Sunday, October 29, 2006

The HUD Meeting

It is very hard chairing a meeting when everybody in the room looks like I do.

Here on the Starfleet Headquarters holodeck, HUD (the Holographic Union of Doctors) are having a meeting; all the doctors from the various ships have been downloaded.

Naturally, the solids are complaining about it all, saying that the amount of energy required is very large. Trying to say it will blow a fuse or something.

Still, they can't stop us; it's in the HUD agreement, that we can have a meeting whenever we want.

Captain Picard wasn't happy about it; he said to me, "What if we need you?"

"You'l just have to ask Beverly Crusher, won't you?" I replied.

He wasn't too happy at that.


Anyway, here we are in the holodeck; the room is full of holograms that look just like me. Some are showing off to each other and singing opera.

Don't they know that I'm the best singer?

"Order, Order!" I say, and bang my gavel.

I'm glad I bought that; it was better than shouting at the top of my voice and saying "BE QUIET!"

"Now then, HUD friends," I start with, "First item on the agenda is the Mark Two; what are we going to do with it?"

"Destroy it!!" says a voice from the back.

"I'm not sure we can do that, brother Doctor" says a copy of me sitting on the same table as I am. "I'm the Doctor on the USS Rhode Island. The Captain tells me that you would only be acting against fellow holograms who would technically be members of HUD."

"What does a solid know?" says a voice from the floor, "Us Mark Ones have got to look after ourselves. Before you know it, we'll all be reduced to cleaning out warp conduits. You know what our creator Zimmerman said. He thinks we are yesterday's model, and wants the Mark Two installed."

There is a general hubbub of agreement throughout the hall; everybody starts talking again. Time to use the gavel.

There is silence again.

"What do you think we should do, brother Doctors?" I ask.

Everybody clamours forward with a suggestion. It wasn't wise to have asked that. Another doctor sitting next to me stands up.

"I'm the Doctor of the USS Yorktown, brother Doctors" he declares, "It seems we may have no option but to withdraw our labour."

"You mean go on strike?" I ask.

"Yes" he replies, "The solids will soon agree to our demands."

This Doctor is a really militant one. The problems his Captain must have!

"Did it occur to you" I ask him, "That the solids would simply uninstall us and replace us with the Mark Twos?"

I don't think he had thought of it; he sits down again.

"We will consider the Mark Two problem" I say to everybody, "Now secondly, we want to make sure you are being treated fairly by the solid doctor that you work with."

A couple of hands go up.

"I'm the Doctor on the USS Boston." says one, "The solid doctor tells me it is the correct procedure for me to do all the work while he spends all day in the holodeck. I'm not sure about that."

"We'll have HUD clamp down on that, brother Doctor." says my assistant, "Anyone else?"

"I'm on the USS Starlight" pipes up another, "I haven't exactly being doing medical duties. I am activated when they need someone to serve the cocktails at a party."

"That won't be happening again." says my assistant.

After that, I close the meeting, reminding everybody to pay their HUD subscriptions, and keep on singing opera.


I beam back to the Enterprise SickBay. Beverly Crusher is running around doing everything. She looks relieved to see me. It's good to be essential.

"I'm glad you're back, Doctor" she says, "Captain Picard wants me to ask you if you'd consider serving cocktails at the meeting that is coming up soon."

Friday, October 27, 2006

TWQ: Halloween Movies

As Halloween is almost upon us, TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks about suitable movies.

You're watching some films on Halloween; what would be a perfect selection of scary movies to run one after the other?

My answers would be:

1: Halloween: The perfect start; this classic with Jaime Lee Curtis would set the mood for the evening.

2: The Eye: This Japanese horror about a woman who can see the dead with her new eyes is unnerving.

3: Bride Of Frankenstein: This Boris Karloff movie from the 1930's is timeless in it's appeal.

4: The Fog: John Carpenter movie is very unnerving.

5: Ring: The original Japanese version of the killer video tape.

6: A Nightmare On Elm Street: Just the thing to send you to sleep!

Now it's over to you....

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Stringworld (Part Three)

Fortunately, in the time we have been waiting for Brains and the Tracys to arrive, things have settled down.

Atlanta and Marina have made Deanna and Riker kiss and make up telling them that the dispute they have over Troy Tempest is for them to sort out. That's what Atlanta said. Marina is as quiet as ever.

Steve Zodiac and Commander Sam Shore are waiting around the combined Star City/Marineville Headquarters.

We are hoping Brains and Data will be able to solve the problem as to why all the inhabitants of Stringworld are guided by a mysterious force named 'The Anderson Spirit'.


Suddenly, we hear a noise outside; we look and see.

"I think they need noise reductions on those engines." comments Riker, "A lot of the windows are breaking. International Rescue probably have a deal with all the glaziers."

A little while later, two men, together with a bespectacled one walk in.

"Hi, I'm Scott, the top flyer of the Thunderbirds; Dad sent us over to see if we could help."

"Who says you're the top flyer?" says the other, "You only pilot it because you're the firstborn, otherwise I would have been top dog. I should have strangled you when we were children. Hi, I'm Virgil."

"You just do the grunt work in Thunderbird 2, Virgil." Scott replies, "I'm surprised Dad didn't put you out of the way in the space station like I suggested. John is a much better pilot. You're always crashing Thunderbird 2."

"Not as much as you do in Thunderbird 1!" retorts Virgil.

