Wow! I can’t believe how long it’s been since I posted anything here. Well, as they say, the buck stops here. I could claim an excuse of real life keeping me busy (and it has), but that doesn’t mean I can ignore you, the hardworking crew of the USS Kelly. So… here’s what’s up.

As shown in our last post, we had a great time at the 2021 Fleet Games in August.

September 1st was the USS Kelly’s 35th birthday. We had a small gathering in a park on Labor Day weekend, showcasing the history of the club over the past three-plus decades. As you can imagine, it was sparsely attended, but those who were there had fun.

In October, our fearless XO lead the crew through a corn maze. I regret that due to work schedules, I was not able to be there at the time.

Our November activity is THIS COMING SATURDAY, November 13th. It will be held at 6:00 pm at the Fiiz located on 4700 South just west of I-215.
This will be the USS Kelly Auction, as well as a food drive and a bake sale to raise money for the club and for the Utah Food Bank. The Kelly Auction has been a near-yearly tradition, and raises operating funds for the club. It is by using these funds that we were able to get our new, gorgeous USS Kelly t-shirts in time for Fleet Day. It also helped subsidize the Kelly Kampout and pays for things like our ownership of the website usskelly.com and our Zoom subscription. All of these things are done for the use of the crew, so please come and see all the Star Trek (and other pop culture) goodies we have available, just in time for your Holiday shopping!

There will be no Kelly Activity in December, as that is prime time for family gatherings.

Our first activity in 2022 will be the annual Admiral’s Banquet, held January 22, 2022. This will be hosted by the USS Rendezvous.

In other news:

Have you seen the new Star Trek Prodigy? The first three episodes are out, and so far it’s fantastic.

It amazes me how fast time flies. Fleet Day 2021 was held Aug 7, 2021, and here it is the 28th. All I can say is I’m sorry for posting so late. BUT… we definitely had a great time.

The annual Seventh Fleet Day is one of those events that everyone should try to attend. It is an opportunity to see those members of other clubs that may be too far away for us to visit normally. Social media is fine and all, but there is nothing like meeting in person!
As you can see, the USS Kelly was well represented at the event. And we look awesome in our new Kelly t-shirts! (Thanks to everyone who ordered one. If you still need to pick yours up, please contact Captain Bogler a.s.a.p.)

This year, the annual Seventh Fleet Day was held by the USS Ticonderoga at Barlow Park in Clearfield, UT. They had all sorts of games available to play, but the highlighted event was a kickball tournament. Kickball teams were not designated by ship, but were random teams… sort of. You could sign up for one of four teams: Borg, Vulcan, Andorian, or Klingon. The Ticonderoga even made hats for each of the kickball teams! I was on the Andorian team (we lost… bad). We had crewmembers on every team, so congratulations to those of you who were on the Klingon kickball team.

Klingon Kickball team kicks butt

The Ticonderoga provided an awesome hot dog bar for lunch along with all the trimmings, and we were able to relax and have fun. It was great seeing all of your faces at the event, new friends and old friends alike.

Of course we had Fleet Day staples such as the “Saucer Separation”, “Design a Starship”, “Liar’s Dice” and “Shields”. I’m proud to say the Kelly swept the Shields and Liar’s Dice events. Liar’s Dice winners were Admiral Dennis Hollinger (1st place), Crewman Eric Moorer (2nd place) and Captain Jill Bogler-Patterson (3rd place). Shields winners were Crewman Bob Patterson (1st place – technically USS Ticonderoga, but he’s honorary USS Kelly), Captain Jill Bogler-Patterson (2nd place) and Lt. Commander Dawn Woods (3rd place).

As I mentioned at the beginning, time seems to just fly by lately. Case in point – next week we celebrate the USS Kelly’s 35th birthday. Can you believe it? 35 years!
That event will be held in Murray Park Pavillion 3 in Murray, UT. Check out our Facebook event for more details.

