I had someone ask me this recently and the only answer I can give is that I’m a great big nerd and I love video games, movies and pop culture humor. These aren’t just products to me, they are things I would want to buy.
As far as calling myself a big nerd. Well, I have a reason for it. Once a college professor called me a nerd in class. Granted I was being a bit of a smart ass. He gave a test on the first day of class. He said if you missed 3 questions you needed his class, if you missed 2 or even just 1 question you needed his class. So I threw my arm into the air…think of Hermione Granger. “What if you didn’t miss any? Can I CLEP out?” He said “In that case, you’re a nerd and no you cannot CLEP out.” Well…phooey. I tried.
So yes, I’m a nerd. My husband is a nerd and our son is…you guessed it…a nerd. And we are all damn proud of that moniker which was hated when my husband and I were younger. Now my husband and I couldn’t be more proud of being nerds and we are super proud of our nerd progeny.
In fact, we started our son’s love of all things nerdish early on. He started playing video games very young, oh we had educational games for him Reader Rabbit and all that but we got him started on actual video games quite young. He could complete all levels of Star Fox before he could tie his shoes. We’re talking N64 version circa 1997. To give you an idea our son was born in 1995. So yeah, we started his gamer training young and his nerd training young too. He was Darth Vader when he was 3 for Halloween and kindergarten the year Phantom Menace came out he won a costume contest as Anakin Skywalker, he even got the spiky haircut.
So you could say that our household loves all things deemed “nerdy” by the rest of the world. We are equal opportunity nerds as well, we love both Star Trek and Star Wars. Gasp! You cannot love both? Ah, but we do. My father was into Star Trek and Star Wars when I was a kid so I was exposed to it at a young age as well. My husband’s parents also were fans of both of these sci-fi masterpieces. No one can say "I could use a shower" without, "Hmm, yes." (if you don't get that you aren't a Trekkie!)
Princess Bride is another favorite and is quoted quite often in our home. A goodbye in our house generally ends with “Have fun storming the castle!”
My husband and I grew up on the Muppets, Fraggle Rock and loved The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth. My husband was in a band and one day our son, still a toddler was playing in the floor with his toys as the band practiced in our living room. The singer looks at him and says, "You remind me of the babe." And the rest of the band filled in the rest of the lines. Yes. Nerds all and proud of it.
We can’t see Ricardo Montalban in anything without yelling KHAN! Even Fantasy Island repeats we’re yelling at the TV “Da plane, boss. Look, da plane…. KHAN!” Yeah, we’re weird.
We did not dislike anything about the Star Wars movies original trilogy or prequels and loved the latest one. Ewok haters, step aside, we love our little warrior teddy bears. We even stomach Jar Jar Binks because you know what? He made my 4-year-old laugh so hard the kid had tears in his eyes. So I can take Jar Jar…my kid laughed and any parent knows that the most wonderful sound in the world is the sound of their child laughing.
We still quote the original Ghostbusters. Lord of the Rings is re-watched often in our household and quoted. We cannot grocery shop for potatoes without someone saying "What's taters, precious?"
Our dog is named after a Harry Potter character. Our son had a beta fish also named after a Harry Potter character.
I have a signed picture of Faramir hanging right over my desk, that David Wenham signed at a Comic Con. So yes, nerds. I have Lord of the RIngs cups and plates for crying out loud.
Indiana Jones and Back to the Future are also beloved movie series in our home, who hasn't said "It's not the years it's the mileage." And we couldn’t do without our superhero movies. X-Men, Avengers, Batman, Superman, Spiderman, Thor, Ironman and then there are the comic books still in storage from my husband’s high school years. Silver Surfer, Fantastic 4, Punisher, Ghost Rider and really anything drawn by Todd McFarlane.
So my long answer to a short question is, the products we sell are what we love. Not just something to make money with, not just a business. The t-shirts and other products we sell are things we’d actually buy ourselves…and have! We are fans too and that is what makes South of Memphis special to us. It isn’t just a business or even a hobby, it is a love. They say, do what you love and you’ll never “work” a day in your life. That is what South of Memphis feels like…it isn’t work. It is life for us.
South of Memphis