‘The Master and the Message’

Someone had moved the sofa, though mom had yet to notice. The carpet was the same, and the video-game joystick in the room’s center was earthly enough. No one would have guessed that the rearranged, cream-colored furniture was the metallic battle bridge of the Starship Enterprise; no one knew that the gray Atari joystick was the central-computer of the federation’s most powerful flagship. But I knew, for my eight-year-old heart yearned with each beat to “boldly go where no man had gone before,” longed with each pulse to fearlessly look both ways before crossing the galaxy.

“Dad, grab the camera! I’m going to make a movie!”

My beanpole sister Andee was Spock, and Jessi was Doctor Bones. “Darn it, Kirk, I’m a sister, not a Star Trek oddball” she said, trying to imitate the good doctor. Besides the director, I was the star, Captain James T. Kirk himself, commander and chief of the starship Enterprise, heart and head of the most powerful space vessel this side of the Romulan Empire.

The plot was brilliant, following closely the plot of every Star Trek episode ever created. Sister Spock was flying the Enterprise through an uncharted sector of the galaxy, avoiding black holes and other “unidentified singularities in space-time.” The ship shuddered, an effect created by jostling the video camera randomly as we all lunged to the right.

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