I sit here studying (reviewing) episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation in preparation for taking (or re-taking) the first part of the Command Test. As I do, I was reflecting some on the episode I just finished watching: The Schizoid Man. I thought I should do a review, especially when I reflect on the last episodes of Picard, available on the Paramount Plus streaming network. If you haven’t watched all of Picard season 1 yet, I suggest you do that before reading my review as I will incorporate my thoughts on that in this review.

The episode introduces us to Ira Graves, the genius who claimed to have taught Dr. Noonien Soong everything he knows. The enterprise is called to Gravesworld, Dr. Graves home planet, because he is ill. It turns out he is ill with a terminal disease.

Spending a lot of time with Data, they discuss things like Dr. Graves work on cybernetics, how Data will never know death, and how Dr. Graves intends to cheat death by transferring his consciousness into a computer. This is especially ironic as we discover during Picard season 1 that what was left of Data’s consciousness has been transferred to a computer where it was able to grow into Data’s full consciousness again. (In fact, that tidbit is central to the whole plot of season 1).

Eventually, Data comes out alone saying that Dr. Ira Graves is dead. The away team, along with Dr. Graves’s body and his young assistant, beam back aboard the Enterprise. Soon, the crew realize that the Data that beamed back with them is not the Data they know. Dr. Graves consciousness is suppressing the Data we know, in part because Counselor Troi can sense intense jealousy coming from Data, plus his personality is arrogant and seems completely unlike Data’s… and let’s not mention the funeral. (I mean, “To know him is to love him and to love him was to know him”? Talk about arrogance!)

Eventually ‘Data’ ends up in Engineering, after knocking out Geordi LaForge. He claims it was an accident. Picard, calling to Sickbay, asks about Dr. Graves’s assistant’s hand – it turns out that he’d crushed it, because he is not aware of how much of Data’s strength he uses. This conversation between Picard and Ira-Graves-in-Data’s-body gives probably my favorite quote of the episode.

“No being is so important that he can usurp the rights of another.”

Captain Picard to Ira Graves (in Data’s body), The Schizoid Man

Ira ends up knocking Picard out accidentally, realizes that he’s doing wrong, and eventually transfers his consciousness to the Enterprise computer. This saves his knowledge, but the human factor is gone.

TNG Season Two tends to be more… cerebral… than other seasons. There are some great gems in the season, and this is one of those.

Thanks for reading my review! Live Long and Prosper.

(P.S. See you at Fleet Day this weekend!)

The design is complete and the vendor chosen. We have a short time to get these shirts done before Fleet Day on August 7th.

Click the link to order. Order form closes July 30, 2021.

Cost is $20.00 per shirt. Pay me (Captain Bogler). Venmo is preferred, but we can make other arrangements. I’ll have them shipped to me, and I’ll distribute them at Fleet Day, unless I see you earlier. Adult and Youth sizes are both available.

One thing I want to do as Captain is to keep the legacy of the USS Kelly alive. As part of that, I wanted to find and share our old newsletters. Thanks to Admiral Carl Stark, I was able to get most of our back issues (from volume 1 through volume 68) up on our Website. You may have noticed a few changes because of it.

As I was perusing these old issues, I was remembering when I joined the USS Kelly. I remembered being asked to write an article and that it was published. Well, I found it. I didn’t put my name on the article in the issue, but I distinctly remember that it was about the Tenctonese (the aliens in Alien Nation) and that I wrote it like a bunch of various logs. I wanted to share that with you… so here it is.

This article was published the first part of 1994, and was in the first issue of the Communique published after I joined in December 1993. Sometimes I forget how much time has passed since I joined this organization. A lot has changed, but a lot remains the same – namely the friendships I’ve made along the way. I hope that you find the same enjoyment with the USS Kelly as I have over the past two-and-a-half decades.

Live long and prosper,
Captain Bogler

We are getting ready to have new USS Kelly t-shirts made. After lots of discussion, we’ve decided that the t-shirts will be a dark purple with silver ink. We will have two images on it, and we need YOUR help to pick it.

