not dating obsessive people,

Um, she kinda did mention it. From the original article:
At dinner I got straight down to it. Did he still play? "Yes." Strike one. How often? "I'm preparing for a tournament this weekend." Strike two. Who did he hang out with? "I've met all my best friends through Magic." Strike three.
Man, I've been playing D&D since the 80s, and that "Strike three" would be a strike in my book, too. Dude needs to get out more. Meeting "all" of your best friends the same way is a bad sign, because it suggests you don't know how to bond over anything else. At the very least, it means any gathering of him and his friends is probably going to be all about the hobby.

Honestly, it sounds like Magic is all he's got, and he's hiding that. I'm finding this guy's unwillingness to "own it" annoying. Overall, he sounds boring.

All the geeks, nerds, and dorks coming out of the woodwork to tell Bereznak she should be throwing herself at Finkel are extremely creepy. The more they go on about how nice and smart and rich he is, the more they sound like they want to date the guy. Or maybe they want to be that guy.

The real problem here might be that a thousand nerds just found out that even wealthy super-nerds aren't sex symbols. (All those "I ♥ NERDS" t-shirts lied to them!) It must be very upsetting to them to have their fantasies crushed like that.
posted by faster than a speeding bulette at 12:31 AM on August 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


Shallow girl doesn't want to date nerdy guy? meh. Film at eleven.

Internet Hate Machine goes over the top and probably does real damage to a young woman who'll know better one day. Awful. Creepy. Hateful. Also, Film at eleven.
posted by seanyboy at 12:38 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Rebecca Watson: Jon Finkel Dodged a Bullet
posted by homunculus at 12:43 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


All the geeks, nerds, and dorks coming out of the woodwork to tell Bereznak she should be throwing herself at Finkel are extremely creepy. The more they go on about how nice and smart and rich he is, the more they sound like they want to date the guy. Or maybe they want to be that guy.

These MtG/poker playing nerds sound like alpha-nerds, and it seems they've turned nerdiness into a money-making asset.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 12:43 AM on August 30, 2011


For example:

The girl who wrote that article is a vile human being and deserves to be alone.
posted by empath at 1:34 AM on August 30 [66 favorites +] [!]


This is amusing and all, but it's a disturbing thing to say. She doesn't deserve to be alone. She doesn't deserve to be hounded round the internet to such a degree that she'll never get a date again. She said something silly. She was wrong to do it. One day, she'll realise how shallow she was and she'll regret it.

But she didn't kill anyone. She didn't damage anyone.

Wishing that she be cut off from community. That she be alone. It's too much.
posted by seanyboy at 12:43 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Look, nobody is saying she has to date this guy, or nerds. But he does not deserved to be publicly shamed because he makes his money is a way she thinks is uncool. The fact of the matter is women date singleminded or obsessed men all the time, think of all the time a professional athlete has spent training, how much time did a doctor spend in school and how much time do they devote to their practice. Many men devote 60 hours a week to a job they despise. This guy spends his time making money playing magic.

I am going to restate that: This isn't a hobby, this is a job.

At any rate, there is a book about the guy.

I think some of the venom directed towards her is over top. But honestly her publishing that makes me seriously question her professionalism and ethics.

Wishing that she be cut off from community. That she be alone. It's too much.

Oh please that is what she did to this guy, I quote "Mothers warn your daughters"
She thinks the guy does not deserve any dates.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:48 AM on August 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


Ad hominem : So we're basing how we behave on how she behaves? An eye for an eye?
That sounds like a terrible moral code.
posted by seanyboy at 12:50 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Meeting "all" of your best friends the same way is a bad sign, because it suggests you don't know how to bond over anything else. At the very least, it means any gathering of him and his friends is probably going to be all about the hobby.

Calling serious total mega-bullshit on this one.

I have met nearly all of my friends through the same hobby, and we only occasionally even talk about it when we're out doing stuff, we're just friends with a common interest. I agree that the suggestions that she should be "throwing herself at him" are extremely creepy, and I think they're more than a little misogynistic (gamer nerds have a serious problem with this, on the whole) and sure, maybe he's extremely boring.

But the outrage is over what she did after the date (and she continues to defend it rudely). That's where she skipped over the line from "just some shallow girl, who cares" to "holy shit, that's MEAN".

I don't think she deserves to be alone, or to die, or several of the more awful things people have said elsewhere. If I wish her anything out of this ordeal, it's wisdom and compassion, and maybe a little modesty.
posted by jake at 12:51 AM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


Jonny Magic and the Card Shark Kids is his amazing true story: the jaw-dropping, zero-to-hero chronicle of a fat, friendless boy from New Jersey who found his edge in a game of cards–and turned it into a fortune.

There's a Titus Andronicus song in here somewhere.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 12:52 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Ad hominem : So we're basing how we behave on how she behaves? An eye for an eye?
That sounds like a terrible moral code.


Yeah you are right, people who attempt to publicly shame their dates, hold them up to ridicule and warn people away from them deserve love too.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:55 AM on August 30, 2011


How is the article ridiculing him exactly? Did I read a different article entirely after she toned it down, or is everyone here seriously overreacting and thin skinned?
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:01 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


The real problem here might be that a thousand nerds just found out that even wealthy super-nerds aren't sex symbols. (All those "I ♥ NERDS" t-shirts lied to them!) It must be very upsetting to them to have their fantasies crushed like that.
He's even a hedge fund manager, although I don't know what kind of hedge fund you can start with just $300k, which is apparently how much he's made playing the game. Also, it's over several years so if it is his job it's not like he really made that much money at it.
posted by delmoi at 1:10 AM on August 30, 2011


Maybe I really am thin skinned but she clearly says he "isn't normal"

You'll think you've found a normal bearded guy with a job, only to end up sharing goat cheese with a guy who takes you to a one-man show based on Jeffrey Dahmer's life story.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:13 AM on August 30, 2011


The real problem here might be that a thousand nerds just found out that even wealthy super-nerds aren't sex symbols. (All those "I ♥ NERDS" t-shirts lied to them!) It must be very upsetting to them to have their fantasies crushed like that.

We know we aren't sex symbols, people never let us forget it.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:21 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


give me your car

i'll own that
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 1:31 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


We know we aren't sex symbols, people never let us forget it.

Give it up, are you Chuck Palahniuk?
posted by hal_c_on at 1:34 AM on August 30, 2011


He's not normal, he's exceptional, but that sentence was right after the hyperbolic Mothers, warn your daughters! Which I'm pretty sure means she was just trying to be flip rather than seriously castigating him, especially when juxtaposed against statements like the inane biases that each of us lugs around.

I took my impression of the tone of the article more from this:

judging people on shallow stuff is human nature; one person's Magic is another person's fingernail biting, or sports obsession, or verbal tic.

This is hardly ridicule or condemnation. She is guilty of muddled not very interesting writing; which is kind of what I'd expect from someone who's ostensibly a journalist sitting across from someone who's a world authority on a topic that people are self-evidently passionate about and can't think of any interesting questions to ask on the subject. So flame away on that count, but to indict her character as a person because she rejected one geek after two dates? Seems kind of weak and says more about the insecurities and baggage of those reacting.
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:35 AM on August 30, 2011


also i totally called it re: this being repackaged and resold for outrage

i feel really fucking stupid, though, because i didn't forsee the article being reedited
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 1:36 AM on August 30, 2011


He's not normal, he's exceptional

That is a pretty generous reading. I like it.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:45 AM on August 30, 2011


People., we're forgetting who the real villain is, who the real villain always is.

Nick Denton.
posted by fullerine at 1:51 AM on August 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


Give it up, are you Chuck Palahniuk?

I'm really Scott Adams.

sorry, didn't mean to imply I am wealthy, I am a super-nerd though.
posted by Ad hominem at 1:55 AM on August 30, 2011


Ad hominem: Well, the dude doesn't look like a forever alone neckbeard (I can use that phrase, I am a neckbeard).

I thought you were rocking the Mr. Whipple mustache these days! What happened? It didn't diminish your nerd cred in the slightest.
posted by Chichibio at 2:00 AM on August 30, 2011


So flame away on that count, but to indict her character as a person because she rejected one geek after two dates?

Not to flog a flayed horse, but the point isn't that she rejected him. The point is that she had two dates with the guy and then wrote a critical article about him in a public forum for LOLs.

She may have intended comedy. Indeed, Michael Richards might have intended comedy during his notorious racist rant a few years back. Her bad writing makes it seem like she's taking this guy to task for being a nerd, which in turn makes her look shallow and mean.

If you're going to be a writer, you need to own your words.

I propose that the correct response from her on this is "I wrote an article that makes me look shallow and me and, yeah, I own that."
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:04 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


One other thing - this is an article on a Gawker site. People have to get what you're saying the first time they read it. If your piece requires multiple readings to pick up the nuances or intent, then your writing has failed as a Gawker article.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:10 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Good points.
posted by BrotherCaine at 2:16 AM on August 30, 2011


Jon Finkel Jonnymagic00
Id like to thank everyone for their messages, and Im sorry I cant reply to them all - especially all the date requests from cute nerdy girls


replies ↓
Lee Sharpe
@Jonnymagic00 You forgot to add "#WINNING" at the end of this post.


It is a just world.
posted by pH Indicating Socks at 2:26 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


The funny thing about that article for me is that

1. I met my wife through OKCupid four years ago,
2. I have spent a lot of time and money on Magic: the Gathering (and continue to play),
3. my wife likes to make fun of this and fully admits that she probably wouldn't have consented to date me if she'd known at the time, and
4. she admits this would have been her own short-sighted loss.

