The Big Goodbye

The time has come.
I’ve been putting it off over the weekend, attending my best friend’s wedding, going geocaching with my step-son.
But it is time. Money has changed hands, and I have an obligation to fulfill.
I pick him up from my desk, and avoid eye contact as I carry him into the dining room.
I gingerly put him down on my dining room table, and he looks like a patient about to undergo some sort of surgery. Strangely, I feel more like Doctor Giggles than Doctor Green.
He looks up at me and says, “Hey, Wheaton. What do you say you let me out of this box, and take me for a spin in your landspeeder?”
“Can’t do it, Wesley. First, you’re the wrong scale, and second, you don’t belong to me anymore.”
He doesn’t reply. He knows that I’m right.
I uncap a gold paint pen, and get ready. The familiar burn of acetone and paint hits me in the face, and a series of convention memories blurs through my mind, in hyper-real Hunter S. Thompson-o-vision: I sign a plate, a photo, a poster, field a question that I don’t know the answer to, politely decline the offer of a hug from a large woman in a “Spock Lives!” T-shirt. The memories race past, and I watch them with a certain amount of detachment, a spectator to my own life.
Although the places and people changed, there was little difference from one hotel convention hall to the next: The same questions, the same jokes, the same inescapable smell…the memories engulf me with a frightening and surprising lucidity. I think that I’ve allowed these events to drift into the distance of memory, but they come back, immediate and insisent, as if no time has passed.
He looks at me, daring me to give voice to these thoughts.
I realize that we are very interwoven, whether we like it or not, and as I open my mouth to speak, something I’d never thought of before comes into my mind: I can exist without him, but he could not, would not, does not exist without me.
Suddenly, I feel free.
I lift the pen up, and touch it to the plastic, and write what I’ve been asked to write:
“Vincent –
“I am sick of
following rules and regulations!
-Wil Wheaton”
It’s done.
I sit back, and regard him. He’s obscured by my writing, which casts a lattice-work of shadows across his face and body. The symbolism of this moment is not lost on me.
“You know, that was a cool line,” he says. “Remember how cool it was to stand up to Picard?”
“Yeah. It was fun being you back then,” I tell him. “I watched Code of Honor last night though. Jesus, you were a dork, man.”
“That wasn’t me, dude. That was Wesley Crusher, the doctor’s son. I’m Cadet Crusher, the bad ass. Wesley was a dork. Cadet Crusher was cool. Need I remind you who waxed Robin Lefler’s ass?”
“Why do you have to talk that way? People have a certain image of you, you know.”
“Hey, they can kiss my shiny plastic ass. I have never been responsible for the things I say. I can only say what someone tells me to say. As a matter of fact, I’m not even talking now. You’re putting all these words in my mouth.”
“So my Tyler Durden is a 5 inch action figure? That’s just perfect. At least you can’t force me into some sort of Project Mayhem.”
“Oh, I can’t?”
I can’t tell through the gold paint pen, but I think he’s sizing me up.
“You’re such a pussy, Wheaton. We were cool when we wore this spacesuit, and you know it. Fucking own that, boyo. If anyone has a problem with that, they can fuck all the way off. ”
I’m a bit shocked to hear this come out of us.
“Uh, Wesley, you really can’t talk like that.”
“I just told you, it’s not me. It’s you, cock-knocker. Now put me in the box, and find some other cool thing to auction. I think I saw a plate in the closet.”
“Why didn’t we ever talk like this before? I never realized that you were cool. Really. I mean, I hated you, man.”
“Yeah, you and every other insecure teenage boy. Listen, and listen good, because I’m not saying this again.
“You have always cared too fucking much what other people thought of us. Go read your stupid website, and listen to your own advice. You’ll be much happier. Now put me in the box and let’s get this over with.”
I look at him, and a touch of sadness passes over me.
“Wesley, I have always been, and I always will be –”
“Oh Jesus H. Christ! I can’t believe you were going to quote Star Trek. I am so embarrassed for you right now. Just close the fucking box and send me on my way.”
I do it. I put him in the box, drop in some packing stuff and a few stickers.
We drive to the post office in silence.
I walk to the mailbox, and open it.
I think to say goodbye, but I know that Wesley won’t be talking to me anymore.
I place the box on the edge, and lift it up. The box falls into darkness.
I am Wil’s freedom.

