This is one of those days of the year on which I always find myself in a reflective mood.
And, no, it isn't because it's Constitution Day, the day in 1787 when the United States Constitution was signed. Or because it was on this day in 1683 that Antonie van Leeuwenhoek wrote a letter to the Royal Society in London that contained the first known scientific description of protozoa. It certainly isn't because it was on this day in 1630 that the city of Boston was founded. Never been there. It isn't even because this is the day in 1976 that the first space shuttle, the Enterprise (the one that never flew in space), was first unveiled to the public, although that's a pretty neat thing that I remember clearly.
The reason that this is always a thoughtful day for me is that it was on this day in 1922 that my father was born. I've written about him here before. My father was a good man, and I miss him a great deal even after all these years, and on this day I always think of him and all the things he did for me, and all the support he gave me, and the ways in which I am the person I am because of hi
I've had a pretty busy day today, but I've also taken time off, as I always try to do on his birthday, to do something that my father would have appreciated. Today, that has been reading Redshirts (2012), by John Scalzi, the novel that recently won the Hugo Award, given at the World Science Fiction Convention, for Best Novel. Redshirts kind of takes the phenomenon of "Star Trek" and turns it on its head and shakes it up and has some fun with one of the central memes to come out of that classic television series. I'm only on page 112 right now, so I don't know how things are going to come out, but it's funny as hell so far while at the same time proposing some interesting (and sometimes kind of mind-bending) ideas.
Why am I reading this in honor of my father's birthday? Well, my father was a big science fiction fan (okay, he was a geek; he raised me right), and a huge "Star Trek" fan. Back when the original series was in its first run, when I was in elementary school, we watched it together every week, much to the dismay of my mother, who was not much of a science fiction fan. My father also had a slightly bent sense of humor. I suspect that he would have loved this book.
This is not to say that I'm only reading Redshirts in memory of my father. I'm reading it because it is a really good book, and I find it more and more difficult to find really good science fiction.
So, I'm going to go read some more now.