Every year on Christmas Eve, my extended family on my mother’s side, gets together.
This year, my little cousin Dane had a toy lightsaber. It was an appropriate toy as the new Star Wars film had just been released and he had just seen it in theaters, AND he got his very own popcorn and pop (this was an important detail to Dane).
Dane is eight-years-old and he is the youngest child in his family. He is extremely intelligent. He is a natural performer and has a unique sense of humor. He isn’t as competitive at sports as his older brother and sister. He is sensitive, a quality that never bodes well in team sports. He has a strong attention to detail and a vivid imagination. He is one of my favorite family members as we share some similar character traits, for better or for worse.
Dane was very excited to share with me his favorite moments of the Star Wars film, the technical details of the lightsaber and his hopes and dreams for the future of the Star Wars franchise.
I started asking him far too advanced, technical and philosophical questions about the Star Wars universe,
“Does a lightsaber cut or burn?”
“If you get your arm chopped off by a lightsaber, would the wound cauterize and sterilize? Or is there risk of infection?”
“What do you think the annual wage of a Stormtrooper would be?”
“Would a Jedi be considered a terrorist?”
His older brother, Drake, weighed in on the conversation. He had his own answers to my questions and they were well thought out.
Drake figured a lightsaber was an energy source and therefore would burn. If you lost an arm the wound would be cauterized and would probably be sanitized in the process. Stormtroopers probably weren’t paid and instead were taken care of and brainwashed into the movement. And Jedi’s are the good guys, so naturally they would be embraced in modern society.
Dane was fascinated by the conversation but couldn’t keep up with his brother’s confident answers to my obscure questions.
“A light saber would be a really, really, hot heat, Tanner.”
Thanks Dane. Thanks buddy.
To be honest, I’ve never been a massive Star Wars fan. I loved the original three, hated the three recent films and considered that a pretty mediocre batting average. I wasn’t really interested in the new film until my conversation with Dane and his brother Drake.
Dane was jacked-up on Star Wars. He wanted to get into it. It took every ounce of his being to not ruin the ending. He could barely resist telling me that a main character died in the film (whoops, spoiler alert). Instead he gave me painfully obvious clues until I figured it out on my own.
After Christmas, I went to see the new movie and loved it. It was fun, I felt excited. I was like a kid watching it; eating my very own popcorn.
My point is that Dane was excited and thus it made me excited. It made me realize that excitement and a distinct interest in something is a contagious quality. When people get excited about things, momentum builds and movements happen. People are excited about Bernie Sanders right now. Everyone loves an underdog story.
I don’t care what you do, but if you are passionate about it and can demonstrate that to me, then I’m probably going to become interested myself.
If you are a musician, author, jewelry maker, politician, real-estate agent, entrepreneur, carpenter, work in non-profit, a teacher, a chef or even a Jedi, if you are into it then I’m probably going to be into it as well. I’ll drink the Kool-Aid - I just want to know that you want to drink the Kool-Aid as well, and I want to know that it’s going to be awesome!
Marketers rejoice. Here is some free information that I learned from an eight-year-old kid.