225 thoughts on “The Big Goodbye”

  1. *lmfao*
    “Need I remind you who waxed Robin Lefler’s ass”
    i literally fell off my damn chair when i read that line! i’m so glad i found this site! hmmm, anyone know where i would be able to obtain such action figures besides eBay?
    this was truly brilliant!

  2. Placing Wesley into the box and dropping him toward oblivian was for the best, now if Cadet Crusher can just transport other memorabilia from his sanctuary to ebay headquarters, we would be happy!

  3. It’s obviously a very strange time in Wil’s life.
    I look in this commentary section, and I see a lot of courage.

  4. Holy Shit that was fucking funny Wil.
    Well funny and touching. I just want you to know that your view of life is so much more entertaining than anything on TV. I think we need to see the “Wil Wheaton Show”. I’d watch it. If Ozzy gets his own show I think you should get your own show as well. ;-)Teh Heh….
    Anyway I think the book would be great. Spudnuts picture would make a great cover for it.
    I liked his idea for having him doing stuff in different places. You could put one at the start of each new chapter.
    I’d buy copies of that book for everyone I know. “Merry Christmas, check out Wil Wheaton.”
    Hope everything is going well for you otherwise. Have a great day!!!

  5. *tear*
    “Strangers with this kind of honesty make me go a big rubbery one…and then something happened. I let go. Lost in oblivion; dark and silent and complete. I found freedom… Losing all hope was freedom.”
    Fucking OWN that,boyo.

  6. Damn Wheaton…
    That’s some good writing…
    Not just the “found my funny” type funny…this is “witty, need to understand the sub-referances” type funny and that, when done well, is infinitely more funny than standard humor.
    The downside is that fewer will understand it but for those who do it’s well worth it :)
    I compare it to “Dennis Miller funny”. (before he joined Monday night football though I admit he had a few good lines for those who understood him)

  7. Funny, I just watched Code of Honor myself last night. I remember thinking, “You know, they really DID write shitty stuff for Wheaton, but he did a good job with it.”
    It also occured to me that the only reason so many folks hated Wesley was because they were jealous of him. They wanted to be there, but you got to be. You were the cool one, and like the disgruntled folks who hate the captain of the basket ball team just because he’s the captain of the basketball team, their wrath was leveled on you.
    You did good work. You do good work. Rock on and prosper! :D

  8. Wow! All I can say is, “Give that man a big Hell Yeah!!” Good on you Wheaton. Good on you mi mano. You keep getting better and better.

  9. Just here to say that Spudnuts gave me the first real laugh of the day. U R 3l33+, Spudddyboy!

  10. Dude, Wesley has ALWAYS been like that for me. He gets corrupted in Starfleet Academy and goes hitting the bars in downtown sanfransisco EVERY WEEK. He nearly gets bashed up by big scary klingon guys, but his GIRLFRIEND (kinda girlfriend – it’s complicated) has to save his ass cause he is a bad bad BAD fighter. Not his fault. Blame his upbringing. Stupid Picard and his pacifistic nature. It’s all good though. Weee.

