Geek Apocalypse is one years old: sharing things is so much better

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On march 27th 2013, after several months of working on the site and doing 5 podcasts in february to prepare,  Geek Apocalypse was born and released into the rich emerald mine of knowledge that is the internet. And now we have reached today, march 27th 2014 that it is our one year anniversary! 58 podcasts later, a live event, a live show and a convention later, I cant believe it is only being a year and I have so much to be thankful for.

I’m going to break my rule of being proud of myself, because I have thought about Geek Apocalypse alot. One of the things that often angers me is how easy people think it is to do what i do. to talk for an hour, to organise things and promote other people and run the site, It is a full time job. Anyone that listens to the shows especially early on would know I wasnt sure what i was doing , all I knew was that I wanted to be able to be passionate and interested in not only the topics that come up but guests that i cared about and was interested in. I always feel that way, every single day I get up, and I know its something I’m so pleased I have, but to be proud about the shows is because I feel as I have done them I have gotten better at being comfortable being a geek. Being myself. And nearly everyone  thats been on the show has said to me afterwards ‘that was fun I really enjoyed it’ . So in that sense I have done my job. One of the things I wanted to do was to have a podcast that felt safe, that showcased people in the north east that were talented and fun, and also to reach for people in geekdom who I admire and appreciate. So to be able to achieve that all in the first year is quite unbelievable.

as I said to Jane who is on the show next week, all you need to do to be on the show is to be alive, and be interested. And from my personal perspective being the host, interested in things and people. If you think about it  how easy should that be? be yourself and be interested, ultimately one of the reasons I made the podcast is to convince people that it is ok to talk about things you love and like publicly. There are so many people I met who are waiting for permission, rather than simply breaking down the doors to then think ‘fuck it, if i fail I’ll fail, but ill be myself and do something I generally want to do’. Thats so key to me, there are people who come on the show beforehand that arent sure it is for them, and find themselves saying ‘is that it can we do more?’ The thing is as well, I am no one special, I am just someone who is respectful enough to be genuinely interested and is willing to give people a chance. 

Ofcourse, on a purely basic level I got to meet some people I admired for a long time, I got to meet the whole cast of red dwarf, which was the show that my family watched together and began my love of all things geeky. I got to go to conventions and meet Andrew Hackard whos been on tabetop, and matt leacock who made some of my favourite games, I got to talk to producers, actors, artists, poets, musicians, comedians, entrepeneurs, which shows I do not have a rule in who can be on. As I said on the first blog I wrote about starting Geek Apocalypse, Geek is simply a term of being passionate and interested in whatever you love. Its not what you love its how you love it, and for whatever reason how we love things seems alien to me or half hearted. Look at how impersonal life is becoming, with so many posts over actually speaking to someone over the phone, or going to see someone. For whatever reason we do not feel its important or relevant anymore.

I am proud of what I’ve achieved, but simply I am a person that works hard, I spend more of my day frustrated and angry than feeling I have achieved anything, but I am always grateful for the opportunity to enjoy the things I enjoy, and share it with people i know, and even people I don’t. that’s the beauty of life, thats why its so enjoyable. Sharing is so much better than doing things on your own.

The thing that means so much more to me though, is the fact that I feel in my own small way that I am making a difference. We did a convention that was a huge success and I get families coming up to me telling me stories all the time about how playing games together matters and has brought their family together. I also have opened up about my battles with manic depression and have 100s of people open up to me about how difficult it is and how me telling my story makes them feel like they are not alone. because 99% of the time I feel chronically alone but if I can help the person thats sitting in their bedroom feeling no one cares, then that means so much to me. we all need help, its whether you can find someone thats willing to help you thats the problem. The thing that most upsets me is how nothing feels completely different, people are afraid of telling the truth, and are afraid of doing anything that really matters, so i will keep battling that, we need people, we need you, we need me hopefully and the only way we can do that is realising we need to work harder helping each other. So I hope by me telling the truth makes anyone realise that we can beat this, and you can do what you want to do if you really want it.

so after 100’s of thousands of downloads later, another podcast that we produce, an album recording, a convention, a team of people who have helped me along the way, i have so many people to thank. i wish to thank my good friend graham for building my site and doing all the posters for me, because without him i wouldn’t have a thing to promote, to all the co hosts i have had, Wayne, Robbie, Drew and James and to every single guest who has been willing to give them my time and opportunity to get to know them. I really appreciate it. to  the few friends that have supported me and encouraged me to do this, i love you, keep up the support! This podcast gives me the opportunity to speak to some of the most talented people I know, and if this becomes the only thing I do I will be the happiest man in the world doing something i love as a job. it really is that simple.

