INTERCOM NCC 74657
The Official Communique of the USS Ronald E. McNair
Boston, Massachusetts


September 17, 1997 ---------- Vol. 5 No. 1 ---------- Star Date: 35690.3

CONTENTS

Contents
Editor's Note
Mass NetDay
The USS McNair's Mission
Captain's Log
TV Schedule
Code 47 via Subspace Radio
Chief Medical Officer's Log
Treasurer's Report
The Usual Suspects
Jane Doe Walk for Women's Safety
McNair Ready Room
Do Borg Females Require Boobs?
Comm Channel News
From Data's Humor Chip
Fun on the Internet

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EDITOR'S NOTE

In the last issue, I lead off this column with: "The only thing constant is change." How prophetic!

The world of TREK has cast members and characters coming and leaving. The writing at Voyager seems to have picked up. The executives and writers seem to be taking risks. The season opener was quite entertaining. There's a lot more discussion of Voyager, The Borg and Seven of Nine in this issue.

In my opinion, the series "Deep Space Nine" is rolling right along like a fine tuned machine. There's good character development, intricate plots, many sub-plots, and consistently high quality writing.

What about "Star Trek Voyager?" The quality still varies way too much. And, too many episodes wrap up what seems like three dozen questions in the last three minutes; versus more two part or three part episodes. I get the impression at times that Voyager's writers are risk averse. Regardless, the series has structural problems that the executives haven't yet solved.

- George Jenkins, First Officer

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MASS NETDAY

If you are looking to volunteer your time or computer skills, this may help.

The Mass Networks/NetDay web site explains how schools can sign up to get wired for the internet and how volunteers can participate. The next Mass. NetDay is October 25, 1997. The e-mail address is netday@mtpc.org.

What is Mass. Networks/NetDay?

Mass Networks Education Partnership Inc. is also known as Mass Networks, a non-profit organization that is dedicated to helping schools acquire the tools to make meaningful educational use of technology. The organization grew out of meetings called by Senator Edward M. Kennedy in the spring of 1996.

MNEP is sponsoring three NetDays on October 26, 1996, April 5, 1997 and October 25, 1997. The Mass Networks mission statement provides an overview of the organization's goals and structure. "Why wire schools?" explains the educational benefits that can be gained through the use of networked computers. "What will happen on NetDay" gives a quick overview of one part of a long-term process of using technology to further education reform. Answers to some Frequently Asked Questions are listed in the "NetDay FAQ."

MassNetworks is a mostly volunteer effort. The membership of our Board of Directors and the list of Planning Council attendees show the breath of support from all components of our four-way partnership of business, education, labor, and government. Some of these people, whose names appear in the Task Group Leaders and Mass Networks Staff, have put in the extra effort required by leadership.

Mass Network's goal is to support school and district activity. The list of NetDay Participating Schools includes those who have committed themselves to building Local Area Networks (LANs) in their building, (Partner Schools). Mass Networks is this state's NetDay organization. Other states also conduct their own efforts.

Source:
Excerpted from the Mass Networks/NetDay web site

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McNAIR'S MISSION


INTERCOM is published quarterly. Copyright © 1997, USS Ronald E. McNair. All rights reserved. Questions, comments, permission requests, and submissions should be sent to the Editor, INTERCOM, USS Ronald E. McNair, P.O. Box 255159, Boston, Mass. 02125 - 5159.

If you decide to link to this web site, to an INTERCOM newsletter issue, or to an article within an issue, please register with the USS McNair Guest-book. Otherwise, the INTERCOM Editor will not be able to notify you when links or pages change.

INTERCOM is free for USS Ronald E. McNair crew members, and single courtesy copies to region ships offering a newsletter exchange. For others, an annual subscription (4 issues) is available. Enclose a check or money order for $5.00, payable to the USS Ronald E. McNair, and send it to: INTERCOM, USS Ronald E. McNair, P.O. Box 255159, Boston, Mass. 02125 - 5159.


Star Trek: Voyager is a Trademark of Paramount Pictures. Star Trek, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, and Star Trek: The Next Generation are Registered Trademarks of Paramount Pictures. This publication in no way intends to infringe upon any copyrights, trademarks, or licenses held by Paramount Pictures.

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CAPTAIN'S LOG

Stardate: 35687.8
Captain Kevin Johnson reporting

September 14, 1997

I hope everyone had a good summer (ALL GOOD THINGS...).

The USS Ronald E. McNair had an away mission (the farthest and longest since I became commander) to the Start Trek Science exhibition in downtown Hartford, Connecticut. Every one had a good time. I would like to thank Ken (Vorlon Ambassador) for the maps that he made so that the shuttle crafts could navigate the Hartford system in the Connecticut sector of the United States Northeast quadrant without getting lost.

A few weeks ago, I sent almost $3,000 in coupons to the Overseas Coupon Project. This brings the total to almost $6,000 the McNair has sent to the families of military personnel stationed overseas. Thanks to all those who have contributed. Keep up the good work!!

