Monday, January 31, 2011

The Space Rift (Part One)

For once, things seem to be going calmly. mThat's a sure sign that something is going to happen.

Anyway, everyone is in their positions. I am in the Captain's Chair enjoying my Earl Grey, while Riker is having coffee and a donut. Like I said, everyone is in their normal places.

"So like I said." Riker drones on, "Deanna and I were watching As The Galaxy Turns yesterday on TV and it turns out that Brad is the secret son of Jeff and Miranda, when he thought his parents were Tom and Eleanor. Not only that, Sally has been arrested by the police, but was framed by Christina who wanted they boyfriend Jack to herself. Meanwhile..."

"Sensors reveal object 20 parsecs away." Data suddenly states. What a relief that was! Saved by the android!

"What is it, Mr Data." I ask in an authoritarian voice,

"Nothing, sir" he adds.

I look at Riker and Deanna with a puzzled expression. Data is always someone who will overdescribe something that we are about to see. To say 'nothing' is minimalist.

"Whatever is that supposed to mean, Mr Data" I say, slightly irritated, "Can you elaboarate."

"Not really, sir." he answers, "What the sensors are showing is nothing...a rift in space where there is nothing in it. no stars, no planets, no life."

I order the long range viewer to show what is on the video screen.

"We'll have to put some warnings around for starships to avoid that part of space." Riker comments, "Who knows what would happen if anyone went in it?"

"That will not be an adequate solution, Commander." Data replies, "Evidence shows that the gap in space is getting larger at a huge rate. Before long it will be the dominant part of the universe and not long after is all that will be....empty blackness with all life gone."

I groan. It looks like the Enterprise will be trying to save the universe again.

To be continued...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

TWQ: Relaxing

This week, TWQ (the Weekend Question) asks about relaxing.

What do you like to do to relax? List as  many as you wish.

My answers are:

*Computer work

Now it's over to you......

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Riker At The Bar

Guest Poster: Will Riker

I'm in Ten Forward at the busiest time, which is the late evening. A lot of the crew have a drink at this time before going off to their quarters with their spouse...or someone else's spouse occasionally!

As ever, Guinan is running the bar. She is managingf to serve so many people. I don't know how she does it. I must admit, she looks a little tired right now.

"Are you all right, Guinan?" I ask, "It looks like you could do with some help."

"I'm fine, Commander." she replies, quickly, though I see sweat on her face. Suddenly, her legs buckle and Guinan collapses on the floor.

Beverly Crusher rushes forward to analyse her.

"It looks like she has El-Aurian Flu" the doctor summises, "I'll beam her back to Sick Bay and give her a cure,"

"What about the bar?" I ask, "Who is going to look after that?"

Beverly looks around quickly.

"Will, can you do that?" she asks before the doctor and her patient beam off.

I look around, and see a long queue of impatient customers at the bar. Running behind it, I ask the first one what he wants.

"A Siruis 3 Cocktail." he answers. I look puzzled and ask him what it is.

The customer sighs and goes through a lengthy processes detailing the twelve ingredients I should be putting in to create it. By the time I have done this, the queue size has doubled. This is more stressful than a Borg invasion.

"Want some help?" Ensign Britney calls out, "I'll serve them and tell you what ingredients you need."

Before long, the qeues start to diminish, and Ensign Britney is working away .

"I think we're starting to win, Commander." Britney comments to me as she goes to get a PanGalactic GargleBlaster that I've concocted from the bar.

"Thanks to you, Britney." I answer, "You've saved the day. I need a good fatty donut and a Devanian Whiskey when this is over."

"Well done, you two." says a familiar voice approaching.

Guinan smiles as she walks shakily with Beverly holding her.

"You've both done a great job." the El-Aurian tells us, "I'll be ready in an hour, as the Flu will have disappeared. Will, do you want to be a stasnd-in barman?"

" thanks," I say, "I'd prefer to stay the other side of the bar."

Monday, January 24, 2011

Boothby In The Garden

Guest Poster: Boothby

As Head Gardener of Starfleet Academy, I have to keep an eye on all the greenery around here. It can be had with these young Cadets here. I tell you they have absolutely no regard for plant life. Those in the classrooms are taught to respect all forms of life, but when it comes to some daisies or a beautifully shaped plant, you can forget it.

