“Not that there’s anything wrong with that!”

From: Seinfeld

Genre: Television

Who said it?: A lot of the the cast!

The story behind the quote: There’s a reason why Seinfeld was the most popular television show in the 80’s and 90’s. It was funny. It took risks in their jokes and, the best thing of all, it was a show about nothing. There was no lesson to be learned. No moral about how you should behave. It was just about comedian Jerry Seinfeld, his best friend George Costanza, his ex-girlfriend Elaine Benez and the next door neighbor, Cozmo Kramer. However, the writers were intelligent enough to make sure that the stories to not really offend anyone but rather took a humorous look at life.

One example of this would be “The Outing” episode. Here, Elaine notices that two girls are listening to her conversation with Jerry and George. She then veers the conversation to make it look like Jerry and George are a gay couple, which the two eavesdroppers believe. It turns out that one of the eavesdroppers was a reporter and mistakenly “outs” them. Of course, Jerry and George realizes that a lot of people are going to think they’re gay and try to correct the reporter, but, they both don’t want to seem that being gay is a bad thing. So, they always mention that there is nothing wrong with being gay every time they deny that they’re homosexuals.

You can also watch a pretty good summary of the entire episode by going to this link.

Geek wisdom: We love geeky stuff, like comic books, video games and superheroes. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Other people may have problems with it but we have to know that they’re the ones with the problems, not us.

Even the people that care for us will say that they “worry about us” since we’re so involved with hanging out at Comic-con or staying up late to catch the midnight release of  the game that we’ve waited months for. They simply don’t realize that there is nothing wrong with us. We all have our quirks that makes us different from each other. Sometimes we have to remind people that there’s nothing wrong with the things that makes us who we are.

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“More cowbell!”

From: Saturday Night Live

Genre: Television

Who said it?: Bruce Dickenson

The story behind the quote: The quote comes from a Saturday Night Live skit. In a supposed video recording of the actual creation of Blue Oyster Cult’s hit song “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper,” a legendary record producer named Bruce Dickenson (played by the guest host Christopher Walken) sits in the session. The band starts playing, but they are distracted by (fictional) band member Gene Frenkle’s (portrayed by Will Ferrel) playing the cowbell too loud. However, Bruce Dickenson disagrees and actually wants more cowbell to be played!

Bruce Dickenson then tells Gene to really play up the cowbell on the next try. The band now find the cowbell playing even more annoying but Bruce tells them that it was actually better because of the excited playing of Gene’s cowbell. Gene then volunteers to pull it back on the next take. However, he plays it in a passive-aggressive manner and explodes in anger. Bruce Dickenson steps in and says that the cowbell is really necessary to make (Don’t Fear) the Reaper a great song.

Gene Frenkle then gives a speech that it’s his duty to play the cowbell to the best of his ability, to which Bruce Dickenson agrees wholeheartedly. The band then agrees that they should work as a team and record the song to the best of their ability. The last shot of the skit shows that fictional Gene Frenkle died in 2000.

You can also watch the entire clip below:

Geek wisdom: The thing that you thinks as annoying or bad? Well, there are going to be some people who are going to like it. In fact, they may even love it! While the band members of Blue Oyster Cult found the cowbell annoying, Bruce Dickenson heard the same thing and actually wanted it to be more prominent in the track. This is because everyone is different.

If you think about the way we geeks talk about comics, toys and the like, we show a lot of passion and love for these things. But we do know that a lot of people cannot understand why we love these things and just find those topics silly and a waste of time.

This goes both ways as well. You may have a friend that likes something that you do not care for. Maybe it’s talking about  how their Fantasy NFL team is performing or maybe they have to rush home to watch the latest episode of Glee.

 

“More than meets the eye!”

From: The Transformers

Genre: Cartoons, Television

Who said it?: No one really… it’s part of the intro song

The story behind the quote: The Transformers is one of the most beloved cartoons of the 80’s. You probably know the story: Optimus Prime and the Autobots fight to save the Earth from the evil Decepticons led by Megatron. What made the characters incredibly memorable was the fact that they could (as the name suggests) transform into other things. Optimus Prime would transform into a gigantic trailer truck while Megatron would change into a gun. This led to a fantastic toyline. Never mind that people would complain that the cartoon was just a big commercial for the toys. It didn’t matter; the show was fantastic as well.

The quote actually comes from the theme song of each of the seasons of the regular (so-called) Generation 1 continuity (none of the Michael Bay movies or even the later cartoons). The title song lays it out: there is more than meets the eye for the series.

Geek wisdom: There is more to people than what we just see on the outside. Each and every one has different facets and you will not be able to determine them with just a simple look. You would have to go deeper than that.