I would like to note that Major Robert H. Lawrence, Jr. will have his name put on the Astronaut Memorial i.e. "Space Mirror", on December 8, 1997, 30 years after he crashed in his F-104 Starfighter. The "Space Mirror" honors the astronauts who gave their lives in the pursuit of space exploration. Major Lawrence along with his predecessor, Captain Edward J. Dwight Jr., were the first two African Americans selected to train for space flight. His name will join his fellow Omega Psi Phi brother and our namesake, Dr. Ronald E. McNair.

In January the USS McNair will celebrate our 5th anniversary celebration. Yes the USS Ronald E. McNair has been in existence for 5 years and we plan to celebrate!!

Before I close this log, I want to congratulate Val ("The Klingon') on receiving her scholarship, Robbi "Counselor" on passing the bar, and George ("Number One") on landing his new job.

Kevin D. Johnson
Commanding Officer
USS Ronald E. McNair

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TV SCHEDULE

Star Date: -- Here are three lists of what we have seen or will see this television season. For some of you, this list is what you've missed so far.

STAR TREK: Deep Space Nine - Unofficial Air Schedule
#Date#Title
1259/27/97525A Time to Stand
12610/04/97527Rocks and Shoals
12710/11/97526Sons and Daughters
12810/18/97528Behind the Lines
12910/25/97529Favor the Bold
13011/01/97530The Sacrifice of Angels

STAR TREK: VOYAGER - 3rd Season (Unofficial):
#Date#Title
689/03/97STV401[169]Scorpion, Part II
699/10/97STV402[170]The Gift
709/17/97STV403[172]A Day Of Honor
719/24/97STV404[171]Nemesis
7210/01/97STV405[173]Repulsion
7310/08/97STV406[174]The Raven
7410/15/97STV407[175]Scientific Method
7510/22/97STV408[176]The Year of Hell Part 1
7610/29/97STV409[177]The Year of Hell Part 2

BABYLON 5 - 4th Season:
Week of##Title
97/10/0685419Between the Darkness and the Light
97/10/1386420Endgame
97/10/2087421Rising Star
97/10/2788501The Deconstruction of Falling Stars
Season Five: Season five will begin airing on TNT on January 19, 1998, Mondays at 10PM with a repeat showing Saturdays at 6PM. TNT has hinted they'll show the season straight through with no reruns, but that hasn't been confirmed.
98/01/1989502No Compromises
98/01/2690503The Very Long Night of Londo Mollari
98/02/0291504The Paragon of Animals
98/02/0992505A View from the Gallery
98/??/????5??The Day of the Dead (written by Neil Gaiman)
98/06/15?110422Sleeping in Light

Notes: Obviously, (R) indicates a previously aired episode, and NG indicates a star date not supplied during the episode. The air date is the date of the first uplink to affiliates. Actual air time will differ.

Sources: Vidiot: DS9 | Vidiot: Voyager | The Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5
Credit: Thanks to Ken for The B5 data!

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CODE 47 VIA SUBSPACE RADIO

By George Jenkins, XO
Star Date: 35685.9

Have you taken the "Daily Star Trek test?" Did you score better than 92%? If you are interested in some fun, surf on over to Thalia's Funpage and take the Star Trek Test. The images and scores change daily. Enjoy!

Sill bored? Try this TREK trivia site. If that's not enough fun for you, then try the Babe Test. When you're done, remember to come back to the McNair's home page.


And, from the Internet:

---------------- Forwarded message:
Subj: Funding Sought To Honor First African-American Astronaut On Space Mirror Memoria
Date: 97-09-02 06:48:18 EDT
From: AOL News

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., Sept. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- The name of America's first African-American astronaut, Major Robert H. Lawrence, will be added to The Astronauts Memorial Foundation Space Mirror, in ceremonies at Kennedy Space Center on December 8. A national campaign has been launched to fund the addition of Major Lawrence's name to the monument, which currently recognizes 16 of America's astronauts who have died in the line of duty, including the seven members of the ill-fated 1986 Challenger Space Shuttle launch -- among others.

The projected cost of adding Major Lawrence's name to the 42.5' x 50' polished granite monument and accompanying ceremony is approximately $125,000 and will be raised through solicitation of corporate and individual donations made to The Astronauts Memorial Foundation during the next few months. Corporate sponsors and donors to the AMF/Major Lawrence Campaign can receive a variety of recognition opportunities in appreciation for their support that range from invitations to sponsored VIP events, to dedication commemorative items.

Major Lawrence was a United States Air Force astronaut-in-training for the Manned Orbital Laboratory (MOL) Program when the F-104 Starfighter jet he was co-piloting during a training flight crashed on December 8, 1967. The memorial ceremonies come exactly thirty years after the crash and as a result of some controversy over his official astronaut status. At the time of the accident, MOL trainees were not officially considered astronauts. Last January, the U.S. Air Force officially designated Major Lawrence an astronaut and the AMF Board of Directors quickly and unanimously voted to include his name on the Space Mirror memorial.

The Space Mirror was dedicated in 1991 to honor all U.S. astronauts who lost their lives on space missions or in training for missions. It has been designated a national memorial by Congress and former President George W. Bush. Funds for construction and maintenance of the memorial were initially provided by Florida's Challenger automobile license plate program.

