I Blerd

A Black nerd is a Blerd. A Bleek is a Black geek. They are not  new trends, they fit in the Americana tradition of elevating the sub culture into a movement. The movement that Blerds and Bleeks (the people and the word) lives in Geekdom and Nerd-dom.

There is a rift of what’s a geek and what’s a nerd. A Geek is essentially a fan-boy or fan-girl with Hipster dna. They are obsessed with comic books, video games etc. like the Nerd but they are cool and socially adaptable where the nerd is a bit more socially inept. A Nerd is academic or idea base. Nerd are heavy into Math and Science and literature and Technology and creating the gadgets or the stories that the Geek holds dear to there heart. But as time move on the words are becoming interchangeable. Geeks are getting into the industries that they grew up loving and being an obsessive fan of and creating. As nerds are becoming more social and cool as being labeled or even labeling yourself one has hit the mainstream. The geek or nerd is a generation or two removed from being socially oppress groups.

Speaking of a socially oppress group the African American also produces nerds and geeks, breaking stereotypes of what a African American really is. ‘You talk white’ or ‘You act white’ were and sometimes still are stereotypes giving to suburban blacks, or proper speaking blacks, or those interested in star wars or star trek and may listen to other forms of music outside of R&B and Hip-Hop. You can now find everywhere on the internet from websites, blogs and twitter that the black nerd or geek has arrived.

So what separates a Blerd from a Nerd? Is it only the skin color or does it run deeper. Blerd or Bleek and even Blipster (Black Hipster) doesn’t appear to be derogatory terms or mistaken as such. It is embraced. It is use to describe oneself now such as the terms geek and nerd have lose it’s negative meanings.

Is there a rift of meaning between Blerd or Bleek? Only  difference I could see is Blerd is the dominate term over Bleek. Who’s knows why, maybe because it was first. However the term seems to lumb in a few black subcultures such as Afro-punk, Afro- futuristic or any other terms that stray away from what it is meant to be black in the decades past. Even Hip-Hop has it’s Blerd;The backpacker or conscient rapper.

The major question here is why embrace the term? Is it important to separate oneself from the Nerds or Geeks of other ethnicities? Or was that term created to separate the Blerd from nerds or geeks of other ethnicities? Whatever the reason the term is real and the embrace by those who identify  as Blerd is real. But once again is there any difference between a Blerd and a Nerd outside of race. There is no word for an asian nerd. And if you are one to embrace the term Blerd have you also embraced the word African American. Which is a term that baffle progressive Blacks on the reason behind it. Why not just American? Why not just Nerd?

I am a Blerd and an African American but when asked I simply use Black or Nerd. Most of my friends and peers would call me a weirdo. So am I a Bleirdo. Yes of course.

We are all  labeled something. We all at times lable others. As we also label ourselves. Either good or bad. Let’s not get into the infamous N-word. But is the acknowledgement of the difference a issue. Or is there a fundamental ideological approach of life that separates Blerds from the entire subculture of Nerds outside of the grouping in of other alternative Black subcultures. Afro-punk would get tossed into the labeling of Blerds but Punk rockers are not considered Nerds. So is Blerd a substitute for alternative Black culture? Which causes one to ask, What is the dominate Black culture? There is no real answers. You can ask 100 people and get receive 50 different answers.

Why question the meaning behind the choice to accept or choose a label for yourself? Well on the road to self understanding the question is valid. The answer will differ from one to the next. If you know what you are or who you are it’s easier to accept a title. Especially a cool one such as Blerd. However there are underlying reasons for the creation of all words or terms. Either to separate the difference between relating terms or to give identity for those without identity.

About christopherreel

Christopher Reel is a writer and cartoonist from Philadelphia.


  1. Pingback: I Blerd | Genius Papers

  2. A Bleirdo. This was funny, haha. Thanks fit the smiles 😊


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