The Geek Shall Inherit the Earth

“Hey, Younger Self.  You know that wooden bookcase near the closet that houses all the  encyclopedias?  The one you use when your parents tell you to look stuff up?”




“Well, by the time you’re out of college, you won’t need it.”


“You’re kidding,” said Little Me.


“Nope.  And that state of the art word processor that your parents bought you for school…you know, the cool typewriter with the LED screen?”


“Yeah, I love that thing.  It was better than just about everybody’s.”


“It’s going to be obsolete.”


“How obsolete?  I know there’s the computer, but you have to be like an aeronautical scientist to figure out how to make it do anything other than one single line of text repeated over and over again.”


“That will change.  An imbecile will be able to make feature films on this one.  And that CD disc walkman you have for working out…Say bye, bye.”


“Come on, those just came out on the market.”


“I know, but they’ll be something better and smaller.”


“Impossible, you can’t get smaller than the CD.”


“Yep, you can.  It will be called the MP3.”


“That sounds like weaponry.”


“Maybe, but it’s beautiful and you can even email them back and forth.  That’s right, you can send songs to people.”


“You mean through the mail?  That already happens.  You join Columbia records and get like a zillion records for a penny.”


“Oh, sh*t, that’s right.  You don’t know about email yet.  It’s like mail, but instead of waiting for days, you wait seconds.”




“Seconds.  See, done.  I’ve sent you and email.”


“But, where is it?”


“It’s on the computer you will have in the future.”


“This is getting weird.  I’m not sure I’ll have a computer.  I don’t even like computer class.  All those big white boxes with the flashing green cursor…it’s not appealing.”


“All of that will change.  By the time you’re done with your first job, you’ll be completely reliant on your computer.”


“What do you mean completely reliant?”


“Well, you’ll use it – everyday, every minute.”


“What the feck for?”


“For looking things up.  For finding places, for reading, for writing, for doing just about everything.  Also, when you don’t feel like carrying your computer around, you’ll do computer-ish things on your phone.”


“My phone?  The phone is connected to the wall, Stupid.”


“One day it won’t be.  You’ll carry it in your pocket.”


“No matter how big my butt gets, I will not have room for the goddermned phone.”


“The phone will get smaller, even as your a** gets bigger.”


“Thanks.  Wait, how much smaller?”


“Smaller than your passport.”


“Oh my god!”


“Tell me about it.  It’s pretty feckin’ cool, huh?”


“Yeah.  Will I be able to afford all of this?  I mean I’m assuming I’ll be totally rich, but just in case…”


“You will afford it.  In fact, most yahoos out there in the modern world will be able to afford it.”


“Jesus, what a utopia!”


“Well, not totally.”


“What do you mean?  Do the computers eventually eat us?”


“Not as far as I can see.  But, the internet, email, your phone – it will be filled with a lot of sh*t – spam, trolling, bullying, cat videos…”


“Cat videos?  How boring?”


“I assure you.  They’re not.  Cat videos will become one of the most fascinating things on the internet.  CATS ARE THE STARS OF TOMORROW!”


(Watch this 30 second cat video.  It’s feckin’ worth it.)



“What about these trolls?  Do they live down in caves and run the internet?”


“Well, you could say that.  But, they’re not trolls in the sense that you’re thinking of them.  I only wish they were little hobbits with big ears and gigantic feet and hearts of gold.  No, these cretins are usually lonely guys sitting in a basement somewhere and being d*cks for fun.”


“Strange.  What do you think these trolls did before computers?”


“They probably made weird collages of celebrities and collected obscure action figures while living off the kindness of their moms.”


“That’s odd.  Is this what the lord meant by – the meek shall inherit the earth?”


“I think that’s a biblical misunderstanding like a lot of things in the good book.”


“What do you mean?”


“Well, I don’t think it was ever – the meek shall inherit the earth.”


“What was it then?”


“Probably something more like – the geek shall inherit the earth.”


“Oh no.”


“Oh yes.”


“Is there any way to stop them?”


“Oh dear god.  What will that mean for us – the middle people – the people stuck somewhere between geek and cool cat…”


“We will blog.”


“What the hell does that mean?  Blog?”


“It’s like a diary, but it can be about anything.”


“Wait, but I already have a diary.”


“Yeah, but now people will read it.”


“What the feck?!  I don’t want people reading my diary!”


