The Wandering Minstrel: Why Gates is a Geek, and Other Mysteries

Tue 10/31/2006 10:30 am. And a Happy Halloween to all! ... The minstrel would be Gilbert & Sullivan’s, with rags and songs and patches and wandering lullaby, and a fine example of the romantic prototype already being made fun-of — the Byronic hero, mad, bad, and dangerous-to-know, the legions of marchers to an apparently endless repertoire of different drums. ... All the show biz characters and lifi authors who, no matter how financially successful, are always wild and crazy guys, loners with weird habits who can barely figure-out how to cross the street safely. ... That is, the inevitable media PR for almost any successful American — with the obvious exception of hateful fascist businessmen and Republican politicians....

Hence, Bill Gates’ geekiness. He’s such a brilliant brilliant geek he made billions of dollars. Likewise the YouTube guys; and the Google guys who bought them. ... Geekiness is another way for the successful to at least try to be weird and therefore socially acceptable on the PR front....

Owen’s Theory of Success

My theory of success — of which I am such a brilliant example — is hard work + an abnormally high ability to relate to other people. ... Pretty-much the opposite of the wild crazy loner geek pretense. ... See, this is actually interesting! — because of the opposition between the successful person’s PR, versus the way they actually are. ... I’m not blaming them; it’s a matter of the approved accepted style. ... I am marveling at how it got that way — not that it’s a mystery; the evolution is fairly obvious — poets and peasants, Rousseau, noble savage, French revolution, generations of demented progressive thought — just that it’s still so prevalent!...

And the wacko pose is hardly guaranteed. ... It’s the template the remaining degenerate shreds and tatters of our centuries-old progressive culture loves, and it will only apply it willingly to friends. ... I’m certain there are plenty of Republican fascist businessmen easily as cranky as the weirdest Hollywood actors, but People and Time — they are still different magazines, aren’t they? — will only place thoughtful playful renditions for the actor....