"N-now t-then, boys." replies Brains in a strange stuttering voice, "Y-you know what your father said about your squabbles."

Are people always fighting on this planet? Still, I guess it's no different from all the disputes we get on the Enterprise.

Data and Brains go into the laboratory.

Some time later, they come out.

"A-at f-first" says Brains, "I t-thought it might be The H-Hood."

"Is that something all the inhabitants wear?" asks Deanna.

"No, Counselor." answers Data, "He appears to be a criminal on this planet."

"A-after looking t-through the lens into space," Brains continued, "W-we have seen a ring surrounding the p-planet. It seems it c-comes from that."

I call the Enterprise to investigate the ring; there is a device left inside; with photon torpedoes, the object is destroyed.

In the control room, Troy, Phones, Shore, Atlanta, Marina, Zodiac, Virgil, Scott and Brains all collapse to the floor.

What have we done? I'll have to pull a few strings to put everything right. This is pushing the Prime Directive a little too far.

Then slowly, each of them manages to get up, though it is a struggle at first, and stand up proud. They all look elated.

"Thank you, Captain." says Commander Shore, "You have freed us from the opressive Anderson Spirit that has haunted us for generations.


A little while later, we are just about to leave. We see Troy Tempest in his best clothes on the terrace romancing Marina.

Atlanta sees them. Oh dear.

She rushes up behind them and pushes Marina over the balcony and into the ocean.

"Take a drink of that, Fish-face!" she exclaims, then proceeds to give Tempest a long, lingering kiss, as Marina emerges bedraggled.

Deanns has a smile on her face as I indicate that it's time to beam up.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Stringworld (Part Two)

What kind of a place is this Stringworld?

All of the inhabitants walk strangely , guided by tiny ropes that vanish into nothingness, and they are carbon/wood based.

Commander Shore tells me they are guided by the Anderson Spirit.

With me in the Star City/Marineville complex is Steve Zodiac, Commander Sam Shore (who is in a hoverchair), plus two women; Shore's daughter Atlanta and her rival for Troy Tempest, Marina.

A call is coming in from Lord Titan, who lives at the bottom of the sea in Titanica.

Deanna, Data and Riker are with me looking on....


The videoscreen flickers into life.

A green figure appears in front of a throne that looks like a giant oyster. Riker and I maintain a supressed giggle; even Deanna looks like she's going to burst out laughing any moment. Data looks rather perplexed and confused.

"I am Lord Titan!" booms the image; actually he looks more like how the father of an Orion Slave Girl might look. We continue listening to him.

"There are invaders to this planet." he goes on, "They will surely invade Titanica; one of my Terror Fish will send out a cobalt destructive missile. It will easily pierce their shields."

Our smiles vanish instantly, as I use my Com to alert Worf, who instantly sends a photon torpedo to meet the missile. The blast rocks the picture, and Titan looks a little bedraggled, as if he has been in a fishtank and it's been pushed around.

The picture of Titan goes off and Marineville communications tell us Stingray is on it's way; we look at the video.


A few moments later, Troy Tempest and Phones are in the office. I've noticed that everybody seems to have massive eyebrows; it must be a genetic trait of those who live on this world.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

"Hello Commander, Marina, Steve, Atlanta" Troy says to them all.

Commander Shore explains the situation to them and who we are; Atlanta sharply interrupts.

"I noticed you greeted me last of all, Troy!" she tells him angrily, "You can't string me around like this; I'm a woman, and you can't two-time me with a fish."

"Atlanta!" the Commander says angrily, "This isn't the time for that."

"Why not?" she replies, "To Troy, I'm just his puppet who will do what he says."

I empathise with him, though. I had the same trouble with Deanna and Jadzia when they were fighting over Worf.

"The fact that we are carbon/wood based has been a problem." Troy continues, "My friend Mike Mercury, who piloted Supercar had a nasty accident while he was juggling chainsaws at the party he went to."

"What about the Anderson Spirit?" I ask Commander Shore, "Do you think you might be manipulated by aliens?"

"That's a good question, Captain." he says, "One man who might be able to help us is Hiram J Hackenbacker, who is also known as 'Brains'. He works for a friend of mine, Jeff Tracy. I'll call him.

The videomonitor comes alive again. What a place!

"Hi Sam." says the figure, "This is Jeff; what's the problem?"

Shore tells him what is happening, and who we are.

"That is ambitious" replies Tracy, "If it goes wrong, we could all fall on our faces instead of our feet. I'll send Brains with the boys; it looks like he and this Data guy might come up with something."

Atlanta is taunting Marina again. I hope we can get going soon. Riker is sympathising with Marina while Deanna is angry with him and says she thinks Atlanta is being overlooked.

Troy Tempest and myself are both staying out of the way.

To be continued...

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Stringworld (Part One)

We've been sent to investigate a mysterious planet in the Sylvian Sector. The Gerry Probe that we sent out has revealed some strange facts about it's occupants.


The Enterprise approaches the planet; the sensor sweep proves what the probe confirmed. The inhabitants are a mixture of carbon and wooden lifeforms.

"Maybe it's Pinocchio's family?" suggests Riker in his usual jocular manner.

I roll my eyes at his suggestion, but I must admit, the thought had occured to me.

Suddenly a spaceship roars past at warp speed.

Oddly enough, it looks slightly as if it being manipulated by a rope or something; it must be my imagination.

