Sunday, October 02, 2016

Stories For Two

Began a late morning with Sweet Potato Whole Wheat Pancakes and The Wacky World of Spike Jones. Spike Jones and His City Slickers were one of the most popular bands of the 1940's. They distinguished themselves by making their orchestra a comedy act, utilizing cartoon-y sound effects and goofy non-sequiturs to spoof classical and pop music alike. They even dipped both into the Disney canon and war propaganda with their hilarious rendition of "Der Fuehrer's Face," from the Oscar-winning Donald Duck short of that title.

I put them on for inspiration for the next big story I'm planning. This is intended to be a goofy comedy inspired by the East Side Kids and Bowery Boys movies and other similar series about kids and young adults getting into trouble together from the mid-20th century. Rey, Finn, and most of the other younger members of the Resistance work for Han, who owns a garage in downtown New York in 1948. The only members who work elsewhere are Poe and his dog BeeBee, who work for private detective (and Han's estranged wife) Leia, and Korel Connix, who interns as a nurse.

This is going to be my comic Halloween story. The kids call themselves a "social club." They really just hang out together, trying to figure out how to improve Han's business, get him and Leia back together, and fight the First Order Gang, who are encroaching on their turf. They've been invited to a Halloween party in an old house with some very spooky history. People have died in that house. Rey wants to go. She's heard the First Order Gang might try to invade it.

Before the end of the night, several people will go missing, everyone will get spooked, and the kids will learn the truth about the history of the Old Skywalker Manor...and why the First Order Gang is so aggressive.

Had noon work today. Even thought it wasn't raining and the Eagles were off this week, the Acme was still absolutely insane, especially early on. It's the beginning of the month, and the weather was still pretty bad. I was in the register for two minutes when I arrived before the manager pulled me to help with carts. Fine by me. Even with the humid, cloudy, gloomy weather, I'd still rather be outside. For once, they really needed my help out there. The carts kept vanishing as fast as me and the other baggers could return them! It got a little easier when it slowed down a bit later in the afternoon.

(Oh, and I did get to see some football today. The Seattle Seahawks-New York Jets game was on in the back during work. The Jets just couldn't get past Seattle's offense. Even though their star quarterback Russell Wilson is hampered with an ankle and a knee injury, he still raced past them 27-17.)

Went straight home from work and did some writing. Instead of going right into my next big idea, I decided I wanted to get something off my chest. I've mentioned a couple of times that I loved Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and that Han Solo's death, while shocking, didn't bother me that much. A lot of fans have put Force Awakens down just because it dared to show that the trio from the Original Trilogy can make mistakes and grow apart, not to mention killed off a member of that trio.

There's also the tendency to romanticize Kylo Ren. Over-dramatic teens and young adults looking for the next Twilight have latched onto Rey and Kylo as a brooding, dark couple...but just as many people take issue with this pairing. I personally enjoy some of the interesting "Beauty and the Beast" stories that have been written about them, but they're not my first choice Star Wars duo. Kylo is a spoiled brat who has killed his father and an entire school of children, just because some ugly old wizard told him to. Not to mention, what he did to Rey nearly amounts to mind-rape. That's not romantic. That's scary, and a little pathetic.

What I want is for both generations to work together, to share stories and adventures together, to learn from one another, regardless of whether or not Han survives.

I decided to address these concerns in a simple short story. Rey remains upset about having witnessed Han's death, even months into her training with Luke. She thinks his death was senseless, regrets not having been able to do more to stop it, and is very angry with Kylo. Not to mention, she's confused about her feelings regarding Poe and Finn. She likes them as friends, but she's really still figuring out what love is.

Luke tells her she has every right to be angry. So does he. They've both been through hell. He, Han, and Leia made a lot of mistakes dealing with Kylo, ones that they regret now...but everyone makes mistakes. It makes us human. The thing is, you learn from your mistakes and move on. Luke knows he has to do that and stop hiding...and so does Rey.

Rey mentions all the stories Leia and Chewie and the others told her about Han. She suggests gathering those stories on a holo-site or the galactic version of a USB port, where they can be shared. That way, everyone will be able to remember Han and what he meant to all of them.

Luke approves of the idea. He reminds her that relating memories can help us heal...and that as long as the stories exist, and there are people to tell them, people never really leave our hearts.

I like how this one came out. (If you know anything about Mark Hamill's day job, you may appreciate some of the in-jokes, especially at the very end...) I had trouble getting my last story on Fanfiction.Net, so this is only available on Archive of Our Own and my writing blog for now.

The Stories We Leave Behind at Archive of Our Own
The Stories We Leave Behind at Writer's Desk at the Riverside Rest

I had leftovers for dinner, then finished the night with video games. Went back to Lego Star Wars: The Original Saga to see if I could go back and get some of the things I couldn't find before. Being able to select characters is a big help with the Free Play rounds. Turns out General Grevious has some use for those long cyborg legs besides jumping around in lightsaber fights. He's a super jumper like Jar Jar. Not only was he able to reach several pieces or coins that were too high even for the Jedi double jump, but his four-armed lightsaber attack made mincemeat of the attack droids.

While I was able to get the red bricks from "Negotiations" and "Invasion of Naboo," I still missed some pieces. Not to mention, I only got True Jedi on "Negotiations." I'm still trying to earn enough gold bricks to get into the final bonus round. I may see if I can go back or do more rounds over tomorrow.

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