As I get older and wiser, I am realising that I cannot avoid the fact that I may come across as a bit of a geek. This is probably not surprising (I am a ferroequinologist, after all), but it does mean that even folks with names like Mike Posner think that they’re cooler than me.
I do try and make up for this by adding chic to my geek, although this doesn’t always go as planned. My brother’s reaction to my new Versace glasses, for example, was “are they fake?”*
Thankfully, I realised today that there are always some people in the world who are geekier than you, no matter who you are. Unless you’re the one of the guys I saw on the train this morning.
The guys in question were sat a little further up the carriage from me, and I don’t think that anyone would question whether or not their glasses were genuine, because I don’t think that there is a market in counterfeit NHS items. As is the way with such types, they were conversing quite loudly, and I was able to enjoy being a bystander to their banter. Such that it was. There were lots of numbers being bandied around, and a debate as to whether one of them was going to “chase the four 57s he still needed to spot.”
The highlight for me, however, was when we passed what I would describe as a fairly ordinary train** and suddenly there were cries of “Ooh, there she is! Haven’t seen her for yonks!” and “The beast herself! What a beast she is!” I’ve also never seen someone whip out a notebook so fast.***
Maybe you had to be there, but I thought it was quite funny. And, like the Pharisees in Luke’s Gospel, I was thankful that I was not like those people. Even though, if you change the emphasis, we all know that I might be one of those people.
*I have to confess that I wouldn’t actually know if they were.
**I would describe it like this when I am trying to hide the fact that I am a geek as much as possible. But between you and me, I did actually happen to know what sort of train it was. It was a Class 90, for the record.
***Casual observers looking the other way may not have seen someone whip out their phone as fast as I did. I felt the need to record the banter, especially for my friend Skittles who sends me regular texts about the antics of the anoraks at Crewe station.**** Apologies if you were one of the people I also sent the banter to in my frenzy of excitement. It was otherwise a very boring train journey.
****I am not sure how this sub note on a sub note thing should work, but I’ll give it a go. Skittles’ response was to tell me about the guy on Friday he’d overheard “waxing lyrical about a level crossing” and a general observation that “the Royal Mail Train is a crowdpleaser.” So now you know…