  11. Hey wil, you probably wont read this but a very cool post, I have been lurking for a few months now, ever since Entertainment Weekly posted your website, and this is the best post yet… you should be nominated for some award or something…
    *stands up and claps for the performance of the mentally troubled Wil Wheaton*
    Kirthew

  12. Okay, so I meant to go check my email…But I’m addicted to WWDN. (It’s really bad, I have to read the comments now too.) Love the post & thanks for mentioning the landspeeder. And Spudnuts, you definitely know where your funny is…

  13. Hey Hey It’s my birthday…yay yay. Sorry not drunk yet. This is one of the greatest posts I have read from you Wil and I will consider it my birthday present :) I loveeeee fight club and the references made my day. Also cock-knocker is from Stand By Me of course. I can still hear that annoying voice saying, “Cack-knacker” (it’s not spose to be profane, merely accetuating the accent). So in a way you paid homage to both your past successes. Anyways I am off to eat crab and party it up with 30 of my closest friends at the pub!
    I am Fallulah’s Alcoholism.

  14. Sigh
    And to think my Spudnuts crush was over
    Damn you little man
    and Wil as well…
    That Robin line is gonna stick in my head forever
    Hey Rob- Is there any way we can cordinate with Wil to have audio readings of these posts?
    The voices in my head are good- but not as good as your productions.
    luv and ninja burgers,
    -MKF

  15. Hey Wil…
    You know, you really do have a wonderful knack for writing. You also have a wonderful knack for introspection. Wesley as the Wil alter-ego… makes you think.

  16. Hey…”other Sally”…change your name up a little, you confused the heck out of me, thinking I had posted again.

  17. Wil Wheaton is my fucking HERO.
    In the heavenly pantheon, there exists the mighty Spudnuts, with the acolyte Matsushita at his right hand.
    WWDN – The Legendary Journeys and Fucked Up ToySpeak

  18. I wish I could write about talking to a lump of plastic and make it so deep and meaningful, as well as funny. Thank you.

  19. This strangely sounds like “Magic” with Anthony Hopkins..”Heyyyyyyyyy smuckles..”
    LOL Excising Wil..

  20. Wheaton? Have you been this good at writing on your own website for very long? Ever since I’ve begun reading you semi-daily doses of introspection I have come to respect you in a way I’d never thought possible.
    Now, in the evenings, while watching TNN my other family members give me strange looks. I didn’t realize it, but I’ve been mumbling things like that whole AOL-speak phrase, “Wheaton, you RAWK!” and brain-candy, “Remember who waxed Robin Lefler’s ass!”. To utter these things aloud… to look at Wesley in a whole new Blue-GE bulb-type light… well, I just hope that I don’t lose any friends over it, or they don’t raise my rent while I’m staying at the “Big Brother” house.
    Now, cough it up! What kind of cache booty did you bring home from E3!
    ———-
    Lori aka: RedwoodRed
    KF6VFI
    “I don’t get lost, I investigate alternative destinations.”
    GeoGadgets Team Website: http://www.geogadgets.com
    Comics, Video Games and Movie Fansite: http://www.beautywithattitude.com

  21. Oh, my God. That was just… well, I’m glad to know that I’m NOT crazy. Maybe my Optimus Prime really DOES talk to me. Though given what Wesley was saying… I probably should have bid on him. Granted, it wouldn’t have been as fun as playing with a flesh and blood Wesley… but I gotta say the attitude will be missed.
    Okay. I’ve been meaning to ask this Will, and I’d love to hear back from you on this: What is the latest on buying an upgrade for the pc, so that we can have our Burrito back? I probably speak for all here when I say… YOUR VOICE IS SORELY MISSED!
    If it’s a money issue, I think I know how you can raise it up… though you may have a cramp in your wrist when it’s done. Have a dutch auction, and sell off about a thousand or so 3×5 cards with individually autographed notes? At about 10 bucks a card, and if you sold about a thousand cards, you could make an even thou, right there. Money well spent, if it gets you back on the air.
    -David.

  22. I have only recently found and read your site and I know that I have to come back. It is funny and strange all at the same time. Thank you, and take care.

  23. Great read, Wil! I’m happy you have found some truths. You were/are part of a wonderful story and a beautiful universe. Nothing can take that away and you should be proud. I read somewhere that Gene considered Wesley an incarnation of himself as a teenager. What a wonderful compliment to have played him. Take care.

