He has 7.3 million Facebook fans. As the actor who played Hikaru Sulu, he boldly headlines at Star Trek conventions, electrifying countless fans every time. He holds nearly universal acclaim among Howard Stern listeners, of all people. And this week, for the first time, George Takei set sail on the Cunard ship Queen Mary 2, where he’ll travel from New York to Southampton as the one and only headliner of his own, 100-percent Takei themed, cruise.
Takei has done cruises before. But he’s never hosted what’s essentially an 8-day, trans-Atlantic party with himself as the main draw. The highlight: What might be the world’s first mid-ocean premiere of a movie: To Be Takei, an all-access documentary about his life.
Here the 77-year-old Takei offers five reasons why you’ll never take a better journey, in this solar system, or any other. Just in case he ever does it again. And something tells us he will.
You can genuinely claim that you lived with George Takei. And you just might become his real-life BFF.
“There you are on a ship, so we are going to be actually living together, 24 hours a day, for 8 days. You’ll see me in the fitness center exercising. I huff and puff on the weight machines. People you meet on the cruise can become good friends. The real simpatico ones we’ve kept in touch with over the years.”
He really does use his signature catchphrase. And you’ll probably hear it a lot.
“I’ve been saying it all my life. When my nephew’s kids spill something on the kitchen table, you say ‘Oh my’. When you see something wonderful you say ‘Oh my,’ or when you a radiant sunrise, or when you see a space shuttle taking off: ‘Oh my.’ It can be used many many ways. I am sure you won’t be able to count the ‘Oh mys’ on the cruise.”
He be sparkly fresh and snappily dressed whenever you see him. Because …
“I take a nap nowadays. I’ve reached that point in life. I nap a half hour at most, sometimes 15 minutes. It really re-energizes you. There’s a formal dinner, so we packed our tuxedos, and we’re going to London, so I packed my Gieves and Hawkes London suit.”
He just might surprise you.
“I’ll be dining right there, with a table where I can have guests. I just might throw a party. I might break out into song and sing: ‘Oooooklahoma’.”
You can say “Warp 3, Mr. Sulu,” and he totally won’t mind.
I remember doing the London Marathon once. We started at Greenwich, and by the time we got to the Victoria Embankment, I was looking pretty ugly. My arms were flailing, and then out of the crowd, I heard a female voice shout out, ‘Warp 3, Mr. Sulu!’ And I got my second wind. I started gliding gracefully, and as soon as she got out of voice range I went back to my flailing and contorting. I was walking down 7th Avenue the other day here in New York, and there was a guy in an SUV, and he yelled out, ‘Boldly go where ya haven’t been before!’ That comes with the territory, and I embrace it fully.