Happy “May The Fourth,” everybody! And may the Force be with you! It’s no secret that I’ve long considered myself to be a nerd. And proud of it, for that matter. I think there’s a lot to be said for enjoying and finding inspiration in fantasy, science fiction and make-believe. And I’m one of the more hybrid fans, who won’t subscribe to a specific “camp.” What I mean by this, is that I’m a huge fan of Star Wars, Star Trek and all the other brands of fantasy and fiction including J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Jordan, Brian Keene and Lee Child.
I spent the majority of my childhood, immersed in books. I escaped the cruel world of Diabetes, hospitals and illness by walking the road to Mordor with Frodo, travelling the stars with Captain James T. Kirk (and later Jean-Luc Picard) and learning about the One Power with Rand Al’Thor (That’s the Wheel of Time series, for you muggles!) What was particular and special is that Diabetes didn’t seem to exist in these worlds, which as a child, was one of the most appealing aspects of it. That, and a genuine love of reading kept me occupied whenever I wasn’t in karate class or studying.
Star Wars Day, or May the Fourth, started in 2011 as a way for fans to celebrate, well… Star Wars. Ironically, George Lucas had nothing to do with creating the so-called holiday but has since embraced it. I grew up on the original trilogy (Episodes IV, V and VI) and absolutely loved the use of a light sabre. It was actually one of the inspirational thoughts behind my study of Kendo. And there’s no denying that Jedi robes can easily be seen as something akin to a martial arts uniform. The Jedi Temple very much resembles a monastery, especially since they refer to themselves as the “Jedi Order.”
I know that not everyone has been a fan of the prequel trilogy or the newly-minted closing chapters of the Skywalker Saga (Episodes VII, VIII and IX), but I’ve loved and enjoyed every one of the movies, television shows and spin-offs. Except for Solo. That was a poorly-filmed piece of shit that cost me time I’ll never get back. But that’s just an opinion. I think that everything before, during and after the original movies painted a fantastic saga, and the books are even better. For example, I’ve read a book trilogy from the Old Republic days about the rise of Darth Bane and how he developed the “Rule of Two,” where there are only ever two Sith: A master and an apprentice.
I sincerely love that over four decades after the first movie was released, Star Wars is still hammering along has continued to the next generation of viewership and is adding more depth to the story. I’ve recently started watching The Mandalorian and it’s quite good. There are more plans in the works for different shows and features as well, and this nerd couldn’t be happier. Never discount a bit of sci-fi and fantasy. A touch of imagination and indulgence can go a long, long way. One might even say it can transport your imagination to a galaxy far, far away… ☯