One day about four years ago, I was told I’d be sharing a cubicle at work with Jamie Rockwell, who I would later learn is one of the biggest Star Wars nerds on the planet. He’s been yelling at me in all caps on Facebook every time the movie comes up ever since.
I’ll let him take it from here:
When I worked at (an employer that shall remain nameless), I had a C-3PO figure at my desk. I had recently moved over to Online from designing magazines and I didn't know a lot of the reporters very well, so it seemed like a nice icebreaker, because everyone has Star Wars in common, right?
So when Meghan, who I had just begun to share a cubicle space with upon her promotion to be my immediate supervisor, looked at C-3PO and asked me what it was, I laughed, because obviously she had to be joking. When she told me she was serious, I stopped laughing and just kind of stared at her for a second. "Star Wars. Did you forget he was one of the droids from Star Wars?"
"Oh. Yeah, I've never seen that."
Have you ever started talking to a stranger and then realized that they don't speak English, and you kind of feel like an insensitive idiot for a minute, but then you remember that we live in a place where the vast majority of people speak English? It felt a lot like that.
"How...how have you never...what?"
It was baffling. Several possible scenarios flew through my head. I had known Meghan for probably a year or so, but I didn't know her super well or anything. How was this possible? Did she grow up Amish? Did she spend her childhood in a coma? What pack of wolves had raised this girl?
This obviously really bothered me. I had known before this moment that half of the movie references I would make at work wouldn't connect with her, but this ... I had to do something about this. So later that week, I brought my DVD box set in and slammed it down on our desk. It was all I could do short of strapping her into a Clockwork Orange-style theater seat (which is another movie reference that she probably doesn't get).
To this day, three years and change later, she has not watched any of it. But this transgression won't stand forever. I WILL BE VINDICATED, MEGHAN WESLEY.
So now you know the back story.
All of this came flying into my head when we were in a meeting a few weeks ago, talking about how to cover May 4. If you are a Star Wars fan (or, as I'm learning, a human), I don’t have to tell you about how it’s the official Star Wars “May the 4th be with you” day.
Someone said, “Meghan should watch Star Wars.”
Someone else said, “She should live Tweet it.”
So there you have it. This is how we decided that -- for work -- I am going to finally lose my Star Wars virginity.
And Jamie -- who has been waiting for this moment for literally three years -- is going to watch it with me. That way we can pause it every 10 seconds so he can fill me in on everything I don’t understand. And, in his words, he gets to almost experience it again for the first time through me.
So here’s a shoutout to all my fellow Star Wars virgins: Want to join me? We will start watching Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope at 3 p.m. on May 4. Join me on Twitter at @MeghanWesley with the hashtag #StarWarsVirgin. I'll update everyone if we get going any earlier/later.
(And feel free to join in if you’ve seen it 100 times but want to feel nostalgic and remember what it was like to watch it for the first time.)
Then I'll be going to a WCPO Insider screening of The Empire Strikes Back at 7:30 p.m. at Kenwood Theatre, where there will be more live tweeting (assuming no one confiscates my phone) and hopefully a better understanding of all of the pop culture references I’ve been missing all these years.
May the force be with me?
In honor of May the Fourth, R2-D2 visited 9 On Your Side Wednesday morning. Watch in the video player below.