Go to any science fiction convention and you'll see geeks sporting their hearts on their sleeves — or, more accurately, their license plates. Vanity plates reading everything from "X-WING" to "FIREFLY" are not uncommon sightings.
However, such a display was not something I expected to see in my own workplace's parking lot:
I eventually tracked down the Jeep Wrangler's owner to Computerworld's COO, whom I quizzed: "So are you a big Star Wars nut? Or were you just looking to intimidate folks?" His response:
My family has a tradition of having grandchildren call their grandparents some name other than grandpa or grandma. Nana, papa, grandma, granddad, etc. are some of names selected over time by various grandparents. I chose Vader pretty much just to bug my mother. So my three grandchildren are going to call me Vader — as soon as they can talk; all are under six months old at this point.
Courtesy this gentleman's vivid imagination, an entire generation will grow up unafraid of the Dark Lord of the Sith. How will they feel when they learn his true origin? Will they rebel against their seemingly loving grandfather? Will the Star Wars saga play out once again, pitting blood against blood? Only time will tell… Until then, he can at least be counted on for a lollipop or two.