As I was leaving the coffee shop, a boy sitting outside asked me if I wrote a Star Trek book. I said no I never wrote a Star Trek book. I let it hang there like that, like it was a possibility that someday in the very near future I could write a Star Trek book–because, you know, I’ve got that kind of clout. It’s a deceptive tactic I learned by watching Steven Greer lectures.
The boy asked, “But you did write a book, right?”
I said, “Yes. I’ve written three. I think the one you’re talking about is a sci-fi horror novel called Into The End–but I don’t think you’d like it.” I told him that last part reflexively to warn him off of adult material. It really isn’t for kids.
He said he must have gotten Star Trek: Into Darkness mixed up with my book title. He asked me how long it took to write it and I told him that’s a tough question because I actually wrote the first draft back in high school. Then I thought how ironic that I’m warning a kid about 2 years younger than I was when I wrote the thing originally that he shouldn’t read it because of the adult language and themes. I caught myself feeling old.
“Do you like Star Trek?” he asked me.
“Yup,” I said.
“What about Star Wars?”
“Oh, yeah. In fact I like Star Wars better than Star Trek,” I said.
His eyes went wide with a look of nerdom I remember well. “Me, too!” he said excitedly.”It’s got a way better story than Star Trek and way better characters.” He launched into a mini lecture on the greatness of the Star Wars saga. I caught myself feeling timeless.
I cut him short. I had to catch a bus. “You’re catching a bus?” he asked kind of incredulously. Maybe he didn’t picture a rich writer taking the bus. Or maybe he thought I was blowing him off. I didn’t have the heart to tell him I was a poor writer. How do you tell a young boy with his whole life ahead of him, “Chin up, kid. You can be anything you want in life. But, you’ll probably still work a soul-crushing 9-5 job. They don’t teach you that part in school, do they?”
I also didn’t have the heart to tell him I was blowing him off.
Sorry, kid. My generation invented the Star Wars vs. Star Trek debate. It’s people like you–little people–for whom George Lucas invented Jar Jar Binks, the character that single-handedly changed the debate of Star Wars vs. Star Trek to Star Wars vs. Star Wars for my generation.
Then I felt my eyes go wide with a look of nerdom.