Reading the article made me a little glad I was never a good enough player to really invest in the competitive scene, but seeing that Finkel is getting the better of this situation makes me really happy for him.
posted by jsnlxndrlv at 2:33 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


As far as her career, I don't know why writing one outrage-inducing thing that gets a lot of attention and will inevitably be dead in two days would make her valuable or make anyone hire her. It's not especially well written; even assuming you have no interest in anything beyond outrage-induced pageviews, why would anyone assume she could duplicate this when doing anything other than telling this particular story? She's not using a talent or a knack or anything else; she just massively put her foot in it in a way that has paid off for Gizmodo in this particular case. is somebody going to hire her to tell more bad-date stories?

I also have to say, I don't agree that this is the reputation she wants. I think she thought she was being Carrie Bradshaw here. I think she knew she'd take hits from people who play this particular game; I don't think she expected that even non-gamers would mostly think she sounds like a nitwit. Few people would knowingly sign up for what she's experiencing, I think.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 2:51 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


I thought you were rocking the Mr. Whipple mustache these days! What happened? It didn't diminish your nerd cred in the slightest

Still rocking the Mr. Whipple 'stache, but being a neckbeard is a state of mind. I self-identify as a neckbeard.
posted by Ad hominem at 2:53 AM on August 30, 2011


Copied and pasted for those who refuse to give Gizmodo the hits.

Earlier this month, having had an unsuccessful evening in my local bar, I came home drunk and checked the OKCupid profile that I have had since the day I heard about the site. What the hell, I thought. I'm immensely superficial, I was recently dumped, and I genuinely believe that I'm a good enough person to be picky. Sure, I'd heard some stories, but what was the worst that could happen?

After ignoring many many messages, OKCupid had broken me down. It was like the online equivalent of the way I imagine things to be inside my own brain. Every time I signed on, I was hit by a barrage of creepy messages. “Hi,” from this totally fat guy, and a smiley face from a dude who was wearing glasses and probably smelled bad. So when I saw an IM from a guy named Jon that said, “If you want to go out, I'll pay” I was relieved. He seemed browbeaten. I gave him my name like a nice gift. “Google away,” I said, already knowing he would find nothing thanks to my own dreary insignificance. Then my Chinese food arrived, and I completely forgot about Googling him as well because I'm stupid.

We met for a drink later that week. Jon was lean and tall and I immediately ascribed value to his clothing and his calculated his earning potential, also he lacked a tan and had pierced ears, probably the only guy in the world to have ever done that. I started talking non-stop about all the dumb shit that I like. When I had exhausted the many facets of my own shining personality, I moved on to my siblings and eventually let slip that my brother was a gamer. So he said “Hey, cool, I play Magic: The Gathering professionally. Funny thing, I'm the world champion!”

I laughed. Oh that's a funny joke! I thought, Because in my world there are very strict categories concerning what things constitute 'earning a living', such as my job as a receptionist where I don't help anyone. I detested the fact that he earned money doing something I personally don't understand.

I drank the third of the beers that he had paid for and thought about it. Magic, a social game involving rules and with a lot of maths involved, but which I otherwise have no knowledge of whatsoever and therefore disregard. I started talking about all the frilly dresses I had seen in my life and Jon suggested we go to the show that we had discussed going to and which he had told me about in advance. He didn't get me drunk enough for me to enjoy myself.

The very second I got home I Googled my date and things appeared on my computer screen. A Wikipedia page! Competition videos! Fanboy forums comparing him to Chuck Norris! It in fact confirmed the exact thing that he had already directly explained to me when he was able to. He even has his own Magic card, which is pretty fucking awesome to just about everyone except me because I have such amazingly high standards, which is only fitting considering how great I am.

Just as I had been obliged to mention that I am divorced and have a kid (not custody though, thank god!) in my online profile, shouldn't other people also have to disclose absolutely every single thing ever, even if it has absolutely zero bearing on what kind of a person they might be? He did say that he “is” the world champion, not “was”, but I am something of a dunce and figured he might have meant “was”, not “is”, which is what he said to me when he was telling me these things. I deigned to permit him to take me out a second time and eventually convinced him to do so.

At the dinner he paid for I pressed him on his card game playing, which he mistook for genuine interest (as if I could possibly want to hear about anything other than the things I personally care about). Did he still play? “Yes.” Strike one, I said to myself, while I thought about all the stuff I own that is pink. How often did he play? “I'm preparing for a tournament this weekend.” Strike two, it would appear, because I myself was going to be watching Ally McBeal reruns on the weekend, like a proper human being with a healthy intellectual life. Who did he hang out with? “I've met a lot of great people through the fun social activity I have been lucky enough to make a living doing.” Strike three. I continued being fake and selfish for a while. Eventually I dismissed the creeping feeling I had that he was actually a decent guy and had a hobby like anyone else. The more obvious answer, I thought, Is that there is something profoundly wrong with him.

I later found out that Jon had successfully been on other dates through OKCupid, including with some people I know! I'll go on for another couple of paragraphs now but I'll not be saying anything of importance or relevance. Probably I'll equivocate quite a bit and completely invalidate any point I may have once had when I started writing this, but it turns I didn't have any point so it's all just moot. In reality all this article has done is highlight my own extreme inadequacies and deficiencies.

Blah blah blah blah blah OKCupid blah blah shallow blah blah blah blah peccadillo (I looked that up – always thought it was a kind of chutney!) blah blah blah shit blah blah hardcore.
posted by tumid dahlia at 4:42 AM on August 30, 2011 [17 favorites]


Also:

"We met for a drink later that week."

"We met for round two later that week."


I guess a week as this woman would be an extra-long one.
posted by tumid dahlia at 4:46 AM on August 30, 2011


I think we are probably underestimating the effect that being raised Objectivist had on her behavior here.

She went out on a date with a guy with a high-paying job, who she likely imagined was the ideal she was raised with - an 'overman' who could 'master' her in his self-centred quest for world domination. She then met a guy who a) spends time on a _hobby!_ rather than on single-mindedly generating money and conquest and b) has a particular hobby that the 'best people' among the hipsters she wants to connect with on the way up the social/professional ladder might be turned off by, a fact she can confirm because a few people she knows have been turned off.

So she's more pitiable than truly infuriating, especially after reading the article on her upbringing, which she hated but apparently can't shake.
posted by Wylla at 4:48 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I figured out why I hate the "I heart Nerds" branding

Just yesterday, but before I even read the article, I realized why I hate the this - it's because when I was a pint-sized nerd, being into Dr. Who, or robots, or science fiction, etc etc, was a proxy for being smart - annoying, maybe, but interested in figuring things out. And while there was plenty of misogyny and racism within nerdery, you could often argue that shit down because people generally respected a good argument. What with the Dragoncon/LOL-I'm-such-a-geek-even-though-I'm-also-a-jock thing, the whole nerd archipelago is flooded with people who aren't very bright, aren't interested in argument and are perfectly happy being invested in misogyny and racism because they are successful in a misogynist, racist world. And yes, one should not aestheticize one's politics, but it still makes me sad to trip over all these annoying people who beat up the actual outcasts in high school but who are now making social capital out of the fact that they like anime.
posted by Frowner at 5:03 AM on August 30, 2011 [14 favorites]


So did anyone notice that ridiculous illustration, with a Slyder on the third "Magic" card (and misspelled in the card's description, no less). Where'd they (Alyssa?) steal that craptastic thing from? No time to TinEye it, but I would if I did...
posted by limeonaire at 5:37 AM on August 30, 2011


She should be ashamed, yes, of her lame personality, but mostly of her terrible writing.

Going to a Gawker blog for the writing is like going to a strip club for the buffet.
posted by Rangeboy at 5:37 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Replace the Magic champion with a frat boy or a hipster or an impassioned botanist -- would the outrage be the same? Or are nerds the ultimate in protected species?

But at least we have one boundary coming into focus: it's okay to malign women when they are mean to nerd guys.

Nothing happened, here. It's important to remember that. No one was injured, Magic guy is fine.
posted by gsh at 5:53 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Okay. I take back my expressions of sympathy for her. The Australian version has what I guess was originally the last line, in which she reveals that she's getting back at him for something she thinks he did to her and some other Gawker Media employee by revealing his bad-date habits to the whole world and making him look terrible.

In which case HOLY MOLY, did she not get what she was looking for.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 5:58 AM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


Nothing happened, here. It's important to remember that. No one was injured, Magic guy is fine.

Then it shouldn't be a problem for you if we're all as shitty to one another as we can possibly be, so long as nobody gets blood on them!
posted by tumid dahlia at 6:03 AM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


Yes, notably that (presumably) original version Linda_Holmes links to above doesn't have the introspective fingernail-biting peccadillo ending but rather this (differences emphasized):

"I later found out that he infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people I sort of know, including one of my co-workers. Mothers, warn your daughters! This could happen to you. You’ll think you’ve found a normal bearded guy with a job, only to end up sharing goat cheese with a world champion of nerds. Maybe I’m an OKCupid arsehole for calling it that way. Maybe I’m shallow for not being able to see past his world title. But if everyone stopped lying in their profiles, maybe there also wouldn’t be quite as many OKCupid horror stories to tell.

