Back, by popular demand - a re-post of a story from a yesteryear
I know I'm a geek. That's no secret to me or anyone else. It was obvious in high school. In tenth grade art class my art partner and I made a life size papier mache Mr. Spock, hand lifted in the "Live Long and Prosper" gesture. As if you needed further proof, I was also in AP biology class, AP English and band. I played French horn, very badly, during spring semester concert seasons and in the fall I played the trumpet for marching band, even worse. I was too bad to even go to Band Camp. So, instead I went to Girl Scout camp.
For ten years I was a Girl Scout, and I was at scout camp every summer either as a camper or a counselor. I perfected several geek skills there such as lanyard braiding, decoupage, and making prints of mushroom spores. But I was a lazy geek. In ten years I earned only 17 badges. And at this late date I no longer have my Girl Scout handbook to tell me what the badges meant. So I'll have to guess about them:
From the looks of the things, going from top left to right, I'd say I excelled in Hitchhiking, Camping, Witchcraft, Art, Punk Style, Swimming, Walking a Straight Line, Skating (I know this was a lie), Barista Arts, Sewing (Another lie - I suck at sewing), Piratical Looting, Tsunami Preparation, Nature Studies, Basket Weaving, Pretending to Be an Indian, Megaphone Dictator and Green Peppermint Identification. Wow! What a gal!
Witchcraft, Punk Style and Megaphone Dictator truly predicted my adult personality. Barista Arts perhaps even foreshadowed my blogging career as the Chai-rista. But what did Piratical Looting, Tsunami Preparation and Green Peppermint Identification teach a geek like me? Here's a guess:
Piratical Looting Badge - Prepares girl for a future of Dumpster Diving in central Virginia. Teaches treasure spotting skills at distances up to 50 yards and speeds of 60 mph. Instructs girl in maintaining fitness levels adequate to lift a WWII vintage seven-drawer file cabinet into a station wagon. Teaches girl trash salvage preparation techniques such as bungee cord selection, and truck bed packing strategies.
Tsunami Preparation Badge - Encourages girl to plan for unlikely global disasters such as flooding caused by gigantic meteor striking the ocean, like in the movie Deep Impact. Advises girl that, in the actual event, she might want to live in the mountains of central Virginia, because it will suddenly be the beach. (Only a geek girl would worry about this.)
Green Peppermint Identification Badge - Leads girl to understand the difference between good and bad Christmas candies. Encourages girl to avoid eating green peppermints, sweet and sours, licorice jelly beans, and sticks of spearmint gum given by grandparents, doctors and elderly church members. Prepares girl to re-gift rejected sweets to younger siblings and/or to discard candies in ways that are difficult to detect. See also: Candy Heart Identification Badge and Candy Peanut Identification Badge. (Even geeks need to know good candy from bad.)
But I couldn't be a full on geek as I write before you today, if I didn't commit myself to a fairly geeky career. So, I got myself a master's degree in Library Science and hurried to become a web librarian. These days I engage my geekitude in human/computer interaction, computer interface usability issues in libraries and by making web pages and floor plans. Holy hairbun, Batman!