Here's something I've wanted to start for ages, and this week I finally decided to buckle down and just DO IT already.
Nearly every day I get these amazing stories in my inbox about young geek girls being PROUD young geek girls, and it makes me so gosh-darned happy I could pop. I've shared a few with you guys before - Katie being the most notable - and each time I do I hear how vastly encouraging it is for other girls to see their peers loving the same stuff they love, unashamedly.
So in that spirit, I'm starting new series of posts called the Epbot Exemplars. (I know it's a mouthful, but it just sounds so GRAND, don't you think?)
I'll be featuring mostly young geek girls - although I won't rule out featuring boys or adults now and then - with a little snippet about what geeky things they love and how they express it. It could be just a picture and quote, or it could be a whole story. I might feature a few at a time, or just one every few weeks, or abandon the idea entirely if you guys hate it. (Can you tell I'll be making this up as I go along? Ha!)
So without further ado, let's meet our first official Exemplars:
This is five-year-old Hayden:
As you can see, Hayden LOVES Star Wars. Her mom, Brandi, wrote to tell me what happened when Hayden picked out that Star Wars lunch box and thermos for her first day of Kindergarten:
"Being the concerned parent," Brandi said, "I told her that some people may tease her for having a 'boy's' lunchbox and if that happens, what will she do?
"Without hesitation, she looked me dead in the eye and said, 'I'll tell them I love Star Wars, it's awesome, and I can use a light saber!'"
(If you heard something just then, that was just me cry-cheering over here. Don't mind me.)
This is eleven-year-old Zahava:
(Yep, you read that right; she put this costume together herself!)
"The goggles were a pair of plastic giant glasses. I used a headband for the strap, and used a paper towel roll covered in brown fabric and cut to make the back of the goggles, with the padding from headphones on the end."
"The wings I painted with some bronze on the edges and straps, added a buckle, and used painted boxes with buttons hot glued to them for the box on the back and the one attached with curled wire. the rest of the costume was either thrift store finds or borrowed. Thanks for reading my letter!"
What's this? A budding crafter/cosplayer?? BE STILL MY HEART.
And finally, this is ten-year-old Hannah:
Hannah's mom Nicole describes her as a "voracious reader, enthusiastic geek, and avid Whovian." Hannah made herself a TARDIS backpack, and excitedly chose glasses in "TARDIS blue." For Halloween she dressed as "Doctor Jenny" (hat tip!), and "pored over each episode looking for all the silly tools used, and put together a hip-pouch of fun stuff: psychic paper, tardis key, metal-quote necklace of 'time is a...big ball of wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff', 3-D glasses, water pistol, slingshot, and more."
None of Hannah's friends know Doctor Who, and no one recognized her on Halloween. But don't go feeling sorry for her, because Hannah was having a timey-wimey blast. Nicole writes,
"One of the beauties of the internet is the ability to connect those who wouldn't ever cross paths in real life. Sure, Hannah doesn't have friends who share her geekish interests...but, they find other connections. She can enjoy the episodes knowing that others, around the world, also enjoy it. "
Young geeks reveling in the things they love, taking comfort in knowing they have a world-wide community just a computer away? Now that's Exemplary.
Plus, Hannah already has her costume planned out for next year: Han(nah) Solo. (HIGH FIVE!!)
I hope you guys enjoyed the new feature, guys, and I hope you'll read these with your own little geeklings, should you have any!
Oh, and for more geeky greatness, be sure to check out Superheroes are for girls, too! - a Tumblr blog Chrissy G. sent it. But trust me, YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE CUTE.
PS - If you'd like to nominate an Exemplar, please at least try to keep your e-mails brief [smirk], remember to include a photo or two, and also tell me your children's names and ages. Odds are you won't get a reply - I'm swimming in e-mail already! - but please know that I *am* reading and enjoying everything you send in!