So what did I learn? Google the shit out of your next online date. Like, hardcore. Also, for all you world famous nerds out there: Don’t go after two Gawker Media employees and not expect to have a post written about you. We live for this kind of stuff."
posted by mikepop at 6:26 AM on August 30, 2011 [8 favorites]


I'm trying to imagine the thought process that lead to her thinking this was a good idea. Still got nothing.
posted by NathanBoy at 6:32 AM on August 30, 2011


Can we not make this a nerds vs. jocks thing? Could that maybe happen?
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 6:39 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Ok, looking at the Australian version of the page, and it doesn't show his name:

The next day I Googled my date and a wealth of information flowed into my browser. A Wikipedia page! Competition videos! Fanboy forums! This guy isn’t just some professional who dabbled in card games at a tender age. He’s widely revered in the game of Magic that he’s been immortalised in his own playing card.

vs

The next day I Googled my date and a wealth of information flowed into my browser. A Wikipedia page! Competition videos! Fanboy forums comparing him to Chuck Norris! This guy isn't just some professional who dabbled in card games at a tender age. He's Jon motherfucking Finkel, the man who is so widely revered in the game of Magic that he's been immortalized in his own playing card.

I wonder if that was a change by the Australian editors, whom state at the top of the article they don't like it, and link to articles criticizing it, or if she was more tasteful in the original?

Next change:

.com version:
This is what happens, I thought, when you leave things out of your online profile.. end of paragraph.

vs

Au version
This is what happens, I thought, when you lie in your online profile. I was lured on a date thinking I’d met a normal finance guy, only to realise he was a champion dweeb in hedge funder’s clothing.

That is a definite change from what was posted originally, as I remember seeing people talk about the 'lie' in the online profile. Am I the only one who thinks editing an article without notice after a lot of people have read it is less then classy?

-----

Looks like Milkpop noticed the same change, but I'll put these side by side for comparison anyway:

I later found out that he infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people I sort of know, including one of my co-workers. Mothers, warn your daughters! This could happen to you. You’ll think you’ve found a normal bearded guy with a job, only to end up sharing goat cheese with a world champion of nerds. Maybe I’m an OKCupid arsehole for calling it that way. Maybe I’m shallow for not being able to see past his world title. But if everyone stopped lying in their profiles, maybe there also wouldn’t be quite as many OKCupid horror stories to tell.

So what did I learn? Google the shit out of your next online date. Like, hardcore. Also, for all you world famous nerds out there: Don’t go after two Gawker Media employees and not expect to have a post written about you. We live for this kind of stuff.


vs

I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people I sort of know, including one of my co-workers. Mothers, warn your daughters! This could happen to you. You'll think you've found a normal bearded guy with a job, only to end up sharing goat cheese with a guy who takes you to a one-man show based on Jeffrey Dahmer's life story.

Maybe I'm an OKCupid asshole for calling it that way. Maybe I'm shallow for not being able to see past Jon's world title. I'll own that. But there's a larger point here: that judging people on shallow stuff is human nature; one person's Magic is another person's fingernail biting, or sports obsession, or verbal tic. No online dating profile in the world is comprehensive enough to highlight every person's peccadillo, or anticipate the inane biases that each of us lugs around. There's no snapshot in the world that can account for our snap judgments.

So what did I learn? Google the shit out of your next online date. Like, hardcore.


Emphasis mine. I think the remove of his name was by the Australian editor, but I remember the dweeb line from when I read it at 9-10 pm last night. This comes off as much less ok in my opinion: Not dating someone who picked something stupid for a first date? Totally understandable, and yeah, dude screwed up. But the other? That sounds insulting, painful, and hits a lot of us geeks whom are scared of spending the rest of our lives alone already somewhere deep.
posted by Canageek at 6:40 AM on August 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


AfHere's what I think happened. I think she was super excited to meet the guy after she found out he was a hedge fund manager, was totally okay with him being a magic player, except that he spent the entire date talking about himself and how smart he was.

Then she found out that he was trying to hook up with someone else at Gawker at the same time, and was like, "You know what, fuck that guy, he might be a Magic World Champe, but I work for Gawker!". Her editors then said, you know you can't write a story about how a guy you met on okay cupid was kind of douchey. And thus the OMG FAMOUS NERD angle.
posted by empath at 6:40 AM on August 30, 2011


But at least we have one boundary coming into focus: it's okay to malign women when they are mean to nerd guys.

No, it's OK to malign [people], when they (unreasonably and unfairly) try to humiliate other [people] for the 'crime' of merely existing.

it has nothing to do with her being a woman, and everything to do with her being an arsehole.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:44 AM on August 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


He's been updating his twitter, btw.
posted by empath at 6:47 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


as a nerd girl who loves nerd guys (and girls) it gets really tiring trying to convince people that, no, really, i LOVE nerds.

in the fourth grade i made up a complimentary version of "jingle bells/batman smells" because the boy i liked came to school dressed as batman (nowhere near halloween). years later, the first time i was fingered in the school lunch room was during a MtG game. i would go to d&d games and sit on the redheaded guy's lap while he rolled for initiative. my apartment is full of car wars and space hulk and gutted computers and stacks of nintendo power magazines.

the co-opting of nerd culture annoys me too. almost as much as being told that girls just don't like nerds. some of us have been in the thick of it our entire lives, hoping that the nerd boys in our life stop looking for seven of nine or number six and realize the girl kicking his ass at mario 3 is better suited for him.

i'm lucky to have found a nerd guy who loves nerd girls.
posted by nadawi at 6:47 AM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


arg. lets just pretend all my verbs agree.

also, to amend the last line - i've been lucky to find a few nerd guys who love nerd girls - i just stuck with one of them.
posted by nadawi at 6:51 AM on August 30, 2011


was totally okay with him being a magic player, except that he spent the entire date talking about himself and how smart he was.

But she didn't exactly say this, did she? Who here would be especially het-up if she'd written "and I thought the M:tG thing was a little bit weird, but I had no idea that we'd talk about nothing else except his tournament games all night. I know more about his favorite Magic cards than I do about my best friend's boyfriend!"
posted by Frowner at 6:52 AM on August 30, 2011


empath: I would not be surprised if you were right, and if she had written it up that way I probably would have commiserated with her. I've met lots of otherwise cool guys whom I hate spending time with, as *all* they talk about is there D&D characters. Now I like D&D and all, but I hate hearing about the new feat/spell combo you've created. Even hearing about your backstory isn't that bad. But really, it is like they have only one conservation topic up there, D&D character optimization. If she'd gone with that angel I don't think any of us would have been pissed off in the least.
Instead, at least in the version I read, she wrote it up as an attack on 'dweebs' and how lame they are, and all us dweebs feel hurt and offended. Remember, if the original she only mentioned the Dahmer show once, and in passing. I totally missed that reference when I read it, to be honest, so it came out much less 'He screwed up our date.' and more 'I'm a shallow bint.'

----
Thanks for that empath: I like his latest tweet.
posted by Canageek at 6:53 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


BTW, ladies, I'm available for Magic tutorials.
posted by empath at 7:01 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


nadawi: I totally agree there are women whom date geeks out there. I fell in love with one of them and we were together for over a year, until unrelated problems involving physical distance ended it. We still talk daily though. The problem is the perception of no one being willing to date geeks. Because you know, why bother to go out and look and get rejected if no one will date us anyway? I could just spend the time at home, posting on MeFi instead. The gender balance is improving, and a lot of the geeks I've met via the RPGA are married, and often play D&D with their wives, but man, that doesn't erase the fears that you are missing out, and will always miss out when you find out another friend of yours is in a long term relationship (and you've not had a date in over a year), gripping about their boyfriend going out partying too much (since obviously someone whom ignores them is still a better catch then a geek), or telling you about their plans for a threesome (When you've not had so much as a kiss in well over a year).
posted by Canageek at 7:02 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Hey look! It's by Gizmodo. I'm going to close this window now.
posted by polymodus at 7:02 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Replace the Magic champion with a frat boy or a hipster or an impassioned botanist -- would the outrage be the same? Or are nerds the ultimate in protected species?

It's not the exact same sort of situation, but I seem to remember a previous "story" (incidentally also posted on Gawker) where it was mostly jocks being sexually rated in a public forum (both favorably and unfavorably), and among many there was indeed quite a bit of outrage.

But at least we have one boundary coming into focus: it's okay to malign women when they are mean to nerd guys.

Oh come off it. Here's the boundary: It's a disgusting and shitty thing to go out of your way to publicly make fun of and deride someone else by name for doing nothing more than having the audacity to try to go on dates, and if you do so you absolutely deserve to be ridiculed and criticized yourself.

And if you don't think it's okay to do that then, hey:

Nothing happened, here. It's important to remember that. No one was injured, Magic guy asshole Gawker girl is fine.
posted by the other side at 7:07 AM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


nadawi: I totally agree there are women whom date geeks out there. I fell in love with one of them and we were together for over a year, until unrelated problems involving physical distance ended it. We still talk daily though. The problem is the perception of no one being willing to date geeks. Because you know, why bother to go out and look and get rejected if no one will date us anyway? I could just spend the time at home, posting on MeFi instead. The gender balance is improving, and a lot of the geeks I've met via the RPGA are married, and often play D&D with their wives, but man, that doesn't erase the fears that you are missing out, and will always miss out when you find out another friend of yours is in a long term relationship (and you've not had a date in over a year), gripping about their boyfriend going out partying too much (since obviously someone whom ignores them is still a better catch then a geek), or telling you about their plans for a threesome (When you've not had so much as a kiss in well over a year).

