What Would Spock Do? An Iconic Role Model
I wish I could write a tribute to Leonard Nimoy, but sadly, I have no personal recollections. I was not fangirl enough to find a way to get to a con where he appeared.
However, I have been, and always will be, a fan.
Though his books, I am Not Spock, and later, I am Spock, Mr. Nimoy explored the character that he will always be identified with, the eminently rational yet passionate Vulcan. He said that as he grew older, carrying the constant mantle of the role, he found that he wanted to grow into the wisdom and perspective of the Vulcan. What better fictional role model could a person strive to emulate?
Spock is one who knows who he is, despite his always being an outsider, unlike so many of us who are drawn to science fiction and the otherworlds. He is sensual, judging by the elegance of his quarters on the Enterprise, contrasted with the Spartan quarters of his captain. He likes cats and tribbles.
He has strong emotions, but controls their expression while not being heartless, despite the other doctor’s many jibes. He is able to sacrifice himself to save the many, a heroic figure without bravado or machismo. The famous neck pinch is symbolic of the great personal power held in reserve, extremely effective without overt violence.
While he can command, he has no ambition to rule, only to learn and explore the mysteries of the infinite. In the “Mirror, Mirror” episode, even the evil Spock is able to see the rationality—always called logic but always more than that—of his taking over the Empire because he knows it will collapse in his lifetime, and he can take it to a better place than it will be without him.
I would like a bumper sticker, which seems to be an appropriate signal of one’s world view, that reads:
What Would Spock Do?
Rest in peace, Mr. Nimoy and Spock Prime. Thank you for your blessing, “Live long and Prosper” and your example both as yourself and as the Vulcan.