Guest Blog by Shane Nickerson: Your Turn

Shane Nickerson is a great speller, but he makes up his own grammar. You can find him at nickerblog.com

If you live wrong for long enough, you can forget how to get back.

I’ve spent a significant portion of my life trying to impress people who barely know me. It’s a curse, I think. Unjustified vanity. I suppose it’s what drove me into a career in entertainment. It’s also probably why I blog, tweet, Facebook, Instagram, G+, Vine, and [insert new social media fad here]. It’s clearly what’s driving me to write this entry. I’ve heard theories about why certain people spend most of their lives trying to gain all of the social acceptance they missed out on as kids. Alas, understanding the character flaw does nothing to eliminate the character flaw.

Part of getting older is the discovery that there is no end plateau you eventually reach where everything is finally perfect. Maturity is a myth. You spend the first half of your life chasing maturity and the second half figuring out how to be escape it.  By the end of 2012, I was feeling lost. A show that I produced had recently ended after five seasons, I was on the tail end of a six month decline into party/pig mode, and I started to feel like I didn’t have a lot of real friends in my life. Three kids and a busy job make it difficult to invest time into old friendships, and before you know it, years have gone by and you’ve drifted into deep, lonely water.

Wil and I actually don’t see each other very often, IRL. He’s busy, I’m busy. It’s nothing to lament; it’s how life works. He is, however, one of those people who makes it easy to pick up where we left off, even if it’s been months (or years) since actually hanging out. Friends like that are important. They can, in an instant, remind you how to get back. They can help you to remember what matters and who you are. They can make it clear to you that you’ve been spending too much time trying to impress the people you barely know at the expense of the people you actually do. They can do all of these things without even knowing they’ve done them.

In spite of our separate schedules, we’ve always managed to stay in touch via email, Twitter and blogging. Each time I visit WWdN feels like visiting an old friend. I’ll bet most of you feel the same way…

What keeps you coming back here? His writing? His acting? Did TableTop change your life? Is beer also your spirit animal? Did he sign your boobs at a convention? (PIX OR IT DIDN’T HAPZ)

Now’s your chance, while he’s away at sea. What’s your Wil Wheaton story? What is it, specifically that connects you to him?

61 thoughts on “Guest Blog by Shane Nickerson: Your Turn”

  1. I’ve been a fan of Wil’s since I was a kid and watching ST:TNG. I “re-found” him by chance through online poker several years back and have been following his blog ever since. I used to play with both of you guys in the weekly WWdN tournament on PokerStars. Man, I miss that.

  2. It isn’t just one thing for me. Wil has just been part of a lot of things I’ve enjoyed. TNG, the audio for Mr Weinersmith’s new book Trial of the Clones, Eureka, The Guild, P4A, and now Table Top. Especially with YouTube now, I see this guy, a lot, and I like what he does. It was only natural for me to start reading his blog after I found out abut it during P4A. (He donated a signed Wesley Crusher card with sharpie drawn sunglasses for charity.)

  3. I ran across Wil Wheaton while watching “The Guild.” I had watched Star Trek NG, but hadn’t thought about what Wesley Crusher was up to. I hadn’t realized how funny Wil was and continued to look forward to his episodes on “The Guild.” After watching the Small World episode of Tabletop, I knew that the Wil we were seeing was the real thing – a true geek who enjoyed the fun that others had playing games. I started reading his blog and was very much surprised to find him a very sensitive and multi-faceted person. I admired him being able to tell the world his journeys through life, and how sometimes you fall flat on your face, but you get up and keep trying, hoping that you learn something important about yourself along the way. I’ve found that I’ve been taking that same journey lately and wondering about those roads that I didn’t take and what would things be like if I’d taken the less “safe” path. It’s very brave to let strangers in on your private thoughts, and would like to thank you, Wil Wheaton, for sharing your journey with the rest of us.

  4. I originally checked out his blog because I had a huge crush on Wesley when I was in middle school, and I was curious. I’ve kept reading for the past five (?) years because of the honest emotion in his writing.

    1. Same here – I had a great big fangirl crush on him from the first time I saw “Stand By Me”. I’d tried to follow him beyond when I ‘grew up’, and was pretty darn happy to find out he had a blog and that he’d turned out to be the kind of person I think I’d be happy to know :)

  5. I watched ST:TNG with my folks, and in the early 2000s started re-watching and paying attention to what this wonderfully positive, funny, super-interesting nerd apologist had to say, and he happened to be the guy who played Wesley Crusher! A few ebooks later and lots of projected well-wishes, and I’m still reading, and I still feel super super super connected to this amazing advocate we are all lucky to read and see current exploits of! Woo, weirdly worded but the feels are kickin’ in :)

  6. I was raised on a steady diet of Sci-Fi as a tiny child so I’ve definitely seen my share of TNG but it was the Bloggess that introduced me to Wil Wheaton the person. It’s easy to hop onto someone else’s bandwagon and ride their popularity to web counter high score glory but it takes the special kind of awesome to collate paper for a campaign against ad pitch ass-hattery.

    So I googled him, found the blog and kept coming back. When there wasn’t new posts, I caught his podcasts or webshows and now I’ve enacted a mandatory family bonding regime through gaming.

  7. It was about 1988 that one of my female class mates said to me you look like Wil Wheaton. Conversation:

    “Who?”
    “The Gordie guy from ‘Stand by me’”
    “Who?”
    “Wesley Crusher from StarTrek”
    My mind said to me: Damn I look like the Dork from Star Trek.
    13 Years later I was introduced to Fark while I worked at the German publisher for DC Comics and after a while I asked myself.”Why do only Walken and Wheaton have their own tags?” So I stumbled upon WWDN and Tehsopabox (It is dead Jim). And I was smitten. I bought his books at a time when Amazon.co.uk could not send books to Germany, I play computer games, tabetop games, I switch my own harddrives, I try different beers in different countries. I worked in an oversized Homer Simpson costume(Licensed by FOX).

    I am the Dork from Star Trek! and effing proud to be.

    1. i reread my last sentence and came to the conclusion it is wrong.

      It should be:

      I am like the geek from Star Trek. Just a Geek.

      And this leads to the other question you asked and I forgot: Why I always come back?
      The answer for me is Wil’s self doubt, curiosity, humor and love.
      Why is Wil such a great (I fought over this word but didn’t come up with a better one) person/writer/actor/brewer, because he doubts everything he does. His posts are always a great read due to the fact that he never babbles away but he seems to think of every word he says like every writer should.
      I think he checks the beer he brews the same way. I remember a post a long time ago when he thought if it was fair that he shared so much of his family life in his blog for Anne and his sons. I liked that he did not drag his sons into his blog with pictures when they were not able to decide if they were cool with that. He always seems to check if what he is dooing with/in his life is good for first the others and then for him.
      Even though I would call myself a fan-39-years-not-so-boy-anymore he feels more like a mixture between a friend and a drama series(more “six feet under” than the “Bold and teh beautyful”).
      It is good to stop and think “WWWWD”?