But this whole approach figures geeks as male. (So do the "I Heart Nerds" shirts)- as if erds and geeks are smart men who get obsessed by stuff, and who must find "normal" women (preferably blond, popular ones!) who will see through or for some reason be interested by geekery. Nerds and geeks are figured as men; nerdy/geeky women are invisible or undesirable. The classic nerd dude move is "if only the cheerleader would like me! She's so pretty! She should value me for my skillz because guy nerds are awesome! Girl nerds are awkward, and that girl in chemistry who has the crush on me? Should totally go away."
posted by Frowner at 7:09 AM on August 30, 2011 [10 favorites]


er, "nerds and geeks"
posted by Frowner at 7:09 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Shit, I don't have the attention span to learn how to play Magic, but the fact that this guy has HIS OWN CARD is so freaking cool, not to mention that he seems like he's coming through this all cool and classy, not unlike the picture of him on the card.


brb reactivating my OkCupid account
posted by oinopaponton at 7:14 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


That wasn't my intention, Frowner. I just didn't want to imply that the only women whom would date male geeks was a female geek. I'm told there are non-geek women whom enjoy dating geeky men. (i.e. my Mother, whom patiently puts up with my Dad and I discussing black holes at the dinner table on a regular basis.). The women I dated used to organize gaming conventions and was very geeky, which is how we met (um, via an online game called PMOG or The Nethernet). I honestly can't see myself dating a non-geek, as I can't see what we would have in common. I want someone whom is as fascinated by just about everything as I am as one of my main requirements.
posted by Canageek at 7:15 AM on August 30, 2011


yes, Frowner! exactly! "why does popular girl only date jerks?!" - well, doofus, she's a jerk. that redhead dude i lap grinded on? he spent any time he wasn't talking about gaming talking about the girl who would never, ever notice him. i was fun to hang out with, but not nearly beautiful enough for his rejection fantasy.
posted by nadawi at 7:18 AM on August 30, 2011


Indeed, there are a lot of people who don't date people who would like to date them. I don't know that it necessarily needs to be a culture war kind of thing.
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:21 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


yes, Frowner! exactly! "why does popular girl only date jerks?!" - well, doofus, she's a jerk. that redhead dude i lap grinded on? he spent any time he wasn't talking about gaming talking about the girl who would never, ever notice him. i was fun to hang out with, but not nearly beautiful enough for his rejection fantasy.

"Why does Person date Patently Bad-Idea Person?" Status or self-punishment, that's about it. I wish we lived in Dan-Savage world where it was all just about the sex - life would be so much simpler.
posted by Frowner at 7:23 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I hope this results in lots of great dates for Finkel.
posted by Theta States at 7:25 AM on August 30, 2011


My Favored Enemy Is Mean People: Much more well spoken then I can be, explaining why her article hurts so many people.

Even if he did spell favoured without a u.
posted by Canageek at 7:25 AM on August 30, 2011


Just yesterday, but before I even read the article, I realized why I hate the this - it's because when I was a pint-sized nerd, being into Dr. Who, or robots, or science fiction, etc etc, was a proxy for being smart - annoying, maybe, but interested in figuring things out. And while there was plenty of misogyny and racism within nerdery, you could often argue that shit down because people generally respected a good argument. What with the Dragoncon/LOL-I'm-such-a-geek-even-though-I'm-also-a-jock thing, the whole nerd archipelago is flooded with people who aren't very bright, aren't interested in argument and are perfectly happy being invested in misogyny and racism because they are successful in a misogynist, racist world. And yes, one should not aestheticize one's politics, but it still makes me sad to trip over all these annoying people who beat up the actual outcasts in high school...

I'm just not convinced that "nerd who are actually dumb" is a new thing. I remember a nerd I once dated in high school (so...late 90's? or were you thinking earlier?) - after we had exhausted everything there is to say about Star Wars, I discovered that he was not actually very interesting or very bright, and having nerdy interests did not necessarily make him so. This was an important for hopelessly unpopular high school me.

who are now making social capital out of the fact that they like anime.


I am also not convinced this is a thing - everyone I know who likes anime is definitely a super-nerd.
posted by naoko at 7:44 AM on August 30, 2011


D'oh, and I messed up my italics. Paragraph two is mine.
posted by naoko at 7:45 AM on August 30, 2011


We've been successfully trolled! Yay!
posted by grobstein at 8:03 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I just love the way that Gawker made that edit and slid it in there without notice after the original got wide exposure. What a trustworthy media source Gawker is!
posted by tyllwin at 8:12 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


She may have intended comedy. Indeed, Michael Richards might have intended comedy during his notorious racist rant a few years back. Her bad writing makes it seem like she's taking this guy to task for being a nerd, which in turn makes her look shallow and mean.

There's a lot of truth in this. For what it's worth, I do think she intended comedy. But something that people miss about comedy is that it's a tool for the weak to use against the powerful. I know a comic who opens with a joke which can be basically summarized as 'I am better than homeless people', and then goes right into making ethnic stereotype jokes about minorities. He doesn't understand why sometimes people come up after the show and want to kick his ass.

Making fun of people and still being likeable isn't easy. A lot of comics will make fun of themselves, because that's always a safe target. When comedy is used by the powerful against the weak, it comes off as mean. And because we've all been to high school for the most part, generally we think of nerds/Magic players as a less powerful group of people, and so this article just comes off as mean-spirited and nasty, even though she tries to even it up by making fun of herself as well.

If she'd decided to make fun of him because he was a hedge fund manager, this thread wouldn't exist.
posted by Comrade_robot at 8:12 AM on August 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


Replace the Magic champion with a frat boy or a hipster or an impassioned botanist -- would the outrage be the same? Or are nerds the ultimate in protected species?

Are these all really equivalent classes? I dunno about "frat boy" or "hipster" - it depends what about those things you were saying was bad (ie if you were deriding the assholish "I was into it before it was cool" aspects of hipster culter, as opposed to "omg they wear things ironically", for hipsters... or "all he does is play Call of Duty online all day and drink beer" vs "he is simply a member of a fraternity because it's a great networking opportunity"). But if you were writing an article about how you should never date an impassioned botanist, simply because they are like, totally into something that you don't understand? Yes, I would probably think you were a shallow twit.

Also, for those who missed his twitter account of the situation linked above in the skepchick blog post, obviously a he-said-she-said but his version comes across more believable:
Thanks for all the support internet. People want “my side” but it was really a complete non event. Go out on a date that’s kinda blah.

Next day the girl tweets me about what shes reading about me, my reply is merely a prophetic, “Remember to use your powers only for good”

She then texts me about serial killer dreams and I dont reply because I didnt think we had much chemistry. A couple days later I’m home

and I’m a bit bored and I know she works right by me and seemed like the sort of girl I should like so I text her about grabbing a bite

Since I know she works around the corner. An hour later we meet up and it quickly becomes clear I’m bored, she’s bored(I assume)

But its raining heavily out.Eventually I suggest we head out anyways and luckily I find a cab. We go our separate ways and never speak again

At that point I just thought she was a nice girl, which I still mostly think. God knows we’ve all made poor decisions in our lives.

Id like to thank everyone for their messages, and Im sorry I cant reply to them all – especially all the date requests from cute nerdy girls

To be honest the article doesnt really say anything bad except that she doesnt like guys who like magic?

The only thing I really quibble with it “hedge fund uniform” – I’m not sure what that is, but I doubt it includes jeans and boots.

@Jonnymagic00 This should read ‘texts’, not tweets #freudianslip

Meanwhile Harry is demanding more of my attention. He doesn’t understand how important the Internet is. yfrog.com/j217778429j

He is one fine looking cat though. Hide your kitty daughters! yfrog.com/mfqbevj
posted by antifuse at 8:19 AM on August 30, 2011 [8 favorites]


Ugh... s/culter/culture
posted by antifuse at 8:19 AM on August 30, 2011


I'm just not convinced that "nerd who are actually dumb" is a new thing.

Coincidentally, this is one of the things I love about Freaks and Geeks - I think the show portrays Sam and Neal as nerds in the bright, offbeat, awkward mold, but it's not at all clear whether Bill can really keep up with them intellectually. Just one more example, in my experience, of how right the show gets the dynamics of high school.
/derail

posted by EvaDestruction at 8:23 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Just yesterday, but before I even read the article, I realized why I hate the this - it's because when I was a pint-sized nerd, being into Dr. Who, or robots, or science fiction, etc etc, was a proxy for being smart - annoying, maybe, but interested in figuring things out. And while there was plenty of misogyny and racism within nerdery, you could often argue that shit down because people generally respected a good argument. What with the Dragoncon/LOL-I'm-such-a-geek-even-though-I'm-also-a-jock thing, the whole nerd archipelago is flooded with people who aren't very bright, aren't interested in argument and are perfectly happy being invested in misogyny and racism because they are successful in a misogynist, racist world. And yes, one should not aestheticize one's politics, but it still makes me sad to trip over all these annoying people who beat up the actual outcasts in high school but who are now making social capital out of the fact that they like anime.

Every non-mainstream culture that ends up producing interesting and well-loved content ends up getting co-opted by the mainstream sooner or later. Your comments could just as easily be coming from someone who into a band "before they were cool" or any other situation where something becomes popular. I'm glad that there's enough people who are into sci-fi and anime to justify selling t-shirts and DVDs and whatnot, and I'm glad that looking around at a con there are a ton of kids and people of all kinds into comics or anime or any other nerdy hobby. There are some negative aspects to having whatever the secret thing you're into become popular, but the only other major alternative is for that secret thing to die out. You won't see many t-shirts about BBSes, but that's not exactly a good thing for the BBS scene.
posted by burnmp3s at 8:27 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


"Meeting "all" of your best friends the same way is a bad sign, because it suggests you don't know how to bond over anything else."

I think I met all of my current best friends through MetaFilter. I mean, the people that I hang out with on weekends and stuff. (Though technically, one of them was on MeFi well before I knew what it was, and just happened to know my girlfriend through a mutual friend of hers.)

