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Friday, June 09, 2006

Nobody Ever Says, "When I Grow Up, I Want To Be A Cliché"

   I've never seen an episode of Star Trek from beginning to end. I've seen moments here and there, but I've never seen a full installment. Of course, through cultural osmosis I know what people are talking about when they talk about 'beaming up', 'red shirt', and 'Tribbles', and I've seen a few episodes of Next Generation and Enterprise; but not a single time have I seen Kirk and Spock and Bones and Scotty and Uhuru and Sulu do their thing for the full thirty minutes. I've even seen the first feature film, and most of one of the others, I think the fourth one; but I have no memories of the 80 original episodes that launched a thousand conventions.

  I didn't set out to be some sort of 'Anti-Geek', I was even a little interested in the seventh grade when a kid was telling me about this cool game he was working on with his graph paper in the quad; "Dungeons & Dragons", he said it was. Just not interested enough to play, but D & D is a different level of geeking, and really a separate story. I have an older sister, so the family television was often controlled by her or my Mother, so Star Trek reruns were bypassed without pause. I can even remember a few teenaged times, in the era of cable and a television in my room, flipping the channels with friends around, and happening upon a classic episode. "Oh, that's the blank blank one, skip it", someone would say, or "That's a good one, leave it there", but someone or something else trumped the choice. As time has gone on, I've never had enough interest to seek out the show on my own, continuing on until the situation I find myself in today. I'm not exactly ashamed, in fact, it's to the point that I kind of want to keep my 'Star Trek Unseen' record intact. What I mean is, if I were to see an episode now, I would have seen one episode, not nearly as neat and tidy as having never seen one, and I would remain basically as ignorant of the series as I was before. I could go all O/C disorderly and watch all of them over a couple of weekends, but that would require a lot more interest than I have. Really, my lack of interest could fill a warehouse.

   On a different science fiction angle, I have seen every episode of Futurama several times each. (That probably establishes a level of geekdom of a different sort. I won't go into my collection of commercial product mascot figures and toys, except to mention that I will be getting my Poptart talking alarm clock in 6-8 weeks. It runs counter-clockwise!!!) In the viewing of those episodes with the audio commentary, I became aware that Matt Groening has also never seen a Star Trek episode beginning to end. Actually, it was hearing that comment that made me realize that I myself hadn't seen one all the way through in the first place; I had never given it that much thought. He seems to be reasonably well adjusted, so I think I'll leave well enough alone.


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