Blog 29 – A nerd with ridiculous hair!!!
Dr. Einstein….I could really use some help right now!
“We’re not friends, Melissa! We’re just a bunch of girls who happen to be good at math! I’m a has-been popular girl and you….well…you’re just a NERD with ridiculous hair!” Amber says to Melissa in NUMBERS N3RDS, the musical.
I heard Amber’s line and thought….wow….I can remember when I was humiliated like that. When I was a teenager, I was a nerd. I had unfashionable glasses, was thin and gawky and could never quite seem to look “in style.” Looking back, I can celebrate that I even found a way to benefit from that. When I became a professional actor, I used it to my advantage. Once, above my headshot I put the phrase – “Some may do nerd just as well, but nobody does it better!” It was a quote from my agent at the time. I learned to embrace my nerd…and try to make money using that image. But that still doesn’t mean the original experience was any fun.
I’ll bet you felt like this sometimes. Like you never quite fit in….might not succeed…..felt like an outlier. Even as adults, we aren’t exempt from those “I don’t belong here” feelings. We all move into a range of settings with a huge variety of people. And sooner or later, we are put in a place that is “outside our comfort zone.”
But even more, we are aware of how many young people feel this way. There’s nothing quite like feeling like an outcast, being called names, being the butt of a joke – or, maybe worst of all, feeling invisible like “Mr. Cellophane!” For many of us, it is part of our job to help these young folks realize their power, their strength and their sense of self. We need to teach them to embrace that inner nerd, to discover its gifts, and to find a way to let it flourish!
Amber throws her taunt at Melissa. And Melissa? She responds, after a moment’s thought, with “Melissa’s First Theorem.” She is unique, and that’s OK. After all, there were serious nerds in history, and they made a huge difference. In fact, the world fell in love with them! We are hoping that NUMBERS N3RDS – and in a special way “Melissa’s First Theorem” – will speak to today’s young people and help them know there’s nothing to be ashamed of.
A few weeks ago, I worked with some amazing actresses recording two demos of our songs from NUMBERS N3RDS….Here is Ariana Burks singing “Melissa’s First Theorem”.