      I would write more praise but have got to work now sorry.

      Greetings to Wil, Shane the other guest bloggers. BTW you do quite a good job. Normally I do not comment.

  8. i always knew vaguely of this “wil wheaton” person who was an actor. wasn’t really a fan coz I wasn’t a big fan of Star Trek (don’t shoot me!). But my brother is a Trekkie and liked Wil, so he would mention Wil once in a while in conversations. Then Geek and Sundry started up. and Tabletop came on. and then I went googling for all things Wil and found out that I really enjoyed listening to him talk, write, play, etc etc. Very smart guy, but humble, super funny and sharp. I once spent 4 hours just listening to youtube videos of him just talking. lol. he’s addicting.

  9. I was in love with Wesley Crusher as a Star Trek-obsessed ten year old. Then as a comic books-obsessed twenty year old, I found out that the actor was friends with Warren Ellis. Then I discovered his Suicide Girls columns, and his books, and his Twitter, and then I was in love with Wil Wheaton, the person. He’s so effing relatable. I just like him. How could I not?

  10. Some years ago I moved from San Diego to Phoenix, and while the distance is not too great, it is enough that going to Comic Con in San Diego became a costly proposition. Wil is announced to be at the Phoenix Comic Con shortly thereafter. I did not know Phoenix had one, nor that Wil would bother to come to Phoenix when he has all of California and beyond to roam. I attended the smallish convention in Mesa (small compared to San Diego, at least), and had a blast. The convention has since grown and moved to the Phoenix Convention Center, and is still a blast to attend. I love the panels he has been on, and the readings he has performed. Tabletop, along with his appearances in other shows, has further displayed his talents to wider audiences.

    He is not Wesley, Geordie, or any of the other roles he has done on camera. Like the rest of us, he is merely human. But unlike many of us, he tries to be better, and lets us in on his journey. That is why I come to read WWdN.

  11. > What keeps you coming back here?
    He seems like a nice guy. He is the same age as I am. He occasionally writes something funny. Openly talks about liking strategy board games, in public. (i.e. he is not afraid to show some geek!) He seems like the kind of guy that if we lived down the street I would have over to dinner and thats a short list.

    > His writing?
    He writes? Ok, new item on to do list, find Wheaton’s written works besides blog posts and tweets.

    > His acting?
    Ah yes, he is an actor, no that doesn’t keep me coming back. Every now and then when I decide to kill some time on netflix I watch some TNG and I shudder at his little “I am genius, let me drive this thing” character. I guess technically that means I think he did a good job in the role but I don’t do celebrity following. Find the whole act of idolizing celebrities dehumanizing. It’s a job people, get over it.

    > Did TableTop change your life?
    Life changing no, but it was entertaining enough to subscribe to Geek and Sundry.

    > Is beer also your spirit animal?
    Ah, if only I could convince my wife to allow me to home brew like he does. I have to resort to buying various singles and experimenting at the liquor store. I like a nice dark ale. What’s on tap?

    > Did he sign your boobs at a convention?
    Nope. That would be the cast of Firefly that did that and I wil never wash again. ewwww

    > Do you come hoping he will continue to create new content that will knock your socks off?
    Yes. I have faith in the man. That he wil continue to inform and entertain us, for the long haul.

  12. Are you asking for a friend?

    I guess this is kind of my coming out letter for anyone and everyone to see. I honestly feel a bit embarrassed about it.

    I liked Wesley Crusher on ST:TNG. None of my friends did and made fun of me for it. That is a pretty minor reason.

    Many years ago, Wil did his first interview on slashdot. I found someone who I probably would have been friends with in high school. I don’t have enough friends from high school so I decided to start following Wil (not physically — I have a pretty strong desire to not be stalker).

    Over the years, Wil and I have sort of become friends. We’ve never hung out more than the few minutes I see him signing autographs at a convention, but we’ve exchanged a lot of emails. I’ve had a few chanced to hang out with him at conventions, but my lack of con-skills combined with my social anxiety seemed to conspire against that. When I was driving through Vegas on my way for a summer internship in Pasadena he recommended I check out this little known thing called the World Series of Poker at Binions. I got to see Christ Moneymaker win in person. My wife almost bumped into the armed guards surrounding the prize money as it was carried up the escalator. Up until a few months ago, Wil was on my XBox Live friends list. I think we played Rock Band online exactly once (and exactly once on stage at a convention).

    Wil’s story is a geek fantasy. He had early success and then was rejected by his own. He has spent the last ten years scraping and clawing his way back to success. It has been a lot of fun and even inspirational watching him on his path and trying to help out when I could.

    The thing I admire most about Wil is that he was willing to take on parental responsibility for two young boys when he was in his early twenties. I know that I would never have done that at his age and I think his heart is probably several sizes larger than mine (but not in a heart-diseasey way). Thinking about that has made me reflect on who I am as a person and what I can do to be better.

  13. Why do I read Wil’s blog?

    Believe it or not, it’s not because of Star Trek – even though TNG is my favorite ST series. I didn’t hate Wesley Crusher. He was a kid, who didn’t control his own story. He was also younger than me and so I didn’t have a crush on him, either. My tastes ran more along the lines of Capt. Picard and Data.

    I started reading Wil’s stuff because he is a geek and I come from a long line of techno geeks. So, seeing an actor, who played in one of the cannon geek shows, also being like those who watched it impressed me. But what won me over to Wil fandom was the wonderful, heartfelt posts about his wife and family. During my divorce, I became very cynical about romance and some of the relationships I had afterwards didn’t help that cynicism. I had a hard time believing that any two people could really have a long term, loving relationship. Sure, there were people around me who had been married for years and by all appearance seemed to still love each other – but I only saw them while they were rushing through their lives and I was rushing through mine. It was easy to ignore those relationships, while I struggled with being a single mother.

    Reading Wil’s obvious adoration of Anne, and later seeing her obvious devotion to him, showed me that no matter how down I might be on relationships, there did exist people who truly loved each other and didn’t take each other for granted. You might say that their relationship is one thing that reminds me that there is still hope for humanity. While I hope that one day I would find myself in a similar relationship with someone, it’s okay if it doesn’t happen, because the world still has beauty like this in it – and as long as it is there, there is hope for us all.

    (And if you think that is nauseating, just be grateful that you can’t see me right now. Dammit, I have salty stuff dripping off my face.)

  14. I started following this blog back around…. 2000ish? Somewhere in there. One of my friends mentioned it as a “Hey, this is actually pretty good – you should check this out.”

