We are continuing the story LATINUM TOE, or The Spy Who Stunned Me, written by former USS Kelly member George Bogler. Our hero, James T Bondkirk, has checked in with his boss W, and is on his way to pick up the gadgets needed for his new mission from Q…

==^==

Bondkirk was not surprised to find Q still in his lab. The little scientist was impossible to dislodge when he was involved with a project. Q was an Expy, native to Expyselon VI. He stood about four feet high and wore no clothes. His species had a natural leathery skin that served as adequate protection. Natural pouches in the skin provided storage space. With their six long arms, Expys made excellent builders, mechanics, and so forth. Q was especially talented, allowing him to be transferred out of vehicle maintenance section into the support technologies section, and to quickly rise to the position of section Chief.

“Good morning, Kazitzilpic,” Bondkirk greeted the alien. Q’s real name, Qztxlbrxlyc as he claimed it was spelled in Federation Standard, was unpronounceable to humans – hence the nickname ‘Q’. James was one of the few who made an effort to pronounce the full version.

“Ah, nice try my friend James! Better than last time. Worse than three times ago.”Expys had eidetic memory. Q, for instance, could remember every tracing of every circuit board he had ever worked on. “Cricket match today?”

“No,” replied Bondkirk. “I need some of your inventions for a new mission.”

“Yes, yes. Just start gathering what you need. It’s all labeled. Be right with you.”

James knew that last statement had as much chance of coming true as a Vulcan doing stand up comedy.The Expy was wrapped up in his own little world, and there would be no disturbing him. In a couple of hours or a couple of days, Q would remember James had been there and he would go looking for the human. Then he would notice how much time had passed, shrug, and start another project. On the rare occasions when neither was working, they liked to get together for drinks or to see a cricket match. Q loved cricket. James selected several items from the shelves and left without bothering to say goodbye.

==^==

Bondkirk walked onto the casino floor. It was huge, the largest he had ever seen. There were tables and machines for every type of gambling game he could think of. There was even one corner of the room set aside for the Gamma Quadrant game known among humans as “Move Along Home”. There was a crowd gathered around this novelty as the required Wadi operator re-materialized three breathless, but healthy, live “game pieces” from the microdimension contained within the machine.

Despite his genteel upbringing, James preferred poker over any of the traditional “upper crust” games of chance such as Chermin d’ Fer or even alien diversions like Dabo or Tongo. Therefore he got a drink, found the poker tables, and picked one with several observers. His plan was to watch until he spotted someone cheating. It was bound to happen sooner or later. When it did, he would get into a game with that individual, expose the cheater, and make loud demands to see the manager. He could then drop some hints that assuming the manager were sufficiently bright, would filter their way up to Latinum Toe himself. the crime boss would have Bondkirk checked out, find the data on the persona created by the Agency, and that would be his foot in the door. Easy as glop on a stick.

It didn’t take him long to find his cheat. A human woman was dealing from the bottom of the deck. However, she she won and the game broke up before James could join it. He discretely followed the woman to the bar. “May I buy you a drink, Miss…”

“Why, certainly,” she replied without looking at him. Her accent was that of the southern United States region of Earth. James noticed that it was faked, but very well faked. “Champagne, and the name’s Delta. Delta Belle.” As she turned to face him, a hint of an expression crossed her face. “And your name, sir?”

“Bondkirk. James T Bondkirk”. The woman wooked somewhat familiar, but then he met so many women. “That was excellent poker playing. Woulod you care for another game?”

“Ah really don’t think so, Mr. Bondkirk. Ahm tired of this place and am plannin to leave tomorrah. I’d better pack mah things.”

“Then perhaps you would agree to have just one dance with me? Please?”

==^==

“Oh, very well. Perhaps just one.” She was getting nervous. Had he recognized her? She needed to know so she consented to go dancing. One dance led to several more. She was just being paranoid. Her disguise was good, and her accent nearly perfect. How could he have recognized her? She relaxed and let the conversation flow, waiting for a graceful chance to leave.

==^==

Bondkirk convinced the lady to keep dancing and managed to draw out the conversation. It was pure chance to find a card cheat so quickly. His plan would go so much smoother if he could use her instead of waiting to find another one. Also the sense of familiarity about her nagged at him. Finally he put it together. He leaned in close and whispered in her hear. “Come to my room, number 1026, in half an hour or I’ll make it known that you’re a professional card cheat known on Risa as Trivoy L. Pursuit.” Then he kissed her and walked away.

