Category Archives: geek stuff

The Next Conversation – Follow Up

I had written a little while ago about how the podcast Larry was a huge fan of responded to a note I had written them telling them about his death.  A thing they’d noted was they’d read my message on their next podcast…and part of me highly doubted that would actually happen.  Just thought it would be too sad.  Well, color me happily surprised, as they did indeed read my note on the next TNG podcast episode.  They’d been doing some Picard episodes in the time since, so I was kind of not sure but yep, the next TNG episode they did included it!

It’s Episode 113, regarding TNG episode “Masterpiece Society”:

Shortly after the 16:30 minute mark is where you can listen to the part above.  It’s awesome, and of course made me cry, but I know Larry’s thrilled somewhere.

Larry Visited the Picard Set

I had sent one of the pictures that Larry took of himself while at the Picard set when I reached out to the TNC podcast guys, but there were more that he took.  It was a nice day in August when his friend Greg brought up that he could take Larry to go visit the studio in Santa Clarita.   This was before Larry was going to go back to NYC to get the hepatic pump surgery at Sloan Kettering, so it was kind of essential timing for us to do this while Larry was feeling okay.  Actually, Greg ended up picking Larry up from the Burbank UCLA infusion center when Larry had gone back to get his portable pump removed, and they then drove together to Santa Clarita.

Once there, Larry had the chance to go to producer offices, where this TNG chair actually sits, and with their approval, he was able to sit in it and be a Starfleet Captain for a moment.  He also got to then go into the set, seeing the set for the Picard spaceship (which we still haven’t seen in the show thus far, but we’re only 2 episodes in – it is visible in the trailer, so these pictures aren’t spoilers), as well as seeing the set where a fight scene was being filmed that involved Jeri Ryan’s character.  He got to go through the propmaster closet and see all sorts of cool shit and talk to the propmaster about all things Trek.  No Patrick Stewart meeting unfortunately, and that never did come about – at one point, there was a chance Larry could go to Malibu to visit the set and meet him the next week, but production issues curtailed that possibility at that time, and of course upon return Larry was in no shape to really try that again.  But one cool thing was Larry got to meet Akiva Goldsman, one of the executive producers of the show, and a giant Star Trek geek.  Of course, Larry and Akiva went on and on about Star Trek while Greg endured it.  🙂   I’m so glad that was able to happen and I thank Greg so much for making this all happen.    Larry was so happy because of it.

August 16, 2019 pics from the Picard Production Offices:

And here’s a video of Larry as Picard:

Website Note:  Posts from January 20 through now are obviously posted in real time, but posts between January 2019 (anything except the lone Rescue Me post from September) and January 20, 2020 are retroactively being inserted – their datestamps won’t indicate or show that I’m posting them now, but yeah, 2019 will start having more and more posts.   I want to post all the pictures I can of things we did last year, but I didn’t have the mental mindset to post at the time.   I can’t let Larry’s last year go unobserved.  It’ll hurt, but also, it’ll be wonderful to see his fighting spirit as he continued to try to live a life of fun and joy and happiness and love.

Larry Loved: The Next Conversation Podcast

If you knew Larry, you knew he was a giant fan of Star Trek: The Next Generation.   He loved Star Trek in general, including the movies and The Original Series, but TNG was his jam.  You’ll see on our Netflix that he’d pretty much watched every episode multiple times, and those that don’t have a complete red progress bar are those that he deemed “meh”.   TNG was his drug, and man did he love watching it – and I think he loved the cast/characters that were on the show.   Picard, of course, but also Riker, Data, Dr Crusher, Deanna Troy, Worf, Jordie….the whole crew.   I could get into some episodes, but for me, I always would have the “Larry Commentary” to help me understand what was going on or what those passing references actually meant.

So fortunately for Larry, a few years back, one of the guys behind the James Bonding podcast, Matt Mira, joined up with his co-writer friend, Andy Secunda, to go through every episode of TNG, in order.   And then talk about it.  Andy was a newbie to the franchise, so he’d come in with the new view point, while Matt was like Larry, someone who’d seen these episodes plenty.   It’s a very funny podcast series, but warning, these episodes can go on for a loooong time, and sometimes the episode itself isn’t talked about for like an hour.   It is perfect for if you’re working and just listening to something, as it feels like you’re just hanging out with two good friends.

