A year ago when my partner and I got together I had to confess something. I didn’t like Star Wars. Not only did I not like Star Wars. I really didn’t like it. Not your usual pre-first date confession. Thing is we’d known each other for a couple of years as he used to cut the boys’ hair – nice guy I thought, seems normal. We connected on Instagram and I realised there weren’t any regular photos of him. Just him dressed as a Jedi. Not really knowing how serious he was about it, I thought I’d ask him out on a date and chat to him about it then.
All went well and it was time to tackle the weird Jedi/lack of regular Instagram photos, thing. My partner explained that it was known as Trooping and not only did they go and dress up for festivals/comic con etc, they also visited childrens charities etc. Ok, started to make a bit more sense, especially the visiting sick/disabled children and I guess, if Harry Potter had come out before I’d reached adulthood, I could have gone down that route.
We agreed we didn’t want to clash so we wouldn’t talk Star Wars and we carried on dating. Hmmmm 3rd movie we went to see together was the Last Jedi. I’ve now seen six of the movies, am the proud owner of a replica Vice Admiral Holdo’s Tiara and matching Funko pop and it turns out I do quite like Star Wars after all. Which is a good thing as it turns out – being a Jedi takes a hell of a lot of commitment. First there’s the costume, sent from America, endlessly fiddled around with by my perfectionist partner. (Don’t worry, it’s not like the YouTube fiascos, we both actually know how to sew). The light sabre, which was handmade to look weathered and battle worn, only to be sent back to the guy who made it, six months later, so it would look less weathered. That’s just the costumes. In the year we’ve been together he’s trooped in Jersey, Birmingham, Manchester London and a childrens’ charity. All of these have involved cripplingly early starts, missed family occasions (lucky him, my family is huge and loud) and the kind of attention to detail that, if it’s not on a website, I’m not capable of. Turns out trooping is not just a bit of fun but a huge commitment too.