Elliot Templeton is kind of a real person. I say “kind of” because he’s actually a Star Wars action figure I found deep in the bowels of my mom’s piano one day in 2005 whilst getting it tuned—a lost relic from my childhood who I’m sure slipped past the piano chords while fleeing Darth Vader through the swamps of Dagobah.
I was 22 at the time, but woke enough to realize that adults can still play with toys. Elliot traveled the world with me, mostly in the U.S. and China. We even reached the Great Wall in time to watch the sun descend upon the invading Mongolian hoards.
Until my wife and I had our first child in 2012, Elliot went everywhere with me. He was my selfie stand-in, since I have never been into taking selfies. He was my ghostwriter (or perhaps was I his?), writing my travelogues, short stories, and essays. He was my one of my top six friends. Since 2012, however, he’s been locked away in a box in China.
That’s gotta change.
Distractions have kept me and my pal separate for too long, and COVID-19 has made our physical separation seemingly permanent. I don’t know when I’ll ever hold my buddy in hand again, but until that day, I’ll be summoning his creative genius from across the waves and through all that mildew to share with the world his take on hobbies, life, and whatever else suits his fancy.
So come along for the ride. Just be forewarned: like Luke’s initial entry into the Dagobah System, things might get bumpy.