Haiku Me Friday! Gamorreans & Being a Girl Star Wars Fan

Gamorrean guard
Standing large at the palace
Their skills are lacking

I’ve mentioned this in a past post, and it’s interesting to me to see how people react to it.

When I was in high school and college, and met a fellow Star Wars fan, I would get excited to talk about Star Wars with them. When I told others I was a big Star Wars fan as well, they’d kind of smile and nod (these were mostly boys) but almost in a patronizing way. It got to be so common that I realized many of the fellow fans I was approaching conversation with did not think I was as obsessed as I am. I interpreted their reactions to think that since I was a girl, I probably didn’t LOVE Star Wars.

My frustration was often two-fold. First, I could tell that 90% of the people didn’t think I was a “real” fan, and second, inwardly, I realized that I may be an even “bigger” fan than they were. This was all based on a lot of assumptions and immaturity.

So, I used to have a theory where I tested people to weed out how much they knew about Star Wars. My one question was, “What species were the pig-like guards in Jabba’s Palace?”

If they could answer correctly, I would invest in a longer conversation with them. If they did not answer correctly, I would say, “Oh, close,” or, “Nah, it’s Gamorrean, but no biggy”, but inwardly realize it wasn’t worth my time. It’s a bit embarrassing to look back on it, but since I was being patronized, I had a need for revenge where I wanted to turn the tables on them and whoop their butt. I think my feelings were only natural, but my trivia question was completely unnecessary. I probably could have found a way to talk to ANY Star Wars fan, whether it was someone who only watches the movies occasionally or someone who devours the books and videogames. It was a little narrow-minded of me to base someone’s depth of love of Star Wars on how much they knew about species within the universe.

I dropped this question and attitude when Disney bought Lucasfilm. It’s become so much easier to talk to people about Star Wars. There were speculations to discuss, plot lines to think about, and so much more. Also, I think it helps that I’ve grown up a bit and I’m not as defensive when people ask me if I like Star Wars. I’m much more aware of how much I DON’T know, whereas before I thought I knew everything (the arrogance of youth or the need to prove a girl could be a big Star Wars fan – you choose).


If you’re a male – how did you react when you were younger, and a girl told you they were a Star Wars fan? Did you believe them? Were you open-minded or think there was no way they could be as big a fan as you?


Haiku Me Friday! Jawa Joy

I may be little
You might find me disgusting
Well, UTINNI you!

After looking at the definition, you can’t use the word utinni (it means “wow”) as I’m using it in my haiku, but c’mon, it fit so perfectly.


In Which I Recite 3 Happy Memories of Jawas

1.  Jawas always bring back one clear memory for me, and it was the first time I watched A New Hope. I had followed the story pretty well and nothing had surprised me because I had grown up with a vague knowledge of the plot and surroundings …that is, stormtroopers, Darth Vader, as well as Threepio and Artoo.

Yet when I saw that Jawa blast Artoo with his blaster and Artoo toppled down, I perked up. The movie suddenly went from interesting to gripping. Everything shifted. I expected Artoo and Threepio to have no problems going on their journey and finding Ben Kenobi. But something happened and the entire steady plotline altered. All because one mysterious being shouted, “Utinni!” and zapped Artoo.

2.  I went to my first convention ever in 2002, Celebration II. I had read about Celebration I in my Star Wars Insider and begged my dad to take me to Celebration II. The thing is – I didn’t even know what fan conventions were or cosplay or anything. I was 14 or 15 and that world was new to me. I remember driving towards the convention center and was angry at my dad because he said I could not wear my Jedi robe because I would be sorely out of place (it was his first convention too lol). As we waited in traffic, we looked out the window and there was someone in full Old Republic Jedi cosplay and it was the first cosplay I had seen in my life. I thought, “I want to be him,” and that started my 10 year obsession with getting an Old Republic Jedi Knight LFL-approved cosplay.

I had forgotten my camera, unfortunately, but the next day I brought it with me (and I totally wore my Jedi robe and brought my plastic lightsaber). And the very first picture I ever took at a convention was with a Jawa in cosplay.

I’m sharing it here…no teasing allowed!

3.  My last happy memory is recently and also has to do with cosplay. While waiting for my friend in the cold lobby of a movie theater for The Last Jedi on opening night, there were people in Star Wars cosplay walking around. One of them was a Jawa and she was short, just like the Jawas in the film. She was true to form as well and would not speak Basic with me, only Jawaese. We had time to kill so I tried to talk to her about Star Wars. It was so much fun! It’s different from someone who doesn’t know your language, because in this instance, obviously she understood me, but I was trying to get her to crack and speak Basic. Nope, she was really good. It was like playing charades, honestly but a Star Wars charades (OMG – I should do this at my next Star Wars party!).