This first graphic will go on the front of the t-shirt in the area where a pocket would go.

front
T-shirt front graphic

One of the following three images will go on the back of the t-shirt. The only question is, which one? This is where we need your opinion. Pick your favorite and then you can vote on our Facebook Poll (here) or send us your vote by e-mail.

So… which will it be? Vote and we’ll find out!

Voting closes on July 20th.

It’s finally out!

Thanks to everyone who contributed to this first volume of our re-launched newsletter. It is published in PDF format, and is free for download from here, our Facebook page, and is also being distributed through our email contact list. You are more than welcome to print out a copy.
(Note: If you want us to mail you out a printed copy, please contact the Command Staff as there will be a cost.)

You can download a copy here.

Last Saturday, the crew of the U.S.S. Kelly met up with the crew of the U.S.S. Pulsar to attend one of the best events a Star Trek club can do… ever. We went to the Christa McAuliffe Space Center in Pleasant Grove, UT. (Click here for more info about the venue.)

If you have ever done one of these missions, you’ll know how much fun we have. We get to dress up in uniform and pretend to actually be on a spaceship, communicating with the computer and with our Chief Engineer by voice, talking to aliens, running programs on computers and so on. It is F-A-N-Tastic!

If you have done one of these missions before, you need to go again. The CMSC has had a major facelift. They have added new simulators, new missions, and even a planetarium!

This time, we ended up with enough people to run two simulators, and we ended up splitting up by ship. For our mission, Crewman Eric Moorer acted as our captain and Bob Patterson of the USS Ticonderoga acted as our XO. Other positions were filled as necessary (I ran sensors). We also had several new recruits join our adventure. (Welcome!)

[Note: pictures will be added to this article at a later time.]

We have finished up our Superhero High School campaign, and at last week’s USS Kelly role-playing game session, we created characters for a new game loosely-based on Robotech… very loosely. Today, we started the game session. We also welcomed some new players. (Note: you don’t need to be a member of the USS Kelly to join with our RPG sessions. You also don’t need to be crazy to play with us… but it helps.)

As always, we are using the Fantasy Grounds Unity program. The nice thing is that all players are able to use the demo (free) version of the program as our GM has a paid copy that allows all his players to use the free one while connected to him. We are allowing both in-person gaming at the GM’s house as well as remote connection through both Fantasy Grounds and a chat channel on Discord.

This Robotech-esque campaign is based on the new Robotech: Macross Saga RPG released through Strange Machine Games. However, we are beta-testing the second book, and our GM had to create the game rules for Fantasy Grounds (with lots and lots of input from the Robotech RPG/SMG community on Discord). In fact, our GM was working on the ruleset today just before the game.

Now for the actual storyline…

It’s been about four years since the Reign of Fire when a Zendrati zealot destroyed Macross City in a suicide attack, killing off eighty percent of the population and lots of the plant life. However, since they mainly fired at cities, the jungles survived. Several people hightailed it to the jungles of South America and built a community in a bunch of crashed Zendrati ships. Our community of Home is … militaristically pacifist. Basically, our leaders decided that all the problems we’ve been having are because of people living in cities. Now, we live in the jungle. While we have plenty of wood, plant, and animal life to sustain us, we have to scrounge for spare parts and medical supplies. Unfortunately, gangs of bikers tend to raid us, and our leaders do nothing about it.

Our party has been put together to go scrounging for supplies. Since everything within about five days of Home has been cleaned out, we need to find somewhere else to scrounge. We ran into a wolf pack and, after a short fight, we were able to gain some meat and pelts. We preserved the pelts as good as we could and placed them in an area that we could find again (so we didn’t have to carry them).

On day ten, we came across a clearing that had both a henge (i.e. a stone circle) and a Mesoamerican pyramid. Strangely, it appears that the two were designed to be together. While the henge and pyramid appear ancient, we also found asphalt underneath the huge plateau we were on. We determined there had been an archaeological dig (a preliminary one) that was surveying the pyramid… and that someone had opened the pyramid’s door after the scientists left. So, we decided to go in.