Ironically, hanging out with them more has cut way into the amount of MeFi that I read.

Outside of that, it's mostly high school friends (who all consider themselves nerdy, even though a lot of them really aren't, at least by my TRVECVLT standards) and former work friends (who are either politics nerds with healthy social lives, or Warcraft nerds with fiancées). But I don't see either of those groups nearly as often as my MeFi pals.
posted by klangklangston at 8:30 AM on August 30, 2011


All the geeks, nerds, and dorks coming out of the woodwork to tell Bereznak she should be throwing herself at Finkel are extremely creepy.

Hello, excluded middle! There's a rather wide chasm between not dating somebody and ridiculing somebody on an incredibly popular blog. There's definitely creeptastic stuff being said about the writer, but that doesn't negate the fact that she did a shitty thing.
posted by kmz at 8:39 AM on August 30, 2011


Now that I've seen the original version I retract my defense of the writer.
posted by BrotherCaine at 8:52 AM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


sorry I missed it--where's the copy of the original?
posted by the mad poster! at 8:53 AM on August 30, 2011


The Australian Version appears to be the original... Or closer to the original, at least.
posted by antifuse at 8:58 AM on August 30, 2011


yeah that's a lot ditzier and unrelenting especially with the little self-empowering jab at the end ('Also, for all you world famous nerds out there: Don’t go after two Gawker Media employees and not expect to have a post written about you. We live for this kind of stuff.')
posted by the mad poster! at 9:11 AM on August 30, 2011


The Australian version removes his name from the article, which I don't think is original: I think it is the Australian editor. The rest of it more closely resembles the version I read at 9-10 pm last night. I've done a comparison.
posted by Canageek at 9:22 AM on August 30, 2011


I get the Manic Pixie Nation theory, but I don't think it's so much that they're making up stuff as that it's a Gawker filtering feature--they encourage female bloggers to give up stories like these, or even set them up (hence full-frontal Juggalette nudity on their sports blog). Blogger gets shitloads of backlash from the internet, Gawker blog gets shitloads of page hits, Nick Denton laughs all the way to the bank; lather, rinse, repeat.

I have no particular interest nor investment in whether or not Bereznak makes a go of journalism in the long run, but her "I Was A Teenage Randroid" piece in Salon really did ring true; I can totally believe that her dad used Objectivism to rationalize his own assholism and wanted her to emancipate herself when she was a high school sophomore so that he could get free help from her in his law office by charging her rent. I wonder if she might take this opportunity to reflect on her own behavior, including her rationalizations for writing this up in public, and ask herself if she isn't displaying some of her dad's me-first asshole tendencies.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:23 AM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Jon Finkel is doing an AMA on reddit.
posted by Ad hominem at 9:34 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Oh man, if I was straight, I would be ALL OVER Jon Finkel.
posted by honeydew at 9:53 AM on August 30, 2011


The AMA is mostly about MtG but someone asks him about the Dahmer show, He replies:

It was a local NYC fringe show that looked kinda interesting and was playing at the right time so I figured why not check it out. For the record I think it was a great concept with so-so execution. Polished up(remember, we're talking off off broadway here) it could be excellent, and it made me want to check out more things by the creator/star.

How can anyone not love reddit.

The top rated reply to the top rated comment is this from the novelty account FTFY_Grammar_Police, he corrects Jon's punctuation. One of the mods comes in and give him "flair", a little text after his name, but the mod uses incorrect punctuation. Grammer_Police posts User Flair?!?!?!
and another user jumps in to correct his punctuation.
posted by Ad hominem at 10:15 AM on August 30, 2011


The science of nerd-baiting.
posted by empath at 10:16 AM on August 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


Your comments could just as easily be coming from someone who into a band "before they were cool" or any other situation where something becomes popular.

Just idly, since this thread is long and rambly - I'm old, or at least I'm old enough to have been punk in the early nineties. I'm old enough to have seen a lot of music, movies, comics and various political scenes come and go. And you know what? Things really do virtually always start to suck when they get truly, widely popular - not absolutely always, and it's certainly very interesting to compile a list of things that are both popular and good (Diana Ross, Sandinista!, Infinite Jest, probably certain blockbuster movies, the Pet Shop Boys, etc etc) - but for something to have a truly mass audience it has to become either commonsensical (David Foster Wallace, for example, whose morals and philosophy are about as middlebrow as you can get, in a nice way; also "I Will Survive"); stupid or incoherent - because it has to appeal to a very broad mass of people.

Now you can work around this with games and technology, I think, because a game can have pretty sweet effects that are produced by novel, sophisticated means but that do not actually require the end user to think much. An iPhone is a fairly clever thing, but both the clever and the stupid can use an iPhone with great satisfaction.

But books, music, film, some games, political scenes - to be great, those things need people who are passionate, informed and thoughtful, or who are trying to become passionate, informed and thoughtful. Scenes also need people who are committed to the scene, and those folks (the ones who organize events and shows, play in bands when they don't make money at it, etc) need an audience that gives back or else they get burned out. When something becomes very widely popular, the coherent audience almost always disappears. Sometimes - sometimes - a larger audience can be reconstituted around the music and across class/subcultural lines. That's fun and exciting, but it's not common.

I can't think of a band I liked who started on an independent and then signed to a major label (and there were plenty back when the record companies were looking for the next grunge) who actually did their best (or even fairly good) work after they signed. The switch to the major label took them away from the environment and the audience that they'd wanted to perform for, and that took a lot of the heart out of their work. Creation isn't the function of an isolated genius producing universal truths off in a studio somewhere; it's something warm and alive and of a particular place and time. Take that out by extracting the artist from the environment, and the artist dries up.

Also, people who aren't passionate about something often have stupid ideas about it. I have stupid ideas about bikes, because my bike is just something to get me from place to place. I'm not one of your serious bike-builders. I could get serious about bikes, but then I'd be one of the Serious Bike People; I wouldn't be a "popular"/generic/mainstream audience for bike stuff. Passionate, specialist audiences are what keep a scene going; you can have a very large passionate specialist audience - making something popular "by the numbers" - but you can't have an audience that is simultaneously casual/mainstream and passionate/specialized.
posted by Frowner at 11:04 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Sooooo... that means he's single, right? If someone took me out to a comedy show based on Jeffrey Dahmer, he'd be guaranteed a second date on that choice alone.

...I admit to having done a little Googling of the guy and getting excited that he may be one of my own OKCupid matches.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:10 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


In this day and age, if you had the full name of your date before the first date, would you or would you not google them?
Where does the social ethics on this currently stand?
posted by Theta States at 11:37 AM on August 30, 2011


That's not a social ethics question of This Day and Age. That's a given. Today it's more like "should I post this skype video of them masturbating after we break up?"
posted by the mad poster! at 11:48 AM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


I post this skype video of them masturbating after we break up?"

DRM people, DRM . Don't let your private moments end up on pornhub.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:06 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I played Magic pretty seriously for a few years and just enough to understand that the top levels of competitive play sound really, really interesting.
posted by neuromodulator at 12:06 PM on August 30, 2011


On nerds and personal hygiene.
Sincerity begins at a little over 100 hours a week. You can probably get to 110 on a sustained basis, but it's hard. You have to get down to eating once a day, showering every other day, things of that sort to really get your life organized to work 110 hours a week.
posted by Chuckles at 12:10 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Internet Hate Machine goes over the top and probably does real damage to a young woman who'll know better one day. Awful. Creepy. Hateful. Also, Film at eleven.

But at least we have one boundary coming into focus: it's okay to malign women when they are mean to nerd guys.

It took longer than I expected for the white knights to appear and save their princess from the EVIL SEXISTS! I'm amazed.
posted by rodgerd at 12:26 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm old, or at least I'm old enough to have been punk in the early nineties.

Fuck, you're tellin' me that counts as "old" now? I am so screwed.......
posted by spilon at 12:33 PM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


theres plenty of island fish jasconius in the sea.
posted by ejoey at 12:39 PM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Guys, you're not seeing the real picture here.

This whole thing is an elaborate bit of marketing for the Jeffery Dhalmer comedy.
posted by The Whelk at 12:59 PM on August 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


Ugh. So exactly the kind of person I had in mind as I hid my inner nerd in those middling years. What a waste of time and energy.

I’m not sure where the “girl nerds are invisible and unwanted” angle is coming from in this thread. That’s certainly not my experience. Showing up to an rpg tourney with an attractive girl who has an interest in rpgs independent of her relationship to me is basically the nerd jackpot. OTOH, wanting to be wanted because you’re a nerd but have no other redeeming features strikes me as identical to thinking you deserve someone because you’re a nice guy. Otherwise, yeah, it’s just a mix of people wanting people, and sometimes (often?) not those who want them.

Mrs. B isn’t into CCGs but I need to get back to scanning eBay for cheap-ish collections, cause we do play German board games, and a good CCG can be every bit as appealing in a roughly similar way. Jyhad, Magic, Mythos – these are great games.

Bereznak really missed the boat here by not successfully painting him as creepy (though maybe she was trying, with the edited-out Dahmer mention). That's the modern social leprotic.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 1:01 PM on August 30, 2011


Oh, and: Meeting "all" of your best friends the same way is a bad sign, because it suggests you don't know how to bond over anything else.

Sure, that's one possibility. Not the leading possibility, though, when the person in question has worked to reach the pinnacle of a given activity. That he hasn't picked up friends in a half dozen different activities shouldn't be all that surprising, or a "bad sign" of any sort.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 1:04 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


It took longer than I expected for the white knights to appear and save their princess from the EVIL SEXISTS! I'm amazed.

