I had a Kaylee moment this weekend, of which I am very proud.
Background information: Kaylee Frye is a character in “Firefly” and “Serenity.” Kaylee is the ship mechanic onboard the Firefly ship called Serenity, captained by Malcolm Reynolds. Kaylee is basically the heart of the crew and incidentally my favorite character in the series. She is sweet and pure-hearted and happens to be a genius when it comes to fixing anything mechanical. The girl knows her catalyzers and compression coils, let’s just put it that way.
So while camping this weekend, we were packing up the campsite, and I was hanging out with my new friends Tom and Josh O. They were attempting to fold up this ancient, rusty table that looked like it was birthed in the in the 1970s. They were stomping on the hinges and pounding it to the ground and forcing the legs of the table every which way but it wouldn’t budge. They tried scrutinizing the faded, yellowed directions on the underside of the table, but they might as well have been written in Sumerian cuneiform. They managed to close one flap of the table, but the joints were jutting out uncomfortably like broken bones. After about 10 minutes, Tom and Josh sort of gave up.
I had this weird, Jedi-esque moment where I immediately saw what the problem was and I knelt down and in one swift motion, I easily folded up the table while Tom and Josh were standing there, gaping at me. They were just trying to bend the joints in the wrong direction which is why the table wouldn’t close. Simple, really.
There’s one scene in Firefly where the ship’s original mechanic Bester and Malcolm are completely befuddled by an engine problem, and Kaylee swoops in from the outside and makes a pull here and adjustment there and fixes a problem in two seconds that Bester said would take a week. Obviously, Malcolm ends up hiring her on the spot, and kicks Bester off the ship roster.
There’s another scene in the pilot episode where Kaylee humbly shrugs off praise to her talent by saying, “Machines just got workin’s and they talk to me.” The preacher known as Shepherd Book observes, “That’s a rare gift.”
Later, Tom thanked me as he was preparing to pull away in a vehicle with Josh L. (a different Josh and also the pastor), making a big deal about how awesome it was for me to fix the table, to which I replied tongue-in-cheek, “The table just spoke to me and I listened,” subconsciously referencing Kaylee, as I later realized. Amazingly, Josh L. (also a preacher!) answered equally dry, saying “Maybe that’s your spiritual gift.”
Talk about life imitating art.
Kaylee would be proud.