It was in this moment that I realized (probably for the 100th time) that Star Wars can really bring people together. I have no idea what this woman looked like, but she helped me kill time and ward off the frigid December weather by discussing-but-not-discussing Star Wars. While other people may see this as nerdy, I see it as love. Love for each other as fans and love for something that brought us together. I tip my hat to the lady Jawa who reminded me that though some fans can get divisive and heated over Star Wars nowadays, I think we still, at the core, all love each other.


If Jawas are your favorite species – give me a holler in the comments and tell me why!



Fan Fart Friday! Super battle droid smells the roses

Yes, you read that right.

We have a whiteboard in our house where every week prior to this first Friday, I will write “FAF!” I do this to remind myself that I need to color our monthly piece, otherwise I’ll completely forget.

Every month, my husband asks, “What’s FAF?” And every month, I say, “Fan Art Friday…where I have to color in the Star Wars coloring book and do the same picture that Mei-Mei (the blogger friend I’ve never met) does and we compare/contrast.” And every month he goes, “Oh, right okay,” and then forgets by the next month where we do this whole exchange once more.

Two days ago, I looked at our whiteboard and found some new wording:

I rolled my eyes but then I couldn’t stop giggling. So now I can’t get Fan Fart Friday out of my head. I may be forever scarred/changed by this.

This month’s picture was chosen by Yours Truly because whenever I passed by it, I thought it had to be some sort of huge joke by the editors/artists/authors. In my mind, Lucasfilm had a survey that said, “We are creating a Star Wars coloring book to jump on the adult coloring craze. Please cast your votes on what you’d like to see in it.”

And some doofus thought it would be hilarious to have a Super Battle Droid surrounded by roses. Little did they know that LFL would actually approve this picture!

(Okay, I know that’s probably not how it went at all, but in my head, that’s what happened)

So here it is! What a strange, obscure picture. I’m really neutral on this, other than I think it’s hilarious. It reminds me of the book, The Story of Ferdinand. I read it when I was a child and it was about a bull that did not want to be in the ring, but instead, outside smelling the flowers. That’s what this Super Battle Droid wants to do as well…sit and smell the roses, not kill people!

Don’t forget to check out Mei-Mei’s rendition as well, once it’s up. Not sure if we’ll be doing another one any time soon just because Mei-Mei’s little boy is due at the end of the month! Make sure to congratulate her. We’ll see if she ever wants to return to this world of coloring.

Happy Fan Fart Friday!


My Love For Star Wars in a Party

When I was 11, I received my first copy of Star Wars Insider from Lucasfilm after writing a letter to George Lucas (I did not get reply from him, alas).  Within the issue, they had a section where they printed letters from fans and readers.  One letter started out as:

Dear Insider,

I have been a Star Wars fan for over 20 years…

That sentence has stuck with me throughout my life.  Why?  Because family and friends thought I was going through a “fad” or “stage” in life with my Star Wars obsession.  And there is nothing that irks me more, even at that young age, than people thinking I’ll grow out of something or won’t like something as much in a while.  I saw that sentence and thought, “I want to be a Star Wars fan for over 20 years as well.”

I haven’t reached 20 years, but I’m currently at 18 years.  Actually, technically I’m over 20 years if you count when I first saw Star Wars, but I only count the age when I became obsessed as the starting point in my Star Wars journey.

Throughout this journey I have:

Yup, that Star Wars party happened this past weekend.  Why?  Because what better time to celebrate my true love than around Valentine’s Day?

I know “first annual” is an oxymoron of sorts, but I wanted to make it clear that this is something that will be continual on a yearly basis.  Due to some bad weather the day before, we only had seven people show up (12 RSVP’d as a yes) but I was more than happy with that!  This was blue_milkthe greatest party I could ever throw, in my opinion.

And, oh the discussions!  It was so wonderful to sit with friends, drink some wine and blue milk (yes, I had some blue milk and Yoda soda), watch a Star Wars movie, and discuss Star Wars for four hours.  Heaven.

What movie did we watch?  Ah, the suspense!  No one knew until they showed up and there was a prize for those who guessed correctly.  Surprisingly, there were a lot of ROTS guesses, which I thought was very strange.

But the movie I chose was The Force Awakens for two reasons: 1) In honor of my daughter, whom I hope will grow to be like Rey, and 2) It was the one movie I had not seen and discussed with a lot of my friends.

To reiterate: the discussions!  I have missed talking about Star Wars and guessing what will be coming next with good friends.  Here were my favorite discussions that happened during the party…please chime in with any thoughts you might have as well.