For infomation on corporate sponsorship opportunities or to make an individual contribution for the December 8 dedication ceremony, contact AMF President James De Santis or Development Director, Terry Greenhalgh at 407-452-2887 or write to The Astronauts Memorial Foundation, The Center for Space Education, Mail Code - AMF, Kennedy Space Center, FL 32899. E-mail to jrds@iu.net.

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CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER'S LOG

Stardate: 35686.8
CMO Sabrina Lewis reporting

Although we think of January as the time of new beginnings, September also invokes a similar feeling of expectation and new beginnings for me. Thus it is very appropriate that we ackowledge the various members of the crew who are embarking into new territory:

To our First Officer, Lt Commander George Jenkins, we say congratulations and best wishes as he begins his new job;

To our Lt. Valerie "The Klingon" Hope, we say best wishes as she reaches for new heights in scholastic achievement; and

To my own staff member, Lt. jg Robbi Thomas, we say peace and prosperity in her new home and job, congratulations on passing the bar, and best wishes as she begins a new commission as ship's Counselor.

Whether or not we're starting a new job/commission, going back to school, or otherwise, may we each find something new and different, something that fills us with expectation, something that exhilarates us, something to look forward to every day.

Your Chief Medical Officer,
Lt. Sabrina Johnson

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TREASURER'S REPORT

Show me the money! Well, we will. The Treasurer's report for the USS Ronald E. McNair is available to all members. Ask the Captain or the First Officer for a copy.

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THE USUAL SUSPECTS

Part of the mission of the USS Ronald E. McNair is our value of IDIC, Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations. The goal is to improve ourselves, just like the Federation citizens and starship crews in the 24th century. Often, when I think of diversity, and how well we - as a society - value and achieve this goal, I find myself looking at today's America.

I found myself looking at the NFL, the National Football League.

Boston Globe Correspondent Norman Chad presented some very interesting statistics about NFL coaches in the Friday, September 12, 1997 newspaper. In Chad's words, "In an NFL off-season of coaching changes, they rounded up the usual suspects: white guys. Some winners, some losers; some proven, some unproven - but every one of them very Caucasian. Eleven teams started this season with new head coaches; all of them decided that white is right."

Who cares? Who cares about the NFL?

I can hear many people ask this; especially people who aren't American football fans. Consider this: the sports we watch, play, send our children to play, or pay money to see all reflect our values. Not just the sport, but the manner in which the sport is managed and promoted. While many of the football players are from diverse backgrounds, the coaching staffs are much less diverse. The ownership ranks even less so.

So, who cares? Haven't we solved this race thing in America already?

Apparently not. The facts speak pretty loudly and clearly.

Was this an accident? Well, that is a possibility - an awfully slim possibility. My experience based upon working for 14 years in several Fortune 500 corporations has shown me that most senior managers frequently hire people who are very similar to them. The candidates usually hired often look like, think like, dress like, and behave like their new bosses.

And, we know who the NFL team owners are. All white guys.

But the owners had to hire competent, winning coaches! Right?

I can't tell you how often I've heard this statement from White executives in diversity meetings or encounter groups at several Fortune 500 corporations. The subtle implication of this statement is that all white guys are competent and above suspicion, while everyone else is suspect, at best. Restated, this statement reflects an attitude and belief by too many that in order to hire a diverse work-force, competency standards must lowered.

I find this comment and attitude highly insulting; not to mention inaccurate, too.

Diversity, or Affirmative Action, does not mean lower standards. Maybe, that was the way these programs were implmented - and implemented poorly. It is possible to find both. As a manager, I did. And, if I can, any other manager can.

But, let's look at these 11 newly hired NFL coaches. Five have won Super Bowl titles, as a coach, player or both. The coaches and the current teams they are coaching: Mike Ditka (New Orlean Saints), Bill Parcells (NY/NJ Jets), Dan Reeves (Atlanta Falcons), Bobby Ross (Detroit Lions), and Dick Vermeil (Los Angeles Rams). All obviously had winning records to get to the Super Bowl. So, these five are obviously qualified and competent.

We'll just give Vermeil credit, even though its been many years since his last Super Bowl.

What about the other six new NFL coaches? They're competent too, right?

Three are definite losers, based upon the won-loss records as head coaches. The Cincinnati Bengels hired Bruce Coslet, who was 26-39 with the NY/NJ Jets. The Oakland Raiders hired Joe Bugel, who was 20-44 with the Arizona Cardinals. And, the New England Patriots hired Pete Carroll, who was 6-10 with the NY/NJ Jets.

The remaining three new coaches are newbies; no head coaching experience at all in the NFL. The San Francisco 49er's hired Steve Mariucci, who was 6-6 in college football coaching at California. The San Diego Chargers hired Kevin Gillbride, and the NY/NJ Giants hired Jim Fassel. Fassel and Gillbride were offensive coordinators last season.

So, all of these new White coaches were competent and proven as head coaches, right?

