Tuesdays With Geordi

Break Dancing w/ Wanda Sykes at a wrap party
Break Dancing w/ Wanda Sykes at a wrap party

Being a geek and pursuing a career in the Entertainment Industry, or “The Biz” as I like to call it, is both challenging and rewarding. Jobs can be scarce at times, so when you are employed you have to put your game face on. For me, that means keeping my geekiness in check. But, it’s only natural that when I’m surrounded by actors and writers that I grew up watching to get star struck; especially if I’m working with an actor from a sci-fi series. It takes all my concentration to keep me from becoming a“Geek Hulk” (i.e. spazzing while trying to bring coffee to George Takei. You bet that happened.)  More often than not, I manage to maintain self-control. But there is one time where I was really put to the test: working with a certain cast member of Star Trek: The Next Generation.

In between PA gigs, I landed work as a stagehand at a small black box theater. The play I was working on just so happened to star Geordi La Forge, himself: LeVar Burton.  He was totally cool and very nice. What an opportunity to see the mastery of his craft up close! For the play, I assisted not only with set changes, but with props for LeVar. It took all my might not to whisper to him “I have an action figure of you in my car!” or hum the theme to Reading Rainbow during rehearsals. But I didn’t, I respect the actor’s process.

Creepy Picture with LeVar Burton
Creepy picture with LeVar Burton

Awesome right? Well hold on to your butts for this paragraph! One night one of LeVar’s fellow Star Trek: TNG cast members comes to see the play: none other than Brent Spiner! Yeah, I know!  So after the night’s performance Data went back to congratulate the cast and LeVar introduced him to everyone, including the crew.

That’s right, Geordi La Forge introduced me to Data.

Not since the age of 7, when I won a coloring contest and got Spiderman comics, had I reached “Nerdvana”! I politely told him that I was a huge fan. Inside, though, I was high-fiveing God. Indeed, a very cool moment for a Geek like me.

Two months later, I saw LeVar Burton at Comic Con and said ‘Hello’. He didn’t remember me. Probably because I was dressed as Optimus Prime, which is understandable.

I also Met Michael Dorn (Worf) after another play. He gave me a suggestion for a local restaurant, which I rejected.  Poor, poor Worf.  Three cast members of Star Trek: TNG down, five to go.

End Transmission

The story above in stand up form: