Wet Friday

Well, I meant to hang diapers on the line today… and then I woke up to empty my bladder this morning and it was raining. I love summer rain. The coolness, the free water on the lawn… but I had intended to hang diapers on the line! Oh, well, at least I won’t have to run the A/C today. The other downside is that the Webmaster just bought the Munchkin a wading pool, and then it rained. Murphy’s Law. Not that I’m worried – lots of warm weather predicted for next week. I see this pool getting used.

Anyway, something sad happened earlier this week. James Doohan, Scotty from the original Star Trek, passed away at age 85. He suffered from several illnesses, including both Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, and primary cause of death was listed as pneumonia. He had retired from public life in August 2004, shortly after receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The personal biography information differs between the AP reports (which credits him with 3 marriages and 9 children) and the Star Trek website and Internet Movie Database website (which credit him with 2 marriages and 7 children – somehow, another wife and 2 kids show up between his first and last marriage in the AP story, but I can’t find anything that identifies the kids by name – best guess is that if this marriage occured, these might have been his stepchildren, since they are not listed on official biographies), but all agree on one thing – he was a patriot.

Doohan was Canadian, and fought at Juno Beach with the Canadian army on D-Day. He was machine-gunned late in the day and eventually lost the middle finger on his right hand due to his injuries. He chose to live in Redmond in his later years, and built a house here, which made for a lot of local media interest when news of his death broke.

Did I ever meet him? Not that I can recall. My parents, when I was very small (the Munchkin’s age and a little older) took me to a couple of sci-fi conventions, one of which was at the Space Needle – this is when my Dad was young and was very into science-fiction stuff. These were the early days of Star Wars and the beginning of the Star Trek movies. At one of these conventions, I got George Takei’s (Sulu) autograph, and I think my brother got James Doohan’s. My Dad still has both of those stored away for us. So I may have met him, but I can’t remember.

Regardless, Star Trek is such a part of my childhood that I still pop out with anecdotes that I tell the Webmaster about watching the movies as a kid. In tribute to Scotty, I watched Star Trek: The Motion Picture Director’s Cut DVD on Wednesday night. I still like the original cut better, but I didn’t feel like pulling out my tape and using the VCR. I’m so spoiled. It is one of the first movies I remember watching in my life, mostly because I remember my brother getting slightly freaked out at the Klingon cruisers going across our 19″ TV screen at our home in Seattle when he wasn’t more than 2 or 3 years old. Anyway, I have every line of the movie memorized, including the Vulcan and Klingon lines. It may be one of the most boring movies ever made, and easily the most dull Star Trek movie, but it was considered very cutting edge and intellectual when it was released in 1979. Then the next movie was The Wrath of Khan and we all learned what a good Star Trek movie should be. “KHAAAAAANNNN!” 🙂

The Motion Picture is still one of my favorites, and for one reason alone – music. The musical score is absolutely perfect. It is Star Trek music to me. None of this 60’s theme song wailing for me. You have to have Jerry Goldsmith’s full orchestral score. He later became the most prevalent composer of the Star Trek universe, but nothing matches up to this score. It is the best. It makes a shuttlecraft ride a thing of beauty instead of the most pointless 5 minutes in a movie, an attack on Klingon ships something to really fear, and end credits a joy to sit through.

Okay, I’ve bored all of you enough. 🙂 Enjoy the weekend, and may it be drier than today. I’m going to go listen to some soundtracks now.

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