Being an Absolute Geek
I have four kids. They are awesome. I have a serious job: I’m a senior prosecutor. In all respects, I am a very serious person. Watch out when you see me in public, my shirt is tucked in and I am wearing high-class loafers.
In all seriousness, I am anything but. I don’t just follow popular games on Twitch, I don’t even have a gaming system. My sole exposure to all the pleasantries of E3 comes from Twitch and Youtube. What a drag.
On top of it all, I watch anime. Not only do I watch anime, I aggressively devour it. I am peculiar in my tastes, but I have hit all the normal highlights: Naruto, SAO, One Piece, Bleach, etc. I have attended Anime Expos in LA and Comic Cons in SD. By all accounts, I am a geek.
The question remains though: how long can this personal slant be acceptable? I am (ugg) 35 years old. That means that I am responsible for molding young minds at work and molding young minds at home. Where do I draw the line? If I draw too much association with the immature aspects of my subordinates/children, then I will gain respect, but I will lose authority. If I do the opposite, then the reverse will occur.
At the end of the day, I think the only answer is being yourself. If I am a hardcore geek that requires hours of anime, deep-dives into future Pokemon consoles, and up-to-date programming paradigm news, then so be it. I have raised my children with the belief that nothing is off limits (except sex). If they watch violence, so be it. If they watch conspiracy and corruption, so be it. They need to see the reaches of the human experience. I draw a line at sex because sex is permanent. If my daughters have kids, that is a lifelong commitment.
My children have excelled. They are reading at least five grades above their current grade and are enjoying the benefits of being in “gifted” education. I should owe this to my wife, as she is the maestro of our home, but deep down, I want to owe it to the geekities I have afforded them.
When my children attend Anime Expo, they learn a ton. When my children watch hours of anime, they learn new cultures and new emotions. When my children learn to program, they learn to think analytically. I don’t know what success is, as I only have my own context, but I think this is working.
Allow your children to be independent. Allow them to be successful. But above all else, when they show interest is something, geek the fuck out with them. Geek out, no matter what. Geek out, and never look back.