May the Fourth Be With You
It seems fitting to pay tribute to the amazing Star Wars saga today, given that today is Star Wars Day. If you don't get why, say, "May the Fourth be with you" out loud, and you'll understand. And if you don't, please--for your sake and mine--go watch the original Star Wars trilogy!!
I was fortunate enough to grow up in the Star Wars generation. My dad loved Star Trek and even did a short stint at NASA, so sci-fi was a regular thing in our house. With two brothers, I couldn't get away from it. From the start, I didn't have a chance. Although I enjoyed Barbies and My Little Pony (can you tell I was an 80s child?) far more than spaceships and aliens. I also was wrapped up in Broadway, thinking I was going to have a career in stage management...but that's a different story.
It wasn't until I worked for Disney that I became truly enamored with Star Wars. Yes, I'd seen the movies multiple times...and again, I'm talking the original trilogy. I can proudly say I saw A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi in the theater. Empire is my favorite, and I remember that very moment the empire began to lower Han Solo into the carbonite. I wasn't enraptured with the sudden revelation of Han and Leia's love story. I was scared to death of what was going to happen to poor Han! And my dad...who had taken me to the movie that day...was asleep. What a traumatic moment! (I got over it. Really. Now I swoon and sigh with the best of 'em!)
Okay...back to Disney. Being single, I returned home for Christmas. That year, my younger brother received the Star Wars Trivial Pursuit game. Being the good sister, I played a round with him and my older brother...and I kicked their butts! (Yes, Bry and John...admit it!) Who knew I had hoarded away so many little details about that weird little space saga? For some reason, that set off a love affair as passionate as Han and Leia's. (Okay, maybe not that passionate, but you get what I mean.) Started reading the books, collecting the graphic novels, and any other scrap of Star Wars stuff I could find.
I got to do an event at Disneyland--the 10th anniversary re-dedication of Star Tours. Got to meet Carrie Fisher and make sure her microphone was in place. Babysat her for a bit. She was SO cool! I also got to take a picture with C-3PO and Chewbacca. (I'll dig that up in a bit and attach it to this post.) Such a great day!! So in love with Star Wars at this time, I was determined to name my first child Anakin.
Episode One: The Phantom Menace came out. Stood in line for the midnight showing. (Forever live Ric Olie!!) Episode Two: Attack of the Clones...yup. Same thing. My brother and I even took the day off of work when the merchandise released just to go spend some bucks! The best part about Ep. 2 was showing up at the theater in my little silver sports car bearing the license plate "JEDIKNT" with John William's Empire theme blasting from my speakers. Yeah, I was that much of a SW nerd.
By the time Episode Three: Revenge of the Sith came out, I had gotten married and moved across the country. So I missed the joy of the midnight showing, but I did get to see it. I'd also started writing my own space saga: The Circeae Tales. (Had to get a mention in!) So understand, I still adored Star Wars...but in a much more conservative way. And alas...the day came when I had to say goodbye to my little silver sports car and hello to a much more practical family car. (But I still have the license plate in a treasured location!)
Years have passed. My firstborn was not named Anakin. But I do have a Star Wars baby! I have a little girl named Hope...and I like to say she is my New Hope! I must admit, I am excited about the news of a merger between Disney and LucasFilm, despite the concerns of the extended universe. I think Disney will do it justice. And it will bring yet another generation of fans to the saga. Pretty awesome if you think about it.
So on this day, I'd like to say thank you to George Lucas for his amazing stories. Thank you to the cast and crews of the Star Wars movies for committing those stories to film. And thanks to the fans for keeping the saga around for years and for giving me an instant connection with any of you I've met.
May the Fourth be with you all.
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Award-winning sci-fi author * Christ follower, wife, and mom * broadcast content producer. And yes, I am a real duchess. http://amzn.to/2eLTlH3