Some were. Most weren't. The majority of the new hires had either losing records as head coaches, or no prior NFL experience as head coaches. Here in New England, Carroll's experience as an assistant coach as San Francisco was highly promoted, but not his won-loss record with the Jets.

Hmmmm.

So, these White coaches were the only competent head coaches or assistant coaches available, right?

Anyone who would say that must have been living in the Delta Quadrant the last few years. Or, you brain suffers from the Phage. One available, proven coach is Art Shell, who was 56-41 with the Raiders from 1989-94. Plus, his team made the playoffs 50% of the time during his coaching tenure.

And, if an owner wishes to hire from the college ranks, there are available, African-American head coaches there, too. The schools Grambling and Morgan State immediately come to my mind.

Yeah, but there were no available African-American coaches or coordinators with NFL experience!

In his article Chad adds, "Contrast this with Sherman Lewis, offensive coordinator for the Super Bowl champion [Green Bay] Packers. In recent years, coordinators from title teams usually have moved on to head coaching positions. However, Lewis was not interviewed for a single opening."

"Since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, teams have used 218 head coaches, just four of them Black. Three are coaching right now, and quite well: The [Minnesota] Vikings' Dennis Green (47-37), the [Philadelphia] Eagles' Ray Rhodes (22-15), and the [Tampa Bay] Buccaneers' Tony Dungy (8-5 since losing his first five games)."

Apparently among the football team owners, competency, experience and a winning record among head coaches aren't necessarily the primary job prerequisitess. As Chad stated in his article, "At the White Guys R Us Coaching Club, once you get in, you're a lifer. You don't need a membership card; they'll know you when they see you."

George Jenkins
First Officer

P.S. Guess who's undefeated? After the first three weeks of the 1997 season, Dungy's Buccaneers are undefeated.

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JANE DOE WALK FOR WOMEN'S SAFETY

Hi!

I will be doing the 5K walk again this year on Sunday, September 21st; my fourth consecutive walk. If you would like to sponsor me, or submit a pledge, that would be great. Any amount would be appreciated: $5, $10, $25 or more.

What is the Jane Doe Safety Fund?

"A program of the Massachusetts Coalition of Battered Women Service Groups, the Jane Doe Safety Fund promotes public awareness of domestic violence issues and support for battered women's programs through the production of special events like the annual Walk for Women's Safety. The fund's other focus is to provide community education through its Learning Center, a new iniative which will provide state-of-the-art resource material about domestic violence."

Jane Doe is any woman: rich, poor, any race, any nationality, any lifestyle or educational level. She may be employed or working at home raising children. She can be your mother, sister, aunt, daughter, co-worker, grandmother, or you.

Some facts on domestic abuse from the coalition's flyer:

Again, any amount would be appreciated: $5, $10, $25 or more. Please make your checks payable to: Jane Doe Safety Fund. Mail your checks to me at the following address: USS Ronald E. McNair, P.O. Box 255159, Boston, Mass. 02125 -5159.

Also, if you would like to walk together, that'd be great, too! Registration opens at 10 AM on Sept. 21st; the ceremonies start at 11 AM; and the walk starts at Noon. I'll be there rain or shine.

Or, if you prefer to volunteer in other ways, there are many flexible options. Please see me for details. Perhaps in future years, several Eastern Massachusetts starships can organize a more formal, joint participation effort in this walk. Thank you.

George
First Officer

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McNAIR READY ROOM

Star Date: 35580.6 -- Meeting agendas are available via Internet e-mail or fax. To learn more, see us at the next ship meeting. New members are welcome! Meetings are the second Sunday of the month at 3 PM. Call or write us for directions. Contact Starship McNair at P.O. Box 255159, Boston, Mass. 02125-5159. Future meeting locations:
September '97: Kevin
October '97: Jocelyn
November '97: Robbi
December '97: Ken
January '98: George
February '98: Fern hosting (at Robbi's)
March '98: Joan
April '98: Sabrina & Kevin


The meeting minutes from prior McNair meetings:

September 14, 1997. Stardate 35685.67

Meeting called to order at 4:06

Present, Fern, George, Ken, Robbie, Jocelyn, Kevin, Val, Sabrina; also Taka and Peter

Minutes of June 7, 1997 Meeting read and accepted.

Coupons: Discussion regrading accountability for coupons - i.e., who gave how many coupon over the years. To date we have sent about $6,000 of coupons.

Change in meeting dates. October 19, 1997 - Jocelyn; November 9, 1997, Robbie; December 14, Ken; January 11, George; February 8, 1998 Fern to be hosted at RobbieUs; March 8, 1998 - Joan; April 12, 1998, Kevin,

From - George: Jane Doe Walk on September 21st. George will be doing this from the Hatch Shell up the Charles and back, 5 km. Donations gratefully accepted. This is the fourth year George has done it and the second year for Peter.

TV appearance - On Channel 5 in April, 1997. A focus group focus chaired by Mike O'Leary, a reporter at WCVB channel 5. The session focused upon sex, violence and AIDS; the issue was what do children want to know. Apparently the best time is for parents to initiate the discussion with children between the ages of 8 and 12. Field Work Boston regularly schedules focus groups. There is a video of the session. Apparently. George was used for a lot of facial expressions.