James went to his room and retrieved a PADD from his briefcase. He slaved that PADD into the room’s terminal and hacked effortlessly into the guest files. Trivoy, a.k.a. Delta Belle of Savannah, Georgia, was in room 9429. He downloaded her thumbprint scan into the PADD and dialed for a subspace frequency. The hotel computer verified his credit account and let him access an available frequency. Bondkirk sent the thumbprint scan off to HQ. It would be a few hours before they could tell him anything. Trivoy was obviously “in the business” and would have several layers of false identities. Nothing the experts at HQ couldn’t crack, though. Meanwhile, there was no reason why he couldn’t approach things in a civilized manner. He called room service and ordered a candleight dinner for two.

We are continuing the story LATINUM TOE, or The Spy Who Stunned Me, written by former USS Kelly member George Bogler. As you recall, our hero just exposed a Ferengi cheating at cards. He introduced himself as Bondkirk, James T Bondkirk…

==^==

James T Bondkirk sauntered into the offices of the shipping firm that served as a cover for the United Federation of Planets Covert Intelligence Agency. With a quick look to make sure he was unobserved, he slipped through a nondescript door and into the foyer of FCI headquarters. After clearing security he went directly to his office. It was not a place where he spent much time. The life of a field agent suited him well, and he made a conscious effort to spend as little time in the office as possible. Still, a private office was one of the perks of his “Double-O”, or elite agent, status. It was not large, but it had its advantages such as the well-stocked bar, and the equally well-stocked female yeoman who kept it that way. His terminal screen was flashing red when he entered. “Computer, play priority message,” he instructed.

After a brief pause, he heard the gravely voice of the Agency Director, code named ‘W’. “Double-O Forty-Seven, report to my office as soon as you get in,” it said.

There was already someone else in W’s office. James recognized him as the liaison to the Federation Council, Slai Meeyuuze. The man was liked by the agents only slightly less than a Klingon likes a Tribble. Anything said in the conversation to follow was likely to be twisted and analyzed to see how Slai could take advantage of it before it ever reached the Council.

The Director looked up from the PADDs spread across his desk. “ah, here at last 0047. We’ve been looking over that little incident of yours on Risa last month. Very clever figuring out how the Ferengi was cheating – but why in the name of the Great Bird did you go and get yourself involved?”

“Elementary, my dear W. I had seen this Quirm earlier in the day talking to a Vorta and getting some casual oo-mox from one of the hostesses. He seemed to entirely too happy for what he seemed to be getting. I suspected that he had extra sensitive lobes. Yet later, at the poker table when the waitress accidentally brushed against his ear he displayed no erogenous reaction.

“Hmmm,” grunted W admiringly. “And the woman had nothing to do with it? What was her name again?”

“Trivoy L. Pursuit,” Meeyuuze popped up. “Or at least that’s how she signed the guest register and her official statement. She’s nobody to bother ourselves with.”

“Yes, yes,” W interrupted, “but why involve yourself 0047? You were playing on an expense account.”

“And I would remind you to turn in your winnings and receipts,” interrupted Slai.

W shot the man a nasty glare. “0047?”

“Yes, sir. One of my informants told me that Latinum Toe was interested in Risa, and was sending a new operative to check the place out. When I caught on to Quirm’s cheating, I put two and two together. Now I have a clever plan to infiltrate Latinum Toe’s organization. As the man who exposed Quirm’s incompetence, I can pass myself off as a security expert looking for a more lucrative job opportunity.”

“Latinum Toe! The infamous Ferengi crime boss? We’ve tried at least a dozen times to infiltrate his organization.”

“I’m not familiar with this character,” said Meeyuuze.

“He’s a relatively new player,” replied W. “He’s come from nowhere in the last three years and is now considered, at least in some circles, to be a dark rival to Grand Nagus Zek. Some analysts think he is a former Zek associate who somehow fell out of favor. He operates a casino through several dummy corporations on Torman V.”

“So is ‘Latinum Toe’ some sort of code name?”

“Not exactly, Minister,” answered Bondkirk. “It’s a nickname or alias he created for himself. It seems he lost his left big toe and had it replaced with a prosthetic made of gold-pressed latinum. For a Ferengi, that would be the ultimate investment. He takes a chunk of his fortune with him wherever he goes.”

“”Yes, and I’ve no doubt that he would sell that toe in a minute if he had to,” added the Director. “What will you need from the agency to carry out your plan, 0047?”

“To start with, a suitable cover story along the lines I just described. Then first class passage to Torman V and an assortment of technological tools.”