    So I did. And he was right – it was good. And a lot of what Wil wrote even back then spoke to me as a geek and as someone trying to make sense of life. So I bookmarked it and would come back every couple of days to the main page and see what was new in the World of Wheaton. And very seldom was I disappointed.

    Hung out on the old forum A LOT. It was awesome. Made it to a forum meet-up in SoCal at one point, met up with a couple other people from the forum individually at different times (take that however you want).

    And then Wil blew up the warp core. Damnit Wil.

    And after he blew it up, I left the site for a while. These things happen. Then about 4 years ago, I googled Wil, found the “InExile” site and picked it back up again. And still – the writing spoke to me and it got added back into my Favorites bar.

    Wil – Please don’t blow up the warp core again, ok? :-D

  15. I got into Wil Wheaton because games designer Monte Cook recommended his blog a long while back. Then I bought the ST.TNG dvds. I got into BBT because he was in it. I think he’s also responsible for me watching The Guild.

    But I stay for the writing. Man, he can write.

    That aside: Shane, you just got a new subscriber. What you wrote there resonates so much with me. Thanks.

  16. I was a huge fan of Wil as Wesley when I was growing up and could relate a lot to the character. I lost track of him for a while after TNG ended, then I heard his PAX keynote and I liked it. I went in search of more info, found his blog and his twitter and have been hooked ever since.

    I think one of the reasons that many of us follow Wil is that he conveys such strong positive messages in everything he says or writes. Just look at his motto, or should I say, LAW. Despite all of the political gesturing and posturing that most in the entertainment industry make of supporting good causes, you need only listen to Wil for a few minutes to see that he truly, genuinely, strongly believes in the ones he chooses to endorse. He’s human, open, honest (sometimes tear-jerkingly so) and fun. And most importantly, he doesn’t apologize for being himself (although he is kind-hearted enough to apologize if it negatively impacts somebody).

    Keep on being awesome…everybody!

  17. I signed up without any special expectation. Shortly afterwards Twitter suggested me to check out this ominous @wilw. I’ve never heared of him before, but his latest tweets seemed funny. Out of sheer curiosity I clicked at the shortlink in his description – and there he got me. “What to expect if you follow me on twitter (or: how I’m going to disappoint you in 6 quick steps)” was one of the best texts I’ve ever read and since then I love this guy for what he performs with pure language. There’s a lot of nonsense going on at Twitter – yeah of course, it’s difficult to set the world on fire in 140 signs. But there’s a secret. And Wil knows. So I’m just hanging around, shed tears of laughter reading his posts, and maybe someday I’ll figure out his magic trick. Getting sucked into Tabletop and all that nerdy stuff is a byeffect. Hell, I even attend a lecture about cosmology and space exploration at university. And to be honest, it’s the subject I love most. And what’s the story? I started to fiddle with this stuff after Wils’ enthusiastic posts about NASA and their Mars exploration. Go on, good Sir. I’m curious what comes across next. And till you’re back here, I’ll gladly follow your guest bloggers and see that they’re into. Getting new insights and new inspiration. That’s what life’s about, isn’t it? Have a good trip, get some unnerdy sunburn and fresh ideas for whatever you gonna start next. And remember – somewhen I’ll get to the bottom of this tophat-rabbit-trick. For sure. That can’t just be magic.

  18. What is it that connects me to him? It’s like you said, he’s connectable.

    Three years ago I was stuck on a four hour layover in Charlotte airport. On my birthday, no less. I hadn’t really kept up with Wil over the years, but I had recently rediscovered him on Twitter and WWdN:IE. And so, bored and with free WiFi, I tweeted at him.

    And he tweeted back. And then he posted about it on his blog. And I made him laugh.

    The tagline of his blog is, “I’m just this guy, you know?” And it’s not just marketing spin; he really is just one of the guys. I don’t know how he manages to stay so grounded and accessible, but I think it’s a big part of the reason he’s become a major nexus of modern geekdom. I’ve been following both you and Will Hindmarch for years now because of him, and if I tried to list everyone he’s led me to (Paul and Storm, John Kovalic, Felicia Day, just to name a few), I know I’d be leaving out a bunch of people.

    It’s like you said, coming back to WWdN is like coming home, like getting to hang out with an old friend and reminisce and make stupid jokes. So why do I keep coming back?

    Because he lets me.

  19. was introduced via ST:TNG altho did not start “following” Wil at that point (I was also not a child or teenager and so my “crush” was on Picard)… MANY years later, The Bloggess RE-introduced me to this clever man collating paper… found his blog and started reading; my husband introduced me to Eureka and BBT, where I got to enjoy his character portrayals again, and THEN… I was behind him in line at the bank, and suddenly my inner schoolgirl TOTALLY whammied me and I had to gush about what a fan I was! He was CLEARLY very uncomfortable being recognized in “real life” (who knew Wil is SHY?) but also SO gracious and SO nice, and NOT a Dick!

    I no longer live in L.A. so I won’t be running into him at the bank again, but I am a fan for life now, and will continue to read him and watch for him, and probably start playing some board games (if I can manage to expand my circle beyond my husband and myself).

  20. I have been a fan of Wil’s since watching TNG as a kid. I didn’t discover his blogs until 7 years ago. His writing and honesty grabbed me. I was going through a rough time in my life. I was a single mother without much self-confidence. The career I imagined I would have as a kid was no longer a real possibility. So when Wil wrote about discovering the writer side of him it helped me find the new side of me. I also admired how much he loves his kids and thought of them as his own, even though they are not biologically his. It was actually that writing, and Anne’s strength, that gave me hope that I would find someone to love my son as his own. (I did find someone and we were married 3 1/2 years ago, he even adopted my son as his own…and now we have another little one). I also found acceptance in Wil’s writing. I found that it is indeed cool to be a geek. In school I never felt I fit in, but here (and other sites I discovered through his blog) I feel I belong. Thanks Wil and Anne for helping me through rough, depressing time in my life. I will always be a fan, but now I’m a fan of your writing. Thank you for sharing your personal life with us.

  21. Stand by Me was the first connection. I still watch it with joy. I was a senior in college in 1987 and on a Sunday night movie event (!) we watched with friends ANXIOUSLY to see if the new incarnation of Star Trek would be something that could be remade into another edition of awesomeness. As there was nothing like IMDB.com at that time, we debated long and hard about which actors had been seen where before, and Wil was one of the few that was easy to figure out. Always felt sympathy for ‘Wesley the wunderkind’ – often thinking of Jessica Rabbit’s line “It’s just the way I’m drawn” (paraphrased).