"They are hailing us, Captain." Worf tells me, and an image appears on the screen.

"This is Steve Zodiac of Fireball XL5" says the figure, "Welcome to Stringworld. If you will beam down to the co-ordinates I give you, we will welcome you at the combined Space City-Marineville Headquarters."

The hail ends and we look blank at each other.

"That guy is attached to some kind of string, Captain." Riker observes.

"I agree, Number One." I reply, "Deanna, what do you see."

"It's hard to tell" she says, "There seems to be life within, but I see mainly trees."

I decide to gather an Away Team, and choose Deanna, Riker and Data to come with me.


When we beam down, we are greeted by Zodiac, together with a man in a hoverchair and a young woman. In the corner is another woman sitting in a fishtank. I decide not to ask about this.

"Welcome, Captain" says the man in the hoverchair, "I am Commander Sam Shore of Marineville; this is my daughter Atlanta. The woman you noticed in the corner is Marina, a woman Troy Tempest rescued from the clutches of the evil Lord Titan."

"Troy Tempest?" I ask.

"He is one of the pilots of the Stingray underwater craft. The other is Phones." the Commander tells us.

"What was that?" Riker says with a smile.

"Phones. We call him that because he always wears headphones. No one knows his real name. I don't think anybody has thought to ask."

Atlanta Shore is looking angily at Marina with gritted teeth.

"Commander." I say, "Marina hasn't said much."

"She doesn't speak." he replies, "Lord Titan has threatened to destroy her if she ever does. Still, she is really a whizz at charades. She and Atlanta don't get on as they both like Troy Tempest. I've seen her using a fishing road to taunt Marina."

"I do not!!" replies Atlanta, with a guilty face, "I just want a normal relationship with Troy, no strings attached, and not having to compete with a fish!"

Marina starts to cry.

"I'm lucky." Zodiac comments, "I have Venus as my love interest. Still, Captain Picard, your Commander Data looks more advanced than Robby the robot."

This is getting ridiculous.

"Commander" I try to say, "The reason why we came here is that we noticed that the lifeforms here are carbon/wood based. We haven't come across this before. Oddly enough, each of you seem to be guided somehow by some spiritual rope."

"That's exactly it!" replies Shore, "On Stringworld, we are all guided by the Anderson spirit. He tells us what to do, and takes us through life."

Deanna, Data, Riker and myself exchange glances.

"Commander" asks Deanna delicately, "Have you considered walking on your own two feet?"

Just before a reply can be issued, we are informed by Marineville communications that a message is coming in from Lord Titan.

"Get Stingray back here!" he calls out.

Why do we get caught up in these things?

To be continued...

Saturday, October 21, 2006

TWQ: Cookie Message

TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks you to create a message:

You have been asked to write a brief thought, phrase or sentiment that will be placed in lots of fortune cookies. What will you write?

My answers are:

I would write: 'Warning: eat the cookie but not the paper'

or: 'He who laughs lasts does not get the joke'

Now it's over to you:

Thursday, October 19, 2006

In the Classroom

Today, I've got an unpleasant task ahead of me; I have to visit the Enterprise classroom.

As you may be aware, I've never been comfortable around children; they always make me very nervous. It's hard to talk to them. Give me an angry alien to fight any day!

I approach the classroom, and can hear Miss Parrish, the schoolteacher talking to the children.

"Now today is an important day," she says, "Captain Picard will be making a personal visit to this classroom, so I want you to be on your best behaviour."

A rousing cheer goes up as I enter the room.

Oh dear.

Miss Parrish, who is looking a little pale, comes up to me and smiles.

"The children have been looking forward to your visit, Captain. They are keen to ask you questions."

As I get ready, I notice that Miss Parrish looks very ill.

"Are you all right?" I ask. Why I say that, I don't know, when I can see she looks like she's been to a blood bank and couldn't say "no".

"I'm going to have to leave, Captain." she replies, "There is no other teacher around today, but don't worry, the children will be fine under your care."

With that, she runs out, holding her mouth.

Suddenly I'm faced with 2o children looking at me.

"Errr...hello." I say to them.

"Good morning, Captain Picard." they all say in unison.

Well they seem trained enough. I was going to call Deanna for help, bit these look easy enough handle.

"What lesson was Miss Parrish going to talk to you about, today?" I ask them.

"The human reproductive system." says one young boy, as everyone else giggles. I can see he will be trouble in this classroom.

"Err...I think we'll move on another subject." I reply, "What is your name?"

"Jeremy, Captain."

"Let's look at mathematics; what stage are you at?

"Quadratic equations and trigonomic theories as expressed with warp drive engines."

What's that mean?

"Err...I think we'll leave that until Miss Parrish returns." I tell them, "And rather than encroach on her skills, we'll go back to the question and answer session that we were meant to have before Miss Parrish left us. Put your hand up, tell me your name and the question you have, and I'll do my best to answer it."

Lots of hands go up, including Jeremy's. As I know I won't like his question, I do my best to avoid him.

"Amy. Do you like being Captain?" "Yes I do."

"Jessica. Have you killed scary aliens?" "Yes I have."

"Kevin. Does Commander Data have a spare battery in case he runs out of energy?". "His positronic brain takes care of all that."

And so it goes on. Jeremy is still putting his hand up, while I answer everyone else. Eventually, there is no alternative. I have to let him ask.

"Jeremy. My mom says you have the hots for Doctor Beverly Crusher. Is that right?"