Web page - we are now on the web. Most of us have web access. The rest of us reviewed the printed information. Questions as to what one wants on or in it. Addresses and phone numbers will never appear. If we have e-mail, there is a way it can be sent; but if one does not oneUs address, it can be removed. There is a mission statement and a history. We are linked on the page to all other major clubs and to some fan clubs. The home page has been listed in the Fandata directory on line. The only images are those of McNair and an Intrepid-class ship.

Future Activities:
Ken, our Marathon man, and Robbie are talking about the next Babylon 5 marathon for the last week of September, or the beginning of October. He is also doing a "Lost in Space" marathon on October 18th. The movie "Starship Troopers" should be released in November.

George wants to have a Borg marathon. He is thinking of November or December; plus a pancake breakfast again. We agreed on November 29, a Saturday.

Anniversary Party - Discussion as to what we want to do. We decided that we would like to go to Weylu's in Saugus. This was agreed. It was also agreed that we would try to do it at $15 per head. Anyone who says s/he is going will give a $5 deposit. If you show, you owe only the balance. If you don't show, you lose the $5 deposit. We also decided to invite all of the clubs. The Date will be January 31, 1998. If it snows, it will be done on February 7, 1998. Val has a program with interesting invitations on it. We will also do an e-mail invitation. Kevin is also thinking of having a monitor with Star Trek stuff going on. At some point in December, Joan will contact Weylu's regarding the party.

Val is going to be on TV in January on WGBH a teaching program on how to teach ESL students.

Robbie is now the Ship's Counsellor. She was promted to Lt.jg. level. Sabrino is the CMO. Val will be Robbie's assistant. She is still a Klingon.

Celebrations: for George's and Robbie's new Jobs. For Val for always being a help to Kevin, and her four year scholarship to college.

Meeting adjourned at 5:20.


August and July, 1997: no meetings held.


June 14, 1997. Stardate 35595.66

Meeting called to order at 3:45 - by George

Present: George, Roxanne, Me, Ken, Robbie, Fern, Taka

Decided who would be going to Rebelcon. Several people will be staying overnight; People who are going for the day, probably, Saturday need to coordinate with Roxanne.

Federation Science: Hartford. at the G. Fox building downtown, tickets are $9.00. We are looking at July 12 and have the meeting there. We need to find a place to stay overnight. George recommended a Courtyard; Rooms are $69.00; $62.00 if one has triple A. There is also the Red Roof. We will try to get a group discount.

We will go to BATMAN the week after it opens and to see Men in Black the week it opens.

T-shirts. Roxanne will coordinate this for those who do not have one.

Next meetings Date: October 12, Roxanne; November 9, Joan; December 14, Ken; George January 11; February 8, Joss; March 8, Robbie. We will discuss with others other dates.

Security chief. Val has resigned from this post. She is still a member of the ship. But she is teaching and taking more classes and doing a lot of volunteer Work and School. She feels that she wants to concentrate on these matters for the time being. Hopefully school will go well for her.

Meeting adjourned.


Submissions to INTERCOM are welcomed and encouraged from both crew and non-crew. Articles must relate to TREK, space science, the TREK characters, adventure, actors, literature, fandom, IDIC, collectibles, or events. Articles should not exceed 1,200 words. For full writer's guidelines, send a SASE to The First Officer, INTERCOM, at the above address. Send materials or manuscripts addressed to the First Officer, INTERCOM, at the above address, or at INTERCOM Editor. Unsolicited manuscripts will not be returned. Materials received after the deadline date will appear in the next issue, space permitting. The deadlines for manuscript submissions:

Deadline (Issue Date)
Dec. 1, 1997 (Dec. 15th)
Mar. 1, 1998 (March 15th)
June 1, 1998 (June 15th)

Note: Submission are welcome for Babylon Five, the X-Files, or other related sci-fi subjects. If you'd like to see INTERCOM cover these series, please let us know. Or better still, submit an article.

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DO BORG FEMALES REQUIRE BOOBS?
An Essay on Borg Sexuality

September 15, 1997

(Spoiler warning! This essay assumes that you have already seen the Voyager episodes "Scorpion II" and "The Gift.")

A couple weeks ago, Paramount aired the Voyager episode "Scorpion II" in the United States. My girlfriend and I eagerly anticipated the season opener. Would Janeway's alliance with the Borg last? Could the Borg be trusted? Could the fragile alliance develop an effective weapon in time against species 8472?

While answering these questions, "Scorpion II" introduced a new Borg character: Seven of Nine. Seven of Nine's mannerisms, attitudes and speech seemed thoroughly Borg. Yet my girlfriend and I couldn't help but notice that this Borgette had the biggest boobs of any Borg character we've seen! That's right! Boobs. Tits. Titties. Boobies. Bubbies. Hooters. Headlights. Breasts. Over-sized mammary glands, as my high school biology teacher used to proclaim.