    Now I’m a middle-aged wife & mother who counts Syfy as a go-to network for entertainment. We love(d) Eureka and imagine my delight when the Parrish character was introduced. Gave me all kinds of fuel to spout about Wil Wheaton and his history as an actor. My oldest son is also a Star Trek fan and is watching TNG on Netflix, and thus another generation is indoctinated and continues the legacy (and royalties for the actors!). Don’t even get me started about BBT… I fantasize about Wil being the officiant at Sheldon & Amy’s wedding… tee hee… More ‘Fun with Flags’ with Sheldon Cooper (and Wil)!!!!

    I am an avid blog stalker. My personal blog has only a few entries per year, but I read and click next, read and click next, and repeat as necessary. I can’t remember when I stumbled across WWdN but it was several years ago. I keep coming back for more. I’m a fringe geek.. standing on the edge of the crowd, but so interested to see what’s next.

    And Shane, it took me all of 3 seconds to recognize your name. When I found my son watching Ridiculousness, like every concerned parent I watched it too… just to make sure there was nothing untoward. We are hooked! It’s sort of embarassing to admit but we’ve learned a lot about the culture our sons are living in as teens in the 2010′s from your programming. I look forward to blog-stalking you and thereby getting to know you more.

  22. Words of advice from Mary Schmich about friends.

    “Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle, because the older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.”
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/chi-schmich-sunscreen-column,0,4054576.column

    These are words to take to heart.

    Why I read Wil’s blog?

    Years ago, I started watching a remake of a sci-fi show that was being resurrected . I even saw that they had a kid on there my own age, and though it was cool that someone my age could be on a starship. I was born into the space age, the space shuttle program was going strong, and I was sure we would be taking trips to the moon in my lifetime. However, like the idea of a moon vacation, this young man on the show started to go awry. Soon, it seemed every show he was on the show, the rest of the crew became idiots and he had to save the day. (Would Picard really have played a video game? Come on for fun he played a gum shoe in the holodeck!) I can’t say that I hated Wil’s character like so many others of the time, but I can say that when I saw him on an episode, I would not expect the rest of the crew to do anything in the episode, so I was not interested in the actor who played this role, as much as say the Captain or the android.

    Skip forward a few years and I am looking some technical computer thing up on the internet* and I found a post by Wil where he was talking something nerdy. I started reading his post and I found that they sounded exactly like the nerdy stuff my friends and I were talking about. That was the day I became a fan of Wil Wheaton. I read about him having the same frustrations with the character he played on the Sci-Fi show that I had., and I formed more of a bond with a fellow nerd.

    Skip forward again. I lost my job, and was not able to find a new job for a while, about this time I started reading his other entries, and read about him being between jobs, trying to pay the light bill, and saw him writing about the same feelings of questioning his life and his decisions that I was having, the regret of missed opportunities, the rage and anger and sadness, all the raw emotions I had in me, but he had the balls to put them out there for the world to see and discuss. He struggled, he vented, the continued on.

    His raw, base anger, doubt, and fear mirrored my own. On that day, Wil Wheaton became a person to me. Those gut wrenching confessions let me know I was not alone, and they really helped during those bleak days. I was walking the same road as this guy. He not only found a way to keep the lights on but in the process he has to stare his demons squarely in the eye.

    Since then I have read his posts. I don’t agree with everything the man posts, but I find I agree with most of what he posts, he talks about stuff I find interesting, and he has pointed me toward several nerdy and geeky things that I have enjoyed, so I keep reading.

    * This was pre Google days, so I can’t say I Googled it., and AltaVstaing just doesn’t sound right.

      1. At the risk of sounding like the old man I am, I remember using Gopher, and I loved it.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gopher_%28protocol%29

        The internet at that time was a command prompt with telnet, gopher and FTP with the occasional Kermit or X-Modem (or Y-Modem or Z-Modem) transfers. Yes, they had X-Modem over the internet, and if you ask what X-Modem was, It is simplest to say it back in the pre internet days of peer to peer connections with a modem, it was a way to transfer files.

        Man I miss those days, everything because there was not a lot of overhead. I remember first time I saw a web browser. 2 or 3 people started using them, and brought our network to a crawl. A guy sat in front of Netscape for an hour to wait for a simple webpage to load, meanwhile everybody else ground to a halt because it was eating up all the bandwidth. He stayed there for an hour waiting slowing waiting for a graphic to load so he could click on a link and wait another hour. I though to myself, the internet is going to have to get MUCH faster before this sort of thing works.

    1. Brilliant! I always had a love hate relationship with Wesley Crusher too. I loved him because he was just a nerdy geek like me and he made nerds look cool, before we were considered cool.
      Wesley’s big mouth sounded a lot like mine, though where Wesley actually was always right I just had the arrogance to think I was right :D

      However Wesley’s character was out of whack with the rest of the team. He did not have a unique skill that filled a void left by the other characters. It was too little too much.
      Wesley’s character was just a gimmick to draw in younger viewers (it worked because I watched it, I even battled the V2000 VCR to record it) .
      The writers didn’t look passed the gimmick and thus created an ill conceived character.

      There could have been such an interesting dynamic between a frustrated genius kid, his mum and his superiors. A bit more Degrassi and a lot less “know it all Care Bears”. And then it would’ve been a wonderfully complex tormented character who did have his heart in the right place but because of frustrations acted in his own peculiar way and getting into trouble over that.

      It’s like my mum always said to me when I could not keep my big mouth shut… “Nobody likes a know it all, so learn when to keep your mouth shut! Sometimes it’s better to just sit and listen.” *the “sit and listen” always sounded more like a command then a factual statement…

      1. I had no problem with his mouth. He was right, and that is all that matters. I didn’t care if Data was right, Riker was right, Wesley was right or whoever was right. Too often great minds are ignored because people can’t separate their predigest beliefs of a person from their ideas. The can’t objectivity look at someone’s work without looking at their age, or religious beliefs or lack their of, or skin color, or political views, or their sexual preference. So many great ideas have been stunted because of these bigotries. Alan Turning and Dr. Joseph Goldberger are a couple of examples that come to mind that had great ideas that were overshadowed by bigotry.

  23. I missed one things in your list about Wil.
    And that is Wil’s amazing story telling abilities which appeal to me, stories are so important! People seem to forget that you can hide insanely complex or confronting messages in a story and deliver it. It merely plants a seed in their mind and over time that seed grew allegedly in a thought from their own mind. Whilst you steered them to it in a very harmful and entertaining way.

    Wil, has a wonderful style of writing but an even far more impressive way of telling them. In his mouth and with all his expressions the story comes to live. I cried laughing about his K-Mart story picking out a Star Wars figure. I could associate with it instantly !!!
    Or his appeal of: “You can not have too many dice.”
    Or the way he read his review on TNG episode Datalore! Only a good story teller can be sarcastic, silly and funny and stay entertaining.

