AER: 2017 Klingon Language Institute qep’a’!

Qapla’, mighty warriors!

Another year, another qep’a’ in the paqmey (books)! Members of the IKV batlh qa’, the KPV Hov nIHwI’, and IKS pongHa’lu’ joined forces to expand their knowledge of tlhIngan Hol!

For those unfamiliar, the Klingon Language Institute holds an annual gathering called the qep’a’ (important/big/significant meeting) where speakers from around the world gather to hone and prove their language skills!

This year, I (Lt. Commander jenbom) took the Klingon Language Certification Program Level 1 test and passed, earning my first pin and the honor of being a true taghwI’ (beginner). Over the last year, I used the online course on the KLI website to prepare along with a copy of The Klingon Dictionary and a couple of different flashcard programs to complete this task. It was rough going near the end but I came out victorious!

Along with tests, qep’a’ is three days of games, learning, stories, late nights, and lots of food. Camaraderie around meals is almost as important as the language! In fact, once upon a time, a new word was created around a midnight trip to Denny’s… ghem which is the inverse of megh (lunch) and means “midnight snack”. I actually ventured out for my first ghem this year… pretty sure the last time I made a midnight trip to Denny’s I was in college.

Once again, I was a slacker who didn’t make it out for morning betleH warmups but janSIY had a dedicated crew out on the lawn each morning! Hopefully, some video will start to surface in the coming weeks of some of the fun we had! In the meantime, there’s pictures below!

This year, we had a track of “late night” activities that started after everyone returned from dinner. On Thursday night, the creator of the Klingon language, Marc Okrand, provided us with a special screening of the movie Conlanging, which he was associate producer on. On Friday night, we had a rockin’ performance from The Klingon Pop Warrior and Saturday night was filled with the annual “Klingon Cabaret” where everyone from beginners to experts jump up & give a little demonstration of something they learned or created. While the extra stuff cut into some of the free time people have come to love in the evenings, it was a neat change of pace and was a great way to keep everyone from beginners to experts involved.

The one thing I stress every year in these AER’s I’ve written… and this is the 3rd one I’ve written about qep’a’….qep’a’ is welcoming no matter your level with the language! Three years ago, I was pretty good at pronouncing the language but knew almost nothing else…. this year, I passed a test, have 500+ words in my vocabulary and enough grammar that now… jIQob (I am dangerous)! It just takes some dedicated effort and time and a willingness to expand your mind! You can walk in without ever having cracked open a copy of The Klingon Dictionary and, by the time you leave, you’ll know some Klingon and have made a lot of good friends in the process.

This year’s qep’a’ t-shirts had the perfect sentiment so I’m going to close out with it….
batlh yIvang ‘ej taHjaj wo’!!
Act with honor & may the The Empire continue!
Lt. Commander jenbom vestai-toQqul
Communications Officer – IKV batlh qa’


  1. Lieutenant Commander janSIy sutai-Qa'wan

    As proof that the qep’a’ is welcoming and a great place for beginners, on the final day a young man from Germany was visiting Chicago and came across the qep’a’ attendees eating breakfast.  He said he had The Klingon Dictionary at home and had looked through it, but had not seriously tried to learn to speak it.  He purchased a one day membership and by the end of the day we had him actually speaking some Klingon, signed in to all the online groups, and excited to go home and study more. taHjaj wo’ indeed!

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