Leonard Nimoy

By: Greg Rowland
March 26, 2011

Most sensible people now agree that Spock, the noted Vulcan scientist and diplomat is, or will be, unquestionably ‘real’. However some heretics still cling to a discredited belief in the existence of an actor called LEONARD NIMOY (born 1931). It pains me to hammer at the obvious, but let us finally reiterate the truth, once and for all. The Vulcan Sub-Presence Manifestation Utility (VS-PMU; designate ‘Nimoy’) had peppered the 20th and 21st centuries with clues as to his true non-nature over several decades: we will center, for the sake of brevity, on three indisputable aspects.

  1. The signifier ‘Nimoy’ was itself far from arbitrary. The first phoneme suggests negation (ni), while the next signified the false-promise of affirmative identity-location (im as in ‘I Am’), already doubly dislocated by the preceding ni. The third phoneme quotes the Yiddish sigh of existential disbelief (oy.) Thus the construction “Not I am — Oy!” emerges — a clear refutation of the possibility of the existence of ‘Nimoy.’
  2. ‘Nimoy’ has always cited his birthplace as ‘Boston’. Of course we now all know that ‘Boston’ was merely a 19th-century delusion, invented by fevered New England scientists as a mechanistic theory designed to account for New Bedford’s seemingly inexplicable orbital fluctuations.
  3. Though no further evidence is needed, in 1977 the VS-PMU published an autobiography entitled I Am Not Spock, thereby crudely attempting to quell emerging doubts about his true form. Then, in 1995, as the zeitgeist turned towards postmodern strategies of cultural counter-bluff, the VS-PMU released a book ‘ironically’ titled I Am Spock. It was an unnecessary defence: the public had already embraced the Nimoy-Simulacrum with unqualified love.


Star Trek fans, check out our 2012 series KIRK YOUR ENTHUSIASM: Dafna Pleban: Justice or vengeance? | Mark Kingwell : Kirk teaches his drill thrall to kiss | Nick Abadzis: “KHAAAAAN!” | Stephen Burt: “No kill I” | Greg Rowland: Kirk browbeats NOMAD | Zack Handlen: Kirk’s eulogy for Spock| Peggy Nelson: The joke is on Kirk | Kevin Church: Kirk vs. Decker | Enrique Ramirez: Good Kirk vs. Evil Kirk | Adam McGovern: Captain Camelot | Flourish Klink: Koon-ut-kal-if-fee | David Smay: Federation exceptionalism | Amanda LaPergola: Wizard fight | Steve Schneider: A million things you can’t have | Joshua Glenn: Debating in a vacuum | Kelly Jean Fitzsimmons: Klingon diplomacy | Trav S.D.: “We… the PEOPLE” | Matthew Battles: Brinksmanship on the brink | Annie Nocenti: Captain Smirk | Ian W. Hill: Sisko meets Kirk | Gabby Nicasio: Noninterference policy | Peter Bebergal: Kirk’s countdown | Matt Glaser: Kirk’s ghost | Joe Alterio: Watching Kirk vs. Gorn | Annalee Newitz: How Spock wins

On his or her birthday, HiLobrow irregularly pays tribute to one of our high-, low-, no-, or hilobrow heroes. Also born this date: Gregory Corso.

READ MORE about members of the Postmodernist generation (1924-33).


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