    It’s just not fair that one person can have so many talents! ;)

  24. I loved Stand By Me as a kid but didn’t realize that was Wil.

    I grew up watching ST:TNG with my dad, and was like, meh, Wesley, he’s a kid like me so that’s cool. Even though he’s kind of a tool sometimes. Then I lost track of him.

    In college, a friend of mine handed me Good Omens and said, “read this, you will love it.” So I did, and I did, and I started following Neil’s blog, and then on twitter, and over the course of following Neil, Wil came up. I think I may have also run across him through a PennyArcade post about PAX – maybe.

    And I was like – dude, Wil Wheaton is a real guy! With a blog and stuff! I found my way here and never looked back!

  25. _Stand By Me_ was a movie that really spoke to me as a kid. I identified with Wesley(sp?) in TNG–being the smart kid who was very tech-focused.

    I’ve followed his writing, web and otherwise, avidly since his site was posted to slashdot in…oh…2001 maybe?

    The singular thing that made me realize Wil was a real person who I could relate to was one time when he had been auctioning prints off on ebay. Every time he did that, the top bid was hundreds of dollars. He posted on his blog and felt bad that those prices put them out of reach of most people; so he sold a large block for a flat rate until they were gone.

    I first saw him in person at w00tstock Minneapolis. I chatted briefly with him across the autograph table at Dragoncon; the story is here: http://craigsteffen.net/dc2011/wilw.html (apologies for the horrible page; I was experimenting with CSS and I haven’t fixed it).

    Much more to tell but I’m at work. Keep up the good work, Shane!

    [For the record--the cruise ship that had an engine room fire in the last couple of days is NOT the one that JCCC was on.]

    Craig Steffen

  26. I fell in love with Wesley Crusher when I was a smart teenage girl in a place (school) that didn’t fully appreciate smart girls. Wesley I felt would have *totally* appreciated my big brain.

    But it wasn’t until I was feeling nostalgic some years back and searched to see whatever happened to the actor behind the character that I fell into like with Wil the man. And honestly what drew me first was his writing which has made me laugh, made me cry and made me love our how our language can flow in the hands of a writer. But more than the writing it is his love for his wife, his boys, his dogs. The enduring passion and full love that Will allows you (as a reader) to glimpse is spectacular and something I see in my own home with my own family. I like knowing that someone can articulate with beautiful writing some of the things I’d like to say about my own husband, my own boys and my own adorable pet-animals.

  27. I haven’t spoken with Wil, and I haven’t had a chance to meet him, but he has touched my life in more ways than I can count.

    As a teenager, I grew up with him while he was on Star Trek: TNG (easily the best TV show in history). I enjoyed and was even envious watching him on the show. I didn’t have a crush on him but I enjoyed the episodes he was in and felt like I could relate to his character. A teenager lost in a sea of adults, trying to be the mature one. I was always older than my age…. and I wondered every time I saw him if he knew how lucky he was to be on that iconic show. I would have given a limb just to be an extra.

    After he left the show, I was upset but life carried on and I grew up. I had gone thru a divorce, had some financial issues, and had also taken on the awesome responsibility of a new husband and 3 step kids and a not so fun ex on the other half’s side. I also came to the darkest point of my life, diagnosed with Depression. When I did anything, it was usually watching Star Trek. I thought of it as my own, personal security blanket. It was kind of like mom’s chiken soup when your sick, it always makes you feel better. I rediscovered Wil watching The Guild, (thank-you Felicia Day!) and I felt like I had found an old friend.

    Wil Wheaton, you taught me how to laugh and have fun again. Most importantly, you have taught me to show how much the poeple in my life mean to me. Thanks to your acting, writtings, Tabletop and the perserverance you have continued to show in your own life, you have enriched mine ten times over.

    Thank-you for being “you”!

  28. I was never a young girl with crush. And, it appears that I’m actually older than a lot of the others who follow Wil. I”m 53 and was watching ST:TNG as a full grown (if somewhat immature) adult.
    I think that the connection I feel is this: I owe Wil a Guiness, if he ever comes to South Florida and finds time to let me buy him one. He’s the type of guy I think I could just sit wtih a bull-shit about.. well …. just about anything.
    After reading his blog and his works, I’ve started calling myself a “Geek-wanna Be”.
    I want to be Wil.

  29. The Bloggess + The Big Bang Theory + having had the luck to marry a lovable RPG-playing, sci-fi-lovin’ smarty = reading the things Wil Wheaton writes for the ‘tubes. Not the world I came from but I like to dip my toes in these days. Most importantly, I like that readers here get a glimpse of a whole person – professional, player, parent.

  30. What keeps me coming back, is all of it. There aren’t actually a lot of writers that I will sit down and read. Most can’t keep my attention for much more than a blog post. Wil can though… I have bought and read every book he’s put out, some twice. Also his complete works CD that at the time actually took me quite a bit of work to scrounge the money up for. Totally worth it! He has also introduced me to some other authors that are amazing enough to keep me reading.

    I love Wil as an actor as well. Especially with all of these deliciously evil roles he’s been getting to play lately. Having met him a few times, and read so much from him, I know that it’s so opposite of his true nature. That makes it even more fun to see him in those roles, and appreciate how good of an actor he really is to make it work.

    TableTop did change my life. I have always really wanted to learn how to play some of the games that he has covered, but have always been really anxious about learning with a lot of people around, or looking really dumb while I’m clueless what’s going on. TableTop has totally eliminated that aspect, and let me learn at least enough where I feel like the rest of the unknown is okay being unknown until you run into it in game play. Now I just need to make some local friends so I can actually play some!

    My Wil story… hrm. I actually came across a link to his blog in Arstechnica sometime in 2005 or 2006.
    After reading the blog for a bit, I ended up buying the books that he had out at the time, and was really impressed. At one point I had sent him an email asking for advice for a writer friend of mine, and was really not expecting a reply. I was amazed that not only did he reply rather quickly, he had great advice, and complimented me for being a good friend by wanting to help.

    The first time that I met Wil, it was my birthday and I went to RinCon pretty much just because he was going to be there. I wore the “This is how we roll” t-shirt that he had helped bring into creation. When I saw him walking down the hallway for the first time that day, he was wearing the same shirt! I was slightly mortified, and wondered if I should buy a shirt from somewhere to change into. A few minutes later, I was on twitter, and saw him send an update about how awesome it was to see people wearing the same shirt, so I relaxed. When I saw him later for the first of many book signings that he’s done for me… the first thing he said was nice shirt! with a huge, genuine, kind smile. When I told him my username (Syndelin), he recognized it, and thanked ME for my comments and contributions to the blog and on twitter. He never made me feel bad or stupid for being bright red the whole time I was talking to him, and doing the complete fangirl awkward flail in front of him in person. (ugh, sorry Wil!)

