By Marie Roberts / Guest writer
The Meridian Star
For Sumrall native Sarah Landrigan, being nerdy is more than just being intelligent – it’s a dedicated lifestyle. The marketing major at MSU-Meridian is taking the concept of "nerdy-ness" to the next level.
“I wear my geeky-ness on my sleeve. The way I talk, the way I look, and the things I do just screams ‘nerd alert!’ I may not have much free time, but when I do, I'm playing video games, doing origami, reading, or taking care of my twenty or more fish,” Landrigan said.
After seeing an ad for a nerd-themed national reality competition, Landrigan was excited about the opportunity to represent the area in all her nerd glory. The competition, hosted by "King of The Nerds," which is entering its second season and airs on TBS, gave viewers the chance to create a five minute audition tape to be voted on by fans of the show. The most popular entry will be named the “People’s Nerd” and have a chance to be on the show as an extra contestant. The winner of the show claims the title of “King of The Nerds” and will win a $100,000 cash prize.
As to what compelled her to enter the competition, Landrigan said, “There aren't many reality shows I feel I will excel at, but this is one of them. Obviously, I'm also a nerd and the $100,000 is pretty enticing.
Her nerd qualifications also speak for her success. A regional champion in Yu-Gi-Oh!, more than 20 Pokémon tournament wins, four overall awards for Gantz cosplay, and numerous wins at Guitar Hero, Dance Dance Revolution, and Pump It Up tournaments make Landrigan’s audition for King of The Nerds all the more legitimate. In her words, “I’m kind of a big deal. Toot-toot!”
The mother of a 2-year old son, Michael, Landrigan is hoping the area, as well as the state, will embrace the positive role that nerds play in the community by voting for her as the “People’s Nerd” choice. The four rounds of competition include two public voting rounds, where anyone can vote for their favorite entry.
To date, Landrigan is the only Mississippian to enter the competition. “Essentially, the public gets to decide a contestant to represent them on the show. People need to know about it because it's a fairly entertaining show and we need a Mississippian to represent us. Plus, nerds are cool,” Landrigan said.
Public voting consists of 45 percent of the overall decision to be considered for the show. Fans can vote once per day until May 24 via the King of The Nerds Facebook page, where Landrigan’s audition is named “Just A Small Town Nerd.”
When asked to describe what "nerd" means to her, Landrigan replied, “Well, first I want to say that the nerd image is constantly changing. However, one thing stays constant. Nerds are people who are intelligent and experts in certain subjects.”
Her first memory of nerdy-ness was multiple video game victories on her dad's Sega Genesis at just 3 years of age. Her son Michael is quickly catching on to his mother’s nerdy ways.
“He has taken a liking to one of my favorite movies of all time, 'My Neighbor Totoro' and I'm attempting to teach him how to play Pokémon. You have to start them off with the originals first.”
This small town nerd is hoping to make it big by being selected as the “People’s Nerd” choice and winning a spot on the King of The Nerds season two premiere. For now, she’s focusing on her final exams, raising awareness about the positive impact that nerdy-ness’ can have in our area, and spending quality time with her son.