In the first chamber, we found seven skeletons – five were ancient, two were more recent. There are several doors that are still sealed. We decided to open one, but had to wait 48 hours for the pressure to equalize. By this time, it was dark, so we decided to camp for the night. What’s odd is that we all fell asleep, including the watch. When we woke up, we were all rested, none of us were hungry, and there were no animal or inset noises.

We checked out the road, and found the plateau pitted as if someone had attacked it. The only way out appeared to be by air, so we decided to check for supplies. It turned out that we had run across an old United Earth base that had been set up in the ancient corridors. Part of what we found was a reflex engine that has been running for about 35,000 years.

We found all sorts of technology, including battle pods. We determined that if we tell our Home about this area, the artifacts will be destroyed. We found the base’s database, which showed drone logs. Those drone logs showed footage of us fighting wolves three days ago… and footage from Home.

With this information, we decided to keep perusing the logs… and end the game for the night.

I was recently asked which Star Trek series was my favorite. My response? “Yes.” I mean, how can you choose just one Star Trek series? Each one has its own unique flavor, its positives and negatives, and not all series will appeal to every person. If I were to pick just one Star Trek series (which is really, really hard to do), I suppose that I’d have to go with the original.

TOS holds a special place in my heart. Not only was it the beginning of one of the most prolific sci-fi series in existence, but it reminds me of my childhood. You see, when I was little, I used to watch Star Trek reruns with my dad. It was a special time we spent together, just the two of us. (Later I found out my mom is a sci-fi nerd, too.)

Looking back at Star Trek (no bloody A, B, C or D), you might think it’s really cheesy or outdated, with outdated attitudes. To that I say you need to look at when it was created. When Star Trek first premiered in 1966, the most popular television shows were westerns. Star Trek was presented to the networks as “Wagon Train among the stars”, where the wagon train (the starship Enterprise) would travel and have adventures during the journey.

While today we may cringe at the obviously misogynistic attitudes depicted in the show, we also need to realize that this is the way television was in the 1960’s. Heck, this is the way most attitudes were in the 1960’s. Star Trek did a lot to help change those attitudes, as well as inspire people.

If you look at it, the original USS Enterprise had a diverse bridge crew. Not counting Spock, the completely alien first officer, there was Sulu, the Asian pilot and Checkov, the Russian navigator (which at the height of the Cold War was definitely unheard of). There was also Uhura, a black woman with responsibility (also completely unheard of at this time of civil rights activism).

Speaking of Uhura, there is a wonderful story about Nichelle Nichols’s experience on Star Trek. She had submitted a resignation letter to creator Gene Roddenberry, wanting more for her acting career. That weekend, Nichelle had gone to an event where she met Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He let her know that her character of Lt. Uhura was a role model, and that he was a fan of hers. When Ms. Nichols went to work again that Monday, she approached Gene and took back her resignation. Roddenberry was relieved. (You can see an article about the experience here.) Heck, the character of Uhura even inspired one Whoopi Goldberg to become an actress! (See an article on Whoopi being a Star Trek fan here.)

Star Trek was hopeful at a time when there was a lot of uncertainty about the future. It showed us an Earth that was united regardless of race, position, or creed. It showed humans getting along with other races (Vulcans, Andorians, etc.) and trying to get along with other races. It showed that we could find humor in even some of the most dire of circumstances, and that sometimes we just need to laugh (“The Trouble with Tribbles” comes to mind here).

It may have lasted only three seasons, but Star Trek has become ingrained in pop culture. It has inspired all sorts of people to do amazing things, and has spawned several movies and television series. For these reasons, plus the personal memories I have of enjoying a lazy Sunday watching Star Trek with my family, the original Star Trek series will always have a special place in my heart.

Live Long and Prosper,
Captain Jill Bogler