  24. MissKittyFantastico said: “Hey Rob- Is there any way we can cordinate with Wil to have audio readings of these posts?
    The voices in my head are good- but not as good as your productions.”
    I actually considered this today, believe it or not.
    KJB said: “In the heavenly pantheon, there exists the mighty Spudnuts, with the acolyte Matsushita at his right hand.”
    I told will and Cherish last week that I’m still not altogether sure that Spudnuts isn’t MY Tyler Durden.
    I mean, you never see him and me together.
    Hmm…

  25. spudnutz = my hero
    I’m still waiting for the Wesley bobbly weener to come out in stores. (It smells like ensign Robin Lefler) scratch n sniff.
    yo

  26. *Grins* These articles have been great Wil. And it’s great to see you working through stuff, you’re an inspiration to us all. Especially now ‘Acting Ensign Role Model Crusher’ is off our screens.
    And that Lefler site is weird.

  27. Spudnuts, that was hysterical! I love the little suitcase, nice touch.
    Am I the only one that thinks Wil looks really pained in the photo on the box? Kind of like someone was stepping on his foot…

  28. I -love- this entry. Just for the record (and I’m sure I’m getting way too boring-ly honest here), but I originally came to this website as a funny-ha-ha “check out the geek I had a crush on when I was a Star Trek watching geek at the age of 12 or so” kind of gag. I stayed because the real Wil Wheaton is smart, funny, insightful, terribly cool, and about a million other things. I’ll keep coming back — your last few posts have really been speaking to me. Thanks for showing the rest of us a little bit about how to own our own past.

  29. Dude.
    Sweet!
    And, of course, as always, Spudnuts still manages to upstage you.
    Heh. Rock on, my brotha! :-)

  30. PLEASE write some kind of book soon. Or get a sitcom or something! I couldn’t imagine keeping the energy of that going as long as you did. True talent flowing from the mind of a true artistic intellectual.

  31. Another series of beautiful, funny and deep entries. Please write a book. Then we can all be Wil’s Book Club instead of Posse (OK, never mind I guess that just doesn’t sound as cool : )
    Oh yah and Rob, here’s another vote for more of your recreations whether Spudnuts inspired or otherwise.
    And Spudnuts you are beyond words, keep it up. You help give the rest of us a left turn in reality once in awhile.

  32. I think it was Isaac Asimov that stressed WRITING, constantly if you want to get better (I’m sure he wasn’t the only one–he’s just the one I paid attention to). Dude, you are getting better and better all the time. I thoroughly enjoyed reading that, more than all that came before it. WRITE ON BROTHER!

  33. An excellent conclusion to a wonderful story. And nothing spices up a story like a dash of truth….hmmmm….wesley should’ve been a black gang member, that woulda been cool. And what qoute where you going to do?

  34. I want to be Spudnuts when I grow up. Really. Spudnuts, you rock. You deserve your OWN fan site.
    I knew the whole plastic Wesley thing was therapy from Wil’s first PlasticWesley post and look at him now. Crusher is THE MAN, but he’d better remember (where ever he is) that Wheaton is his god. Wheaton better remember that too.
    Poor Wesley. Trying to dump Wil after Wil’s dumped him. I wonder if Crusher really cried (behind Wil’s back) when he left to go to his new home.
    We’ve all got our Tyler Durdens in the closet and our toys in boxes. If only you knew what mine where…
    Everybody’s nuts.
    Great writing, Wil. You never cease to impress me.

  35. you can leave the past (plastic wesley) behind…but sooner or later it will come back to you…and when it does…i hope it’s a good thing…’cause it’s (even the nerdiness)a part of who you are…d.burr

  36. Well, I really appreciate all the comments, you guys.
    This has indeed been a weird few days.
    Wesley is gone…but there’s this plate that’s been winking at me whenever I pass him ^H^H^H it by…

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