Friday, August 23, 2013

Star Trek

My dad and I have a somewhat strained relationship. We do not agree on anything, and we both like to have the last word. Not a good combination. Religion, politics and Harry Potter (yes, I did say Harry Potter) are all hot button issues with the two of us. Just a minor mention of the boy wizard can send my father into an angry tirade about the evils of black magic. I’ve learned, over the years, there are topics you just avoid when my dad is in the room. You don’t even joke about certain things because the consequences could create a lot of tension, yelling and eventual tears. It isn’t always easy, but I’ve also learned to just keep my mouth shut and let go of my pride. I do not have to agree with him, but I do not need the last word, either. 

However, despite all of this, we have managed to find a little common ground over the years with television; particularly, Star Trek. We watched every series, growing up: re-runs of the original series, The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine and Voyager. We watched them all from start to finish. (The only series I did not watch with my dad was Enterprise, and it was only because it aired while I was away at college.) The fact was, and still is, if you wanted to spend time with my dad, you’d have to spend that time watching television. But Star Trek was something our whole family enjoyed watching, and that was rare. It was a weekly event in our home.

So, naturally, in 2009 when I found out J.J. Abrams had made a new Star Trek movie, I was really excited. I hadn’t really thought about Star Trek since the last episode of Voyager. And I really loved the new movie. I watched it over and over again. After it came out on DVD, I bought it for my dad for Christmas, and we watched it together. It made me feel nostalgic, and I experienced one of those rare moments of connection with him. People talk about television like it’s this terrible thing that’s rotting our brains, but I’ll gladly give up some brain cells to have those peaceful moments with my father that are so rare and so precious to me.

My Christmas present to my dad this year will be Star Trek: Into Darkness, and we will watch it while I’m home, and it will be wonderful.  (I was also thinking I might get him one of those "Trek Yourself Before Your Wreck Yourself" t-shirts.)

This blog’s intention was really to recommend the new Star Trek films because I've been meaning to write about them for a while now, but it looks as though I had something else whirling around in my brain. However, I will say they are fantastic films, and even if you’re not familiar with the entire Star Trek universe, they are still highly enjoyable. So I suppose my real recommendation is this: take home some Star Trek, put aside your differences and spend some time in front of the television with your family.

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