The fact that some—regardless of ethnicity—look and scoff at black geeks’ bookish airs, that just adds to the coolness of it all. Because a true geek doesn’t care. And there is the essence of geek power. It says: I love something, and I’m going to tell the world I love it, and if you dismiss me for that, it just shows that my love is greater than your scorn. In fact, the more you hate what I love, the more you deride it, the cooler I become. My love is so strong that your disdain means nothing to me. The more you scoff, the stronger I get. I know who I am. I know the beauty I see, and nothing in the world can stop me from singing out that truth with my life. Nothing you can do about it. I like it and I’m not supposed to. I like it, in part, because I’m not supposed to. I have reached coolness by walking in the other direction so far that I went around the world and hit it from the other side.
Mat Johnson from his essay “The Geek” in the collection Black Cool, edited by Rebecca Walker.