Star Wars fandom: DEFCON 1!
I'd say there's three levels of Star Wars fans. There's Level 1: the person who really enjoys the movies and can name all the main characters, but stops short of engaging in a discussion of whether or not Han shot first. A Level 2 fan (of which I would be one) has a more in-depth knowledge of the movie series; recognizes the Star Wars world as one of fantasy but often discusses aspects of it as if it were real; owns action figures, but realizes that Peter Mayhew is not really a Wookiee and wouldn't ask him to do a Wookiee yell if they ever met him. Then there's Level 3. That's the guy who will wait on line months in advance of the premeire of a new SW movie. At the wrong theater. And demand that Lucas show the film in the theater he's on line at. A Level 3 lives in a world inhabited by people who are one light saber duel away from never coming back to this side of reality. He or she is the person who dresses their dog in a Vader costume or names their son Luke Skywalker.
I admit that I have at some points I have flaunted my Level 2 credentials with reckless abandon and come very, very close to a beginner stage Level 3. Yes, I stood outside Toys R Us waiting for a new shipment of figures to come in. Yes, I had a life size cut-out of Boba Fett in my house for way too long. Yes, I've had discussions that make me seem a bit out there. And so what if tasted Yoda cereal or sent away for a glow-in-the-dark Kenobi or cried tears of joy when, in 1997, I found a Darth Vader action figure carrying case at a garage sale for two dollars? I'll tell you what I've never done. I never ate Lava Berry Explosion Pop Tarts just because they have Vader's face on the box. Ok, I bought them. And I opened them. And I was actually going to take a bite until I realized they look like they are filled with the blood of rebel peasants and coated with actual lava. So while I purchased them and looked at them and even smelled them, I never actually ate them, which I think saves me from crossing over into Level 3-dom. Because that's the difference between a 2 and 3. A Level 3 fan would eat the Pop Tarts anyhow, no matter how bad they looked or smelled or tasted, because they are compelled by the voices in their heads (most of which sound just like James Earl Jones) to do such things.
I have no such voices. I draw the line at certain places. I will not subject myself to ridicule in the name of a movie franchise. I will not (even though I said I would) make a stormtrooper costume for myself. I will not attempt to try a Darth Dew Slurpee (I leave that to the experts). And I will stop having those dreams about Boba Fett. I don't know the dimensions of Tatooine or how much fuel it takes to fly an X-Wing and sometimes the entire Star Wars family tree confuses me so, even if I aspired to be one, I could never be a Level 3. My mind automatically rejects any further knowledge of the Star Wars universe because it knows. It has a warning system that tries to keep me in check. That's the difference between a 2 and 3 - a working mind. Sanity!
Ok, maybe I'll get these Dark Side checks. When my Batman checks run out, that is. And this would look nice in my living room. Did someone say they had a link to a Leia slave girl costume? I could probably get something together in a few days, if I.......
Danger! Danger! Approaching Level 3! Step away from the $120 lightsaber!