Arthur C. Clarke is one of my favorite science fiction authors. I devoured the science fiction grandmaster’s books as a kid and I couldn’t tell you how many times I watched 2010: The Year We Make Contact in high school (and listened to the soundtrack while studying in college). Of course, I watched 2001: A Space Odyssey as well, but it was 2010 – and the books that followed it — that I loved.
For Day 2 of Ornament-a-Day, I’m going with Hallmark’s HAL 9000 ornament, which was released in 2018 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick’s landmark movie. It’s a battery-powered ornament whose red “eye” lights up when you press the play button. It also receipts HAL’s classic lines from the movie including “I’m sorry Dave, I can’t do that” and the “Daisy, Daisy” song as Dave Bowman is slowly disabling his memory chips.
It’s a great ornament for the Geek Tree. In addition to representing the 2001 and 2010 movies, it represents an entire childhood of reading science fiction classics like Rendezvous with Rama, Childhood’s End, and The Songs of Distant Earth. Aesthetically, it’s also a good fit for the tree. Although it’s not constantly powered, HAL-9000’s camera eye reflects the nearby lights of the tree, and the ornament’s silver edges pop against HAL’s matte black surface.