Can't sleep, clown will eat me.

Can't sleep, clown will eat me.

For the past few weeks, I’ve been having trouble sleeping.  This is nothing new, I’ve had periodic insomnia for years .  If you’re one of those people who have no problems falling sleeping (and I hate you),  you maybe unaware that one of the more fun aspects of it is  your mind running completely off the rails, making leaps and bounds in logic and constantly segueing between self-doubt and fear.  I think it has something to do with lying in the dark, like when you were a kid and heard monsters in the closet.  Only now, they’re in your head.  Anyway, last night I decided to keep a notepad by the bed and record exactly what I was thinking and feeling, keeping note of the ever slipping time.  Today, I transcribed it.  Enjoy:

12:15 AM: I’m probably dying of something.  Cancer, it’s probably cancer.  I smoked for over five years, so it’s probably lung cancer.  I think I have to cough.  I’ll probably cough up blood. [A half-hearted attempt to cough that sounds like a dog panting].  I probably have Lupus.  If I get really sick and have to spend days in the hospital getting treatment, do I still get paid?

12:30 AM: I wonder who would come to my funeral. [Insert long rambling narcissistic imagining of my own funeral/wake that I will save you from having to read.]

1:25 AM: God, I hate my job…God, I’m such an ass for taking my job for granted.  I know so many people who’ve been laid off.  Though, they all seem so much happier than me.  Oh man, if I got laid off, I’d be so happy.  I’d collect unemployment and write all day.  Maybe I could even move back in with my parents, that’d be sweet.  I wouldn’t have to pay rent, or buy groceries, and they have a Wii and premium cable.

1:57 AM: I distinctly remember when I was eight or nine and I was sitting at the kitchen table, writing out my English homework.  I looked up and asked my mother if I’d correctly spelled “friend.” To which she replied “I before E, except after C or when it sounds like A, as in ‘neighbor’ and ‘weigh.’

2:10 AM: I wish was more like Dr. House/James Bond/Spider-man at least when they have purpose.  I mean it’s pretty simple—as along you save the day you can pretty much do what you want. Cure patients that no one else can, you get to be an ass.  Fight villains bent on world domination, you get to be a man whore.  Fight cartoonish super villains, you get to be awesome.  Maybe I just need a marketable skill that I can argue saves the day?

2:40 AM: When I was a kid I thought my life would be filled with opportunities to say melodramatic phrases from TV and movies, like “We’ll probably never meet again.” Grown up, I’m a little heartbroken that I’ll never get to say “That’s just crazy enough to work.”

3:30 AM: Words that feature I after E without C and don’t sound like A: Weird, their, being, either, feisty, foreign, albeit, forfeit atheist, and reimburse.

3:42 AM: Words that feature I before E after C: Ancient, science, conscience, efficient, omniscient, concierge, prescient, society, efficient, and sufficient.

4:00 AM: My mom was wrong?

4:17 AM: What am I doing with my life? I should have accomplished something noteworthy by now…I really want a cigarette.

[This is about where I briefly fall asleep and have my most reoccurring nightmare that’s basically a zombie movie.]

4:28 AM:I wake up screaming “Get away from me, Zombies!”

5:00 AM: If I travel back in time and kill my father before I was born, then I would cease to exist.  But if I cease to exist, then I wouldn’t travel back in time and my father wouldn’t die and thus I would be born and then still kill my father and thus not exist. And so on, and so on.  I’m pretty sure that this could destroy the universe, but I would need a time machine to be sure.

5:30-6:30 AM: I go over the plot of the new Star Trek movie which I saw the night before and concentrate on how awesome it was.

6:45 AM: If there was a real Star Fleet Academy, I’d totally join.

7:00 AM: [Alarm goes off.]  I hate my life.

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star-trek“Babe, there’s something I need to tell you,” I said to Kate as we sat down for lunch. “Mmmhhhhmm?” she said, her eyes looking over the menu. “Anything important?” she inquired, paying more attention on trying to figure out what to order than what I was saying. “A little,” I said, adding: “you might get mad at me.” At that, she looked up at me. I saw her mind began to put it together. Asking her to go lunch in a public place, where we could “talk,” so she wouldn’t create a scene. “Wha…what do you need to tell me?” she asked. I took a deep breath. “Kate,” I said. “I’m a Star Trek nerd.”

Kate’s mouth dropped open and her eyes widened as tears began to form. “I knew it!” She yelled, slamming her fist down on the table—rattling the place settings and silverware. Obviously, the girl had no qualms about making a scene. People began to turn and watch. Kate bent down low and spoke in a harsh whisper. “I told you when we got together that I could only handle dating a man obsessed with one science fiction franchise,” she hissed. “You said that it was Star Wars. I wore that Princess Leia gold bikini for you!

“I like Star Wars too,” I replied. That seemed to make things worse. “You lied to me!” She moaned before burying her head into her hands. “I didn’t mean to,” I said. “I used to be into it as kid. My parents took me to see Voyage Home (the one with Whales) in the theater and I watched TNG with my Dad. But I thought I grew out of it.”

“Wait…” said Kate, “what’s ‘TNG’?” I paused, knowing that she wouldn’t like the answer. “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” I said. “Dear God,” she muttered, “you’re already speaking in anagrams.” After a few minutes of staring at our drinks in silence, Kate spoke again: “So how did you realize that you didn’t outgrow it?”

“The trailer for the new J.J. Abram’s reboot,” I said. “It looks so amazingly awesome. I can’t wait to see it.”

“Who’s J.J. Abrams?” she asked.

“He’s the creator of the TV shows Alias and Lost. He also directed Mission Impossible: III and created Cloverfield—that Godzilla like monster movie that…”

“Shut-up, nerd!” Kate screamed.

It seems that one of the worst thing you can call someone is a Star Trek (or Star Wars) nerd. The connotation is simple: you dress up in as character as you wait in line to see horrible movies created just to make you pay to see them (Star Wars) or go to conventions to pay money for cheap crap as “memorabilia.” These people deserved to be pointed out and mocked. As such.

How did this happen? Both franchises were meant to inspire and get people to imagine the possibilities of the future—to see what adventures science can eventually take us (humanity) on. It used to be that if you were a Star Trek fan that meant you ended up working for NASA as a rocket scientist or that you wanted to be an astronaut. Instead, losers and outsiders adopted the mythology and hero worship of a fictional universe to create common ground amongst themselves and thus form their own sense of community. The hardcore Star Trek fans who wear Vulcan ears, learn to speak Klingon, and get into raging debates about the childhood of Captain Picard, betray everything the franchise stands for. They’re not real Star Trek nerds. They’re posers