Weirdsville #2 - Trekkin' and Zombie Fever

Weirdsville Continues
If you'll recall from our first installment of Weirdsville, I was "tagged" by my pal, author Jack Kincaid. This tagging thing requires posting a list of 10 weird things about yourself, but rather than one long list, I thought I would milk this baby for all it's worth and do my list one post at a time.

O Captain! My Captain!
I left you a Weirdsville #2 clue (the Spock pic above) last time. I'm sure you guessed it. I'm a Trekkie, but I'm happy to say that I'm not hard core enough to even know if I'm spelling Trekkie correctly and I resisted the urge to spell-check it out of principle. But the truth is, I AM A TREKKIE. I don't know which influence came first, 2001: A Space Odyssey or Star Trek, but when I was a child, I was obsessed with the whole idea of living in a future world, so Star Trek became the escape from my bland earthbound reality.

As a kid, I had a little ritual for quite some time. I would rush home from school, plop down in front of the TV to watch Star Trek, while faithfully practicing my Vulcan hand greeting. During commercials, I'd focus on another obsession, shuffling a deck of cards in the two-pile fanning technique called the Riffle Shuffle (amazing what the razzing of older brothers will do to create an obsessive need for perfection in all things).

OCD and Spock Rocks!
Thinking back on that time in my life, I realize now just how OCD I was about a lot of things. I must have listened to the Twelve Days of Christmas a hundred times in a row to learn the lyrics flawlessly (again, avoiding sibling ridicule was always a motivational factor). Same thing with Maresy Dotes. I nagged a neighbor kid to teach the song to me and I was perplexed when after the twentieth time or so, she suddenly felt the need to go home. Gawd, I was weird...but I was cute, so I guess it evened out a little.

Anyway, back to Star Trek. For me, it was all about Spock (see YouTube for the REAL Spock). I had such a crush on him...again, very weird to have a crush on some dude with pointed ears that had no discernable emotions (but I knew they were in there). And speaking of crush, I was summarily crushed when the series ended! How could they?? And later when the first Star Trek: The Motion Picture came out, I actually teared up during the opening credits, listening to the whole "Space, the final frontier" thing. Oh, such a geek.

Then The Next Generation came along. I was dubious. No one could take the place of my Captain Kirk and Mister Spock, but I was so hungry for more Star Trek, I watched anyway. Before long, Picard hooked me. Then the whole Borg thing happened. OMG - Locutus!

Where's the Horror?
So with all this love of Science Fiction, I've wondered where my horror chops have come from. Besides an unauthorized viewing of Hitchcock's, Psycho (I pretended to be asleep while my parents were watching...yeah, I was too sly for my own good...that one scarred me), I didn't get to see much horror. But I think back to my Star Trek days and dang, there was tons of horror. Monsters, ghosts, planet eating cornucopias, pox, contagious madness, and alien creatures galore - you name it and the crew of the Enterprise encountered it. Remember the Star Trek pilot with the dudes with the veiny swollen cerebrum? Freaked me out!

Zombie Goodness
Anyway, geek that I am, I could ramble on about this subject forever, so I'll stop myself before your eyes start bleeding, and I'll switch gears for a quick public service announcement about Zombies. I haven't been much of a zombie story reader, until recently when I had the pleasure of reading Joe McKinney's, DEAD CITY. Then I had one of those little synchronicity moments where I met, Kim Paffenroth, nominated for a Stoker award this year for his excellent non-fiction book, GOSPEL OF THE LIVING DEAD: George Romero's Visions of Hell on Earth. Turns out Kim lives in my old stomping grounds in the Hudson Valley, and he's written another fine book, this time a novel, DYING TO LIVE. I've just read the first chapter, and I'm looking forward to the book's release in March, so I can devour the rest. *chuckles* Sorry, I couldn't help myself...devour...zombie.

You can have a juicy taste of the first chapter for yourself, FREE! Click Here to find the PDF link for DYING TO LIVE. I suspect, like me, you'll really enjoy this morsel of zombie goodness.

Okay, I've yacked on much longer than I had planned, but I hope you've enjoyed the walk down Weirdsville Lane with me. I always love having you along on a good stroll, which bring me to #3 for next time.

Wickedly Yours,
Fran Friel