Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Star Trek club is more than ‘stereotypical nerds’

With sayings like, “Beam me up, Scotty,” and, “Live long and prosper,” “Star Trek” has taken many “where no man has gone before.”

And now there is a “Star Trek” club for everyone, from the Klingon-speaking Trekkies to the casual watcher.

J.C. Harris, a sophomore majoring in philosophical anthropology at Shelton Community College who will transfer to the University in the fall, and Brian Manley, who lives in Tuscaloosa, organized the “Star Trek” club in January. Harris first became interested in “Star Trek” after watching the movies and episodes when he was about 12 years old.

“I fell in love with it,” Harris said. “I liked the philosophy behind it, the ideas and the characters.”

The club, which meets once a month in the Tuscaloosa Public Library’s Rotary Room, is open to the public. The two-hour meetings consist of watching an episode of “Star Trek” and then discussing the episode and different activities and events the club would like to have in the future. The club has also talked about doing things to help out in the community.

Although the club’s main focus is on discussing “Star Trek,” Harris said one does not have to be a “stereotypical ‘Star Trek’ nerd” to enjoy attending the meetings.

“[I want people] to have an experience of learning more about ‘Star Trek,’ just seeing more of it and possibly developing a newfound enjoyment that they might not have had before,” Harris said.

Harris placed an advertisement in The Tuscaloosa News to tell community members and students about this new club. They are also in the process of placing a billboard in the library.

Manley, a cabinetmaker by trade, said he has been a “Star Trek” fan since he was about 8 years old.

“I first liked it because I was all about space,” Manley said, “but then I learned what it was really about: the nobility of humanity, self sacrifice and humanity pulling together for the common good to accomplish a common goal.”

He said he enjoys the sense of belonging and having like-minded people to talk to about different episodes and movies. But, there is more to it than that.

“It’s not only about ‘Star Trek,’” Manley said. “It’s open to anyone who wants to come. We’re not a bunch of dorks and dweebs. We’re normal people who have a common interest.”

Manley has suggested that the club participate in the Adopt-A-Mile program to help clean up Tuscaloosa, while dressed as Klingons.

Trey Stewart, a graduate student studying educational psychology, saw the club’s advertisement in the newspaper and decided to attend a meeting.

“I’m a ‘Star Trek’ fan, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to meet new friends … who have similar interests,” Stewart said. “When I was a kid, I caught some episodes here and there, and they got me interested.”

As the club looks to expand, Stewart said he would like for it to possibly have more activities, like building models of space ships, reading and writing fan fiction, role playing games and educating people in the community. The club could explain how scientific topics are relevant to the people of Tuscaloosa, he said.

“There’s a lot of aspects one could focus on and be interested in,” Stewart said. “They could find some aspect of ‘Star Trek’ that would allow them to … explore outside interests.”

The “Star Trek” club’s next meeting is May 30 at 2 p.m.

More to Discover