I tell you what happened this morning, I went to start and found that an area in a secluded part of the garden had been squashed flat! A couple of young whippersnappers making out together after a party, no doubt. Some Cadets think they come here just for the partying, and that learning how to be in Starfleet is just a small interruption between them.

Things have always been like that, though. That Jean-Luc Picard was one of the most troublesome partygoers I ever knew at the Academy. How he ever got to be a Starfleet Captain is beyond me. Virtually every night he would stagger across the lawns drunk, or I would find him the next morning on a flowerbed, having passed out.

"Hi there, Boothby, Nice to see you." says a female voice.


It's Beverly Crusher. I must say, I always had the hots for her when she was the young Cadet Beverly Howard. She still has great pins. A redhead always looks gorgeous in my book!

"Err...hello Doctor Crusher." I say, reddening slightly, "What brings you to the Academy?"

"Oh, I'm here to give a Surgery lecture at Starfleet Medical." she replies, "Besides that, I can get a bit of shopping done at the Mall. Good to see you still keeping the Academy Gardens looking beautiful, Mr Boothby."

"Yes, well, no one else would do it right." I say, "So I maintain it. If these young whippersnappers only kept off the grass and fauna, my job would be a lot easier."

"Ah, yes." Beverly smiles. "I know Captain Picard wasn't always on his best behaviour as a Cadet, but he asked me to apologise for him."

"That's fine, Doctor Crusher." I tell her, but don't mention that I saw Beverly and Picard kissing six months ago in the Japanese Gardens.

Quite a few rare blooms lost their lives as a result of what followed afterwards!

Beverly smiles and strides off. Ah, if only I were younger.....

Saturday, January 22, 2011

TWQ: Unfinished Books

TWQ (the Weekend Question) asks this week about books you haven't been able to finish.

Which books have been so bad or incomphrehensible that you have given up reading it before the end? List as many as you wish.

My answers are:

The Time Traveller's Wife by Audrey Niffeneggar (intensely disliked every character)
Moby Dick by Herman Melville (a fair start, but bogged down in symbolism)
Blow Fly by Patricia Cornwell  (virtually finished but disliked the new writing style)
Hornet's Nest by Patricia Cornwell (awful characters, amateurly written)
Between The Acts by Virginia Woolf (this final novel was a really poor one from this talented writer)

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

1100th Post!

Who can believe this is the 1100th post on my Journal? It doesn't seem that long since I put my first words down. Since then, me, the Enterprise and it's crew have come through an unforgettable series of adventures, weddings, births and all manner of events.

In fact I can remember when,.....

"Oh liven it up, Jean-Luc!"

What's that?  I turn round, then continue...

I wonder if anyone remembers the time three years ago.....

"Come on, Jean-Luc, you'll have everybody leaving in droves!"

I turn round again; this time a figure appears.

"Go away, Q!" I snap," I'm trying to do this. It's my 1100th post, and can hardly do this if you blink and make my clothes disappear, like you usually do."

"Now that WOULD make this post interesting and give everybody a good laugh." Q comments, "But I know what you're doing, so Im here to contribute some ideas to our post.."

"You can contribute by vanishing into thin air, Q" I tell him, "This is certainly not YOUR post."

"Well, so far, your speech is very dull, Jean-Luc" Q observes, "I remember that lecture you did at Starbase Academy for the Cadets. It was all about 17th century archaeology digs in the Loire Valley region of France. Not exactly a crowd-puller, was it? The Cadets started leaving, claiming they were late for another class!"

I grumble, as I recall the incident. Some people just don't appreciate archaeology.

"Let's liven the Post up!", Jean-Luc, "This will get more watching."

"Q!" I exclaim, "This is meant to be a serious relection on my my previous posts!"

"Well, wasn't this woman in a recent post when you and Beverly visited Santa Claus in a holodeck program?" asks Q.

"I suppose so." I grudgingly admit.

"So it is a reflection on your past posts?" he tells me with a laugh.

Bev comes in.

"Hello, Jean-Luc" she asks, then sees Q, "What is HE doing here?"

"Being an annoyance." I tell her, "I'm trying to do my 1100th post, but he has just been trouble."

"Hello Beverly" Q says with a smile, "You do look starchy in that official uniform. Let me change it for you."

