Nerd cred edition: The History Center's 'Peanuts' comic-strip exhibition and Mykmedia's N3RD Night
Published: October 3, 2012
After paying my $5 cover, I was handed Issue 3 of Nerd Knight Adventures, a hand-scrawled single-page comic book distributed serially at the events. Inside, the lounge itself was a riot of flat-screens and colored gels; think A Clockwork Orange's Korova Milk Bar by way of Tron. An almost equal mix of men and women (take that, stereotypes) sprawled on pleather couches as DJ Spank spun a ceaseless soundscape of techno beats blended with 8-bit chiptunes, sounding like a Commodore 64 rolling on MDMA. Other patrons huddled in various corners playing a variety of vintage video game consoles, including an Atari 2600 sporting one of the few copies of the infamous E.T. cartridge that wasn't buried in a landfill. The several-dozen-strong crowd was somewhat subdued when I arrived, though some were certainly dressed for the occasion; one gentleman was dressed head to toe as Mario's brother Luigi, while another bore a working miniature video projector mounted to an NES Power Glove.
Headlining the evening's entertainment was singer-songwriter Marc With a C, a seminal member of Orlando's "nerd rock" scene. Despite fighting a cold and being doped up on medication and hot sake, Marc put on a strong show of old favorites and new material, even tossing in some Townshend-worthy guitar windmills. His upcoming album, Popular Music (which he calls "the best record I've ever made") has an especially geeky genesis: It's been entirely crowdsourced, from fan-suggested song subjects to fundraising through Indiegogo (at indiegogo.com/popularmusic).
As Marc closed his set with "Nerdy Girls," his signature serenade to bespectacled beauties, I glanced around at the happy audience and smiled. Orlando's nerds are alive and well.
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