From Chicago Tribune
By Glenn Jeffers
Very few places allow for the type of revelry I witnessed one Tuesday night at Guthrie's. Science-fiction conventions come close.
Inside a bright-yellow back room, twenty- and thirtysomethings sat around picnic tables, conversing and laughing, doing everything one expects to see hanging out at a Lakeview bar. Only the subject matter gave away the truth.
"I'm a software tester," one woman said.
"Mainframe or application," a guy asked.
These were nerds, and self-proclaimed ones considering they had ventured to Nerds at Heart, a Chicago-based singles event where the erudite and well-informed come to flirt. Here, those conversations could exist without fear of sounding too bookish. Here, nerds could be nerds, and proud of it.
Ideas travel fast in the information age. We just published a Dish about young nerds in love (see the Dish from April 17). The Chicago version of this story is more about meeting other nerds rather than using nerdly pursuits to cement relationships. Niche dating is becoming more and more of the norm, rather than an isolated trend. Is niche dating going to lead to niche marriages and further to niche children? Are we doing major genetic damage by not diversifying? Also, it’s surprising that Nerds at Heart meet in an actual, physical location. You would think that they would have created web avatars; maybe there would have been a fight over who gets to be Darth Vader.