There is a sudden flash, and Bev reappears looking very different.

"Thank you, Q" Bev says, "It saves me getting ready for my date with Jean-Luc tonight in the French restaurant holodeck program."

"Yes, well.." I grudgingly say, "You do look gorgeous, Bev. Thank you, Q."

I turn around and Q has gone.

"Now I can do the 1100th post." I say.

"Space almost complete" the computer warns.

"Oh, well that's it, then" I comment.

"Come on and let's get in early to the French restaurant, Jean-Luc." Bev laughs, "We can celebrate your 1100th post with a bottle of Arkan '24."

Monday, January 17, 2011

Jenny Versus The Baroness (Part Four)

Guest Poster: Jennifer Baxter

I'm on Taurus IV, doing an unofficial mission for Captain Picard. I'm trying to stop the Baroness from stealing valuable technology. Her real name is Anastasia Cobray, and dresses like I do in black leather. The Baroness unsucessfully tried to persauade me to team up with her in stealing things, claiming we are alike. I turned her down, and am mdetermined to stop her once and for all.


This will be the big finale, I'm sure. Now I know that top secret government technology is being housed in a warehouse, I'm going there to put paid to this woman once and for all!

When I do, I lie in wait. Fortunately I picked up fome snacks at Ted's Donut, Pizza and Burger Emporium before I got here. It could be a long night.

Mmmmm. That was delicious. I'll have to stop by and have another pizza on the way back. Hold on. I think I've heard something.

I look in my infra red glaases...something I picked up at Jeff's Spy Store. Ah, there she is...

I jump from the trees where I was hiding and land on the ground. Ouch! Remind me not to do THAT again. Quickly I pick myself up and get my multiphase disruptor and knife all ready, then rush through a small tunnel and out to surprise her.

"You're SO predictable, Jenny." purrs the Baroness, "As we are alike, I can tell everything you are going to do."

"So can I, Anastasia." I reply tartly, "Shall we spend this fight trying to read each other's mind, or settle this for good?"

"Such a pity." she smiles, "You would have been the perfect partner. Very well, Jennifer. Lets finish it."

Before she finishes, her disruptor releases a beam of energy which just grazes my arm. The pain is immense, but I'm still in one piece and not disintegrated. Villains are supposed to finish their speech before firing. Doesn't she know that?

We run towards each other and clash, knocking the disruptors out of our hands. We hit and wrestle on the ground. I have to be careful as there is a clifftop nearby. As we get near the edge, we get hold of our disruptors. Anastasia does first, but the ground beneath her crumbles and she plummets into the darkness below.

I look over a ledge nearby, but can see nothing.


Several hours later, I am back in Captain Picard's Ready Room.He is sipping his Earl Grey, while I munch on one pf the hundred pizzas I picked at Ted's Donut, Pizza and Burger Emporium before beaming back.

"Is the Baroness dead or not, Jennifer." asks the Captain.

"I spent a while searching the ground below, sir." I reply, "There is no sign of her anywhere. It's my opinion that Anastasia Corbray has faked her death and has escaped from Taurus IV. Sooner or later, when something comes up, she'll reappear."

"Well the government of Taurus IV are happy as she has stopped stealing, but we'll be ready for her wherever the Baroness turns up." says the Captain.

"So will my disruptor." I comment, "The Baroness and I have a score to settle. There's only room for one black leather clad woman in this galaxy!"

Saturday, January 15, 2011

TWQ: Unobtainable DVDs

This week, TWQ (the Weekend Question) asks about those DVDs that you have never managed  to get.

Which movies or TV shows have you been unable to get on DVD as the studios have failed to put them out? List as many as you wish.

My answers are:

* Raise The Red Lantern: This Chinese movie has been on DVD, but with no subtitles or with a very poor print. The studio has never issued a 'proper' version, though it is much sought after.

* WKRP In Cincinnati. This gem never made it on to DVD.

* Midnight Caller. This drama was really well made. A complete box set would be fab.

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Jenny Verus The Baroness (Part Three)

Guest Poster: Jennifer Baxter

I'm now face to face with the Baroness on the planet Taurus IV. She has been robbing the authorities of valuable technology, but as the planet is not part of the Federation, so we can't officially help. However, as we need their membersdhip, the Captain has sent me down on an 'unofficial' mission to stop her. Like me, the Baroness wears a leather outfit and carries a multiphase disruptor as a weapon. However, in a small truce, she has given me an extraordinary offer...