You'd think they'd have made the first strike.
posted by empath at 1:08 PM on August 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


The very second I got home I Googled my date and things appeared on my computer screen. A Wikipedia page! Competition videos! Fanboy forums comparing him to Chuck Norris! It in fact confirmed the exact thing that he had already directly explained to me when he was able to. He even has his own Magic card, which is pretty fucking awesome to just about everyone except me because I have such amazingly high standards, which is only fitting considering how great I am.

This is from an earlier draft I guess? My God...
posted by JoeXIII007 at 1:16 PM on August 30, 2011


Of the many uber-magic guys turned professional poker player guys I've met, he seems like one of the better ones. I've spent a couple of days playing poker with him spaced out over a year or two. He was always mannered and polite and seemed decent enough. Last I heard he was making a living betting on sports.
posted by Lame_username at 1:19 PM on August 30, 2011


To be fair, I've heard on some to the other, less mature places on the net were attacking her not just for her personality and choices, but her appearance and other personal attacks, which I don't think is ok. Attacking her choice to post the article? Fair. Her looks? Not so much.
posted by Canageek at 1:27 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


How about if that person were to declare in her post "judging people on shallow stuff is human nature"? Can we judge her looks then?
posted by IanMorr at 1:33 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


So Finkel is not Einhorn? Ace Ventura you got some 'splaining to do!
posted by The Violet Cypher at 1:36 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's not a social ethics question of This Day and Age. That's a given. Today it's more like "should I post this skype video of them masturbating after we break up?"


Exactly, so why wouldn't this WEB SAVVY WEB WRITER actually google her date beforehand? I am bewildered.
posted by Theta States at 1:48 PM on August 30, 2011


Some people have also been attacking her because in inemof her current bios she says

Her current hobby is trying every cheese at the Park Slope Food Coop. Five down, 40 more to go.

You know how when you get a bad impression of someone everything they do annoys you? I don't even care about what she did to that magic nerd guy anymore. She is writing articles about the history of Brooklyn! I know it is unreasonable, but I wish she would leave my hometown alone, she is giving it a bad name.
posted by Ad hominem at 2:10 PM on August 30, 2011


Only people who live in Park Slope have to feel bad and there are plenty of people embarrassing Park Slope already. You get Beer Table, though, so I think it ends up even.
posted by the young rope-rider at 2:31 PM on August 30, 2011


Is this where we get to talk about Magic? YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY

I'm actually going to restrain myself except to say that compared to the way they used to look, the new cards are gorgeous.
posted by heatvision at 2:32 PM on August 30, 2011


Wow, the Royal Assassin is a really unfair card. Any tapped creature? 3 mana? The fuck?!
posted by the young rope-rider at 2:34 PM on August 30, 2011


It's a 1/1 for three mana, which would put them behind in the damage race against a fast deck, and also pretty much any creature removal or direct damage spell kills it. You can always just not attack until you can kill it, or you can only attack with regenerating creatures, etc. It was mostly good in black vs black games because so many black decks depended on terror for creature removal, and it would especially be useful vs things like hypnotic specter (which was a truly broken black card).

(disclaimer: I haven't played magic in years).
posted by empath at 2:47 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also, it comes into play with summoning sickness, so if you need creature removal immediately to not die, it was worse than something like terror in most cases.
posted by empath at 2:51 PM on August 30, 2011


The Science of Gawker's Nerd Baiting might be of interest to anyone still reading.
posted by immlass at 2:54 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


To be fair, I've heard on some to the other, less mature places on the net were attacking her not just for her personality and choices, but her appearance and other personal attacks, which I don't think is ok. Attacking her choice to post the article? Fair. Her looks? Not so much.

klangklangston called her 'potato-faced' in this thread.
posted by delmoi at 2:58 PM on August 30, 2011


I suck at magic and have like 10 cards but I would use Boggart Shenanigans so the player would take damage if they used that card to destroy one of my goblins.

I lose almost every game anyway though.
posted by Ad hominem at 2:59 PM on August 30, 2011


An Island Fish Jasconius joke made all this worth it, IMO.
posted by neuromodulator at 3:22 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm old, or at least I'm old enough to have been punk in the early nineties. I'm old enough to have seen a lot of music, movies, comics and various political scenes come and go. And you know what? Things really do virtually always start to suck when they get truly, widely popular

If punk hadn't gotten widely popular you wouldn't have been punk in the early nineties, it would have died out long before then. Which is my point. Option 1 is that punk gets popular among a vast number of people and you get things like jocks ruining hardcore shows in the 80s and Blink 182 putting out shitty pop punk songs in the 90s/00s, along with all of the great bands throughout the history of punk producing great music and people who benefited from being able to be part of the punk culture. Option 2 is that The Stooges or The Clash and a few other bands are loved by a small number of people for a short period of time and the few records they sell end up being thrown out or collecting dust in people's basements. A scene is always going to be ephemeral, time and place dependent thing, you can't have one that lasts forever with the same energy and creativity. The question is whether that scene ends up producing things that last and are appreciated by a wider audience or not.

Also, people who aren't passionate about something often have stupid ideas about it. I have stupid ideas about bikes, because my bike is just something to get me from place to place. I'm not one of your serious bike-builders. I could get serious about bikes, but then I'd be one of the Serious Bike People; I wouldn't be a "popular"/generic/mainstream audience for bike stuff.

So what? Should Serious Bike People have to sneer at everyone who rides an old Schwinn or wears a "I Love Bikes" t-shirt but doesn't know what a derailleur is? When bicycling is mainstream, you get things like bike lanes and cheaper bike parts. If bikes were an obscure hobby that only a very small number of passionate people were into, not only would there be a lot less Serious Bike People but those people would also have a lot harder time being into their hobby. The only reason I'm a programmer, which is considered to be a pretty nerdy activity, is because programming had become so popular that I could do it myself on the random computer that my parents had bought. If programming had never extended past the very intelligent and dedicated Computer Scientists with huge expensive computing machines and into my lap as a dumb kid with no special insight into technology, I never would have found it. So if people who were athletic and not very smart in high school end up watching anime or getting into sci-fi or whatever, more power to them. And if someone calls themselves a nerd because they feel some sort of connection to nerd culture, even though they didn't grow up in a socially isolated group of intelligent outcasts, that's fine with me. I don't own "nerd" and there's no nerd club with special rules you have to follow or get kicked out. If not being popular in school taught me anything it's that excluding and othering people is a bad thing, so I say the more the merrier on the nerd bandwagon.
posted by burnmp3s at 3:22 PM on August 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


People don't like geeks? What the hell?

I'm with John Waters: "If you go home with somebody and they don’t have books, don’t fuck them."
posted by Pronoiac at 3:23 PM on August 30, 2011 [12 favorites]


I'm pretty sure she wrote this article because he ultimately wasn't into her. She's just a little too passionate and mean about it.

It's ultimately a cautionary tale about dating her.
posted by rainydayfilms at 3:40 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


the original article is about as mean-spirited as it could be. however, we should take note that this is from Gawker Media, which is about as far from responsible journalism as the News of the World (r.i.p.)

for evidence, please view the first 30 seconds or so of this interview with Gaby Darbyshire the COO of Gawker (warning there is a lead in advert):

http://video.forbes.com/fvn/wtw/gaby-darbyshire-gawker-stir-fry-journalism.

also, from the public views on linkedin we get this:

"Alyssa Bereznak's Summary

Excellent interviewing and researching skills"


http://www.linkedin.com/pub/alyssa-bereznak/1a/590/423

if the young lady is a researcher, why would she go on the a second date with someone who is as accomplished at something she loathes?

i don't know about you but if i had a date with a world-champion of anything. i would at least want to hear their story.
posted by BoZo555 at 4:10 PM on August 30, 2011


Meeting "all" of your best friends the same way is a bad sign, because it suggests you don't know how to bond over anything else. At the very least, it means any gathering of him and his friends is probably going to be all about the hobby.

Meh. People do grow and change together.

I met all of my best friends on a Wheel of Time Usenet group 15 years ago. Jordan was a sloooooooow writer, so we talked about lots of things in between book releases.

Here we are, 15 years later, the damned series STILL isn't done, Jordan is dead, we've...assimilated?...some non-fans into the fold, some of our kids hang out together (both online and offline), the kids all refer to all of the adults as Aunt and Uncle and to each other as cousins. We gather together regularly (a bunch of us are doing so at my house this weekend!), and come from all over the world. And we hardly ever talk about Jordan these days, even though we all remain connected by that thread.

There's nothing that requires that how you met your friends define your relationship with them forever.
posted by MissySedai at 4:14 PM on August 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


I heard that Jon Finkel doesn't actually even know how to play Magic-- but apparently there's some weird thing where you can force a forfeit if you can knock the other person out of the playing area, and that's how he rose to the top.
posted by threeants at 4:36 PM on August 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


And yes, one should not aestheticize one's politics, but it still makes me sad to trip over all these annoying people who beat up the actual outcasts in high school but who are now making social capital out of the fact that they like anime.

Wasn't this one of Kurt Cobain's complains about grunge getting popular among the sort of people who used to beat him up?

I still hide my nerdy interests, but if someone comes back to my place they'll still see graphic novels and XBox games. And I'm glad that now counts as 'normal'.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 5:08 PM on August 30, 2011



In this day and age, if you had the full name of your date before the first date, would you or would you not google them?
Where does the social ethics on this currently stand?