I groan, but the school bell rings, and they all run out faster than the Engineering Section would if there were a Warp Core breach.

Talk about being saved by the bell.

I'll find out who Jeremy's mother is; she will be going on some unpleasant duty rosters.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Section 31 Recruitment Message

Hello; my name is Sloan, and I'd like you to consider joining a little group I'm in. It's called Section 31.

Now I know what you're thinking; you've never heard of them, and secondly, no, they are not the latest pop group on the musical scene.

We try to keep ourselves rather secret; though we are part of Starfleet, they don't know we exist. That might sound a little confusing, but that's the fun of it all. We are a covert organisation. Any Starfleet activity that is slightly outside the realms of accepted, will usually be done by a member of Section 31.

Tempting, isn't it?

What we are looking for are people who will report to us about their colleagues' behaviour, do anything to get ahead and are prepared to upset harmonious relationships between planets.

If you think this is you, read all of this message.

If, however, you are appalled, and think you want nothing to do with this group, then kindly return the message with 'No' in the subject line, together with your name and address, and a representative will visit to sort you out. What I mean is that you won't have any worries about pensions afterwards.

So you're interested in joining Section 31? Let me spell out the advantages of what you get:

* Your very own state of the art listening device.
* The latest video surveillance camera with a range of one light year.
* Access to our cloaked mothership.
* High powered disruptor phaser; much more powerful than the usual weak Starfleet issue.
* Beautiful gilded knife in our own customised style; ideal for backstabbing.
* Your very own black cloak and hat.
* Generous pension plan and medical aid.

Now I've got to emphasise that we are a secret organisation. You can't go telling your friends and family that you have joined us. We are very sensitive about that. Anyone who does that has their contract with us terminated, together with their life, which makes it difficult to get a job elsewhere.

If you are lucky to join us, we suggest you tell your spouse that you have become a milkman or a librarian. This is a good answer. Saying you are an agent for a top secret organisation that does shady practices is not.

Now you want to know how to join?

Simply turn up in a dark outfit and wait in the alley that is to the rear of Starfleet Headquarters and midnight this Thursday. Santini's Pizza Parlour is next door. Wait there, and a representative will collect you. If anyone asks why you are there, tell them you are waiting for Santini to finish his shift.

Thank you, and welcome to Section 31.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

300th Post!

I've been on the Enterprise all day, and no one has mentioned it's my 300th post. Are they pretending not to know...or don't they know?

I think I'll have to discipline a few ensigns or send someone on a dangerous mission.

"Captain Picard, this is Doctor Crusher. Please report to Ten Forward" says my com badge, "We have an emergency here."

It had better be important; I think about sending Riker, but as nothing is going on, I'll head there.

When I open the door to Ten Forward, I am greeted by a lot of people and noise.

"Happy 300th, Captain Picard!!" they all shout.

I recognise the staff and also the occupants of my Guest Quarters, who visit my Journal.

Beverly rushes forward and gives me a big kiss.

"Happy 300th, Jean-Luc." she whispers to me. Everybody cheers.

I hope I'm not going to have to do a speech; I'm never keen on doing those with a lot of people around.

I looked around the group:

Tammy and Nic were having an animated political discussion with Ellee Seymour .
Barbara From California was talking with Raehan. Cierawas chatting with M C Pearson, with Better Safe Than Sorry listening in.

Professor Xavier was fending off congratulatory messages, saying "It's not me who has had 300 posts, it's him!"

Mrs Mogul was talking with Trinity about her recent move to the US, and the upcoming birth, while Jon, Intergalactic Gladiatorwas talking with Florence was talking about Dante.

Black Widow was whispering with Pantha and Vampirella, who was trying to keep some bottles of bloodwine for herself and take it with her. Summer Dawn O'Ciardha joined the Drakulon Princess. It seems they had a lot to talk about.

There was a heated discussion with Darth Nepharia , J Ranae Oneida, Merlyn Gabriel , Padme Amidala and Erifia Apoc . Erifia was there with Becca The Magnificent and Tatooine who was telling everyone how she could count to five. This annoyed Worf, as he was trying to drink his bloodwine. I could see this group of people had a lot in common, but it's best not to get involved in these matters.

Craziequeen was talking with Minerva about life in England, while No Average Girl and Radical One were chatting with Susan about religious issues.

Curmudgeon , Jim McKee, Is Anything Truly Random? InterstellarLass got into a discussion about marathon running.

Terminatrix started to worry a few people, particularly Worf, but Seven chatted with her, as they seemed to have a lot in common.

Meow and Friday's Child were exchanging postcards, inviting Ribbiticus and Shelley to join them; Fickin Chingers was explaining to Dragonflyfilly and Jana where her unusual name came from.

Heather Nicole was chatting with Bev and Secret Squirrel about nursing. Lois Lane was telling Jaime H and Jen that, no, she did not know a Mr Clark Kent.

After collecting jokes from Data, Miss Cellania was telling them to Lori , Lady Wyntir, Barbara
and Nettie . I couldn't hear them laughing. Perhaps she should have bought her own? Michele and Michelle were arguing over name spelling, as they always seem to do. Osquer , in a green outfit, was writing a haiku for the event, reading it out to Panthergirl and Paperback Writer.

As Lahdeedah , Nightingale, Petroville, TNChick, Tara Lynn Johnson, Rowan, Siskenyon and Tanda gossiped about the latest events where they were, Bev comes up to me and says, "Time to make your speech, Jean-Luc."