1. The Force Vision/Knights of Ren

When Rey touches Luke’s lightsaber on Takodona, there a bunch of scenes that go by very quickly.  One of them involves what looks like a knights-of-renmassacre by the Knights of Ren, with Kylo leading them with a lightsaber in the rain.  We don’t know where this is or what happened.  Rey sees someone coming towards her who looks like they are about to kill her, but instead gets killed by Kylo Ren.  When Kylo Ren starts stepping towards her, she gets scared and backs up, where the scene immediately shifts to a young Rey being left behind on Jakku with Unkar Plutt dragging her away.

My friend brought up this theory: what if Kylo Ren had, in fact, saved a young Rey (though we are seeing her as an adult) from another Knight of Ren?  That Knight of Ren could have been going to kill Rey as part of the massacre, but Kylo Ren steps in to save her.  He then takes her to Jakku where she is left behind, which would explain why it seems like Kylo Ren knows her.  Why would he save her? That’s the question.  Guilt?  Is he related to her?  If so – why wouldn’t Han recognize her?

When I previously thought about this scene, I thought Rey was seeing some insight into what happened when Kylo Ren turned to the dark side and those were all of Luke’s Jedi pupils.  I never thought about her actually being there, but the more I think about it, the more I like this theory and it seems to make sense.

2.The Force Vision/Artoo Shut Down

This is my theory and I have brought it up before, but it did become a discussion point again at the party.  In the Force vision, we see Luke put a hand on Artoo.  Artoo is clearly “awake” here and not in hibernation.  Is Luke shutting Artoo down and somehow using the Force to make sure the next time he awakes, it will be because of Rey?

This theory is a little far-fetched, but I keep coming back to it, because WHY are they showing Artoo in this vision?  It could be because Abrams wanted to keep Luke as hidden as possible until the end of the movie, but I also don’t think there were any throwaways in this movie.  They could have not had this scene if he wanted Luke to remain hidden.  Why show Artoo?

I believe Artoo was getting some kind of direction here and it is interesting that he is “awakened” just when Rey shows up on D’Qar.

Here’s a video of the Force vision for your reference:

3. Your favorite 15-20 minutes in Star Wars

This was a question someone asked at the end of the party.  What is your favorite 15-20 minutes out of all the Star Wars movies?

I thought that would be hard and there were scenes that flit across my brain very fast as I tried to think of something.  I thought of Amidala speaking to the senate (“I was not elected to watch my people suffer and die…”), I remembered Luke staring out at the binary sunset, I thought about Vader revealing he is Luke’s father, I thought about Rey rescuing BB-8, I remember Order 66, I remember Leia and Han’s exchange before he went into carbonite (“I love you!”  “I know.”), but then one part of the saga stood out to me the most.

My favorite scene in the Star Wars saga would be the end of Return of the Jedi.  Luke is trying to control his emotions but Vader gets to him when he realizes that Luke has a sister and says he will turn her to the dark side.  Luke loses it and goes after Vader with such hatred and bests him in their final lightsaber match.  He cuts of his hand in anger – only to hear the Emperor’s sinister laugh behind him.  The Emperor is sure of his victory; sure that Luke will take Vader’s place.  And then….Luke turns away from the dark side.  Seeing his own hand cut off, he turns to the Emperor and tells him:

You failed your highness.  I am a Jedi, like my father before me.

It makes me want to woop with joy every time I see that scene.  Talk about good triumphing over all!  Talk about doing the right thing even when you know it means death!  Aggggh that scene – everything about it: the lightsabers, the ominous music, the Emperor’s moment of triumph – only to have Luke come out on top and throw away his lightsaber.

The best.  That is, in my eyes, the best scene from the entire saga.


My party was wonderful and I had a great time.  It’s the perfect thing for me to look forward to since I’m not a fan of Valentine’s Day.  This is a way to celebrate my true love in a way that honors it.

I can’t wait until next year’s party.

Social Media Bullying

I love Instagram.  I think it’s one of the greatest social media platforms out there…it took me a while to get into it but it’s now a bit addicting for me and I love scrolling through all the photos in the morning with my cup of tea.  (If I find Instagram addicting, can you imagine how I’d be with Pokemon Go?  It may be a good thing that when I’m walking I have the dog in one hand and the stroller in the other – no room for a phone.)

I rarely read comments on large social media accounts but I was caught by surprise when the Star Wars account posted a photo of some female fans cosplaying recently and I happened to read one of the comments.  The comment was not friendly so I decided to go into the comments and read more.  Maybe I’m naïve but I was surprised at how much bullying was going on in the comments.

I want to copy and paste the comments here, but then everyone will know what picture it was referring to and I’d rather not go there.

Instead, what I did was begin to scout the internet for photos of people labeled “geeks” or “nerds” and read comments where it was allowed to see what people were saying.