I know its a given, but I don't really like it and I think you can dig up lots of stuff that it would be better to just ask the person about it. Facebook stalking is okay, but I don't want a date to judge me on my angsty teenage blog.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 5:11 PM on August 30, 2011


Internet Hate Machine goes over the top and probably does real damage to a young woman who'll know better one day.

How old would she have to be before we should expect her to know better now, and be held accountable for her reprehensible behavior?

Ugh. So exactly the kind of person I had in mind as I hid my inner nerd in those middling years. What a waste of time and energy.

Yep. Now, this is exactly the kind of person I have in mind when I broadcast my inner nerd -- I have no desire to minimize or apologize for my interests, and it wastes everybody's time when people expect me to do so.
posted by Amanojaku at 5:16 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


We're not typical, and I've seen (met and gotten to know, not just seen, it's not a superficial appearance thing, that would make me a hypocrite) a lot of people displaying "nerd pride" who have no business doing so, co-opting the most superficial parts while still ostracizing (and subtly mocking) the poor virgin neckbeards who actually walk the walk.

I have never ever met anyone like that.
posted by bq at 6:38 PM on August 30, 2011


I never knew until this thread that there was a right and wrong way to be a nerd.

I'll just continue on nerding out over the things that give me my nerdboners whether or not they are the sorts of things that have been sanctioned as being the correctly shaped pegs for the holes in the box labeled "Real Nerd."

That's the cool thing about nerds. You love what you love and when it comes to what others think of your geeky passions, not a single fuck is given.
posted by Windigo at 6:48 PM on August 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


It's not people liking the wrong things. It's the wrong people liking the things you like.

Aaaaaand... we're back to hipsters.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 6:59 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Okcupid is stressful enough without having to worry that someone is going to go home, google you, write about you in a public sphere and make fun of something that you actually happen to be very very good at. Reading that first article was a drag. And yeah, I think it makes the writer an 'Okcupid arsehole' for sure. On preview, exactly what the first commenter said.
posted by bquarters at 7:04 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's not people liking the wrong things. It's the wrong people liking the things you like.

Aaaaaand... we're back to hipsters.


There's a serious overlap. Xiu Xiu was using a DS to make music when I saw him, and there's also sorts of mashups going around of hipster and game iconography....
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:27 PM on August 30, 2011


a lot of people displaying "nerd pride" who have no business doing so, co-opting the most superficial parts while still ostracizing

Well, they're attractive and charismatic so they must be mocking the true nerds.
posted by delmoi at 7:27 PM on August 30, 2011 [3 favorites]



a lot of people displaying "nerd pride" who have no business doing so, co-opting the most superficial parts while still ostracizing

Well, they're attractive and charismatic so they must be mocking the true nerds.


This guy is a hedge fund manager and former professional poker player. That's not the kind of socially awkward nerd I grew up with!
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:29 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I just think it's terribly sad she immediately took his nerdy interest - so obviously far from her own interests - as a dayglo sign that they weren't compatible.

I mean, ok, my fiance plays Magic. Badly, he tells me, but if I go to the closet there's boxes and boxes of the cards. He has special names for his decks, is that normal? I have absolutely no interest in Magic or watching him play or learning to play myself. He has a podcast with some friends called "Across the Nerdiverse," where they talk about things I really don't follow - videogames, comics, so on and so forth.

When it comes to the things I'm an utter obsessed nerd over - Doctor Who (he thinks Torchwood is better. I DON'T EVEN!), Radiohead (He thinks Pablo is the best thing they ever put out), and bicycles (he doesn't care as long as his moves from point A to B) - I can see his eyes glaze over if I talk too long about them and start to go down the rabbithole.

And...so what? I LOVE he has his passions, and he loves I have mine. We support each other in our various pursuits. So what if his is going to PAX and mine is seeing how many times I can see Radiohead on a single tour? It's great to have things in common - and we have plenty - but I think it's really great to have your own world, as well.

I feel that by dismissing anyone who has hobbies, passions or outlooks that don't fit into what she already knows, the author runs the risk of becoming stagnant as a person because the only people she'll ever get to know will just be mirror images of herself.
posted by Windigo at 7:39 PM on August 30, 2011 [11 favorites]


Solution: lie about your name to your dates, lie, lie about everything, fake name, fake Google, fake facebook

every other living person is an enemy spy until proven otherwise

welcome to the snitchocracy
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 9:32 PM on August 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


What I still find jarring is

"Just like you're obligated to mention you're divorced or have a kid in your online profile, shouldn't someone also be required to disclose any indisputably geeky world championship titles?"

Why required? Is that really on par with "I have a child" or "I have been married, and it failed"? The emotional value she puts into Magic seems to be greater than his.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:44 PM on August 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Ok she is now a legit meme. Her picture was used with zero reference to the original event. She has now entered the pantheon along side Good Guy Greg and Scumbag Steve.
posted by Ad hominem at 9:47 PM on August 30, 2011


Was the fact that she worked for Gawker in her OkCupid profile? That would be a deal-breaker for me.
Googling my name can, depending on how deep they dig brings up European politician and a guy from my state that was convicted in the early 90s for running a teenage prostitution ring between Vancouver B.C. and Portland Or.
posted by the_artificer at 11:29 PM on August 30, 2011


Not fair! I would totally go on a date with Jon Finkel ... if he'd go on a date with me. In fact, could somebody set that up? His people can talk to my people.

I don't actually have people. I think you are my people.
posted by iamkimiam at 1:35 AM on August 31, 2011 [8 favorites]


He has special names for his decks, is that normal?

Yeah, most decks get names eventually. You have to call them something, if you aren't just going to refer to them by the complete list of cards they have.
posted by empath at 5:30 AM on August 31, 2011


He's taking it well :

"Look I think it's kind of uncool to do what she did. I dont really want my personal life out in public, and I think theres a sort of general understanding that you don't blog about someone you went out with using their real name in an attempt to denigrate them, especially if they weren't an asshole.
That said I dont think these thoughts were necessarily going through her head, and it seems like enough people are giving her a hard time without me. I dont think this invalidates her as a human being or anything."
posted by SageLeVoid at 6:23 AM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


could somebody set that up?

You might have some competition, there are some rumors about him and Felicia Day.

Kinda sad that I am gossiping about the love lives of Magics nerds on the internet.

Wait a minute, are there any nerd gossip magazines? I'm thinking a glossy checkout line magazine focusing on nerds, If people care about the Cardassians the might care about Jon Finkel too. I can see it now "Johhny Magic and Felicia Day wedding pictures, only in Nerd". Should sell dozens of copies.
posted by Ad hominem at 9:36 AM on August 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


I would subscribe to Nerd. I want a 'where are they now' section with updates on Numa Numa guy etc.
posted by bq at 10:52 AM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


I feel that that is a project that mefites would be uniquely suited to producing.
posted by empath at 11:03 AM on August 31, 2011


Lovecraft: Poker players are just a big of nerds as magic players. Winning ones that is. I suppose the same might go for Hedge Fund managers. Basically anything that requires obsessive math skills is inherently nerd-overlapping wouldnt you say? In this case though, it also seems to have come with a large helping of forgiveness and self-confidence. Good for you finkel!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:16 PM on August 31, 2011


Yeah, most decks get names eventually. You have to call them something, if you aren't just going to refer to them by the complete list of cards they have.

Often deck names are just descriptors, really. Like [archetype][key card(s)/card combo]. For instance: Stax, Control Slaver, Bob Tendrils etc. Which IMO is more like saying "the blue one" than it is calling the deck "Bob" (the "Bob" in "Bob Tendrils" is the nickname of a particular card).
posted by juv3nal at 12:29 PM on August 31, 2011


I would subscribe to Nerd.

I would write for Nerd.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:30 PM on August 31, 2011


and then the inevitable Nerd Blind Items
posted by The Whelk at 12:37 PM on August 31, 2011


Which pro starcraft player 'gg'd early' while trying to inject his larvae into a korean supermodel?
posted by empath at 12:42 PM on August 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


I would write to Nerd, but they would never print my letters.
posted by Eideteker at 12:57 PM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


What metafilter moderator was seen cooing over calamari with a well known link-bait Lothario?
posted by The Whelk at 1:35 PM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


They'd print 'em, but only in Comic Sans.

Ooooh, buuuurrrrn.
posted by iamkimiam at 1:46 PM on August 31, 2011


This tippy top type designer doesn't want to admit he doesn't do his own work anymore, so he might be a red faced and orphaned after invitations to his event came printed in Arial.
posted by The Whelk at 1:48 PM on August 31, 2011


I will offer my free copy-editing services. Please someone make this.
posted by bq at 3:46 PM on August 31, 2011


I'm with John Waters: "If you go home with somebody and they don’t have books, don’t fuck them."

only follow this if you're in some strange D/s relationship with John Waters at the same time
posted by the mad poster! at 3:57 PM on August 31, 2011


I once had the idea to start a porn magazine for people interested in intelligent women, it would be called "Big Brains" and would have essays and artwork by women along with a centerfold of their CV, I never did it because someone convinced me it was just as objectifying.

If anyone wants to run with Nerd go for it.
posted by Ad hominem at 4:30 PM on August 31, 2011


Ten best reactions to the Gizmodo post.

While I REALLY don't like what she did here, for a lot of reasons, I think making her into a meme is a little over the top.
posted by sweetkid at 6:11 PM on August 31, 2011




I once had the idea to start a porn magazine for people interested in intelligent women, it would be called "Big Brains" and would have essays and artwork by women along with a centerfold of their CV, I never did it because someone convinced me it was just as objectifying.


