The Rhumb Line Headline Animator

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Beam us up, Scotty!

He's 80                                                              He's 5
Last week saw the birthdays of William Shatner and Twitter. Known as the Priceline pitchman, Sgt. TJ Hooker, Deny Crane (Boston Legal) and most recently, Ed from $#*! My Dad Says -  the sitcom inspired by Twitter - Shatner has come full circle - and then some.

Shatner will always be synonymous with Star Trek, the TV series that conceptually spawned much of the tech we today take for granted. Wasn't that a Bluetooth in Lt. Uhura's ear? Kirk's "communicator" looked a lot like any flip-phone. Was U.S. Air Force  stealth technology inspired by the Enterprise's "cloaking device?"

When Kirk first flipped open his communicator and said beam me up, Scotty, we somehow assumed such futuristic gizmos would be operated exclusively by high ranking officers in Starfleet Command. Who would have guessed their devolution from voice - with its infinite spectrum of tone and vocabulary - to the confines of text, and a paltry 140 characters at that? Who would have further imagined these compact marvels would find themselves in the hands of the likes of Ashton Kutcher, who would use them to apprise his 6.5 million followers of his every synaptic event.

In a recent 96-hour span, Kutcher's tweets ranged from excited to announce my new @popchips (now he's hawking salted snacks?) to Rock the Relief run for Japan! Thanks for the commercial message, AK. And your concern. You're dismissed. And by the way, thanks to your efforts, we exclusively use, endorse and promote... Canon cameras.

Don't get us wrong. We dig Twitter and its wonderfully exploitable features as a marketing tool. And we dig Shatner - here's one reason why...

Happy birthday, Bill.

While we're reminiscing about Star Trek, which Lt. Uhura do you prefer - the original or newest? 
1966-1969                               2009

Let us know.



  1. I'm going with the new babe. the old one always reminded me of Leslie Ugums (sp?)

  2. I was 13 when the original Star Trek first aired and had a total crush on Nichelle Nichols.

  3. Gotta go with Nichelle Nichols. She guided many a young boy through puberty on Friday nights.


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