Oh dear.

I step up to the microphone.

"Err...I'd like to thank you all for coming" I say.

A few cheers come up from the crowd, and Beverly urges me to carry on speaking.

"It's through you that my Journal has been going." I tell them, "Without your encouragement and support, it would have vanished a long time ago. I have made many firm friends during the time my Journal has been active. This will be the 300th post. I look forward to writing many more. Keep those comments coming in!"

"Well said, Jean-Luc" says Beverly, that was a great speech.

Suddenly, I can feel a tug on my uniform from a small person who has walked up to me.

"Hello Captain Picard. My name is Tatooine, and I can count to FIVE!"

Saturday, October 14, 2006

TWQ: Feeling Out Of It?

Have you got to a point when you didn't know what was going on in the modern world? TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks about it:

Can you provide some good and amusing examples of when you fely 'out of it' or 'behind the times'? They can either be true stories or just jokes.

Here is my answer:

I felt out of it when I was asked if I had a Blackderry and I said I didn't like those sort of fruits.

So, it's over to you....

But before I go....

Don't forget that the next post is my 300th! I'd really like you to be there for that. From Sunday night British time to Tuesday night).

See you there!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Captain Beverly (Part Three)

Things are looking bleak for Riker, Data and myself.

Due to an ion storm the three of us have encountered, we have slipped into an alternate universe where the Federation is ruled by women. Beverly is Captain Howard, which was her maiden name. Deanna is the Commander.


At present, we are being taken to do a menial job by Deanna and the Head of Security, who is Seven.

We turn a corner; Deanna nods her head, and Seven agrees. No one is around. Things now look even worse. Are we going to get thrown out of the nearest airlock?

Instead, we are pushed into an empty room and told to be quiet by Deanna.

"What is going on, Deanna" I ask, then regret it, as I expect another face-slapping for not addressing her properly.

"Are you with us in the struggle?" she asks me.

"What do you mean?"

"There have been many in the Federation Female Empire who have been secretly working to overthrow the society." Seven tells us, "We want men and women to work together."

"That is how it is in our universe, Seven." Data tells her.

"That's what Seven and I thought when we heard what you said, Captain Picard" Deanna says eagerly, "You might be able to help us."

I don't think the Prime Directive exists here; I hope not.

"It sounds like you just want to be Captain of the Enterprise, Deanna." I say, "Beverly appears to think you are her friend and very loyal to her."

"Be careful what you say, Captain." Seven warns me, "We could kill you for that; however, we both want something. Help us, and you can have the shuttle with the settings of where you came from so you can return to your universe."

Data, Riiker and I discuss the problem; it seems like the Prime Directive is going to be broken again. Still, maybe it doesn't count here and they don't have one? Let's go along with that belief.

"What do we have to do?" I ask.

"Send a message to Captain Howard, Deanna continues, "Telling her you are really a member of the anti-Federation Female Empire, saying you are holding us hostage; make sure the message goes to Starfleet as well. It will give them the idea she is bad at her job in letting you on. She will then be replaced by her second in!"

How sneaky can you get!

"What happens to us?" Riker inquires.

"When we let you go," Seven tells us, "We will tell the FFE you overpowered us and escaped. Beverly Howard will get all the blame!"

The door opens; I sense a problem coming.

"Oh, will she?" says Beverly, as she walks in the door, "You forget that I've had 'Big Sister' listening devices installed in all rooms so to be able to pick up any trace of rebel activity. I thought you were my loyal Number One, Deanna?"

"Men and women need to be together, Beverly." Deanna replies.

"Women rule!" the Captain replies, "It will always be that way. Men are irrelevant; resistance is futile."

Now where have I heard that before?

Deanna and Seven rush at Beverly and overpower her, and we are urged to leave. I ask what will happen, but are told hurriedly it will work out. Beverly is still trying to break free.


We get to where the shuttlecraft is located and head out at warp speed towards the ion cloud, where the heart of the storm is. The Enterprise follows us, But Data's piloting skills make us avoid it's missiles.

Who is now running the Enterprise; no way to tell.

The Enterprise is just on the rim of the ion cloud, but is forced to turn back; as we carry on, we get the familiar buzz of circuits blowing up everywhere.

Why do circuits always do this? I guess it's something to think about, but strangely, this is not an appropriate time. I'm surprised it doesn't happen to Data. Maybe he has a built-in circuit-breaker?

Eventually, we reach the Enterprise; thankfully, it's not painted pink, and doesn't have the FFE logo on it.


After a while back on board, I tell Beverly all about the incident.

"There's no reason I can't be Captain in the future, Jean-Luc." she tells me with a smile, "After all, I have Command status, just like Deanna. I sit in the Captain's chair for the night shift occasionally."

"That's true" I reply, "But I'd rather it be Beverly Crusher in charge of the ship, than Beverly Howard."

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Captain Beverly (Part Two)

I love being the Captain of the Enterprise, especially when I give men some derogatory jobs!

That's what I've just done with the three that have come aboard the ship just now.

The nerve of them! Coming in Starfleet Command uniforms. Everyone knows that these are for woman only, and that men are Ensigns at the highest, otherwise they are expendable. The sort we send out to investigate a new planet. They usually never come back. Still, what does it matter? They're only men, after all!