And to anyone that has took the time to listen to the shows, or come to the events, or emailed me when they didn’t have to, thank you, it means the world to me, Don’t anyone ever tell you you don’t mean anything and you cant make a difference.

your loving geek

Steven Hesse

p.s Ill be releasing the podcast with shamol begum today as treat being the 1 year anniversary! so please do have a listen when it comes out!

 

 

 

 

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Merry Christmas from Geek Apocalypse

So its another Christmas! As I sit down after another dose of lovely Christmas dinner at my sisters, surrounded by people I care for and love, I sincerely hope you are having a lovely Christmas day figuring out something to do before doctor who comes on! I mean…..what else is christmas for?? *phone rings* hello? what do you mean giving gifts? wheres your whovian spirit!

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this was the sight early in the morning of my nephew Sam’s new present , notice the two adults in the frame? sure this present is just for my 6 year old nephew?

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the table, pretty awesome thanks sis!

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My family eating said meal,the one ordering people around is my nephew 😛

 

So on behalf of everyone associated With Geek Apocalypse, from contributors to co hosts, web helpers and I’m sure everyone whose been a guest on our show, can I wish everyone a very Happy Christmas! As I say in my show, I hope the festive holiday finds you enjoying being a geek even more than usual 🙂

may the geek be with you…always! Merry Xmas!

Steven

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p.s the next episode of geek apocalypse podcast with be released on the 28th with Andrew Hackard, due to itunes needing its beauty sleep this week!

 

Interview with NTG online now!

 

I did an interview with Next Level Guy a while ago talking about being a geek and got to answer some questions about it for their website via a video interview! so here it is here,please have a look as I really enjoyed it 🙂

http://www.nextlevelguy.com/hitting-the-next-level-by-being-a-geek-overload-with-steven-heslewood/

being a geek=being yourself

I watched a interview recently with fellow Geek Wil Wheaton today where he talked about the great film Stand by me  and I felt a strong sense of emotion. In the first few minutes he said such a simply profound thing of that if your a geek chances are your a very insecure person. To be totally frank, it affected me because he is absolutely right. And I wanted to say why here for whatever reason and find other ways to bore you I haven’t previously explored.

Well firstly, it pretty much underlines that I am insecure, and I do not pretend otherwise. But What I think is key in saying that is that I am very much insecure because I am aware of the mortality that I face as a human being. I think that conveys what geeks are like, because of their curiousity and intrigue, you know the bad facts in life as well as the good ones. To give you an example of what I’ve done today other than work, watched family guy episodes including the star wars triology, read three books Nerdist way and long way down and a book on titanic, watched two Neil Degrass Tyson lectures on physics, listened to two albums and two episodes of the nerdist podcast, watched two episodes of bill Maher’s including one comedy special and played two hours of dragon age RPG as well as played two video games and played guitar. My brain still does not feel nourished.  The feeling to me is that it never will, because geeks always want to learn.

And that in a nutshell l is really why we are all geeks. We even in a basic sense learn something everyday, are interested in something beyond someone you knows understanding and whether we like it or not, we re in some way or another insecure about something. The difference is Geek’s admit it because the truth is far more important and bearable that living a lie.

Its one of the few things that keeps me going, learning and being curious, and just like me being a geek, that will never change…….I’m proud of that.

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” 
― Mahatma Gandhi

We are featured on Sky Tyne and Wear!

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What a weird turn of events mr bond! how cool would that be james bond reading blogs? and not only that but my blog? agh to dream but thats why I am a geek! Sky Tyne and Wear acknowledge this and were kind enough to do a feature about Geek Apocalypse which is frigging awesome!

I have a few people to thank in regards to it happening and also to mention that I have been ill for the last week, hence why I sound like I belong in the Godfather in the video and on the last podcast. So apologies for that and looking like i needed to cough because….well I needed to cough! Huge thanks need to go to Mike for agreeing to let us use the Travelling Man shop and Jenni from sky tyne and wear who was patient in getting what he needed of me and the guys! I really want to thank Robbie Lee Hurst and Mike Mcconnell for agreeing to turn up and help me with the feature, I really appreciate it! Coincidently, the next podcast will feature Robbie and Mike which we will be recording on Tuesday the 30th june! what are the chances! 🙂

so heres where you can find the video hope you enjoy and thankyou for the support! 🙂

Comic Books, Card Games And Consoles: Newcastle Geek’s ‘Apocalypse’ Website – Sky Tyne and Wear http://tyneandwear.sky.com/news/article/72022

‘just how much of a Geek are you’ by guest blogger Wayne Madden

geek ideaSomeone once asked me, “Just how much of a Geek are you?” and I think that’s a good way to begin my introduction to you on this site. It’s an interesting question because, in one sentence, you’re almost forced to come up with a rationale for your entire being – a kind of “Here’s why you should hire me” type response. I often compare questions like those, and job interviews, with Dating Websites. Through a series of unfortunate, and perhaps some fortunate, events in my life I’m currently in the unenviable position of having to use both of these kinds of sites.

