Thursday, December 14, 2006

Rose Bowl: Nerds, Freaks and USC Song Girls

As we’ve pointed out before, the Force is strong in the Trojan Family. I am not embarrassed to say so … no, I’m proud to say it, damn it … because I am an admitted USC Star Wars nerd.

Still, that’s not to admit that I’m a Star Wars freak. There is a difference, which will be abundantly clear on January 1.

I’ve been to USC’s last six Rose Bowls, but I’ve never been to a Rose Parade. And even though one of my heroes, Star Wars creator and USC alum George Lucas, is the Grand Marshal of the 2007 parade, I refuse to waste good tailgating time to go see it.

The same can’t be said for 200 Star Wars freaks … I mean, “superfans” … who will dress up and march as Stormtroopers (or “clones” depending on your pre- or post-Empire perspective) along with Lucas in the parade. I would never do that.

Sure, I’m nerd enough to want to catch the two Star Wars-themed floats on someone’s TV after parking on the Riverside Golf Course. But I’m not freak enough to want to be in the parade … unless I could grab a spot next to the Song Girls, who will also be marching.

I know I’m not alone. There are other college-football-loving Star Wars nerds in the blogosphere, including Brian Cook, who runs the outstanding Michigan blog mgoblog and whose double-duty post on AOL’s Fanhouse brought this matter to our attention. (Props, or “hat tip” as it were, to him.) I don’t know Cook personally, but only a fellow Star Wars nerd could write this:
Let's say you're a big Michigan fan from Alderaan with earmuff hair, kind of a pouty thing going on, some droids, and a destroyed home world. You're probably in a bad mood. Things have not gone well of late, what with everyone you know and love evaporating as you watched from the Empire's ultimate weapon of terror, not to mention Florida going to the national championship game.

So what's the last thing you probably want to see when you roll into Pasedena for the Rose Parade? Hundreds of Stormtroopers. So let this be a public service announcement for anyone who finds themselves in this situation: skip the parade and go tailgate, because George Lucas is the Grand Marshall and wherever he goes he brings a phalanx of laser-toting bodyguards for protection from uppity Jedi Knights.* Just FYI.

*Probably something of an exagerration.
Obviously, Cook knows that Lucas is a USC alum, because he presumes that Lucas will be on the dark side on New Year's Day. Light side … dark side … it doesn’t matter to me, as long as our Song Girls behave themselves and give USC Football a chance to win the game.

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