Friday, January 27, 2012

Adventures from the Tour de Nerdfighting! :D

So yesterday night the Tour de Nerdfightering (also known as the Fault in Our Stars tour) came to Phoenix Arizona! I was super psyched as you might imagine. We're talking John Green here guys: JOHN GREEN. You know, the guy who wrote Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines, Paper Towns, Will Grayson, Will Grayson, and now the absolutely genius book The Fault in Our Stars? Yeah, that guy.

But it wasn't JUST John Green guys. It was also his awesome brother Hank. I don't know if you watch The Vlogbrothers on YouTube (if you don't you totally should by the way) but if you do then you know who Hank is. He plays the guitar, he writes songs, he founded VidCon and he's just as awesome as his brother John.

So what does Awesome + Awesome equal? That's right MORE AWESOME. Okay so that was a lame and totally non-mathematical equation but what I'm trying to say is that the vlogbrothers are some of the awesomest people on the planet. No question about it.

The evening started out pretty crazy because as amazing as John Green's books are they actually aren't as well known as his Vlobrothers YouTube channel he runs with Hank. John and Hank have created this entire community called the Nerdfighters. What's that you say? What's a Nerdfighter? Allow me to tell you the description from the official The Fault in Our Stars Phoenix Program:

Nerdfighter: Someone who, instead of being made of bones and organs and stuff, is actually made of awesome. Nerdfighters are bound by a common belief that understanding the world and other people is important. More important, for example, than understanding the details of Brad Pitt's betrayal of Jennifer Aniston. Nerdfighters don't fight nerds, they are nerds who fight.

I don't know about you but that pretty much sums me up. If you're reading this blog post then you are probably a Nerdfighter to and just don't realize it. Don't worry, being a Nerdfighter really just makes you cool and more intellectual than the average human being. We care more about books and learning about the world than we do Snooki. And that is a beautiful thing.

As I was saying as awesome as John Green's books are most people were there because this was the Tour de Nerdfighting and therefore a Nerdfighter gathering. The people who were first in line for the event had arrived at ten in the morning and had been camping out all day. Now that's dedication! I on the other hand arrived at around 5:30 PM so I was not at the front of the line.

As you can see the line was quite long. It was also quite scream-y. And by scream-y I mean Hank popped up for all of 30 seconds and the crowd went crazy. People were screeching like lunatics and waving their hands in the air and gosh darn it if I were Hank I would have been freaked out of my mind thinking that the crowd was gonna run and crush me to a pulp.... >.<

Here's me and my friend Cristian waiting in line with our John Green books:

Anyways I may not have been at the front of the line but I was close enough to the front to get a good view of their presentation! I was in row 9. Sweet right?

Even after getting seated I had to wait a good hour till the show started. I know you think I'm kidding but I'm not. Fortunately there was also a merch line to wait in (if you wanted to buy merch that is) and so I waited in that and bought some fun stuff. I got a Nerdfighter shirt (DFTBA!) and a poster for them to sign. $30 I probably should have saved, but alas I am a sucker for nerdy but awesome shirts and posters. Especially when it involves them getting signed by one of my favorite authors. :P

One of the weirdest/funniest things of the night actually happened while I was purchasing my merch. An employee of either Changing Hands Bookstore or The Phoenix Library (I don't remember which) was adding up my total when suddenly she stopped and stared at me kind of strangely. I was a little bit awkwarded out to say the least because I had never met this woman before in my life and so I was thinking "did I do something wrong? What's going on...." Then she proceeded to say:

Woman: "You cried didn't you?"
Me: "At The Fault in Our Stars?"
Woman: "Yes."
Me: "OF COURSE! How could you not cry?"
Woman: (turning to the woman next to her) "See, it makes everyone cry."
Other Woman: "Oh well I get emotional at everything."
Me: "I don't! I hardly cry at anything."
First Woman: "I knew it! I could tell by looking at you that you weren't a cryer."

I'm not gonna lie I'm totally impressed with this woman's "cryer" and "non-cryer" discerning abilites. I mean all she did was look at me she and knew I wasn't the crying type. Not only that but she knew I had read the book even though I wasn't carrying it or anything. She was a creepily perceptive woman she was. I'm beginning to wonder if she had super powers or something....

Now back to what you guys really want to hear about: The presentation. It took awhile but it eventually started (cue more screaming) and Hank Sock came on to introduce John.