In one of my more popular posts, I discussed bullying and how there has been talk about how geeks/nerds are now “cool” or that since Star Wars is popular once more, being labeled as a geek or nerd is not as derogatory as it once was.

I’ve now come to realize that though there may be less bullying (if that’s even true; I’m skeptical on what the media says) IRL, the bullying has transferred to online – specifically through social media.

And why not?

cyber bully phoneIt’s so easy to bully someone via the internet.  Bullying in person means you are owning up to what you are doing and it takes a certain amount of guts.  It means that you might get caught and chastised in person.  Online allows all the people who may not bully in person, bully behind a screen and think they will never get caught.  Sure, some people may be caught, but it also allows people thousands of miles away to comment on someone they do not know or never plan on meeting.

What I’ve found from reading comments on photos online is that passionate fans are still labeled a geek or nerd but that seems to be the least of the bullying. I wanted to break it down more concisely.  (PLEASE keep in mind this just from my experience, not any kind of scientific analysis.  Also – Mr. R. says I’m overgeneralizing but based on the comments I’ve looked at over the past few weeks, I don’t think I am.)

First, let’s start with the term “geek” or “nerd”.  It can be used affectionately and I often use it proudly, but it connotes something different and is usually in reference to someone who is passionate about something that is not mainstream.

When a social media bullies uses that term, I feel like that is the first level of bullying and often the least egregious.  I’ve then noticed that it’s broken up very differently between men and women.

If there was a man cosplaying or photos of him at a convention, there were very few comments on his appearance unless the internet trolls thought he was overweight.  And what constituted overweight seemed vastly different between men and women.  If the man in the photo was overweight, then he got labeled “fat” and sometimes there were comments on how he probably lived alone in his mother’s basement playing video games.  (That image has got to go. Seriously. Plenty of men play videogames and do not live in a basement but have high paying jobs and their own place.)

But when you compare it to photos of women, the women have three levels of labels underneath the umbrella term of geek or nerd.

It seems like women cannot be only labeled as a geek or nerd.  The trolls have to go one step further and give them another label.  I found that either a woman is a “hot” geek, an “ugly” geek, or a “fat” geek/nerd.  Sometimes fat and ugly are used at the same time.

All three of those labels are an indication of their looks, as opposed to the men who only had one reference to their looks and one for their lifestyle.

Social Media Bullying

I can’t speak for men obviously since I am not a man, but I will say that as a woman, our society puts a lot of pressure on us to obtain this Western notion of “beauty” – i.e. thin, large breasts, no wrinkles, etc.  We cosplay in what we hope is a judgement-free zone and when people take photos of us, we hope that if it ends up online, the comments are on our outfits, not our looks.  (I do want to point out that there are definitely comments out there on the outfits, but unfortunately, a lot center around looks as well.)

We can’t control what other people say about us online…especially on open social media platforms like facebook, twitter, or Instagram.  What we CAN control is teaching our children about cyber bullying.  I feel like as a society, we are still playing catch-up, in some ways, to the Internet.  Only in the past 5 or 6 years has cyber bullying begun to be brought to the forefront of our attention as social media has become more of a norm in our society.

You might think that this is extra sensitive to me all of a sudden because I just had a child.  Not so.  When I was at Mount Holyoke, located in the sleepy town of South Hadley, a girl at the local high school committed suicide due to cyber bullying.  It brought back my years in middle school and how I was tormented for loving Star Wars and I wondered what it would have been like if social media was as rampant as it is today.  I think it would have been worse.  Much worse.

I’m frustrated at what I’m seeing online, especially as more and more attention has been brought to bullying in schools and how there has been a decrease of it.  However, cyber bullying still seems to happen more to females than males.  The last place I want it to happen is on a Star Wars social media account.  (In all fairness – starwars.com has been doing an amazing job with showcasing all kinds of different cosplay on shapes and figures of all sexes. The problem is with the trolls, not LFL or Disney.)

By starting early, when our children are under our care, I think this would help prevent bullying in adults.  Is it so hard to put rules around your children’s social media accounts?  I look at ARM and I think about social media and the rules that will be placed in our household revolving around it.  I know a family where the dad allowed social media, but insisted he have the password to all his 14 year old daughters accounts.  When she changed it once and refused to tell him her password, he took away her phone and shut down the internet at the house.  Is it so hard to be strict nowadays and monitor your children?  Combating any form of bullying should not just be left up to the school but should start at home.

I will be monitoring ARM’s use of social media as well.  I hope and pray that she is never one to bully others online and I intend to educate her very early about bullying.  But on top of that, I hope I raise her to be a confident woman, so much so that if she is ever bullied, she knows that she is better than any comment on an internet page.