And, OK, not everyone has to use a dating or a job seeking website, but let’s face facts, if you want to meet people and you want to do things then money is something you should be looking for – and the best way to get money, outside having Dale Winton write you a cheque, is to get a job – and equally, while it can be very difficult, actually make that very difficult to find a perspective partner, it can also be equally rewarding when you do find someone that you can spend time with.

So, here I am, registering my profile on the dating website and answering the questions there. One of my friends has told me this site is for getting a woman into bed, and regardless of anything else, I should be able to accomplish this with relative ease. It might involve me buying her a few drinks, taking her for a nice meal (not unpleasant), but in the end if I’m after sex (and that’s the only thing I’m after) this is apparently the site for me. However, my other friend tells me this is the site where he met his girlfriend, it’s a long lasting connection and he knows that if I want a dedicated and committed relationship then this is the site to be on. Google tells me the site is popular, and so I’m drawn to agree with them both in a manner of speaking, knowing that my body and my brain will tell me two different things anyway and that it’s always going to be based on who you meet and what you do and where it goes. I’m confused enough as it is and I haven’t entered my email address.

Now, as me, I tend to put myself on the line – I throw myself and my heart into things and I expect to reap the rewards. I don’t. About 30% of the time I reap the rewards and on the other occasions I’m left counting the change. It’s the same on a dating website. You put in the information, put your photo up there and contact a few people and you hope it goes well. When someone writes back insulting you for even contacting them it can be pretty damaging and leave you feeling a bit hurt. However, and this is where the Geek comes in, I’m also a little quirky and eccentric and I find myself using words and language that most people find rather bold and brash. In some cases I tone down the language, but I guess I’m a believer that if I’m truthful and honest from the start (that is, I don’t pretend to be anyone but who I am) I will eventually find someone that will accept me for me.

This tends to be the same criteria when applying for a Job. Recently made redundant, I went to my local Job Centre and registered, to which I was informed the new process of finding work from a prospective employer in the UK. Register your details, upload your CV and apply, not too bad for a computer savvy person like myself. The Geek in me certainly learned nothing new but had everything to gain from the experience. But that’s when it hit me, since all I had to do to apply was upload a CV, a one page document selling who I was and hit apply. No long winded applications, no cover letter, no supporting documentation or evidence, no references….nothing other than my CV….leaving me wondering just how many Geeks and Journalists (perhaps the same thing) were able to do the same. How much I actually stood out when all they took into account was actual work experience and basic fact.

So on the one hand, I dreaded answering the questions of the Dating website and yet I was reluctant to send off my CV without answering any on the other. I think that’s part of what makes me a Geek, because it’s the realisation that sometimes these kinds of questions are necessary, sometimes they (like everything else in the world) have their place and justification. If you don’t answer life’s questions and give more information than the basic facts, you’re not going to get anywhere, and that’s a universal president – not something solely confined to this website. The difference in “Geek Dom” (if I’ve just, according to Microsoft Word, invented a phrase) is that one takes pride in those things which make them slightly abnormal, indeed, better to have lived interesting than have simply lived.

But just who was the Geeks of yesterday? Before the arrival of mainstream comic books (some formed from Political opposition and concern about the threat of Nuclear War) we had Hippie’s, who spread free love and free thinking. But what of before that? Maybe the inventors of Industry and Technology, like Alexander Graham Bell, or the magicians and entertainers of their day like Houndi? Both these men, by their example, lived an interesting and extraordinary life. They contributed to society and left their mark upon the world. They were as much Geek’s, extra-terrestrial’s (which literally means outwards earthly) as you can get, moving beyond their realm and creating something the world had never seen. When Gaelio died the Spanish Inquisition by calling the world round, was he perhaps the Geek?

The next time someone asks me the question “Just how much of a Geek are you?” I think I’m going to ignore them and try and concentrate on doing something else. That might seem evasive, rude even, but the fact that we’re just like everyone else in the world means there shouldn’t be a distinction or labels attached. We are one. We are human. We are the collective. Maybe that’s me showing my Geek side, right?