Dating and Star Wars

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It was a blind date…plain and simple. I walked into it with the lowest of expectations, because experience had taught me to be cautious and common sense had taught me to be sensible. I wasn’t bitter or jaded about the endeavor…not yet, at least. Just realistic, something I try very hard not to be on a regular basis.

I walked in head held higher than my hopes. Because I am a people person. Talking…I’m good at that. And after all, a blind date need only go on as long as you want it to. What’s the worst that could possibly have happened?

We sat down, ordered drinks and immediately dove for the basket of bread at the same time. Bread is a comfort food and clearly we were both feeling the kind of discomfort that can only come when a friend of a friend sets you up with a friend of a friend’s friend. Or however the hell fate had brought us together that night.

The first question he thought of was “what’s your favorite movie?” A seemingly innocuous question for anyone…anyone but me, that is.

Because I don’t just have a favorite movie…I have a favorite movement. I have a favorite fandom! I have something that dominates a lot of my brain space and most of my wardrobe!! I have…STAR WARS!!!

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Now, when it comes to dating, there are a lot of things…”skeletons”…that belong in a person’s closet until someone know’s you better than what is possible on a first date. My love of Star Wars turned out to be a skeleton that I should have left buried in my closet. But this was before I knew that I wasn’t supposed to tell boys on dates that I liked loved LIVED Star Wars.

Moments after the question came tumbling out of his mouth, I quickly responded with a short and sweet, “Star Wars!”

Intrigued, he opened Pandora’s box and asked, “Oh yeah, which one?”

I smiled to myself and said, “All of them.”

“No!” he said. “Which of the movies is your favorite one?”

“Well,” I said. “The Empire Strikes back is arguably the best of all of them. Though, we have to ask ourselves…where would we be without A New Hope? And yet, if I’m being honest…it’s Return of the Jedi that tugs hardest at my heart strings. Something about the Throne Room scene has always captivated me the most. As Luke wrestles with his darker nature, the Emperor slowly starts to lose his grip on his most prized apprentice. Which brings me to the prequels…I personally love all of them too. The overarching story of Anakin Skywalker’s descent into darkness and inevitable betrayal of the Jedi forces me to ask so many questions about the movie franchise I grew up with and love dearly. That’s so interesting to me. Sure…sure…they’re flawed movies. But that doesn’t diminish their value to the franchise overall, in my opinion. Does…does that answer your question?”

With a vaguely terrified look on his face, he responded, “I liked the first one.” As he rolled his eyes and ducked his head, I knew…this date was over.

Now, some may think my answer was a bit showy, possibly a display of nerd elitism…but I assure you, it was an answer that came from the purest place in my heart. A place that just wanted to find commonality in the midst of adversity. And yet, this man was immediately disinterested in me based on my lengthy answer to his simple question.

I’ve learned over the years that this question is best answered with much more care than I gave it on that date. Perhaps I should have said less and smiled more. But that’s just not who I am. And isn’t the point of a first date to get to know the other person and show them who you are? Wasn’t that what I was doing? Like a bull in a China shop, I had wrecked the whole damn thing.

I set my bread down on my napkin, thanked him for his time and I left. The look on his face told me all I needed to know. In his eyes…I was a freak. A Star Wars freak! Little did he know…that was perfectly fine with me!

I didn’t leave the date because Star Wars is a deal breaker…though now, it totally is! I didn’t leave because he seemed mildly intimidated and borderline afraid of me. I left because I may not have known him, but I know me! If he was turned off by my passion for Star Wars and couldn’t even understand it in the least, meaning he didn’t feel as passionately about anything as much as I do about that galaxy far, far away….then, what was the point of wasting an hour of small talk on him. Or of him wasting his time on me?

Some people just aren’t meant to be together. And we were a case in point.

I choose my words more carefully when on blind dates these days. I keep my skeleton in the closet longer than I used to, but not too long. I won’t hide who I am. And if they don’t like it, I ain’t interested. And, come on! There are way worse skeletons you could have in your closet than some handmade Padmé cosplay, a Darth Maul lightsaber, a wardrobe full of Star Wars t-shirts, a book case full of Star Wars novels (both Legends and new Disney canon) and the ability to recite from memory most, if not all, of the original trilogy.

Hell, a first date spent debating the evils and virtues of Jar Jar Binks would be a success in my book. Is that too high a bar to set? I think not!

Star Wars Day

Taking a little detour from #TheBradshawChallenge momentarily to talk about Star Wars Day! May the 4th Be With You…always!! But especially today!

Let’s talk about ways you can celebrate!

1. Star Wars Marathon

This is the most ideal way to celebrate the day. But since the 4th falls on a Thursday this year, staying home and binge-watching Star Wars movies while eating a box of Wookie Cookies can be a little hard to accomplish. So maybe just choose your most favorite Star Wars movie and watch that today. My favorite is Return of the Jedi, so I will be watching that when I have a moment after work tonight!