“In the future, you will.”


“Oh, dear god.  Should I stay young forever like Peter Pan or pop singer, Tiffany?”



“No, not unless you want to wear shoulder pads for the rest of your life.”


“Yeah, those are ugly.  They make everyone look like the letter Y.”


“You’re damn right they do.  Whole blogs will be dedicated to shoulder pad desecration in the future.”


Why was this okay?


“What?  That’s outrageous.  Don’t people have better things to do with their time?”


“Better how?  1980s style better?  You mean like crafting?  Sticker books?”


Little me starts to cry.  “You are so right!  So right!  I need to grow up and get the feck out of the 80s right now!  But, no matter what happens, I am not giving up my affection for C. Thomas Howell.”


Pony Boy, I will always love you, no matter what Older Me says.


“Oh, yes you will.”


“You’re kidding.”


“Nope, he’ll be a goner in your eyes.”


“Why?  Does he die in a plane crash like the guy in La Bamba?”


“No, Howell is no longer famous.  And you are gay.”


“Gay?  What the feck is that?”


“Don’t worry.  It’s pretty cool.”



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Photo creds:  howell, shoulderpads, tiffany


40 thoughts on “The Geek Shall Inherit the Earth

  1. Love it.
    Especially the last line. “Don’t worry. It’s pretty cool.” Nicely written. I like writing stories with just dialogs in them too! It’s funny providing a narrative without a narrator.

    1. you know, i think i do it from time to time because i don’t want everything to be just a first person essay from me. and my hope, my hope, is that dialogue writing will keep me ‘sharp’ in some way. i don’t know sharp for what… but, i do think there’s some kind of value in writing that way. hearing the conversation in your head and going with it. don’t know. loved your last piece by the way too. xo, sm

      1. Oh goody. It’ll be like when I got my first apartment, on my own, and I was finally able to walk around naked without bothering anyone. It’s gonna be great!

      2. omg, i talk about just that thing in my book. literally, when i got my first apartment in new york all i could do was walk around in the buff and make coffee. it was like eden for me. loooool.

    1. it might’ve been lcd, but then it might’ve been led. i can’t tell the difference anyway. i’m the idiot walking through an electronics store asking them to explain to me 15 different times the difference between plasma and the other feckin’ one. the other feckin’ one is what we have. wifesy is better at these things. i just got over ‘speak n’ spell.’

      1. i still don’t know the difference. i’m sitting here going, ‘did mine light up?’ i’m like lcd/ led blind. it’s like being colorblind, only more tardo. sigh.

  2. I love, love, love this post. Well, I love everything you write, but this one, especially. I wanted to join Columbia House sooooo badly when I was a kid, but my mom always said no. Then she told me to go clean my room. Always. =)

  3. Oh my god, I remember when I first laid eyes on Pony Boy. Melt! And the letter Y comment is hysterical. I hate that those were even a thing.

  4. I try and pull the old, “when I was your age we had these things called albums” line with Teen. She just laughs and points at her record player and tells me she was born in the wrong era. I love this post.

  5. A dear friend got the IBM XT 286 back in 1987. It had a 10MB hard drive and a floppy drive. “I don’t know how I’ll ever use that much space!” hahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!

  6. I loved being a fly on the wall for that conversation. I can think of a few things I would like to tell my younger self. However, I don’t think I would listen.

  7. 1988, I’m a senior in high school. My dad says computers are a waste of money, remote controlled T.V.’s just make people lazy, and why have a VCR when you can rent it with your video. I leave for 10 months and come back. There is a computer, a new t.v. with a remote, and a VCR. The 80’s were weird.

  8. I must admit: I miss parts of the 80s. I was born in 1980, so my memories of it are different from most folks (I don’t recall the fashions, really). I recall watching awesome cartoons, badass movies and playing Atari. I look around now and say, “Sweet. Tech rules.”

    And I just realized I dated myself…

    1. tech IS awesome. tho, i’m glad that i didn’t grow up with as much of it as there is today. at the same time, i’m the same as you – i’m never without my mac and i’m a bit of a gadget girl whether i care to admit to it or not ;0

  9. It is crazy to think about how much things have changed in such a short amount of time.Technology p!sses me off because it won’t slow down and I can’t keep up. I’m still practically using crayons for God’s sake. I keep them in my shoulder pads.

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