We here at Nerds On Sports never promised unbiased reporting, eye opening analysis or proper grammar. But one line we insist on holding is that of unabashed nerdery. We are nerds, we love being nerds, and we appreciate when other nerds call us nerds. A true nerd goes about their nerdy business with either pride of gleeful indifference to judgement, and such dedication to happiness is a marvel to behold.
On the playgrounds of their youth, such nerds had to deal with the barbs and taunts of others, and it took great strength of character to keep on rolling the dice and reading the fantasy novels that made them happy. As these nerds grow up, they can either enter into an environment that supports such nerdery (like, say, a college full of geeky suburban kids) or hinders it (like, for instance, the U.S. Marine Corps or the National Hockey League). For those gamers, comic book buffs and ham radio enthusiasts that are fighting the good fight in inhospitable climates, we here at Nerds On Sports would like to salute you. As such, I am hereby instituting a new award in Business Day One. To honor men and women that practice their geeky trade in the field of professional athletes, I will be handing out the coveted Nerds On Sports Salute To Nerds In Sports. It is important to note that there is no trophy. It is an actual salute. So if you’re named, please feel free to stop by my apartment when you’re in Boston so I can salute you.
The first recipient of the NOS Salute To NIS should be no surprise to those that follow both sports and the Renaissance Faire circuit. With his dedication to both great on-court body position and eating turkey legs off the bone, I am proud to now salute San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan.
They call him The Big Fundamental for his technically sound play, both effective and devoid of flash. His off the court life could be described the same way. He finished up his degree at Wake Forest before entering the NBA. His humanitarian efforts are extensive, and include a Charity Bowl-A-Thon, which is regarded by most pundits as the most dull yet fundamentally sound way of raising money, and a golf classic. And he’s been married for seven years to a lady named Amy. Put all this together and it makes for a very stable platform to heap the nerdery on to. And that nerdery is extensive.
According to his own website, he has a “large knife collection” that includes a samurai sword. My guess is that he has more than one, and at least one Scottish claymore. He also lists “The Crow” as his favorite movie and describes himself as a video game junkie. Further insight is provided by a compelling 2007 True Hoop story. He wanted the nickname “Merlin” when he entered the NBA, has experience in both Dungeons & Dragons and paintball, and has a wizard and a skeletal jester tattooed on. This man is not just a nerd by NBA standards; he is a nerd by nerd standards. As such, I can think of no better first recipient.
So, Tim Duncan, Merlin of the NBA, I salute you.