Monday, I had a job interview. I didn't get the job. The longer I (over)think about it, the more I worry that it has to do with me admitting some of my nerdier hobbies.
This has caused some of my friends to say "it is who you are, so why work for someone that can't deal with that," but the job isn't about my hobbies, so I can't rail against prejudices an interviewer might have, because it's their livelihood, and I can't really expect them to care enough to find out more about a given hobby.
For what it's worth, I didn't go in talking about how awesome comics are or explaining my Wednesday night exploits in the Adventurers Guild. We were discussing diplomacy and communication, and I mentioned that I have been a moderator on several communities and message boards in the past.
This was probably my mistake, because it's a very logical follow up question to say, "what kind of communities?" I didn't dwell on it too long, but I mentioned "Star Wars, D&D, games, that sort of thing," and then attempted to move on as quickly as possible.
As much as we may like to think that nerds have inherited the Earth, we're not entirely there yet. And it's not completely the fault of people that might assume people with nerdy hobbies might not be fully functional adults.
Sure, if you are super smart scientist geek, your intelligence will likely overshadow your quirks even if you show up for the interview wearing pants on your head. But an "office geek" like me, that probably is better at seeming slightly intelligent, but is actually the poster boy for super mediocrity? Why would you overlook that?
I'm just trying to work through all of this. I was actually kind of excited that in my second interview, my PowerPoints that were game and Star Wars themed were a conversation starter. I'm taking those samples out of my portfolio now. It's a net negative, and I'm not impressive enough to show any real personality.