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2. Rep Your Fandom

Another great way to celebrate today is to wear your fandom gear all day long! Here are some of my favorite Star Wars outfits as well as what I decided to wear today!

Today’s outfit:

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Other favorite Star Wars outfits:

styled by Star Wars Beep Boop Beep Clothing fblogger

Styled by Star Wars fblogger Her Universe

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3. Get in a Debate

Do you have anyone at work, at home, at the grocery story that likes Star Wars? Get in a debate with them. Say something about how much you love the prequels or that you think Jar Jar Binks isn’t the antichrist! That will kick start a quick conversation with any super fans in the vicinity and maybe make a new friend (or enemy depending on what you say!!)

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4. Spread the Love

A great way to decipher if someone is a true fan and potential new friend is to offer them the official greeting that must be said on Star Wars Day “May the 4th Be With You.” If someone says this to you, make sure to respond properly and to listen for those that do as well which is, of course… “And also with you!”

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5. Star Wars Book Club

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Shameless plug coming up. If you are interested in going deeper into the Star Wars Expanded Universe, then my Star Wars Book Club is exactly what you should discover today on Star Wars Day. Head over the Goodreads and see what we’ve already read and what we are planning to read and jump in as you’d like. This month’s book is Thrawn by the incomparable Timothy Zahn.

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6. Tweet, Like, Meme, Gif, Post, Gram, Tumble, etc.

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Today is a day to embrace the social media juggernaut. Jump in with all you have and get involved in the inevitable fan fest that happens across all social media platforms today. What’s your favorite Star Wars Movie, tell me on Twitter? Do you have a favorite meme, share it with me on Instagram? Looking for someone to engage in step 3 with, connect with me on Facebook…I can debate the virtues of Hayden Christensen all day long!!

Don’t fight it. Join me!!
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7. Go Shopping

Today is a great day to have a little Star Wars shopping spree. Plenty of shops are having specials today in honor of Star Wars Day. Here are some of my favorite places to procure Star Wars merch… Her Universe, Beep Boop Beep Clothing, Think Geek, my local Goodwill and Salvation Army, Disney Store, and Etsy.

There are so many other way to celebrate Star Wars Day too. What are you doing today??

And May the 4th Be With You!

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Prequels and Sequels and Spinoffs, Oh My!

If you are someone who is tired of seeing the same 7 or 8 franchises roll into theaters time and time again, I feel bad for ya, son. I got 99 problems, but that is definitely not one of them!

I LOVE them! And I’m not saying all of them or any of them deserve Oscars.

Look…it’s true, some of them are not good at all! But for every stinking sequel there’s a Force Awakens. For every sloppy spinoff, there’s an Agent Carter (her cancellation is not her fault!) or a Rogue One (which I’m already certain will be blowing us all away in under a month.) And for every poorly written prequel there’s a Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. And I’d watch a thousand bad prequels for the chance to get something as delightful as Fantastic Beasts in front of my eyes!!

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We are certainly living in the age of reboots, re-imaginings and big budget franchises. But again I say, I LOVE IT! When word broke that Disney had purchased Lucasfilm and there would be a slew of new stories from that galaxy far, far away I was overjoyed. I love expanded universes. The deeper a story goes, the more involved it gets, the more I can lose myself in the fiction. That’s what makes the worlds of Harry Potter, Marvel and Star Wars so compelling and why they inspire the ticket and merchandise sales that they do.

Do you run the risk of overkilling something people dearly love? Of course. But the alternative is putting that franchise up in a box never to be touched. Never to be reimagined by someone who comes along and loves the world JK Rowling has created as much as JK herself. Art imitating and inspired by art is such a cool thing.

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JJ Abrams grew up on Star Wars, got into movies because of Star Wars and there he was directing his very own Star Wars movie. No matter what you thought about the film itself, doesn’t that inspire you?! JJ is one of us, one of our people (we the geeks) and he got to do what so many of us have only dreamed.

Just think, Harry Potter fans…think of the possibilities that the Wizarding World of JK Rowling holds for you. That world is not closed off. It’s not a 7 book, 8 movie story. There’s so much more and that means big things for you and your imagination!

So I say, prequel it up all you want, Hollywood. Just use Fantastic Beasts as a barometer on how to do it and do it well.

Dreaming of SW Celebration

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Sadly I am not in Anaheim, California right this very minute. I am not soaking up the California sun and preparing for an epic weekend of Star Wars culture. That is what I’m not doing.

What I am doing is dreaming of the panels I’ll be missing. And reading my Star Wars EU novels and watching Star Wars on digital platforms. Anything to be connected to the massive event that I am sadly not partaking in,

I have been to Star Wars Celebrations of yesteryear and I have to tell you… it’s an amazing experience. Especially for the fanatics of the world (that includes your favorite nerdy girl!) Luckily there are some new ways to stay in touch with SW Celebrations as the weekend progresses and the geeks keep on geeking out.

