For many, with age comes wisdom.
For me, with age comes fandom.
I’ve always liked many geek-culture. My next-door neighbors and I watched Star Wars after school almost every day, rewinding to the part where C3PO falls off the cliff over and over again. One of the first “adult” books I ever read was Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy in fourth grade. In high school, I read anime by the shelf-full on the floor of my local B&N. The featured image is at my senior prom. I cosplayed at a Harry Potter book release in college (as Rita Skeeter, in case you were wondering). Actually, writing this paragraph has help me confront just how nerdy I have been. Gosh. Yeah. That explains a lot.
Lately, it’s gotten slightly worse, mostly because I now get a paycheck. Comic books look awesome on my shelf, it turns out. Also, books (but I don’t consider book buying a problem, just an occupational hazard.)
Besides the paycheck, there is this thing called Netflix. My latest binge is Star Trek: The Next Generation. I have fond memories of the theme song playing in the background of my childhood and wouldn’t be surprised to find out that my mom and both of my older brothers were probably watching it weekly. Discovering it as an adult, and during a particularly stressful political and personal time, I’m finding more solace in it than I could have as a kid. It’s so gosh-darn good; not good in quality per sé, but in intention. Whether it’s the prime directives promise to do no harm or the intense love of the crew for one another, I’m happy mush after an episode or two.
I was reading a thick fantasy novel in bed the other night. Something ridiculous happened and I relayed it to my husband. “I just couldn’t get into it,” he said, shaking his head and looking back at his Economist. “Why do you read it if you find it not realistic?”
“Because it’s not real,” I said, gesturing at the dire column he was reading about world affairs.
I make enough time for reality from 7 AM to 7 PM. I claim the rest for Pickard, Jemisin, or Jim Dale’s melodious voice dragging me back to Hogwarts
When I meet someone, online or in person, who is totally obsessed with their particular fandom or spot of geekery, I feel a connection to them– even it it isn’t my personal choice. I’ve never watched Dr. Who, for instance, but I’ve never met a Whovian who I didn’t like. For a few minutes, chatting with someone about what House they belong in (where are my Ravenclaws at?) makes me forget that the world is an uncertain place. Other worlds, imaginary ones, can feel more stable than the physical ones we live in.
So thank you, other geeks in this galaxy, far away or near. The next pangalactic gargleblaster* is on me.