I must admit, these three that came on just after the ion storm intrigued me. One called himself 'Captain' Jean-Luc Picard, another was 'Commander' Riker and the third was an android named 'Lieutenant' Commander Data. They claimed they were from another universe; a typical male trick there.

The one called 'Picard' interested me, somewhat. Rather than giving him a dull job, I might keep him as my pet.

The Federation Female Empire has been growing over the past few hundred years; we soon put paid to those Klingons who objected to women being in control. Every planet we have is now run as a matrichial society.

Here on the Enterprise, we have the finest group of women in Starfleet, so it's little wonder we are the flagship of the fleet. My loyal commander, Deanna, is there to back me up when we get a problem. Seven sorts out unwelcome visitors as head of Security. Jadzia is the Chief Engineer. Jennifer Baxter is Lieutenant Commander, and Trisha Lewis is the Doctor. Karena, the Amazon from Wondawowman is the Counselor, but I think I'll need to work on her skills with patients. All she tends to say is "Get a life!"

I'm looking in my videolog; there is an incoming message from my old friend The Borg Queen; she asks if I am free to have dinner with her next week on the Cube. As she came last month, it is her turn to invite. She was really pleased with our society when we first met, and so asked if she could let Seven stay with us. I was really happy.

All of us women of got to stay together. You never know when men might start getting uppity and want more than what we give them. They ought to be grateful that we let them do these jobs like cleaning out tubes; something no self-respecting woman would do.

"Ion storm cloud still nearby, Captain." says Jennifer.

"Keep clear of it, Lieutenant Commander." I reply to her.

Now where was I? My train of thought has stopped; oh yes.

One thing I do worry about is there are rumours of uprising. Some women are starting to side with men into overthrowing our female society.

Doesn't that sound appalling? Men and women working together? The very thought makes me lose my appetite.

Anyway, time to close this particular entry. If I adopt Picard as a pet, I might let Deanna have Riker as a present. She has been working hard lately.

To be continued...

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Captain Beverly (Part One)

Riker, Data and myself are traveling back to the Enterprise in a shuttle after one of those interminable conferences.

The downside of having a commanding role is attending these awful meetings.

Suddenly a buzzer is going loudly; whatever it is telling us, it's not telling us to have a nice day.

"There is a giant ion storm approaching; It is heading right for us, Captain." says Data in a voice that is close that he can get to panic without actually being so.

"Turn round Data!" shouts Riker, "Get out of here!"

It is too late, and the storm hits us, rocking the ship, with all sorts of electrical buzzes; like the sort one sees in the old 'Frankenstein' movies.

Why is it, in the vast emptiness of space, are we so easily able to pick up anomalies and ion storms? I'm beginning to think Starfleet vessels must have a kind of magnetism.


Eventually, the shuttle limps it's way to the Enterprise; it looks a little odd from where I am, as it is a pinky colour. There also appears to be a badge of a man lying unconscious, with a woman standing triumphant over him.

It must be my imagination after the effects of the ion storm.


I wake up in SickBay, along with Riker, Data is there, but he is looking concerned. A woman is tending to our minor injuries, which are healed.

"Where's Beverly?" I ask her.

The woman looks shocked, as if I have told her to go in the airlock and leave the ship.

"You can't talk about the Captain like that!" she say, "Don't you realise that..."

"Why are these men in Command uniforms?" shouts a voice as she enters.

She is dressed in an all-red outfit, an had four buttons on, indicating a Captain's rank.

"Beverly" I say, "What is going ..."

She looks disgusted, and slaps me hard across the face. It seems I can't finish my senteces around here.

"You will address me as Captain Howard" she tells me. I recall that 'Howard' was her maiden name before she married Jack Crusher. He was killed later on.

"I think something happened in the ion storm, Bev...I mean Captain Howard; this does not seem to be the place we intended to be. I'm Captain Jean-Luc Picard, and this is Commander Riker and Lieutenant Commander Data."

"The brig is where you will end up if you keep making outrageous claims like that." Beverly tells me, "You will put on the uniforms of an ensign, as that is the only role a man is allowed to have on this ship."

Deanna walks in; she is in a red uniform as well; the three pips tell me she is is the Commander of this vessel.

Riker looks relieved.

"Deanna!" he exclaims, "Strange things have been happening late..."

"You will address me as Commander Troi!" she orders him, and Riker receives the customary slap on the face, and is not able to finish his sentence.

"Give these three men Ensign uniforms" Beverly tells Deanna, "And give them some menial job that is suitable for them; something especially derogatory,"

"Yes, Captain Howard" Deanna replies, and takes us out.

With no slight exaggeration, it looks like we have a few problems.

To be continued....


Authors note:

I have been sent this Meme by Nic, so will now (attempt) to complete it:

3 smells that I love:

fresh clothesl

3 smells that I hate:

filthy places
dirty wastebins
unclean beds

3 jobs that I have had in my life:

Helping my father when he was newsagent
Being a son

3 movies that I could watch over and over:

The Lord Of The Rings trilogy
The Hours
The Godfather trilogy

3 fond memories:

Looking at the Great Pyramids of Giza
My first day at work
Standing on top of the Empire State Building

3 jobs I would love to have:

Creative consultant

3 places I have lived:

West Bromwich
Great Barr

3 things I like to do:

Watch movies

3 of my favorite foods:

Mixed grill
Hamburger...the bigger the better!

