Bricks…the final frontier

I went to great lengths in my last post – well, not so great and not so lengthy – to describe the lack of anything new in the world of Star Trek about which to get truly excited.  Silly me. When you’re a 9 year old in the body of a grown man, there’s always something to get excited about.  You just have to know where to look for it.

In my case, I needed to look no further than a little online forum I belong to.  Its sole reason for existing is to provide a virtual gathering place for people who wish the Lego Company would introduce Star Trek sets in the same way they have done with Star Wars, Harry Potter, Indiana Jones, and so many others.  It seems clear the market is there.

So, what’s taking them so long?  The rights to produce Star Trek merchandise can’t be that difficult to obtain.  Heaven knows just about every other toy company has marketed a Star Trek line at some point. How cool would it be to have officially licensed Trek sets from Lego?!  Apparently not cool enough for the good folks in Billund, Denmark.  No matter.

In our online community, we sometimes have contests to see who can design the best Star Trek Lego kits.  The most recent was a ship design contest.  I chose my belovedLego-Contest-Entry-TOS-Enterprise NCC-1701 (No bloody A, B, C, or D!).  The goal was to construct the model using your own design and then submit a single photograph for consideration.  Of course, being a bit of a perfectionist, I couldn’t just photograph the finished product.  I had to do so in a way that would demonstrate what I envisioned as the cover of the box it would come in if it were ever mass-produced.  It took me a few evenings after dinner to construct the model and perhaps one or two more to refine the design and tweak things a bit.  The photo at the right is my finished entry.  I was so excited by the chance to do the model, I celebrated with a marathon of classic Trek remastered episodes on NetFlix!

Who says there isn’t anything new in Star Trek to get excited about?  Well, I do – but I’m wrong!

The End of an Era

Anyone who checks out my posts regularly may have noticed a drop in the frequency with which I have been writing new ones.  This is due in part to the typical things life throws at us but, in larger part, is a result of my feeling that there is less and less to write about regarding my beloved Star Trek.

Perhaps it’s just a phase I’m going through.  However, with the exception of the forthcoming followup to J.J. Abrams’ 2009 re-imagining (which I despised), there isn’t very much new going on for an aging Trek fan like myself to get excited about.  In fact, in a perfectly appropriate imitation of life itself, Star Trek, at 45 years old, is at the point where it is experiencing more endings than beginnings.  To quote Jean Luc Picard, “Lately, I’ve become very much aware that there are fewer days ahead than there are behind”.

Nowhere in the world of Star Trek was this more evident than in Leonard Nimoy’s final appearance at a trek convention, which took place in Chicago this past weekend.  Mr Nimoy, who is 80 years old now, has stated publicly that he wants to focus his energies on other things – including his family, his work in photography, and just generally slowing things down a bit so he can enjoy himself.  He’s certainly earned the opportunity.  Nevertheless, among the fans, he will be sorely missed.

I first saw Leonard Nimoy at a Trek convention at the Hotel Commodore in New York CityLeonard Nimoy at Star Trek Las Vegas - 2011 in 1973 when he was a surprise guest alongside George Takei and James Doohan.  I have seen him 4 times since and was more and more impressed each time with his warmth, joviality, genuineness, and appreciation for his fans. The simple fact that he is now an octogenarian is startling enough in and of itself – to say nothing about the realization that comes with that fact, namely that Star Trek is a thing of the past.

The biggest impact of all this, I suppose, is the addition of Star Trek to a growing list of things that constantly remind me how old I am.  It’s an unsettling feeling as I used to think of Trek as something that made me feel young.  This is why I wish I had some new beginnings to write about!  However, it’s an unrealistic hope.  It seems to make more sense for me to accept the aging of Star Trek and its subsequent exit from the limelight much as I try to accept my own aging.  So, I will count myself lucky if I can get through all the changes later-life hands me by exhibiting the same dignity and class with which Leonard Nimoy said goodbye to the convention circuit.

Thanks for the memories, Mr. Nimoy!