Monday, January 12, 2009

Majel's memorial: We are all still fans

I thought I was above and beyond it all by now.

When Majel Roddenberry passed Dec. 18 I joined the round of tributes and reflections back then, but thanks to the holidays her public memorial was pushed back til Jan. 4. I thought time and distance meant for me that the day would merely be about observations, like seeing so much of the Trekland family reunited—and musing how much like a true family it is, when the years pass and it sadly takes a funeral to get all the farflung cousins and nieces and nephews back together that you used to take for granted as a kid.

You know: true and telling, but safe observatorial comments.

Until, that is, you get blindsided. It should be the most expected moment of the day—but then your gut betrays you in the blink of an eye. In my case, it was a dewey eye, thanks one single entry in Majel's memorial clip reel—produced by longtime trek editor Bob Lederman: a typical Chapel/McCoy face-off, close-up to close-up, together again in Sickbay (above).

And from out of nowhere, I choked. My eyes leaked. And all I could think was, "Well ... Sickbay is going to be a lot quieter tonight." Ten years later and I still miss De...and now Majel. I'd been "got" by a double whammy. (I mean, you all know how I am about my De and my McCoy.)

Where did that come from? I tried to tamp it down—and then, just as suddenly, I celebrated it. As jaded and weary as "professional" Star Trek folks can be—that tear was a precious thing. There's still room for innocence, there's still a place to be a kid again and not even realize how much these people and this world have you bound up. And with all the hoohaw about ages and demographics, that will be the ultimate bar for J.J.'s movie and anything flowing from it.

Once again, thanks De... and thanks Majel. A shoutout to Gene, and Jimmy, and Bob J. to boot.

We are all still fans. Still.

(BTW—It didn't hurt that the reel's very next clip was De and Majel's infamous boob-grabbing crashabout in the medlab, from the second-season bloopers. What a great way to get the smiles back.)

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