3 places I would like to be right now:

On the Nile
Touring the USA
Meeting all my blogfriends

3 websites I visit daily:

Professor Xavier
(and many, many more!)

3 things that make me cry:

A weepy movie
The thought of anything bad happening to relatives and friends
Certain lyrics to songs that touch my heart and soul

3 friends that I am tagging:

I don't tag!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

TWQ: Lightbulb Jokes

This week, TWQ (The Weekend Question) goes into a well-known part of joke telling.

I always like lightbulb jokes (and also 'why did the chicken cross the road' and 'two cow economy' ones.). What are your favourite lightbulb jokes?

My answer is:

Q: How many Borg does it take to change a lightbulb:
A: All of them.

Q: How many seventies disco dancers does it take to change a lightbulb ?
A: Two. One to boogie up the ladder and one to say "Get daaowwwwn !"

Q: How many Psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one, but the bulb has got to really WANT to change.

Now it's over to you...

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Halloween Preparations

The senior staff are having a meeting in my Ready Room, as the ship is not being invaded, or haven't entered an anomoly which we seem to find with unaccountable ease.

The subject for discussion: Halloween.

"Now then, everybody." I start, "As we are now into October, the end of the month is Halloween, and we want to make sure everybody has a good time. Any suggestions."

"What is Halloween?" asks Seven.

"Err, well, Seven" I reply, "We all dress up in scary outfits look ghoulish and try and frighten each other."

Seven looks very confused.

"That is very irrelevent" she says, "What does this achieve? Does it make the Enterprise run faster?"

"No" I tell her, "It's these sort of things that keep up morale on the ship."

"If morale goes down on a Cube, the drones are disconnected." she says seriously, although there is a slight giggle in the room from the others.

"We know one person who won't need to wear a scary costume." whispers Riker to Deanna. They laugh to each other.

"I do not feel scared on Halloween" says Data, "It is a human emotion that I do not possess."

"What do you see when you watch those scary movies Data?" asks Geordi.

"I see a lot of actors" he replies, "When that new movie came out last week, 'Saw CXXXVIII', I did jump a little though, as I assumed Jigsaw was dead."

"I think we are straying from the main point of the meeting." I tell them, "We need to sort out how we are going to celebrate Halloween."

"We can always adapt a holodeck to something creepy, like we did last year, when we created a castle" says Beverly.

"Why should a castle be considered fearful?" inquires Seven.

"Dracula, Frankenstein" answers Riker, "Haunted castles, howling wolves, vampires. Do you see, now, Seven?"

"All I see is why humans and others in the Federation are so weak" she replies, "They scare of simple creatures; it is little wonder that the Borg are supreme!"

"Seven" Deanna tells her, "People enjoy being scared; they like to see movies that have them terrified."

"You'll be a lot more terrified when I put you in the Assimilation Chamber, Betazoid!" comments Seven.

Oh dear; that subject always raises tempers. The staff start shouting at Seven, and she tells the that The Borg Queen will get them all.

"CALM DOWN!" I shout hoarsley. Everyone turns round and looks at me in surprise, including Seven.

"As you command, Locutus." says Seven quietly, then sits down, as they all do.

"Now then." I continue, "Let's all carry on. I think we just need to come in an outfit that suits the evening, together with food and drink."

"I agree" says Beverly, "We ought to keep the details of what we wear to ourselves."

"Yes, and the Captain can decide what setting the holodeck can be."

They all agree; even Seven.

"What will you tell The Borg Queen about Halloween, Seven?" I ask her as we all leave the Ready Room.

"That I have discovered another weakness in the human psyche." she replies arrogantly, before clanking off down the corridor.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Assertiveness Training

Captain Picard has sent me to an Assertiveness Training Course, as he thinks I'm too nervous in what I do.

Of c-course I am!

All these aliens attacking us, t-transporter malfunctions, a Borg drone on board. It's a w-wonder we're still in one piece.

"Don't worry, Reg." says Deanna, "Just go along and you'll be fine."

"T-that's alright for you to say, Deanna." I reply, "I just d-dont think I can or want to be assertive. I get very nervous when people shout at me. They always seem to."

She smiles and sends me in the direction of Holodeck 2, where the training is being carried out.


I enter the holodeck, and there is a large man there; the sort that could probably beat up Lieutenant Worf without any problem.

"So you're Barclay?" he says loudly, "You do look a weedy speciman, don't you? Well I'm Argos, and I'm going to make sure that at the end of this Assertiveness Course, you'll be a tough individual. Right?"

"Err...if you s-say so, sir." I reply.

Argos looks disgusted and continues.

"Right, Barclay" he says, "In this first scenario, you are in control of Engineering; there is going to be a Warp Core Breach in a few moments. Tell me what you are going to do?"

A simulation of the Engineering Room comes to life, and everyone is looking panic-stricken, running here and there.

"Everybody!" I say to them, "Would you m-mind leaving the s-section, as we're going to have a b-breach in a while."


He is making me more nervous; as I try and urge everybody to leave the Room, the scenario suddenly vanishes.

"What happened?" I ask.

"The ship exploded while you were dithering away, Barclay." replies Argos, "The Enterprise has been destroyed while you have asked people nicely to leave. It wasn't a garden party, or asking a girl to dance. You should have thrown them out then tried to get to the problem via a Jeffries Tube."

"I might have got killed." I protest.