    One of the many things that always amazes me about Wil is the fact that I feel like he gives so much to the world, his fans, and our culture… yet every time I see him, he never fails to thank me for supporting him, and letting him give us all of these great gifts. He’s appreciative, he’s kind, he’s funny, and the way that him and Anne relate to each other, and let us all be privy to it is so special. They remind me so much of my husband and I, that it always just warms my heart, and makes me miss him more when he’s out of town, and appreciate him more when he’s home.

    I could go on forever, but I’m sure anyone that actually read this already feels as though I have, so I’ll just shut up and go find a game to play now!

    Loving these guest blogs and bloggers, and relate a lot to this one in particular. Thanks Shane! I love Ridiculousness as well, but now you have a new blog reader, twitter follower. =)

    -Syndelin

  31. First time I have commented here but being able to answer this question is important to me.

    I first “discovered” Wil shortly after “Just A Geek” came out. I am not sure if it was Slashdot or some other site that gave me the link but I followed it out of a mild curiousity that Wil Wheaton, the guy who played Wesley, was showing up in my geeky world but not related to Star Trek.

    I was hooked immediately. As a geek from a very young age, I lived the stereotypical geek life growing up and going to school. From the good, taking things apart, AV Club, Chess, D&D, science, chemistry, physics, math and lots and lots and lots of books. To the bad, social awkwardness, bullying, beatings, loneliness etc.

    Wil wrote about these things, both good and bad, so clearly, so eloquently that it touched me. Even though I outgrew most of the bad parts of being a geek, and the world changed that geekiness became desirable, reading Wil’s writing was cathartic. I knew, and know, intellectually that I am not alone, but reading the words really made me FEEL that I wasn’t alone. Being a guy and a geek, there is rarely discussion of feeling and emotion by the people I associate with and the things that I read. Wil’s writing has that in spades!

    I can also strongly relate to many of his experiences. We are roughly the same age so the experience of the growth of video games, arcades, computers, D&D and the owning of the word “geek” is so familiar. We also both have two adopted children and I relish his stories about how he feels about them.

    There is, of course, so much more that keeps me coming back here and following along on Twitter and Google+ but I would have followed without the talking animals.

  32. First of all, this is a great idea, Shane. Wil is going to come back and read all these comments, and have many things in his eyes for a while. I’m loving the community here.

    I started to craft a reply, but it got waaaay to long for a comment thread. So I wrote up something on my little tumblr as it really got me thinking about making connections to things you love, finding friends, etc. Long story short: Wil’s the dude.
    http://jujyfruit0.tumblr.com/post/42939040609/dr-strangewheaton-or-how-i-learned-to-stop-hating

  33. I love the guest posts Shane. Keep it up. I have been a fan of Wil since Stand by Me and later underrated awesome movie Toy Soliders, which my brother and I had taped off of HBO during a free preview weekend and watched on a weekly basis. I was bored at college one day in 2001 and found WWDN while wandering the web. I was immediately captivated by Wil’s posts about life and geekdom. It was so awesome to know that a successful dude like Wil was really just a geek like me and liked the same stuff I did and had the same hopes, fears, and dreams as me. I immediately launched my own blog (brendoman.com) and that has been going for almost 11 years now. The blog led to lots of other awesome opportunities and projects, from podcasts to webcomics. I never would have made that first post without the encouragement of Wil.

    I consider it a bonus that soon after I started my blog, I emailed Wil an email of encouragement as there were a lot of stupid assholes blogging about how much they didn’t like him and that Wil actually replied to me. We emailed back and forth over the years about various things and then Phil invited me to be the co-moderator with him of the Geeks group at Propeller. That was an awesome time. I remember meeting up with Wil at Gallery 1988 and we geeked out about Propeller for 30 minutes while our companions grew increasingly bored. I shared Wil’s heartbreak when AOL pulled the plug on our fun little community. But thanks to that I made a great friend and I treasure that every day.

    Sorry for rambling. Bottom line, without wwdn I have no idea where I would be today. Thanks Shane for reminding me of that and my heart is warmed reading so many similar stories.

  34. I wrote a blog about Wheaton and this exact subject a couple of months ago. I don’t want to be spammy, but it’s easier to just post the link rather than copying and pasting all my rambly nonsense. http://geekinacardigan.com/its-all-about-perspective/ Short story: I loved ST:TNG as a kid, then rediscovered Wheaton via The Guild a couple of years ago. Love the blog (for honesty and sincerity), love the tweets (for funnies), and yes, beer is definitely my spirit animal.

  35. I’ve been taken with Wil since his STNG days. I’ve heard people either hated him or loved him; I loved him. He was geeky, awkward, not quite fitting in. In other words, he was much like me at his age. Now, it’s more his inherently readable writing style and love of gaming. He writes as though it is effortless. That is always a sign of a good writer. He often writes from the heart, but is never saccharine or cloying. He may write about universal topics (the angst of growing up), but focuses on some unique aspect of it. That makes it both familiar and engaging. That he loves to play games is just something we have in common (although I’m not an RPG fan at all). And since I’m writing all this, I might as well say the other reason I follow his blog: he’s awful damn cute, too.

  36. I met Wil when he was fifteen and I was nineteen. It was the ST:TNG era. In many ways, Wil has changed and grown since those days. (Who doesn’t from fifteen to the big four-oh?) In one crucial way, however, he has not. Even back then, given the choice between some random Hollywood event or a comic convention with his friends, he genuinely preferred the comic convention with his friends. (Fortunately, for his super-geeky, non-famous friends, work sometimes won out and he had to attend one of those events. Occasionally, we got to attend with him. Random Hollywood events are much more fun when they are not work. Like someone else’s puppy…all the fun, none of the responsibility.) Surprisingly, back then, even as a regular on Star Trek, Wil could attend those comic conventions in relative anonymity. The key word is “relative,” I was always aware that the person with whom I was eagerly geeking-out could have just as easily been at one of the booths signing autographs. That had a powerful effect on me. The geek community of the eighties was much smaller, segmented, and even more ostracized than it is today. Wil’s constant enthusiasm to be a part of it—when, in my mind at the time, he had better options – subconsciously infused in me a sense of pride and confidence.

    Wil’s life took him on a different path than mine a few years later. (Eventually, the paths led back together, and I still, once a year rather than once a week, attend a comic convention with him.) But even as he moved on, I retained that pride and confidence I had gained. A few years later, when Magic: The Gathering exploded onto the gaming scene, I found myself something of a shepherd to a fresh crop of burgeoning geeks. Subconsciously (again), I attempted to instill in those kids a sense of pride in who they were and how they enjoyed spending their time. Many of them felt, as many of us have at some point, that they needed to hide their hobbies and interests to avoid being labeled. I hope I succeeded and that the one seed unknowingly planted by Wil became many more unknowingly spread by me.
    During the most recent Phoenix comic-con that I attended with Wil, he introduced me to a card game called Cards Against Humanity. For any that are not familiar, it is politically incorrect Apples to Apples. There were about fifteen people at the table that night, and we laughed – a lot. That’s what Cards Against Humanity is about – laughing. It’s also about bringing people close together. (A certain acceptance of your fellow players, and confidence in their inherent goodness, is required for a Cards Against Humanity game.) A few months later I picked up a copy for myself.