If you don't believe me, go back and review the portion of the episode where Seven of Nine is stretched out on the biobed in Voyager's sickbay!

Why was this?

Even though the episode explained Seven of Nine's form fitting suit as "body armor," we couldn't help but wonder why this Borg had such huge boobs? How did this enhance the plot? Was this necessary? Were they necessary?

Now, many of you will be quick to point out that "It must be the suit!" Well, this essay isn't to debate whether or not the Borg use silicon, saline or foam. Nor will we debate the merits of implants. The fact is, the show's writers, producers and director presented a character that easily had the largest boobs in the Delta quadrant.

So, why did the show's producers present a bosomy Borg?

Some of you will surely cry, "Hey, That's Hollywood! What else would you expect?" Hollywood has successfully sold sex on-screen for years. The Trek franchise isn't immune to this tendency, or habit. But, a sexy, voluptuous Borg character? A Barbie-Borg?

Perhaps, a Paramount executive concluded that a buxomy Borg would help in the ratings. Hollywood has proven that action and sex - boobs, skin or cleavage - helps sell television shows. And Voyager's ratings haven't been as high as Paramount would like. More "T&A" will likely attract more male fans between the ages 15 and 35. (Hey, we saw Chakotay's butt a few episodes ago!) Why not a busty Borg female? The males want to see what Seven of Nine looks like underneath all of that "body armor."

But, a voluptuous Borg character? If Voyager needed more sex (and it is a very Puritan show - unfortunately - that needs more sex and sexuality), why add sex with Barbie-Borg?

Does sex and the Borg go together? What is going on here?

Hence, the title of this essay: Do Borg Females Require Boobs? Consider the facts. The Borg are all about assimilation. Since the TNG episode when Q flung the Enterprise-D into Borg space until the latest episode, we've seen the Borg consistently assimilate other planets, races, cultures, outposts, aliens, and solar systems.

In the episode "Scorpion II" we saw the Borg try to assimilate a biologically superior life-form, species 8472; in order to add species 8472's distinctiveness and advanced DNA structure to the Borg. The Borg strive to assimilate and use the best technology they can steal; be that technology biological, chemical or synthetic. And, the Borg require the most advanced DNA available.

So are the (huge) boobs necessary?

The feminists among you will be quick to ask the question: Do Borg males require (huge) penises? Instead, consider the bigger picture; the more important question to ask is this: is sex irrelevant among the Borg? Do they "do it" at all?

Last Fall, we saw "Q" sex; I like to call it "sex ala E.T." with just one finger between two Q continuum members. (This was most dull.) In the episode "Unity," we saw Chakotay have an intimate relationship with a partially de-Borgified human female, Riley Frazier. An aside: someone pointed out that Riley could also be a man's name. And, all of the other partially de- Borgified characters we saw in the episode "Unity" were male. So, maybe Riley was a "he," and Chakotay slept with a male and not a female. (Gee, did Voyager's writers pull a fast one here and slyly present Voyager's first gay relationship?)

So, it would seem that the writers and producers have now worked up their courage to present us with a story line one might call, "Sex and the Single Borg." Seven of Nine's presence raises the topic of Borg sexuality.

How so?

If the Borg do have sex, do all of them participate? Are the Borg the ultimate voyeurs? Does only one Borg have sex, and then share their thoughts and experience immediately throughout the collective? Or, is the process of assimilating a new planet or species just one single, massive, intergalactic orgasm for the Borg collective? Maybe this is why the Borg assimilate anything or anyone in their path, as quickly as possible.

If sex is irrelevant, then Seven of Nine is probably a virgin, since she was assimilated 18 years ago as a young child. Did her years as a Borg remove her sexual desires? Did her emotional development and sexuality stop at the point Annika Henson was assimilated by the Borg? Will Seven of Nine's sexuality and sex drive return as she becomes more human? And if so, which Voyager crew member might be the object of this desire? Who will Seven assimilate sexually? Will Seven of Nine accept Janeway as her mother figure and guardian?

Who will teach Seven of Nine the "birds and the bees?"

Another alternative: Seven of Nine could be the ultimate erotomaniac or nymphomaniac. As a Borg, Seven of Nine shared thoughts and memories with all of the other members of the collective. This meant that Seven of Nine came to know all of the thoughts, memories, experiences and desires of all of the other aliens who were assimilated by the Borg into the collective. Seven of Nine could also be the ultimate, walking, talking, breathing, intergalactic Kama Sutra. Seven of Nine could very well be a highly skilled lover, armed with all of this sexuality knowledge.

Which way will the writers portray the character? Kama Sutra expert or naive girl? Will Voyager's writers explore these issues? Do Voyager's writers have the courage to explore these issues?

So, do the Borg have sex?

The facts as presented would seem to say no. I can imagine Seven of Nine telling Tom Paris: "Humanoid reproduction is inefficient. Your obsession with romance, sex and child raising is imperfect. Other methods are more efficient." Or maybe Seven of Nine would state, "Only the Borg queen has sex."