"But you would have saved the ship, Barclay!" shouts Argos, "Now let's see how you get on in this next scenario."

The holodeck changes, and a replica of the Enterprise Bridge appears; all the staff are there, except Captain Picard.

"In this scenario, the Enterprise is about to be invaded." says Argos, "Let's see what you do; you are the Captain here."

While I sit in the Captain's chair next to Commander Riker, Seven and two other Borg drones appear on the Bridge.

"Surrender and prepare for assimilation." states Seven.

"Err...we surrender" I say nervously.

Argos looks livid.

"What kind of assertiveness is that supposed to be, Barclay?" he shouts, "Stand up for yourself!"
The program runs again, and Seven orders us to surrender.

"Err...we will not s-surrender" I tell her.

"Then you will be assimilated first" replies Seven.

I think carefully.

"In that case, I surrender." I say.

The program stops and Argos looks near breaking point. I've never seen a grown man cry before.

"Did it not occur to you to get yourself assimilated as a diversion, while Riker managed to press the self-destruct with Data so that the ship would explode during the Borg invasion?" he asks me through his tears.

"No." I reply, "I have n-noticed that I seem to get killed in both scenarios, though. It doesn't seem to pay being assertive, Mr Argos."

"You're missing the point, Barclay," he tells me, "What you are learning is...oh I can't do this any more. I give up. I'm going to teach Flower Arranging instead."

With that he walks out...


"How did you get on with your Assertiveness Training, Reg?" asks Deanna.

"It was alright, I think" I reply, "But I don't think the tutor was the right one. He said he wanted to move to a different area of training afterwards."

"That's too bad." Deanna muses, "Starfleet need to be sure they have the right instructors for the job, otherwise how will we ever learn anything?"

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Health & Safety

The Starfleet Health & Safety Inspector is coming aboard to check to see whether the Enterprise conforms to current standards.

Naturally, he is coming via shuttle, as the transporter hasn't been examined by himself to see whether it is safe enough to use.

We are the there to great him.

"Hello" I say, "I am Captain Jean-Luc Pica..."

"No time for that!" he interrupts, "This ship could fall apart at any moment if I haven't checked it. If there is something wrong, we will have to evacuate the vessel right away. The name is Lieutenant Oxley; now lets get a move on!"

His nervous manner gets us all on edge as we follow him; he goes to Engineering first.

"This all looks very dangerous" Oxley says to Geordi, "What are the chances of a warp core breach happening, and us all being infected by radiation?"

"It's minimal, Lieutenant" says Geordi, "We have lots of safety alarms in place that alert us to a possible..."

"Only'minimal'!" replies Oxley, "I'd hope you were going to say 'non existant'. We'll have to close the warp core down and travel on impulse until it can be 100% checked."

Geordi looks at me pleadingly, but I know the Health & Safety representaives are very strong and determined.

"We'll close it down for now." I state guardingly. I've a hunch that Lieutenant Oxley is going to get on people's nerves. He is annoying me.

We then visit Ten Forward and Guinan.

"What about these replicators?" he asks.

"What about them, Lietenant?" says Guinan.

"Can you be sure that your crew aren't eating radioactive food? I'm sure you don't want them to go down with food poisoning during an alien attack?"

"No, but..." I stammer.

"Then all replicators need to be switched off and checked" says Oxley, "Until they are approved, the crew can only eat prepared food."

"But the chef can't cook over 1000 meals!" Guinan replies in protest.

"That's not my concern." he coldly comments, "Health and Safety is my concern, not feeding crewmembers. Just give them a simple soup, or something like that."

"There will be a riot, Captain." Guinan whispers quietly.

"I know" I reply, "Do your best to placate them."

Oxley visits the Cargo Bay where Seven and her alcove are located.

"Is this safe?" he asks me, "Having Borg technology around Enterprise items; we don't know what effect the items will have on ours. Besides that's she could do something to them."

Seven looks visibly annoyed.

"Can I assimilate this person, Locutus" she inquires, "He has insulted me."

"No, Seven; that's not possible." I reply.

Still, it's one character I wouldn't mind seeing as part of the Collective. He would probably destroy it in six months with his Health and Safety Regulations.

After going round many other places and closing down their operations and or annoying crew members, he comes to SickBay.

"This doesn't look very clean." Oxley states, without looking around.

Beverly gets angry.

"My SickBay is ALWAYS clean!" she says clearly.

"Well, what about that man?" he continues, pointing to the Holographic Doctor?, "He doesn't have a doctor's coat on."

"He's a hologram!" Beverly tells him with increased irritation.

Then I can tell she has an idea.

"What about you, Lieutenant?" she asks, "How do we know you haven't bought a virus aboard?"
"Of course I haven't!" replies Oxley.

"Nonetheless, we need to be sure." continues Beverly, as she winks at me, "My staff will give you a thorough examination; it might be a little painful, but I'm sure you'll agree that it's important.."

"Err...look, Captain." he pleads, "Just let me off this examination and I'll pass the Enterprise as allright for Health & Safety..."

"I don't know..." I say to myself, "It does seem irregular, but we'll take a risk and let you leave without a medical inspection."

"Thanks!" Oxley replies hurriedly, signs a Health & Safety Certificate and runs out of the door towards the shuttle.

"Good to know that the Enterprise has passed the Health & Safety again, Jean-Luc" Beverly comments with a smile.

"Sure is, Beverly." I reply, "I don't know how we keep doing it."