In honor of Star Trek (The Original Series) 50th anniversary I present Our Trip to Star Trek Missions New York….
I just happened to actually read my email one day in mid-August and I saw the announcement for Star Trek Mission NY on Labor Day weekend. I bought the tickets almost immediately. I have been a fan of Star Trek from the time the very first episode aired back in 1966 – <sarcasm font> I was just an infant, not even born, yet really <end sarcasm font>, so needless to say, I was excited.
The first obstacle for DC would be going to New York City (his favorite place) without visiting “DC’s New York City”; meaning the big Barnes and Noble, the Disney Store, the Eloise Store in the Plaza, Hershey Store, Hard Rock Café and ‘Citral’ Park (Central Park). I began explaining this to him weeks beforehand. We also promised him that we would go back another day very soon to spend the day doing his favorite things. As much as he seems to understand when I am prepping him for something, I never really know if he does until I get his reaction when it happens. I have to say that I did expect some kind of reaction to not going out into the city when we arrived, but the promise of going back another day seemed to be good enough. – Progress!
DC knows Star Trek TOS because he has me for a mother, of course. One of his first “signs” before he could speak was the “Live Long and Prosper” sign. Of course he did not know it meant LLAP, it was just his sign for Star Trek in general.
I have seen all of the incarnations of Star Trek over the years with the exception of Enterprise so I knew most of the guests that would be in attendance. DC? Not so much. We have been watching the original series on Netflix in the mornings before work and about a month ago we began alternating between that and Deep Space 9, so I was hopeful he would recognize a few others.
We got there not very long after the doors opened and I was amazed that it was not very crowded at all. I don’t know if it was because it was the very first one, the holiday weekend or if this was just the crowd they were expecting; in any case it worked out perfectly for us.
The first thing DC came upon was a Tribble and he had to have it. When he found that it made “Tribble” noises, he had to have it even more.
He got it……..
His normal “Arrival Anxiety” did not rear it’s head as it usually does when we first arrive anywhere. I was a bit surprised but relieved. We walked the show floor and came upon an Enterprise set where one could sit in the Captain’s chair. It was a long line, but he was all for it.
There was also a man off to the side of the set who looked so much like “Scotty” that I had to do a double take. It unnerved me for a second.
(While in line we were told that there is a replica of the Enterprise in Ticonderoga, NY so hmmmm…. I smell a road trip in the near future.)
By the time we finished taking photos of “Captain DC”, the autograph sessions were starting. DC recognizes Robert
Picardo from the Baltimore Con a few years ago so we headed there first.
For some reason, this is where his anxiety set in. The line was short, very short and as I said the hall was not crowded at all but this was where it hit. He started flapping angrily and making a horrendous noise. He used to make a clucking noise but it has evolved into something unrecognizable lately. In-between the flapping and the extremely loud noises he would stop only to say he was sorry and then start again. I could see that the woman in front of us getting a little bit nervous, but I just kept telling him to do what he had to do to calm down and as long as there was no one around for him to hit with his flapping arms, it was okay. She seemed to relax, I suppose because she saw I wasn’t treating it as a big deal. He did finally relax too. To keep him relaxed, I joked that he should not do that when he got to the table because he would scare Robert Picardo. He laughed. Still trying to keep his mind off of his anxiety, I asked him who we were going to look for next.
“Reading Rainbow. I have to find him. I will find him somewhere.”
The anticipation of meeting “Reading Rainbow Man” (DC-speak) took his mind off of whatever was making him anxious and he was back to his perfectly happy self when he got to the front of the line. He got Robert Picardo’s autograph and we set out on our hunt for Reading Rainbow Man.
We found “Reading Rainbow Man” (LeVar Burton to the rest of you) rather quickly. In true DC – delayed reaction and pronoun reversing fashion, the very first thing he said to him was “You scared me!”. LeVar, not knowing what was going on said “How did I scare you?”
I then had to explain that in the previous line I told him if he made that much noise he would scare people. LeVar understood and told him that no, DC had not frightened him. He asked “How are you?”
Me: He asked how are you, not how old are you.
The conversation continued pretty much like that, with me jumping in to translate when necessary.
DC had been looking so forward to meeting him and was so very excited when he did that I was kicking myself for not thinking about saving this meeting until later. I was worried that after meeting LeVar he would not be interested in staying any longer, but he surprised me once again and wanted to move on to the next meeting.
We got to see and meet quite a few people…….
The only Original Series cast member there that day was Walter Koenig. William Shatner was scheduled to appear on Sunday. DC met him at NY Comic-Con a few years earlier so we weren’t disappointed that we would be missing him this time. Of course, if he happened to have been there we surely would have been in his line too.
There were a good number of TNG cast there as well. We did not get to see all of them, but we saw Levar and Gates McFadden.
I asked him who he wanted to see next. He looked around toward the Deep Space 9 section and answered “Jake”. I was a little bit impressed with that since he has only been watching for a few weeks and I was not sure how much he was actually paying attention. Of course by the time we got to the front he did not ‘renember’ his name but that was all just a matter of him not understanding the question or that the question was not asked in a way he understood. He will typically give a lot of random answers until he is asked properly – unfortunately one never knows what “properly asking” might be on any given day. There are times when he can answer a question correctly the very first time the question is asked and other days, the question has to be asked in many different ways.
He saw Quark over in the next line. Quark, not in costume is only the principal from Buffy to DC. His line was a little bit longer than the others so we skipped over to Nana Visitor. DC was his charming self but when she told him her name he really got excited. He was clutching his chest and squealing with the biggest smile on his face. I was not expecting that reaction.
I don’t know about any of you, but most of the time when I take DC to a play, event or something of the sort, I spend more time watching him get excited than I do watching the play or show or whatever is going on. Then I get teary-eyed. That is just what happened here. He just was so thrilled to be talking to her and she was just so cheerful and upbeat with him that I not only got teary-eyed, but I thought I was going to burst out into an all out ugly face cry right there. It was tough trying to keep my composure. When we finished and headed back over to where Doug was holding up the pole he thought something had happened as it was pretty apparent that I was trying to contain myself. When I tried to explain it to him I got all choked up again. Sometimes I just fall apart when I see him so happy – I know, I know, get a grip, woman….
We walked around a little bit more waiting for the rest of our photo-ops when we came upon an attendee all dressed up in a long flowing gown. DC could hardly control himself. She was talking to people and not paying attention while DC was yelling “Excuse me! Excuse me!”. I had to keep telling him not to touch her dress but he wanted her attention so he tapped her on the shoulder before I could stop him. When she turned around the first thing he said was “Sorry to touch”. She smiled and told him it was all right and he said “Dress Beautiful” (and another squeal). That was all he needed to do; get her attention to tell her that her dress was beautiful. She thanked him and we were off to look at everything else there was to see.
It is a given that he will always find somewhere to buy a book………
He got to see his beloved Nana again at his DS9 cast photo-op (and Buffy’s ‘teacher’ who we never made it back to in the autograph lines). I think she may just have earned herself a place on DC’s favorite women list alongside of Felicia Day and Amy Adams.
What a perfect day! Everything went exactly as planned. The whole event was very well organized and of course it helped that it was not very crowded.
We all had a great time!
Except for this guy….
In case anyone might be wondering; the Reading Rainbow theme remains trapped in my head, still.
And, Oh – there were M&M’s