To answer these questions, first I visited several Borg web sites on the Internet. I started with the impression that any Trek fan who identified with the Borg would know whether or not the Borg have sex. I guess that sex is irrelevant with these Borg fans because none of their web sites discuss sex or sexuality. The web sites the Borg Home Page and the Borg Institute of Technology mentioned nothing about sex.

I never thought sex would be irrelevant among humans. These Borg fans either don't know about sex, don't care about sex, or don't have sex, according to their web sites.

Next, I reviewed several prior episodes. In the TNG episode "The Best of Both Worlds" parts I and II), we learned that human or alien infants are implanted with Borg technology soon after birth. The Borg must assimilate infants.

From the series and from the movie "First Contact" the Borg require fresh biological components to survive. The Borg swiftly assimilated Picard's crew by injecting Borg DNA or Borg-built nanites into the human crew members.

I then asked a Trek expert, Jeff Mills of the Central Connecticut Star Trek Support Group. Jeff provided another interesting perspective. Another reason the Borg don't have sex: death is irrelevant.

What does death have to do with sex?

I doubt that the Borg are necrophiliacs. Well, they could be necrophiliacs, given the way the Borg can assimilate and revive "dead" biological life with neural energy. Perhaps this is a discussion for another issue. Let's focus on the relationship between sex and death for the Borg.

"Think about this from another angle: what is the purpose of reproduction? To replace your numbers and continue the species. In a race that assimilates others, why would there be the need for reproduction? ALSO, in a race in which members are essentially immortal, except for battle losses, there is not the same call for "replacement," thus another blow to the need for sex. (Darn.) Does a Borg die of natural causes, or does the cyborg technology basically sustain the biological body indefinitely? I have always assumed the latter. So, when you are assimilated and made Borg, do you get to keep your reproductive organs? I would think they are irrelevant," said Mills.

We saw in the Voyager episode "Unity" a ship full of Borg come to "life" again, when power was supplied to a cube that had been powerless for about five years. Obviously, the Borg have mastered the technology of producing, controlling and sending the proper neural electrical energy through biological tissue. Hence, biological life-forms assimilated by the Borg never really die. The Borg are able to perpetually provide the proper neural energy and signals.

So, several factors imply that the Borg don't have sex. The Borg are able to easily and rapidly assimilate biological organisms or life-forms into the collective. The Borg assimilate children and youth. The Borg may also incubate infants, probably by the forced injection of DNA into female eggs.

This rapid assimilation and DNA injection method is consistent with the Borg's philosophy: to constantly improve by assimilating other life-forms and utilizing the best technologies available. Speed is essential to the Borg. Further, In DS9 we saw that the Jem'Hadar don't have sex either. Jem'Hadar don't nurse their infants either. A Jem'Hadar infant is cloned and fully grown in about three days.

Interestingly, both the Borg and the Jem'Hadar thrive on preparedness, speed, and a philosophy that excludes activities "for the weak" that waste time. So, it would seem that if the Jem'Hadar don't have sex, then the Borg probably don't either. If the Jem'Hadar don't nurse their infants, then the Borg probably don't either.

Now, back to those boobs.

If the Borg don't have sex, then why the big boobs? The Borg philosophy might suggest a breast reduction for Seven of Nine. In the movie "First Contact" the Borg Queen didn't have large breasts. In fact, her small upper body torso - a combination of machinery and biology - was connected to a mechanical, machine built lower half. This presentation strongly suggests that even the Borg Queen doesn't have sex.

So, now we are back to the original question posed in this essay: Do Borg Females Require Boobs? It would seem that boobs are irrelevant for the Borg.

The Borg don't have sex, and don't nurse their young. So boobs are probably irrelevant. And guys, a penis is also irrelevant for Borg males, since the Borg don't have sex. (We haven't seen any urinals in a Borg cube either.) In fact, given the Borg assimilation process and speed, gender differences between Borg drones is probably irrelevant.

So why is Seven of Nine a busty babe?

It must be for the TV ratings.

A possibility: Voyager's executives have been watching episodes of "Xena: Warrior Princess" and "Hercules: The Legendary Journeys." Both series feature hunks and busty babes everywhere. Both series enjoy higher ratings, too.

So, what's next for Voyager?

Do Voyager's writers have the courage to explore the sexuality issues raised in this essay? The June, 1997 press release (Source: http://startrek.msn.com/News_26.html) which announced Seven of Nine's arrival, stated: "'Seven of Nine' is something of a 'wild child' - she was a Human assimilated by Borg as a young girl. But once Captain Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) severs her connection to the Collective, she is forced to stay on Voyager and adapt to Human society," comments Creator/Executive Producer Rick Berman. "'Seven of Nine' should provide us with countless new story-lines."

Well, we will see if Berman and his writers boldly go and explore "Sex and the Single Borg." We shall see if Berman and company have the balls to go where no boobs or writers have gone before. Will they gloss over the sexuality issues, or not? Will Berman and company stick with a Puritanical Voyager, where sex between crew members only happens due to alien, chemical, time warp, trans- warp, or other strange but temporary influence? (I'm still trying to forget the salamander episode where Janeway and Paris had sex as salamanders.) Or, will the writers do what they haven't yet been able to do: give us fans some really well developed characters and more intricate plot lines.

