Star Wars, My Son & The Force

There are two things I hate telling people because copping to either one seems to elicit scorn, distrust and general angst:

  1. I don’t drink coffee yet I’m a total morning person
  2. I’ve never seen Star Wars

The latter is especially egregious because I’m a guy. And in case you haven’t heard, guys love Star Wars. A lot. And not just the sci-fi geeks either. Hell, even if I find someone who doesn’t like Star Wars, at least they’ve seen it. But not me.

I don’t really have a good reason, other than my parents weren’t sci-fi people so I never got into the genre growing up. At first I wanted to see it to fit in, but I started REALLY resenting that look on peoples’ faces when they found out I haven’t seen it, along with the all-too-common “What?? You HAVE to see it NOW!” So because I’m just a little bit of contrarian by nature, I made a vow to never see Star Wars just out of spite.

I won’t lie, it was difficult. Star Wars is so ingrained in today’s culture, and there are references to it everywhere. And I do mean everywhere. I’ve heard so much about “the Force,” Luke, Leia, wookies, the Death Star, Vader, Jabba, the Dark Side, Sand People, Jedis, the Empire and why it’s VITAL to remember that Han shot first in the original movie, that I felt like I had already watched the damn thing without ever having laid eyes on it. Plus I’m a Kevin Smith fan and you can’t swing a dead hooker in his movies without knocking into a Star Wars related diatribe.

But it was really put over the top when I started my job last year, and found myself surrounded by some of the nerdiest sci-fi nerds ever to inhabit Nerdville. And, of course, they were all appalled when they found out I’ve never seen the movies. But more than that, they were HORRIFIED I had no plans to show Will the holiest of holy sci-fi films.

But a few weeks ago, Will was playing with a friend who had a lightsaber. He had never seen one, so he asked his buddy what it was. And his friend proceeded to tell him every last little detail about the movies. So of course, Will ran to me and asked me first for a lightsaber, and then wanted to know when we could watch all the movies.

Yikes. The moment I was dreading. But, since I’ve never seen it myself and I didn’t want to seem close-minded, I consented.

As soon as I mentioned this at work, my boss Wendy immediately brought me the first three movies, as well as the Clone Wars cartoon for Will. He devoured them all this weekend. Seriously. This is the kid who can’t sit still for 4 seconds, yet he watched the trilogy in the span of 48 hours. He loves it. Star Wars instantly leapfrogged Spiderman, Batman, Power Rangers and everything else to claim the #1 spot in his entertainment world.

To be honest, I don’t personally think the movies are that great. They’re mildly entertaining and I’m sure 35 years ago they were absolutely astounding. But it doesn’t matter because Will loves it. So because he loves it, I love it.

But I love the cuteness it’s inspired even more. Case in point:

While making Will’s lunch, I noticed I couldn’t hear him playing in the living room. Slightly worried, I walked over to check on him. And that’s when I saw him standing next to the dog — perfectly still concentrating all of his energy — with his outstretched hand pointed at our golden retriever palm down. His face was scrunched up tight with squinted eyes, and it looked like he was muttering something.

I said nothing, I just watched in silence waiting to see what would happen next. Suddenly our dog saw me looking at her and instantly started wagging her tail with the giddy anticipation of an ear-scratch. Will stepped back, smiled, looked at me and said “Dada, I used The Force to make Haley’s tail wag. I’m a Jedi!”

OK…so maybe I like Star Wars a little bit.

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5 thoughts on “Star Wars, My Son & The Force

  1. Haha! It’s pretty ironic isn’t it? Having to experience something you’ve avoided all your life? Well, it’s the start of something more than liking Star Wars. There’s now another thing you and your son can bond to.
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  2. You should have waited until today to post that. May the fourth be with you…

  3. Hi,

    I just stumbled upon this blog, and this is the first post I read, and it’s great! I am a soon to be new-father (5 weeks to go!) and as a self confessed comic and sci-fi geek, I cannot wait to enjoy Star Wars and other such movies with my kid, something my wife has no interest in and probably wishes I didn’t introduce our kid to!

    I’m gonna go read your other posts now, nice work.

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