Ask Matt Labash

Ask Matt Labash Vol. XXXIII: Trekkies vs. Trekkers, selfish terminally ill people vs. taco-flavored Doritos, staying young vs. getting old

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If you had to learn either Klingon or Braille, what would you choose? –  Pete

Neither Klingon nor Braille have much practical use for me, but I’d definitely have to go with Braille. For I’d much rather communicate with the blind than with Trekkies. Or is it Trekkers? I’ve been corrected when mentioning them in passing before, so I researched it this afternoon. Sources close to the internet tell me that “Trekkie” started falling out of fashion after William Shatner’s 1986  Saturday Night Live parody in which he implored Trekkies to get a life. (Whereas, Trekkers insist they have a life – a dubious claim, since they’re the kind of people who’d sit around debating the merits of Trekkies vs. Trekkers.)

Furthermore, Spock himself (Leonard Nimoy) – who was, after all, the “science officer” on the Starship Enterprise – tried to settle the debate on Star Trek’s 25th anniversary special, saying the correct term was “Trekker.” Though franchise creator Gene Roddenberry – in what very well could be urban legend – supposedly once corrected a fan at a Star Trek convention who bleated out the term “Trekkers.” Roddenberry purportedly responded, “No, it’s ‘Trekkies.’ I should know – I invented the thing.”

I am no closer to knowing whether it’s “Trekkies” or “Trekkers.” All I know is that after about five minutes of reading Wikipedia on the subject, I wanted to say, “jIH Daq qab tlhej.”  Which according to my online Klingon translator, means, “Shoot me in the face with a phaser.” If a Trekkie/Trekker obliged, and I survived, I would probably be left blind, thus making Braille the clear winner.

If you had three wishes, what would they be? Buzz

I know what the obvious answer is. I know what you’re expecting me to say. That I’d wish for a big pile of cash money, the finest 24 karat crunk grill, and fast cars and faster women. But I’m not going to say that. Because as a senior writer at America’s leading journal of conservative political thought, it probably goes without saying that I already possess those things. Also, I would never say that, because it’s predictable. And I was actually voted “Most Unpredictable” in high school. Why? I’m not sure exactly. I’m actually a creature of habit, and am rather predictable. So you wouldn’t have expected me to take the title, and yet I did. Thus confirming my unpredictability.

NEXT: Matt Labash’s three wishes