Then John came out and read us an excerpt from The Fault in Our Stars! I got video footage of it which you can watch below which is pretty sweet. Don't worry no spoilers! John Green is very anti-spoilers.

After John read from his book Hank came out and a sang a song about The Fault in Our Stars called Video Game Books. It's really quite hilarious especially if you've read the book. XD

Hank then proceeded to play several more songs (you can hear all his stuff here) and then John and him came out for some fun Q & A that also involved electrocution. Believe me, it was all in good fun.

Then of course it was time for us to get our stuff signed! There were about 600+ people at this event (not even joking) so you can imagine this took awhile especially when I was in signing group "I" and had to wait through groups "A", "B", "C", etc. I think I waited a good 2 hours to get my stuff signed but fortunately everything was very well organized. Mad props to The Pheonix Public Library and Changing Hands Bookstore! I finally got my stuff signed and hanklerfished (big thanks to Merideth for getting my poster and shirt signed for me!) and unfortunately we weren't allowed to take pictures with Hank and John (because then everyone would want one and we would have been there all night. :P) but I did get a shot of me right when I was at the front of the line!

LOOK THERE THEY ARE!!!!! RIGHT THERE!!!! I was beyond excited. Ecstatic to say the least. Here's all my signed stuff!

Then before we left the event I took a picture in front of the TFioS van! I had seen it driving in and had started fangirling out ("OH MY GOSH IT'S THE VAN! IT'S THE VAN!!!!") but they were loading stuff out of it so I wasn't about to take a picture with it then. But I did get a picture afterwards and I am happy with it despite the poor lighting.

Overall this was definitely my favorite signing I have ever been to. John and Hank Green are such amazingly talented individuals and getting to watch them perform and hear their stories was such a privilege! On top of that the people there were all awesome because they were pretty much all Nerdfighters. Being a rather bookish person (I do want to be a Librarian after all) it can be hard to find people who understand and appreciate you, despite your nerdy tendencies. Nerdfighters are those people. People who like nerdy things like books, Sherlock, and The Lord of the Rings as much as I do. People who appreciate learning and philosophy, and deep thoughts about dinosaurs and the meaning of the universe. Going to this event has made me realize how awesome Nerdfighters are and that I definitely am one and proudly so!

If you were unable to go to the Fault in Our Stars Tour/Tour de Nerdfighting then fortunately you can watch a full stream of their Austin Texas show below!

And finally here are some lovely shots I got of John and Hank performing. Let's count the number of outfit changes between the two of them shall we?




(yes I do realize all he did was put a black vest over his Great Gatsby shirt but it still counts....)

And last but certainly not least....


That's all folks! DFTBA (Don't Forget to be Awesome)!

Julia :)


  1. This is a really great TdN post! It covers all the bases and includes a video of the insta-classic Video Game Books. DFTBA!

  2. Great post, Julia!! I wish I had been there to go with you guys - it sounds sooooo fun. Totally jealous! :) Susan

  3. THIS LOOKED LIKE IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!! I loved when you said "and deep thoughts about dinosaurs and the meaning of the universe"(you mentioned dinosaurs that means instant friendship right??)

  4. Thanks for sharing!! I didn't get to go to the tour stop nearest me so at least I got to see what it would have been like.

  5. This is a brilliant summary! Steph and Sarah got to see John in Indianapolis before the tour...he read the first two chapters of TFIOS and we were hooked. Well, perhaps were hooked after PAPER TOWNS or was it WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON? He's just so good.

  6. I'm so extremely jealous, you have no idea. :) Great summary -- I almost felt like I was there! DFTBA!!

  7. Epic. You are so lucky. I met John at NCTE in November but I would've given anything to attend the Tour de Nerdfighting.

  8. YOU'RE A NERDFIGHTER! I kind of guessed you were the type, but I didn't know you were! I'm glad to read that!
    It's awesome that you get to go to the Tour de Nerdfighting! Living in Europe, I couldn't exactly affort to go, as you might guess, but I heard a lot about it. I'm glad you had fun!

  9. Just read the Temple Wars Novel on Ganesha! The story is well told through a parallel protagonist Tarun who helps Ganesha retrieve his objects from the spirit world. It's a page-turner that will have you wanting more. You guys should check it out! Temple Wars


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