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the pre-history of "nerm"


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I'm new here to this forum, and these parts, having bought my first tank about 6 months ago. I say the word "nerm" in Lefty O's post about rank and decided to find out more.  It is a very cool word, with a very cool history. (Yes I grew up in the 60's) I hope this post is OK to put in "Off Topic".


A normal or typical person who completely nerds out when it comes to aquariums or fishkeeping. Coined by Cory McElroy of Aquarium Co-Op in a live stream on YouTube on 19 October 2020. The term has rapidly spread in usage across the aquarium hobby and is now frequently encountered in a number of aquatic hobby contexts.

Most people wouldn’t guess, but I’m a huge nerm.

You know you’re a nerm when you try to grow green water on purpose.

by Hobbit22 April 11, 2021


“But wait… there’s more…”

Long ago, before the word “nerm”, before the word “nerd” was spelled with an ”E” and no “k”.  

Back when I was in college, activity generally fell into two categories, drinking and not drinking (also known as studying). That was when the word was spelled 2 ways, “knurd” was the noun, referring to a person, and “knird” as a verb, referring to studying.

Ones friends would ask “Are you “drinking” or “knirding” tonight?”

Now this was back before the drinking age was 21.  So, the drinking was mostly a few beers while going out dancing.  The folks I spent time did not do shots, or get falling down drunk. No one could dance when that drunk. The knirding involved in getting into med school or vet school or grad school was much more intense than the drinking we were doing. We never "drank like a fish", so to speak.

Edited by KittenFishMom
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