I am a Star Trek dork. As they say in rehab, admitting it is the first step to recovery. I swear that even though I am a bit of a Trekkie, I have never been to a Star Trek convention, nor have I dressed as a Vulcan, Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian, or a Borg for Hallowe’en or in the privacy of my own home. I don’t even have a poster of Jeri Ryan or Uhura.
Another excerpt from Book IV of ‘The Mount Whitney Journals’. Rich, Phil and I are now off the mountain and are in the desert town of Lone Pine. The three of us are dirty, hungry and exhausted.
THE MOUNT WHITNEY JOURNALS – Book IV – 2007 August 13, 2007, 10:00 p.m., Lone Pine, CA
Foremost in our minds as we approach town is lodging, a shower, and food. It’s almost 10:00 by the time we pull into the Best Western driveway and I’m praying they haven’t given away our room. With no way to call from the mountain, there was no way to let them know we’d be checking in this late. As I waited for Phil at the trailhead, along with all of the negative thoughts orbiting my head regarding Phil, I also envisioned the three of us having to sleep in the truck on a Lone Pine side street or gas station parking lot.
Again my worries are wasted energy. The receptionist greets us with a Disney-like cheerfulness and says she’s been holding the room for us. Apparently, late check-ins like this are a daily occurrence. I let out another, “Thank God!” With all my prayer and praising of The Almighty over the last hour, one would think that I’m on the verge of some evangelical breakthrough. One would be wrong.
Minutes later we are in our room trying to decide who gets to shower first and who has to sleep on the rollaway bed. The choice for the rollaway comes down to Phil and I, and we both argue why the other is more deserving of the real bed. I consider using the “I’m the older brother and I speak for the family” argument. I heard Lieutenant Worf use it effectively on Star Trek: The Next Generation to end a dispute with his brother Kurn regarding a matter of honor before the Klingon High Council. I decide against using it for something as trivial as a rollaway bed. Phil argues that because I’m old, the most discouraged, have had a bad back, and organized the trip, he should be on the rollaway and I should be on the bed. Spock would convulse at the ill-conceived logic. I just raise my right eyebrow quizzically and relent, resigned to suffer the guilt of the more comfortable bed.