In just under an hour, JJ Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy will be taking the main Celebration Stage to kickoff the weekend and talk about… well, you know what they’re talking about. A little movie coming out in December. An underground indie if ever there was one.

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Only the biggest movies of the year (Sorry, Avengers. I love you, but step aside for the King!) Who knows what untold treasure trove of information they will have to share. Luckily for those of us who can’t be there, Verizon and StarWars.com are bringing us the action, live. Click Here for more info!! 

Not only that, but there are the ever present social media platforms that make it easy to follow along.

Twitter: @SW_Celebration

Facebook: Star Wars Celebration

Instagram: @starwarscelebration

You Tube: Star Wars Celebration

These are, of course, the best way to stay connected to all the action from a galaxy far, far away. And when it comes to Star Wars, you never want to miss any of the action. It’s basically the best part!!!

If you are at the Con, make sure to keep us informed and shout it out if you are so inclined. I’ll be bringing you the panels I wish I was attending this weekend. As well as any good stuff coming out of the Con!! (of which there will be plenty!)

So may the Force be with you, my lovely nerds!! Enjoy this little look at Star Wars Celebrations of yesteryear!!

Ready to rule!

5 Fandom Friday

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My Comfort Films

As usual, to pick only 5 is a very hard thing indeed. I have so many movies I love and find comfort in. But here are the 5 that I turn to the most.

#1 – Star Wars

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Star Wars is my favorite of all! So naturally it’s what I turn to most. I put it on in the background when I have work to do. I sit down and avidly watch it and quote along on rainy Saturdays. I can always turn to Star Wars no matter what. And I know what you’re thinking. ‘Why are the prequels on here.’ Because I like them, that’s why! They may not be my favorites. They may not even be good. Who cares! When I say Star Wars I mean all of Star Wars. And every time I watch any of the Star Wars movies there is a comfort in the watching. There’s a feeling like I’m back home and safe and watching something I know word for word… all 6. Sure the original trilogy has something the prequels could never hope to reach, but that doesn’t lessen the fact that I like the prequels for what they are.

#2 – The Philadelphia Story

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This has long been a favorite of mine. It has two of my very favorite actors of all time. Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn. And Jimmy Stewart is nothing to sneeze at either! It’s got some great lines like, “I’m such an unholy  mess of a girl.” or “I promise to be yar!” I was practically raised on black and white movies and there’s something romantic and enchanting about them. And this above all others is the one I go to when I’m in a mushy, romantic sort of mood. (Which happens more often then you might think!)

#3 – The Court Jester

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This is an old family favorite. My brother and I must have watched this about 100 times when we were kids. So much that I have every song memorized. Humor is definitely my kryptonite. I love to laugh and this movie makes me laugh every time I watch, even though I know the jokes are coming. That’s the mark of a truly good comedy. The humor never gets old. Danny Kaye is a master at his craft and this is an example of some of his very best work!!

#4 – Muppet Treasure Island

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Another family favorite. (There’s something to that!) You can never go wrong with The Muppets. They sing. They dance. It’s family friendly and it has Tim Curry, who is always amazing. This is another film that I have pretty much memorized from watching over and over again.

#5 – The Mirror Has Two Faces

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This is one of my all time favorite romantic comedies. Barbra Streisand… Jeff Bridges. Need I say more. That’s enough to hook ya right there. It’s delightful. It’s romantic. It’s one of me and my mom’s favorite movies. And if you’ve never seen it, do yourself a favor and go rent it!! It’s a treasure.

What movies do you turn to for comfort? I wanna know!!

I Like It and I Don’t Care What You Think!

Here’s the thing… I like Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Spike TV was having a marathon last weekend… as usual. And possibly in lieu of the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi.

And sure… it’s a weak installment in the canon and I could write a list of things that didn’t work for me and nothing beats the original trilogy… duh! But I’m a glass-half-full kinda girl and I like to focus on things I like in a movie.

So haters… move along.

1. John Williams returned to score The Phantom Menace and beautifully scored it was. Duel of the Fates is one of my favorite pieces of music not only in the Star Wars universe but in movie music history. It’s powerful and poignant! And I can’t wait to hear what Williams has in store for Ep. VII.

2. Darth Maul holds up as a super baddie!! Ok, so he’ll never be Darth Vader. No one will ever be Darth Vader. But Maul has a great fighting style. He’s fast, looks scary as all get out and weilds a two-sided lightsaber. Pretty dang bad-ass!!

3. Foreshadowing. I love, love, love foreshadowing.

4. Awesomely wild costumes!!

And finally 5. Qui-Gon Jinn. What a great addition to the Jedi counsel. Liam Neeson’s Jinn is part rebel, part devoted member of the counsel. The force flows through him, but he walks his own path. His death was surprising and tragic for the Jedi and for the audience.

There you have it. Agree or don’t. But I am predisposed to love anything and everything Star Wars. The extended universe, the prequels, Star Wars Clone Wars… even the Star Wars Christmas Special. I love it all and it’s all near and dear to my heart. The future films will be no exception!! Can not wait.