The Brothel Of Slaked Intellectual Lusts from Planescape: Torment?

I can't help feel that Nerd magazine would be hijacked by Neil Gaiman, Amanda Palmer, and the BoingBoing crowd.



Lovecraft: Poker players are just a big of nerds as magic players. Winning ones that is. I suppose the same might go for Hedge Fund managers. Basically anything that requires obsessive math skills is inherently nerd-overlapping wouldnt you say? In this case though, it also seems to have come with a large helping of forgiveness and self-confidence. Good for you finkel!


Yeah my brother's like that - more of a traditional nerd. We have nothing in common, and I'm honestly more likely to end up writing for Gawker than counting cards.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:29 PM on August 31, 2011


I once had the idea to start a porn magazine for people interested in intelligent women, it would be called "Big Brains" and would have essays and artwork by women along with a centerfold of their CV, I never did it because someone convinced me it was just as objectifying.

Actually, this is one of the angles that Suicide Girls tries to sell. Although that's more "Manic pixie dream girl" then "smart girl" but at least a baseline intelligence is sort of part of the 'MPDG' ideal.
posted by delmoi at 9:29 PM on August 31, 2011


Tiger Beatdown weighs in

Right now, Bereznak is being called a “predator,” a “gigantic bitch,” an “elitist,” a “soulless harpie,” a “narcissist,” and a “dumb woman,” and that’s just on this one post. What did she do? She led a guy on! She fucked with a guy’s head! She broke a guy’s spirits! She… didn’t go out on a third date with a guy, because she didn’t share his interests. CATASTROPHE! ATROCITY! Alert The Internet, Ph.D!
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:16 PM on August 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


So, that's twice in two days where Tiger Beatdown goes with an inexplicably obtuse reading of someone else's writing in order to justify some tortured feminist contrarian tub-thumping? When all you've got is a hammer, etc.
posted by klangklangston at 1:03 AM on September 1, 2011 [9 favorites]


I have no doubt that creepy sexism, nerdrage, and entitlement are rife on many sites discussing this, and that Bereznak has become an icon of Every Girl Who Wouldn't Date You.

Still a classless thing to do.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 1:13 AM on September 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I suspect that Mr Beatdown only red the altered version, where she doesn't date him for messing up the first 2 dates, instead of not dating him because he is a "dweeb".
posted by Canageek at 5:33 AM on September 1, 2011


I enjoy Sady Doyle, and she's right in that AB can choose to not date someone for any reason whatsoever, including no real reason, but a lot of the objection isn't that she chose not to date him (though some is), a lot is that she chose to write a nasty article about him and how he is a weirdo loser on a major website. The comments point this out, but are ignored.

I am unclear how she is a predator for this. She didn't deliberately go out with him in order to write about him for Gizmodo.
posted by jeather at 5:47 AM on September 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


i find it interesting that the "predator" article is from kotaku.au, another arm of gawker/nick denton.
posted by nadawi at 5:55 AM on September 1, 2011


I love image macro memes, especially when they've got sort of a thunderbolt-of-justice thrust to them. I liked the first dozen or so that arose on Quickmeme but after checking that page again last night, I see that the response has really taken a turn for the ugly. Damn it nerds, I was really trying to be on your side for this one! Alyssa Bereznak may well be a cruel, thoughtless person but angry nerds typing revenge fantasies around a woman's face still squick me out more. Ohwells. It was a fun two-minutes hate while it lasted.
posted by EatTheWeak at 11:06 AM on September 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am glad that Tiger Beatdown has now firmly established itself as the web's premiere nerd baiting site. I can now safely choose to not take anything written there seriously ever again.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:50 PM on September 3, 2011


a lot of the objection isn't that she chose not to date him (though some is), a lot is that she chose to write a nasty article about him and how he is a weirdo loser on a major website.

Doyle's point is that (as a radical feminist) she supports Bereznak's right to be an ass on the internet without being called nasty names, and particularly not gendered insults like harpy and bitch. I thought the Gizmodo article was awful, especially the version with the don't mess with us badass Gawker girls or we'll take you out kind of ending, but I can't disagree with Doyle's point.

I am glad that Tiger Beatdown has now firmly established itself as the web's premiere nerd baiting site.

So Gizmodo publishes Bereznak's nerd troll in the first place, and Kotaku, another Gawker site, picks a cross-Gawker feud with them for more hits. Clearly Tiger Beatdown is the extreme nerd-baiting victor here.
posted by immlass at 2:58 PM on September 3, 2011


she supports Bereznak's right to be an ass on the internet without being called nasty names, and particularly not gendered insults like harpy and bitch.

You call someone nasty names on the internet, you sort of have to expect to get called nasty names back. I don't disagree with all of Sady Doyle's post -- a lot of the backlash has been very sexist, and a lot of weird stuff about how she doesn't have the right to just not want to date someone -- but it read like it was responding to an article that wasn't the one on Gizmodo, because that one wasn't "I met this guy and we didn't hit it off because I don't really like his hobbies" it was "I met this guy and I thought he was normal but he's a big weirdo loser and he should have to warn people that he's a weirdo loser before he's allowed to date normal people like me".

To make it clear, it's not that she thought the latter -- if even she did -- it's that she wrote it down, named the guy, and published it in a major publication.
posted by jeather at 6:13 PM on September 3, 2011 [4 favorites]


a lot of the backlash has been very sexist, and a lot of weird stuff about how she doesn't have the right to just not want to date someone

Which is the stuff Doyle cares about instead of tut-tutting Bereznak for daring to post something mean online. Saying Bereznak shouldn't have been walking down that part of the internet in those words because she's asking for trouble may in fact be correct in a technical sense, but thinking about it in those terms puts the inevitable two-minute internet hate into a different perspective.
posted by immlass at 7:33 PM on September 3, 2011


Bereznak did post something mean online, though. Do I think she deserved to get insulted back? Actually, yes. Do I think she deserved to get creepy sexist insults? No. She didn't just choose not to date someone, or even choose not to date someone and post about it generically online, she chose not to date someone and called that person out, by name, in a fairly nasty manner.

Doyle is writing as if the backlash on Bereznak was all and entirely about her choosing not to date the guy and not her choosing to write about him by name online. (And as if Finkel was nasty to Bereznak in response to this article, or even to not dating her further. From what I have seen, he was not.)

I disliked very much the framing of Doyle's post, which was disingenuous.
posted by jeather at 7:54 PM on September 3, 2011 [4 favorites]


not her choosing to write about him by name online.

What? Doyle spends her first two paragraphs talking about how the only widely applicable moral lesson she got from Bereznak's article was not to use the guy's name! Jeez, I know beating on Doyle is one of our own local two-minute internet hates right now, but hate on Doyle for something she actually said.

Bereznak did post something mean online, though. Do I think she deserved to get insulted back? Actually, yes.

By whom? Finkel, whose tweets quoted in this thread make him out to be a reasonably classy guy? Or by any old random dude who got his feelings hurt because somebody was bitchy about his hobbies? So she deserves to be called "a vile human being" (so glad I have favorites turned off so I can't see how many that comment has now) and so on and so forth? We're in disagreement about basic principles here.
posted by immlass at 10:25 PM on September 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


124
posted by empath at 10:52 PM on September 3, 2011


What? Doyle spends her first two paragraphs talking about how the only widely applicable moral lesson she got from Bereznak's article was not to use the guy's name! Jeez, I know beating on Doyle is one of our own local two-minute internet hates right now, but hate on Doyle for something she actually said.

Doyle starts out saying that Bereznak should not have used his name. She then goes on to say that only one person in the entire world is that invested in MtG, which cannot possibly be true: if there are world championships, it beggars belief to think that there was only one person good enough to have a chance at winning them, only one person who has enough interest in it to build a social life around it. I also gather that Finkel did, in fact, bring up MtG on the first or second date, which seems reasonable.

Then Doyle says that people find Bereznak guilty of oppression -- which is true, but it was far from the only thing people commented on. The entire post was about how women are allowed to have preferences in who they date, which was a nice and reasonable post, using a story where someone not only had preferences but also insulted the guy by name in a major publication.

I don't hate Doyle. I like Doyle (or her writing, as I do not know her). I think this was a bad post of hers, I think it misrepresented one situation.

By whom?

I don't terribly care, honestly. I guess we are in disagreement here. I am okay with criticism of a post or an author being at the same level of that post. (I will mention that I think this is fair *because she is an adult*, and *because she posted it for her job in a high profile publication*.)
posted by jeather at 5:29 AM on September 4, 2011


So Gizmodo publishes Bereznak's nerd troll in the first place, and Kotaku, another Gawker site, picks a cross-Gawker feud with them for more hits. Clearly Tiger Beatdown is the extreme nerd-baiting victor here

Tiger Beatdown also had that disingenuous George R.R. Martin article the other day. That makes two to the Gawker networks one.

In both cases, Doyle makes good points, but goes out of her way to be edgy, presumably for the sake of hits.
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:04 AM on September 5, 2011


Tiger Beatdown also had that disingenuous George R.R. Martin article the other day. That makes two to the Gawker networks one.

That was a pretty straightforward bash-on-a-book-you-hate rant posted to a popular blog site. The word "disingenuous" has an actual meaning, and "stuff I disagree with" isn't it.
posted by verb at 7:03 PM on September 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The word "disingenuous" has an actual meaning, and "stuff I disagree with" isn't it.

Agreed. However, the fact that she deliberately omitted parts of the book that didn't match her thesis could, with some justification, be labeled disingenuous.
posted by Joey Michaels at 2:14 AM on September 6, 2011


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