We can shun people just because, from our initial impressions, we judge them instantly without really getting to know them. But everyone has something to offer so it’s best to really try to understand other people before we judge them. You never really know if your first impression should be your last impression of a person.

“My goal is not to wake up at 40 with the bitter realization that I’ve wasted my life in a job I hate because I was forced to decide on a career in my teens.”

From: Daria

Genre: Cartoons, Television

Who said it?: Daria Morgendorffer

The story behind the quote: Daria was an animated series from MTV that started during the late 90’s. It was a spin-off from another MTV series, Beavis and Butt-Head. However, while Beavis and Butt-head’s humor is usually derived from the duo’s stupidity, Daria was a bit more intellectual. Daria is a very smart teenager but with a very realistic, cynical   and anti-social view in life. She may come off as an underachiever but prefers to see things in her own point of view.

The quote comes from the Season 2 episode “Gifted.” Daria is invited to a school for gifted teens and, during the program, one of the counselors asks her what she wants to do. Daria comments that it’s a little too soon to be thinking of that simply because she hasn’t decided. The counselor pushes her to answer and that’s when she delivers the quote.

Geek wisdom: When we are young, all we see from our perspective is what we think we should be doing in order to be happy. We may like video games so we think that being a programmer and getting a job making video games will make us happy. However, what we don’t know is that, as we grow older, we gain and lose interest in different things. It’s a fact of life: as time moves on, we change in subtle and different ways.

It’s fun to dream as a child, but we should always leave room in our minds for the possibility that the dream may become a nightmare.

“The answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything is 42.”

From: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Genre: Books, Movies, Television

Who said it?: Deep Thought

The story behind the quote: This is actually my first “book” and “radio” categories entry, but I am cheating a bit here since I’m getting it from the latest movie adapted from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series. The overall story follows Arthur Dent, an ordinary man who survives the destruction of the Earth with Ford Prefect (an alien in disguise) and goes off to have different adventures.

The quote comes from a scene early in the story. Aliens created a supercomputer named Deep Thought and ask it to answer the question of life, the universe and everything. Deep Thought mentions that it would take seven and a half million years to get the Ultimate Answer.

So, seven and a half million years pass. The aliens (their ancestors anyway) come back to Deep Thought to get the answer. Deep Thought gives his reply that the answer is 42. The aliens complain that the answer cannot be correct. Deep Thought then says that he cannot give an answer since the aliens don’t know what the question actually is. The computer does say that another computer, even more powerful than itself, will be able to know what the Ultimate Question is.

SPOILER: The computer more powerful than Deep Thought is actually the Earth.

Geek wisdom: The “meaning of life” question is meaningless since the answer is, and always be, something different for each person. The reason being is that the question is also going to be different for each person. Deep Thought felt that it was a perfectly legitimate answer since, for him, it made sense. For others, it was rubbish. That’s because the Ultimate Question is different for each and every one of them.

When we ask ourselves “what is the meaning of life” we are actually asking how we personally think what we want in life. If you ask ourselves the Ultimate Question and we cannot find what the Ultimate Answer is within ourselves, then you may not know what direction your life is going. If you are able to answer it, then you have already found your purpose in life.

“Give me something to sing about!”

From: Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Genre: Television

Who said it?: Buffy Summers

The story behind the quote: Buffy the Vampire Slayer comes from the mind of Joss Whedon (the same guy that thought of Firefly). The idea behind it was it was the direct opposite of what we see in horror movies; instead of the girl being the damsel in distress, it’s actually the damsel that actually does the rescuing. While this was creative in its own right, the series did other creative stuff, such as the episode where no one talked and the one where everyone breaks into musical numbers. Speaking of the musical episode, it’s entitled “Once More with Feeling” and it’s where the quote comes from.

While bursting out into song and dance numbers may not be a problem, it does become an issue since there is a tendency for victims to dance so fast that they burst into flames! Another side effect of inexplicably singing about your feelings is that you tend to tell the truth about stuff you want to keep hidden.

By the way, MASSIVE SPOILERS coming!

Anyway, Buffy goes and confronts the demon while under the influence of the singing and dancing spell. While singing, she reveals that her friends, the Scoobies, don’t understand why she’s been so unhappy since she was brought back from the dead, making them wonder if the spell that did it went wrong. It turns out the spell worked perfectly. It’s just that her soul was brought to heaven and she was happy. Their resurrection of her ripped her soul from heaven and now, even if she is with her friends, it feels like hell.

Realizing that she exposed her true feelings, she starts to smolder and burn up from dancing when Spike (a vampire who can’t kill… long story) stops her and consoles her that there is a lot of pain in life and it will eventually heal in time.