"You've GOT to be kidding!" I sneer, "Why should I ever want to join you in your crime wave. I came hear to stop you. When the next minute of this truce ends, you're gonna be history, sweetie."

"Don't kid yourself, Jennifer." the Baroness replies, "Look at us. We are identical and cut from the same cloth, and are virtually the same woman. The only thing that keeps you in the Ferderation is that walking tin can, Data."

My anger rises at this, such as when Data forgets yo put his emotion chip in.

"Data is more man than you could ever realise, Anastasia." I tell her, "He keeps me more than satisfied in our relationship."

"You have very low expectations, then, Jenny!" she laughs, "So glad you used my real first name. Does that mean you're getting to like me and we can forge an alliance."

"Forget it, Baroness." I tell her, "My major expectatrion is to see you on a mortuary slab. Twenty seconds left."

"My, such crudity, Jennifer." the Baroness sneers, "Well, I must be off. I've got som,e more shopping to do. This planet has some useful technology."

The Baroness somersaults up into the air and on to the roof. A few seconds later the truce is over, and I follow her up there, but she has gone.

Next time there won't be any truces! I'll call the coroner and book an appointment for Anastasia Cobray!

I look on my Taurus IV website. It looks like there is a powerful new weapon in storage at a warehouse, due to be tested in a couple of days. Now if I were the Baroness, thast's where I'd go next. She did say we are virtally identical women. If I start thinking like her, it's gonna be her downfall!

To be continued after the TWQ....

Monday, January 10, 2011

Jenny Versus The Baroness (Part Two)

My shuttle lands during a dark night on the planet Tarsus IV. Captain Picard has asked me to catch a female criminal named The Baroness, who is making technological robberies on the planet. The Federation refuse to help officially, as the planet is not part of their group, but we need their membership, so it is being done 'off the books' we me on a solo mission.


I put on my black leather outfit and arm myself with my multiphase disruptor. It looks like I'll have to be careful; out there. I'm wearing the same outfit as the Baroness does. I don't want to get arrested by the authorities and thrown in the pokey!

Now where to go? If the police force here can't find this elusive woman, how am I going to.

I suddenly hear a sound behind me. I twist round.

"Welcome to Tarsus IV, Jenny!" says a soft, female voice from up above.

She must have leapt up on the roof. I follow her. It seems like the Baroness is here to welcome me. I doubt there will be drink and cakes. Anybody playing like this is going to get a mouthful of my disruptor!

"Come on out, Baroness!" I call, "We've got business to settle!"

"Actually, Jenny." says the voice, "I've got something to say to you as well, Can we have a truce for three minutes?"

"Very well." I grudgingly say, and set my alarm. In three minuites and one a second, she'll be history.

With that, a figure steps out of the shadows.

"Hello, Jenny." the woman says, "I'm the Baroness. I must say, I've always admired your style."

"Really?" I reply, noticing she is also carrying a multiphase disruptor. The woman looks so much like appearance, uniform and weapon choice, it's uncanny.

"Let's put down our disruptors and talk." says the Baroness, "I have an interesting proposition for you. Please call me Anastasia."

"I prefer not to." I gruffily answer, "I'll have to kill you soon."

The Baroness sighs.

"Very well, Jenny." she continues, "You are so much like myself, I think it would be for the benefit of us both if we joined forces and worked as a team. Together, we would be invincible!"

To be continued....

Saturday, January 08, 2011

TWQ: Resolutions

TWQ (the Weekend Question) asks, on the second weekenhd of the year how you are doing with any New Year's Resolutions.

Did you make any New Year's Resolutions this year, and if so, are they still going now, or did vyou break them already?

My answer is:

My Resolution is always to be more tolerant of people, but but some are so thick headed, sadly, I have to verbally criticise them, such as the one who parks in the office car park and blocks me getting out.

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Jenny Versus The Baroness (Part One)

Guest Poster: Jennifer Baxter

I get a notification to report to Captain Picard's office. Hopefully it's nothing to do with the fact that Data and I were caught kissing and cuddling in the Ready Room while the New Year's Party was going on. Hopefully, that has been overlooked by now.