You can subscribe to their podcast, Star Trek: The Next Conversation, via any of the podcast services.   They’re currently up to midway through Season 5.

I am bringing this up today because earlier this week, I sent an email to their podcast letting them know that one of their biggest fans had passed, and how he listened to their podcast through chemotherapy and recovery over the last 18 months.  Happily, they responded yesterday – and right on cue, I started sobbing as it was just such a happy thing to receive but also just another reminder of what I’ve lost.  They posted about Larry on Twitter here:

And they indicated that they’d read my email on the next official TNC podcast episode, which we’ll see if that actually happens as I don’t know how much they want to bum their listeners out, but still, I think Larry would be very thrilled to know two of his favorites have him in mind and are thinking of him.  I know it makes me happy.

Guinan Returns

I just saw that on The View today, Patrick Stewart was on to talk about his show, Star Trek: Picard, which is premiering on CBS All Access this week.  So right out of the gate, this news just is so bittersweet, as I know Larry was so excited to see the return of Jean Luc Picard to television.  I will wait until after the show premieres to post the pictures and video I have, but Larry was able to go with his good friend Greg and visit the set of the show in Santa Clarita this past fall.  Talk about an awesome treat.   He didn’t get to meet Patrick Stewart unfortunately, but he did get to go on the set of the show’s spaceship as well as see a couple scenes being filmed, notably one with Jeri Ryan.  But Larry died too soon to be able to get to see the show itself.

That was preamble to the news today from The View:  Patrick Stewart extended an invitation to Whoopi Goldberg to be on Season 2 of Picard.  So. Fucking. Cool.   Larry would have been so excited to learn that news.   I know stuff like this may seem trivial but goddamn Larry loved ST:TNG and the return of the cast in Picard was something that made him happy.  And god damn the fact that he died of cancer so fucking soon.  I’ll never be okay with this.

Star Wars at Home

This morning started out with Alyssa leaving and saying her goodbyes with Larry one last time.   Later that morning, Stacie and Trent came over to visit with Larry.   It was a very nice time spent with them – I’m glad they could do so, as we were able to reminisce a little and just have a nice conversation with Larry.  They left before noon and we then got Larry downstairs.   It was very hard to have him go up and down stairs.   A nurse from True Care was coming at 1pm, and we also had Nicki, Sveta, and Mila coming over.  Not only that, I had been able to reach out to friends in the industry (George and Greg, effectively) about a Star Wars Rise of Skywalker screener and Greg had one!   He wasn’t in town on Thursday, but managed to FedEx it to us overnight so it got here in the morning today.  Not only that, but he also sent Uncut Gems, 1917, and Frozen 2. Unbelievable.  The nurse’s visit was good, and she encouraged us to move the hospital bed to the living room level, which honestly made the most sense so he’d have TV, be around everyone, and not have to deal with stairs anymore.  So we cleared out the area around where the Eames chair was, moving that over by the dining room table, and made room for the hospital bed to be relocated.  The highlight of the day was of course getting to watch Star Wars!  It was a lot of fun, a lot of the criticism is warranted, but it’s still one hell of a ride.  Very enjoyable, but still like The Last Jedi the best of this new trilogy.  Larry couldn’t really stay awake for most of it and was in and out, but I tried my best to keep him engaged.

Afterwards, we all just had a pleasant evening hanging out, drinking wine, telling stories, lighting Hanukkah candles, laughing, crying, playing Cards Against Humanity, eating Taco Bell.  I love my friends so much and they’ve been a godsend in this.  I don’t know what I’d do without them, as well as Fran and Joel obviously.   It was the first night that Larry spent down in the living room and I slept on the couch near him.  It wasn’t easy.  He peed once in the night which went well as I had him stand up, but the second time he did it laying down into the urinal and it was a mess.  Had to change the bed, do the sheets and his clothes, change his clothes to be clean, and then finally put him back to sleep.  I’m a little tired today (Sunday).