Geek wisdom: Life can be painful and sometimes we cannot find a reason to “sing about” life. However, as Spike said, the pain is just temporary. It will eventually get better as long as we keep on going. It can be a struggle, especially when it feels overwhelming. In fact, it is the hard times in life that makes us appreciate the good things in life.

We have to take the good and the bad. That’s what comprises life and you can’t take it any other way.

“Shut up and take my money!”

From: Futurama

Genre: Cartoons, Television

Who said it?: Fry

The story behind the quote: This is another quote from Futurama, which is odd, since I’m a bigger fan of Matt Groening’s other show, The Simpsons. Anyway, the quote comes from the episode, entitled “Attack of the Killer App” from Season 6.

A new device called the eyePhone (obviously a joke on Apple’s iPhone devices) is being released and Fry is eager to get one. The retail sales clerk begins to warn Fry that the device is very expensive, he has no choice of what phone company to use and the battery life is poor. However, Fry angrily interrupts the person and shoves a lot of money into his face, exclaiming that he should just keep quiet since he’s going to buy the eyePhone.

The quote became somewhat of a meme because of the utter ridiculousness of Fry’s anger regarding the situation and him totally ignoring what the clerk was telling him.

Geek wisdom: We can be like Fry a lot of times, ignoring practicality to just get the next “big” and “cool” thing. We basically just want to be part of the “in” crowd and that’s normal. However, by doing this, we may experience remorse for purchasing an expensive item that really doesn’t meet our needs.

The first iPhone suffered from the exact same problems the fictional eyePhone had, yet a lot of people bought it. What happened afterwards? A lot of people complained that it was too expensive, you couldn’t choose what phone company you wanted and it had poor battery life.

Sometimes, it’s better to wait for improvements and be patient because good things come to those who wait.

“We live in a spaceship, dear.”

From: Firefly

Genre: Television

Who said it?: Zoe Washburn

The story behind the quote: This quote comes from the (sadly) shortly lived sci-fi series, Firefly. It takes place in the future, when mankind has colonized other planets. Malcolm Reynolds is the captain of a crew of a Firefly class starship named Serenity. While the series is set in space, it’s presented more like a western, which made it pretty unique. It’s also a pretty quirky series being the brainchild of Joss Whedon (the same creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog).

The quote comes from the last episode of the series, entitled “Objects in Space.” To avoid spoilers, I’ll just mention where the quote fits into the episode. The crew is discussing the possibility that one of their crew members, River Tam, who appears to be autistic (and crazy), may actually have psychic abilities. The pilot of Serenity, Wash, seriously doubts this, since psychics only appear in science fiction. Wash’s wife, Zoe, turns to him and ironically tells him that they actually live in outer space in the Serenity.

(By the way, if you’re a geek, you owe it to yourself to watch the entire series.)

Geek wisdom: Somethings may also seem impossible and totally outrageous to one person but may be very natural with another. The clip above shows Wash totally saying that psychics are too far in the realm of impossibility to be real. It’s his wife that has to point out to him that they are living in a spaceship, which is actually something that is pretty hard to comprehend for others. But for Wash, it’s just a normal thing.

“To boldly go where no man has gone before.”

From: Star Trek

Genre: Television, Movies

Who said it?: James T. Kirk, Jean Luc Picard

The story behind the quote: This quote is probably something everyone is familiar with. It comes from the opening narration of Star Trek. But first, let’s talk about Star Trek.

The basic premise of all Star Trek iterations is that a huge spaceship, the USS Enterprise, goes around the universe attempting to make brand new discoveries and encounter new alien races to communicate with. One of the things that made each version of Star Trek memorable was the diverse cast and the attitudes of the crew of the Enterprise. The original 1966 series had James T. Kirk, the captain of the ship, who was usually led by following his instincts. However, his First Office, a Vulcan named Spock, who only works with pure logic.

The second series, called Star Trek: The Next Generation, added more diversity. The crew of the new Enterprise now had a Klingon (a race of aliens that were actually the main antagonists of the original series) named Worf and a full-fledged android named Data joining an entirely new cast.

Anyway, every series would always have the same intro, with a narrator stating the full mission of the USS Enterprise.

Here’s the original version from the first series…

Now, here’s the introduction from Star Trek: The Next Generation…

Geek wisdom: We all want to play it safe and stay in our comfort zone and, honestly, there’s nothing wrong with that. However, it’s when we don’t explore and do new things once in a while is when we stagnate. We all have to eventually try new things and go to new places. In fact, this is the best way for us to keep learning new things.