    At the time, my twenty-year-old son and one of his friends were still living at my house. My son was in the last few weeks before leaving home for a minimum of six years (U.S. Army) and what will likely be for good. Twenty-year-old males take to the depravity-for-humor present in Cards Against Humanity like a duck takes to water. So my wife and I, our friends, my son and his friends spent many hours laughing and playing together before he left the nest. The important parts of that sentence are “my wife, my son, and I spent many hours before he left the nest.” Wil’s butterfly wings unknowingly created a wonderful typhoon in my household this year.

    There is an important connection between these stories. While he has become a powerful voice in the geek community today, Wil has always, often unintentionally, promoted and empowered the geek community. Typically, he does this just by being Wil. When he is approached by a fan at a signing booth and professes his empathy for that fan, it is the truth. He does know what it’s like to be on that side of the booth. When he writes about the confusion of his youth, it’s true, he was as confused and overwhelmed as a teenager as we all were. However, His DNA has always contained the person he would become. I was lucky to be around him when his gift was wild and uncontrolled. We are all lucky that he found the passion and voice to harness that gift and share it with us in his speech, writing, and other creative endeavors each and every day.

  37. Awesome questions, sir Shane!

    Years ago I was on this little site called Fark, and I was like, wow, this guy has his own tag! I vaguely knew who he was, mostly from Toy Soldiers and Stand By Me… I thought it was cool that someone famous was actually accessible. Then I was led to this blog and have been a loyal reader ever since. I love to write, I love to read, and most of all I love to read good writers. He is always able to draw you in, and let you really understand and feel what it is he’s talking about. His writing has voice. It has emotion. I’ve never been able to meet him, but I’ve exchanged a few emails and tweets and he’s always been kind. Always been kind. You don’t have to worry (much) that maybe you’re bugging him with silly things and he’s a busy man who has no time for strangers. He’s always been kind. He may or may not know a simple note about my grandmother passing away really meant a lot to me that day. Still does.
    He shares fun things in his life, and we, this community, share ours too and he responds. He responds to comments that include videos of my baby dancing to Pumped up Kicks. He enjoys it when you take his books across the world and post photos of them in his flickr group. My husband wore his “how we roll” t-shirt to the hospital the night my baby girl was born.
    It’s just a geek-internet-ish connection, and more. We grew up about the same time, he’s nearly the same age as my husband. It’s a give and take. There is interaction.
    He teaches you about this dirty game, Cards Against Humanity, that makes your friends IRL have legendary fun evenings that somehow turn into mornings.
    So, Wil is my internet friend. Of course I will come and visit.

    Shit, don’t even get me started on how Awesome Anne is. I want to be her bff.
    (No stalking Anne, Promise. : D )

  38. I have actually sent Wil an e-mail with this story, but wanted to share it.

    I had many encounters with Wil in the late 80′s early 90′s at various places I worked. I grew up in the same area as Wil. I am a couple years older than him.

    In 1986 I was working at Shakey’s Pizza. Wil came in on a week night with a group of the “drama kids” from Crescenta Valley High School. He was very showy, drawing attention to himself and wanting people to know who he was. I hadn’t seen Stand by Me so I could have cared less.

    Next was in 1989 or 90 when I was working at The Wherehouse. The first time he was with a friend of his and he was obnoxious. He was talking loudly and making a fuss over something with his mom that I can’t specifically remember. I just remember him saying “knowing my luck I’ll come home to Willard Scott on my front lawn.” They rented a movie and left. The next time he came in he bought come CD’s- I think Pink Floyd was one. He handed me his credit card, it was when card companies had just started making cards with custom designs on them, his was a Star Trek themed one and I made a comment like “hey, Star Trek” (Like I did when most people gave me a card with something different on them) and he told me to “be nice or I’ll leave”. I was like whatever.

    The last time was in ’91 when I was working at The Gap in the Glendale Galleria. He was wearing a tie-dyed t-shirt and looked so sad. He was very quiet and almost humble. He was shopping with a girl.

    I don’t remember how or when I came across WWdN, but I know it was pre-exile. I e-mailed Wil back then the above stories with the title “My encounters with a young Wil” and he replied back saying he knew EXACTLY what I was going to say. I totally understood what he was going through back then and never had any ill will towards him- Sure at the time I thought he was an ass, but seeing him that last time I could tell he was struggling. I am happy he found himself.

    Reading his blog over these past however many years I think of him as my friend. I have a couple friends who are actors as well and I get just as excited when I see him on TV as I do when I see them. My 10 year-old daughter and 6 year-old son love BBT and always say “yay” when we catch a re-run with Wil.

  39. I actually stumbled across Wil’s blog through my friend Jeff Schuetze’s webcomic JefBOT; he did a story arc about being in rivalry with Wil and linked to Wil’s blog. I followed the link and fell in love with his writing style. I enjoy well-crafted honesty, the sort of thing that is well said while being able to cut through the layers of crap we put around ourselves. I haven’t seen much of his acting, but I adore Tabletop (Munchkin and Space Fluxx now travel the country with me).

    I think the reason I feel connected to Wil, though we may only ever meet in passing at conventions if I’m very lucky and manage to wriggle through the lines, is because he’s been where I am. A young actor, struggling to find a place that isn’t selling out and yet can still make money to pay the bills. The fact that he’s made it and become a geek god gives me hope.

  40. I’ve been a lurker for a while, but not a commenter.

    I came across Wil’s blog when a mutual friend re-posted Wil’s post about how he would never forget River Phoenix while watching Stand By Me at the Falcon Theatre. It was so lovely, and well written. I had no idea Wesley Crusher from ST:TNG was this wonderful person. As I read on, I felt more like I knew him, as he has the same doh! moments I have. Not in acting but struggling through this strange land of the industry and life as a whole.

    When Wil started Tabletop with Felicia, I watched and keep coming back to it. It has opened me up to a whole new world of nerd/geek fun. I love Geek & Sundry, and love Tabletop! It makes me miss growing up with my dad playing D&D with his friends and Board Games at family gatherings.

    I think overall, what keeps me coming back is the real human aspect of Wil. He’s what is missing in a lot of the business, a nice, genuine individual. I hope I someday get the opportunity to work with him!

  41. I come for the Shane Nickerson guest posts.

    Also, because of the poker playing and Vegasing, and bloggering, and readability.