The balls are in your court, guys. Show us fans what you've got.

© 1997 USS Ronald E. McNair. All rights reserved. This article may be linked to provided it is presented in its entirety with this copyright message appended. If you decide to link to this article, web site, an INTERCOM newsletter issue, or another article, please register with the USS McNair Guest-book. Otherwise, the INTERCOM Editor will not be able to notify you when links or pages change.

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COMM CHANNEL NEWS

Oct. 18, 1997 JUPITER 2 LAUNCH PARTY. Poor Dr. Smith and his aching back. Danger, danger, Will Robinson! The show "Lost In Space" took place in October, 1997. Come watch our future past. Special showing of the never aired original pilot episode. Start time: 3 PM. For further information contact the Vorlon Ambassador to the UFP.

Oct. 18, 1997 WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE... a celebration of Fandom! Saturday, October 18th, 1997 at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Randolph, MA. Come, join the Boston Star Trek Association for a night of food, fun & fandom! Admission -- $10. Activities: cold buffet, cash bar, DJ & Dancing, Door Prizes* (*Bring 5 or more non-perishable food items to be incuded in our Door Prize Drawings) to pay in advance, send your check (made payable to the BSTA) to: The Boston Star Trek Association, WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE PARTY, P. O. Box 1108, Boston, MA 02103-1108. Or, you can pay at the door (If paying at the door, please RSVP so an accurate number for attendance.) QUESTIONS? RSVP to Captain Linda Schneider

Oct. 31 - Nov. 2, 1997 United FanCon VII at the Springfield Marriott in Springfield, Mass. Guests: Roxanne Dawson, B5 guest TBA, Caroline John, Sonia Hillios. Reservations: 413 - 781 - 1111. Reserved tickets: weekend, $45; one day, $20; Friday only, $8.

November 29, 1997 BORG MARATHON. See them from the beginning: when Q flung the Enterprise-D into the Delta quadrant! Watch back-to-back every episode with the Federation's most lethal enemy: the Borg. Start time: pancake brunch starts at 11:30 AM, videos start at noon and stop at midnight. Potluck. Bring your favorite pancake fixings or favorite coffee. For further information contact the McNair's First Officer.

2001 Noreascon *2001. The fan con of the next millenium. Memberships start at US $8.00. For more information, write to Noreascon*2001, PO Box 1010, Framingham, MA 01701-0205. E-mail: Noreascon 2000

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FROM DATA'S HUMOR CHIP

The following was received recently via Internet e-mail.

Subject: FWd: Fun Math!
Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997 09:14:04 -0700 (PDT)

This is from a math major with WAY too much free time...

Sex and Numbers

You MUST try this!(For those of you who are not mathematically inclined, you might need a calculator)

  1. First of all, pick the number of days a week that you would like to have sex.
  2. Multiply this number by 2.
  3. Add 5.
  4. Multiply by 50.
  5. If you have already had your birthday this year, add 1747. If you haven't, add 1746.
  6. Last step: Subtract the four digit year that you were born.

RESULTS:

You should now have a three digit number, the first digit of which was your original number (i.e.how many times you want to have sex each week). The second two digits are your age!!!

It really works. If it didn't the first time, try again! this is the only year it will ever work.

Author unknown


Subject: Fw: Things not to say to a policeman (fwd)

A little good advice...

Author unknown


And, this came from our friends at the USS Christa McAuliffe:

On Tue, 26 Aug 1997 21:57:10 -0400 (EDT) CAPNHO@aol.com writes:
Check out
http://www.webwarren.c om/ic97/photos/saturday/ho-robe.jpg for a picture of me in standard McAuliffe wear for 9AM Starfleet meetings at the 1997 Starfleet International Conference last weekend.

I entered the record books as the first person to be promoted to Commodore in a bathrobe!

Ho
capnho@aol.com

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FUN ON THE INTERNET

By now you know that the Internet and World Wide Web both contain a wealth of information. Both numbers and text. Qualitative data and numeric data. The accurate and the inaccurate. The friendly and the hostile. The useful and the useless.

Simply put, the WWW contains the good and the bad.

So, what else is out there on the Internet? Sure, you can find some quality information, like company annual reports, industry statements, academic classroom teaching outlines, search engines, white page directories, alumni lists, medical/drug interaction warnings, dentists, images of every person you might be interested in, poetry, fiction, jokes, or a plethora of commercial sites to order products or services. And, yeah, you can find plenty of porn.

But, what's new that you haven't seen already? While surfing the other day, I ran across the following data at the web sites of two companies you are probably familiar with:

Facts about Burger King:

By now you'd think that this was enough.

Not!

Some "Chicken Facts" from the Colonel at KFC:

So, the next time you step up to the counter, remember that over 581 million chickens gave their lives for you. There's plenty of chicken to go around. That's a lot of chickens that crossed the road to get to the fryer. So, don't you be a chicken. Boldly step up to the counter and order it your way today!

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