Friday, November 16, 2007

Live Long and Prosper

I have a confession to make. It’s a confession of a very personal nature that I can only reveal under the semi-anonymity of the net. This is big and y’all are getting it exclusively, because I could never say these words out loud. Are you ready? Here it is. I may be a little bit of a Trekkie. There, now its out there and it’s on the web so it must be true. Oh sure, I’ll still deny it if you ask me, but now you know that it’s lurking under the surface of this cool and hip facade that I put on.

Being a Trekkie is pretty hard to come to grips with. You ask yourself, how did this happen? Was I born like this? Should I seek counseling? But in the end, you realize that you’re merely playing out an alternate timeline brought on by a rip in the space-time continuum and you should really stop focusing on a t.v. show and get yourself back to your starship orbiting the planet, marry the captain, move to the Ferenginar and start a stamping business from your home….and live happily ever after.

Ok, I’m not that kind of Trekkie. I don’t speak Klingon and I don’t know in which episode Captain Janeway first battled the Borg in the Delta Quadrant. In fact, “Trekkie” may be too harsh. Afterall, its not as if I ever had a secret fantasy of teaching Spock to love and then mating with him on the bridge during the night shift…really, no secret fantasies here. I also have no desire to ever visit a Star Trek convention (well, no desire that I’m willing to admit anyway). No, I wouldn’t really say that I’m a “Trekkie” at all…nothing more than a slightly obsessive fan, really. But my co-workers continue to speculate and whisper….something about that photo on my cube wall with my phase super-imposed into a photo of The Next Generation crew. That doesn’t prove anything. It’s like I explained to them, I was in Vegas, the opportunity was there and it only cost me $29.95 for an 8x10 glossy photo….would any sane person pass that up?

OK, so we’ve established that I am mildly interested in this television series called Star Trek. But I’m not the only one still watching re-runs all day on Saturday in my pajamas. What is it about this show that has mesmerized so many people from so many different walks of life? It must be more than the mediocre acting and off-the-wall plot lines to make people risk being lumped into the nerdy typecast associated with the show. Personally, I enjoy the subtle humor and references to current events (or events that were current at the time). Mostly, I think these series has kept its loyal viewers by creating several very cohesive series intertwined by common events. Everything from planet names to the actual invention of the Klingon language is used consistently throughout all the series. The success of the show has depended on keeping its fans intrigued with hidden tidbits and innuendo while ensuring that each storyline is independent enough to allow new-comers or channel flippers to easily follow the plot. I can’t think of another show that has mastered the technique of spin-off so well.

I’m happy to say that with the invention of TiVo (God bless that guy!), we now have the next generation (pun intended) of the Star Trek fan in our home. It occurred to me after seeing an old episode about a year ago that my sci-fi inspired CT would absolutely love the show. Luckily, there is always a Trek on somewhere on the satellite channels, so we now have a collection of recorded episodes that could make a Vulcan envious (if they could feel such an emotion, that is). I was right and CT has been assimilated….well, at least when not in public. He did venture out of our mutual turbolift of denial long enough to dress as a Starfleet Lt. Cmdr. for Halloween. He was more terrified that the kids at school would make fun of him that he was afraid of the teenager in the hockey mask at our door. Shame on our generation for perpetuating the stereotype and passing it down to our children! Fortunately, most of his friends have not been blessed with such caring and open-minded parents and had no idea what Starfleet was. Instead of justifying his unusual costume, CT spent the evening explaining “I do have a costume. I’m a military person on a spaceship.” And even some of the adults looked him oddly, when he thanked them for his treats with “Live long and prosper”…..but that could have been because one of his Vulcan ears went missing half-way through the night and he was walking around with only one pointy ear.

He’s a cute little Lt. Cmdr.

I know the resemblance is uncanny, but I swear I ‘ve never even been on a Starship (wink, wink).

Technorati Tags:
, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No comments: