Я не знал, что у слова geek, кроме его обычного современного значения "a person often of an intellectual bent who is disapproved of" (M-W) — он же "ботаник" в русском школьном сленге — есть также и другое значение. В свет этого незнания следующий отрывок из романа "Nightmare Alley" (1946, by William Lindsay Gresham) читался с весьма забавными чувствами:
"Just because I'm your pal I ain't going to crap you up. You want to know where geeks came from. Well, listen — you don't find'em. You make 'em.
He let this sink in, but Stanton Carlisle never moved a muscle. "Okay. Buw how?"
Hoately grabbed the youth by the shirt front and drew him nearer: "Listen, kid. Do I have to draw you a damn blueprint? You pick up a guy and he ain't a geek — he's a drunk. A bottle-a-day booze fool. So you tell him like this: 'I got a little job for you. It's a temporary job. We got to get a new geek. So until you do you'll put on the geek outfit and fake it.' You tell him. 'You don't have to do nothing. You'll have a razor blade in your hand and when you pick up the chicken you give it a nick with the blade and then make like you're drinking the blood. Same with rats. The marks don't know no different.' "
Hoately ran his eye up and down the midway, sizing up the crowd. He turned back to Stan. "Well, he does this for a week and you see to it that he gets his bottle regular and a plce to sleep it off in. He likes this fine. This is what he thinks is heaven. So after a week you say to him like this, you say, 'Well, I got to get me a real geek. You're through.' He scares up at this because nothing scares a real rummy like the chance of a dry spell and getting the horrors. He says, 'What's the matter? Ain't I doing okay?' So you say, 'Like crap you're doing okay. You can't draw no crowd faking a geek. Turn in your outfit. You're through.' Then you walk away. He comes following you, begging for another chance and you say, 'Okay. But after tonight you go.' But you give him his bottle.
"That night you drag out the lecture and lay it on thick. All the while you're talking he's thinking about sobering up and getting the crawling shakes. You give him time to think it over, while you're talking. Then throw in the chicken. He'll geek."
Кстати, и Лингво, и Мультитран не передают самого обычного современного значения geek, да и со старыми не очень-то справляются.