    Wil comes off as a nice guy, both online and in person. It’s good to keep some positivity in one’s life, especially on the Internets.

  42. I was/am a fan of TNG, but was always neutral about Wesley. The breakthrough moment with Wil’s blog came with a post he made about step parenting, saluting those joys and challenges. That post struck a chord with me.

  43. Why do we like Wil and why do we keep coming back for more? For me it’s a long list and I probably can’t do it justice. We’re close to the same age and growing up I was always a fan of ST:TNG. I never really followed his career until a few years ago when I joined Twitter and he was suggested as someone I should follow. After discovering his insane ability to be so smartly funny in 140 characters I got curious and looked for more. When I stumbled on WWdN I felt like I’d found a long-lost friend. The thing that makes Wil so relatable to everyone is his willingness to be open and to be himself. In a world where even those closest to us are fake, it is refreshing to see someone who could easily be distant and egotistical . . . still be vulnerable and have doubts just like the rest of us. Wil is very candid and very smart with what he shares. He paints such vivid pictures in so few words that we get to feel his joys and there have been more than a few times I’ve shed tears when reading about his sorrows.

    Wil Wheaton is someone everyone would like to be able to call friend. And because he allows us to peek into his world, we sometimes feel like we are just that. I keep coming back because he makes me feel accepted and, because he makes us feel like we’re his friends, I like to know how he’s doing. All my RL friends made fun of my during the Super Bowl when I kept sitting on the edge of my seat waiting to catch a glimpse of him. Their constant jeer was “you act like you know him or something”. I like to think that I do. I know I was just as excited for him as I would have been for anyone I know IRL.

  44. Hmm, why am I here you ask me? OK Shane, I’ll bite.
    Wil is openly geek in a world which far too often treats that as something to be derided and scoffed at. He also seems to be a pretty decent bloke. I kind of get the feeling that if I were to bump in to him on the street he’d be happy to have a beer with me, and might even, schedule permitting, play a guest character in our regular role playing/gaming group. Not that this is ever likely to happen, I live in New Zealand, a place where there aren’t any major cons that would attract a guest like Wil.
    I can’t really remember how I discovered WWDN, but I became a regular reader when I first saw TableTop. Like many here I’m not a celebrity follower, but I do enjoy most things geek, and to discover that Wil and his friends have similarly nerdy leanings as I do means I feel a certain connection. I never especially liked his character Wesley on TNG, I was always more of a fan of TOS anyway, but Wil is an actor, and was just playing a role. On here and on Twitter we get a glimpse at the real Wil, and he is a person I would be proud to call friend if a quirk of fate caused our lives to intersect. That’ll probably never happen, but that’s his loss as much as mine :)

  45. I met Wil briefly in 2003 at the O’Reilly Open Source Convention, where I was in the right place at the right time to see his first ever public book signing, for Dancing Barefoot. I love his books and have followed his blog off and on ever since.

  46. I first had a huge crush on Wil while watching TNG. I happened upon his blog while he was in exile and have been reading ever since. I watch him on Big Bang, have watched Tabletop (and just bought 3 of the games he featured to play with my kids) and plan to get around to watching Eureka and the Guild (did I mention I have 3 kids who take up a lot of time?!).

    I love that Wil continues to share things with us things that he doesn’t have to. He could stop blogging anytime, but he doesn’t. He gives of himself by going to conventions and doing stupid cell phone videos, etc….showing that not every celebrity is full of himself. In short, he proves that even if famous, you don’t have to be a dick.

  47. I remember watching TNG as a kid, but I think my re-introduction to Wil Wheaton was as Cha0s on Leverage, and then soon after as Evil Wil on Big Bang. And then I found out he posted some pretty hilarious tweets, and so did his family, and then I was hooked.

    It is just so nice to see a group of genuinely good, kind, happy people. I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression, and reading the “depression lies” post was a revelation. Seeing that there are people out there battling the same mental dragons who are able to come out of it whole is such a simple and beautiful relief. I’m immensely grateful to Wil and Anne for sharing their happiness and hilarity with all of us out there on the internet who need a lift (and of course, to Watson, who already knows he’s magnificent).

    Oh, and the dog pictures. Too damn cute.

  48. In a way, my following of Mr Wheaton was involuntary.

    The first things I ever read (outside of what school made me read) were Stephen King’s short stories and novellas, including The Body. Of course, this led me right to Stand By Me. Not long after I first saw the movie, I was watching St Elsewhere with my mom ( I was only about 12 at the time) and there Wil was again. I thought “hey, that’s cool” and that was that.

    Then, he popped up in an episode of Family Ties, one of my favourites at the time … and suddenly he seemed to be in a whole bunch of stuff I was interested in, including Toy Soldiers, The Liars’ Club and of course, TNG.

    At some point, I heard that he was doing something called “Blogging”. I checked that out (mainly to see what it was!) and have been cyberstalking him ever since.

    The only thing I’ve really missed have been his appearances in Eureka – I show I never really got into. But I have been thrilled to discover load of excellent new things through his blog posts over the years and no doubt, I’ll catch up with that soon too.

    Other stuff I really don’t think I would have discovered without his input are Dr Horrible, Felicia Day and Geek & Sundry … and I even think I only found Firefly by some Six-Degrees of clicking from wilwheaton.net Plus of course, his own more recent adventures in New Media, with stuff like Radio Free Burrito and TableTop.

    So I have a lot to thank Mr Wheaton for – and I’m certain that the above account of my acquaintance with his work is far from unique. Kudos, wilw. You are the very definition of undickness.

  49. I was never a fan of star trek before the 2009 movie. If asked, I doubt I could tell you which series Wil Wheaton was in (I do know the name of his character). I’d seen him on big bang theory and in eureka and thought that he was a good actor and a cool seeming guy. A friend of mine, who is a huge star trek fan, follows Wil’s blog. She sent me links to different ones every now and then if she thought that it was a topic I would appreciate. Then one day I set up my Twitter account. I was in a fairly dark place at the time, and wasn’t going to get out of it anytime soon. I looked around for people to follow and for some reason thought of Wil. I then ignored my Twitter account for about a year while my life spiraled out of control. I got some control of it back and was slowly climbing my way back to sanity when I decided to get back on Twitter. That’s when I became a huge Wil Wheaton fan. No matter how bad my day was, or how big a fight I’d just had with my mom (I’d moved back in I out of desperation) I always managed to scrape up a grin for one of his tweets. Then I started reading his blog more frequently. By the time Wil posted his blog on depression, I’d moved out and am now well on the road to being a whole person. Wil showed me what a truly good person is. That they do exist. And that trials make us better. And he still keeps me going whenever I’m having a rough day. Thanks, Wil, for showing me who I want to be in twenty years.

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