Geek – A person who is very interested in and knows a lot about a particular field or activity (Source: Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary).
Gaeilgeoir – 1. Irish speaker, 2. A learner of Irish (Source: Ó Dónaill, Foclóir Gaeilge-Béarla). 3. An obnoxious twat who goes around quoting grammar rules, correcting native speakers, and generally making him or herself annoying (Source: numerous Gaeltacht residents after spending the summer shepherding enthusiastic language learners around the village).
Hi! My name is Audrey, and I’m a geeky Gaeilgeoir (or a Gaeilge Geek, if you prefer).
Some of my Irish-speaking friends (especially those who have just spent a summer dealing with over-enthusiastic learners) may consider “geeky Gaeilgeoir” to be redundant. I guess that would be true if you’re thinking in terms of definition number three above. But while I definitely fall under definition one, and will always be definition two, I try very hard to avoid definition three!
I have no qualms, however, about claiming the title of “geek,” especially when it comes to Irish! (You call it an affliction; I call it a title. Semantics)
I’ve spent the greater part of the past 13 years learning the Irish language, and I love it passionately. I love speaking it and teaching it. I love to sing in it. I love its quirky but elegant grammar and its unique way of expressing things. I love to talk about it (that’s the geek in me!), to share my experiences (and opinions!), and to help others who are interested in learning this ancient and living language.
That’s why I started this blog. After all, if you can’t be a geek on the internet, where else? I have a lot to share and (always!) a lot to learn. If you’re interested in Irish too (even if you’re not quite as geeky about it as I am), come along for the ride!
Header image: St. Columba’s Church (Church of Ireland), Glencolmcille, Co. Donegal, Ireland. © 2008, by Audrey Nickel.
Featured image: Roadside view in the parish of Glenfin, Co. Donegal, Ireland. © 2013 by Audrey Nickel
In addition to being “The Geeky Gaeilgeoir,” Audrey Nickel is the author of The Irish Gaelic Tattoo Handbook,” published by Bradan Press, Nova Scotia, Canada. For information about the book, including where to buy it, please visit http://www.bradanpress.com/irish-tattoo-handbook/