"Come!" says the Captain as I announce who I am and enter the Ready Room. I try not to blush, as the last time I was in here, I didn't exactly have my party dress completely on.

"Ah, Ensign Baxter." the Captain starts, "I need to have a word with you about something important"

"I'm sorry, sir." I start, "I had been having too much Klingon bloodwine, it was New Year's Eve and the two of us got caught up in the heat of the moment, and thought it wouldn't hurt. We have been going together for some time and..."

The Captain looks puzzled, then he realises what I've been saying.

"Oh, don't worry about that." he says, "I think most of the ship was doing the same thing then. What I need you for is a special assignment that requires your particular talents."

"Go on, sir." I say, intrigued.

"The planet Tarsus IV is not a member of the Federation, but it soon will be." he starts, "Lately, it has been the subject of a number of technological sabotages by a highly skilled individual. Legally, we cannot intervene, as they are not yet in the Federation, but the government are demanding that we do something, otherwise they will withdraw their application."

"So you want this done 'off the books', so to speak." I ask.

"Exactly." answers Picard, "They have said that this individual is a female with dark hair, wears a black leather outfit, is a top fighter with an eye for technology. Her name is Anastasia DeCobray, but she calls herself The Baroness."

"She seems very much like me." I comment.

"Yes." says the Captain, "You will be evenly matched, but this mission is highly dangerous. I can't officially sanction your going, as ity is all off the record."

"I understand." I tell him, "Once I get my black leather outfit on, and take my multiphase disruptor down to Tarsus IV, the Baroness is going to find herself dethroned."

To be continued after the TWQ..........

Monday, January 03, 2011

The New Year

I'm dazed.

Getting up after the strains of a New Year party isn't easy, especially getting out of the bed. It feels like I'm magnetised to it.

New Year's Day is the one time of year that I ask the replicator for a coffee, insterad of my usual earl grey tea. Not only that, it has to be black, extra strong.

Yuk! It tastes like I'm drinking a barrel of tar, but right now, ity's about as much as I can face.

Beverly, who is slightly dazed, holds her head and struggles to get out of bed before sitting herself down.

"Jean-Luc." she mumbles, "Have you been hitting my head with a hammer all night?"

"No, of course not, Bev."

"Well it sure feels like it." she answers, and groggily staggers to the bathroom.

While she does, I try to put m,y uniform on. Only when I haver vdo I realise that it's on back to front and inside out. After two more goes, I get it right and stagger out.

I head towards the Bridge and meet Ensign Britney.

"Good morning, Ensign.Happy New Year" I say to her, who is wearing dark glasses and looks a little shaken.

"Err..hello, Captain. Happy New Year.." she answers quietly, "Could you possibly whisper, as everything seems very....ugh...."

With that, she holds her mouth and rushes off into the ladies bathroomn.

When I get to the Bridge, everyone is looking worse for wear, except Data. Worf looks gruesome as if he is thinking that today is NOT a good day to die.

"I feel like a wreck, Captain." admits Riker.

"Really, Number One." I say, dazed, "If any invaders came and attacked the Enterprise now, it could be sol;d for scrap, and us depositewd on a planet too powerless to do anything about it."

"I have taken steps to prevent that occurring." Data turns round and tells us.

"What have you done, Mr Data." I nervously ask.

" I have placed a beacon warning that the Enterprise is in the grip of a deadly infection which would affect any who tried to board it. The message should last until everyone has recovered from the effects of the party."

I smile.

"Well done, Mr Data." I tell him, "Let's get some more black coffee in."

Saturday, January 01, 2011

TWQ: Books Of The Year 2010

As we go into 2011, TWQ (the Weekend Question) asks about books you have enjoyed over the last 12 months.

What were your favourite books over the last year? They do not have to be books written in in this time.

My answers are: 

The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters: A gripping chiller set in England in 1945, with suggestions of ghosts, although nothing is fully explained, and the reader has to make up their own mind. The narrator, Dr Faraday, is singled out by many readers as a key culprit.

Room by Emma Donoghue: The narrator is Jack, a five year old boy, who is in Room with his Ma. He believes everything in Room is the only things that are real, and there is just outer space outside. In truth, his Ma has been imprisoned in there for the last seven years.. Told with incredible detail.

Now it's over to you....;

But before I go...

Happy New Year!!