W nodded his head. “You mean ‘toys’, 0047, or at least that’s how you seem to treat them. Very well.” He punched an extension into his comm unit. “Director to Q. Report to my office at once.”

There was a sudden flash of light as a voice responded, “whatever you say, Mon Capitain”.

“Damn,” cursed W. “I wish he wouldn’t do that.” He punched in the comm extension for his secretary. “Miss Smallcredit, get maintenance up here stat. My overhead light is on the fritz again. And have a programmer standing by to create a cover persona for Agent Bondkirk.”

“Right away sir,” responded a sultry voice.

“Dismissed, gentlemen,” W barked. “0047, you can intercept Q on his way here and go pick out whatever toys you fancy.

==^==

… to be continued in Part 3

There are many ways to be creative – artwork, writing, music, working on our favorite television series, etc. We’d love to see your submissions!

To that end, I am going to post a story written by a former member of the USS Kelly. I know he would want to share it with you.

LATINUM TOE, or The Spy Who Stunned Me (a Seventh Fleet Tale) by George Bogler

Quirm smiled to himself. This hand would be the one to make him rich. The one that would give him respect in his new employer’s eyes. He had spent the last two hours carefully cheating, winning just enough to be considered a mediocre player. Now it was time for the kill. the chips on the table represented over 100 bars of gold-pressed latinum, and it was all his.

Trivoy smiled to herself. this hand would be the one to make her rich, as well as giving her the opportunity she had come looking for. The chips on the table represented over 100 bars of gold-pressed latinum, and she was holding four Jacks. It was all hers, yet as much as she looked forward to winning, she also would be very happy to wipe the self-satisfied smirk off the ugly face of the loathsome Ferengi across from her. He had joined the game when she had, two hours ago, and had won only a hand or two. However he had gotten lucky somehow & won the last three hands. Each time his gloating got more insufferable.

The Englishman sitting next to Trivoy signaled for a waitress. “Vodka martini,” he ordered in a suave, but halting voice. “Poured, not replicated.”

The betting had progressed around the table, by the time the Englishman’s drink arrived. The waitress was bumped while serving the drink and her bare arm brushed against Quirm’s ear. “Watch what you’re doing, you clumsy fe-male,” he barked.

The Englishman raised an eyebrow.

“It’s your bet, Ferengi,” grumbled one of the other players – a Bolian.

“Very well,” replied Quirm. “I’ll see your slip, and raise you two strips.”

The Bolian debated a moment, then tossed his cards to the table. “Beaten by the damn Ferengi,” he cursed.

“The bet is to you, Miss Pursuit,” prompted Quirm.

“Right,” answered Trivoy. “Your two strips, and two more.”

The Englishman covered the bet.”Call.”

Trivoy laid down her four Jacks. “Well played, Madam,” the Englishman conceded as he displayed his two pair: tens and eights.

Quirm was the only one left. He was positively cackling as he lay down his cards one at a time, prolonging his victory: one, two, three, and finally four Kings. As he started scooping up the chips, the Englishman stood and moved directly behind the Ferengi. “I wouldn’t celebrate just yet, Quirm,” he said, then grabbed the Ferengi’s ears and pulled hard.

The ears came off, revealing circuitry and wires leading into Quirm’s real, though only slightly smaller, ears. The Englishman explained. “He’s been receiving transmissions from a spotter. Someone was positioned in the room in such a way as to see everyone’s cards. He probably would have been roving to seem less suspicious.”

Shortly thereafter, Trivoy finished giving her statement to Security and noticed the Englishman at the bar. “Thank you for exposing that Ferengi cheat. I would have been wiped out if he had won that pot.”

“Think nothing of it. It was the least I could do.” He gave Trivoy a warm smile.

“Nevertheless, I am grateful. Can I buy you a drink, Mr…”

“Bondkirk,” he replied. “James T Bondkirk.”

Founded by the USS Kelly, the USS Rendezvous, the USS Ticonderoga, and the USS Retributor, Starfleet Command’s Seventh Fleet has been around since 1998. With club longevity like this, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that we’ve had crewmembers pass away while part of our ships. The Seventh Fleet Admiralty wanted a way to remember these friends. To that end, the USS Porthos was created.

The USS Porthos was founded January 29, 2011, with the idea that as crewmembers pass away they won’t be forgotten – instead they’ll be transferred to the USS Porthos. In game terms, the Porthos is a Constitution Class starship from the alternate Kelvin timeline (i.e. the J.J. Abrahms movie timeline). Her logo, design, and mission were all determined based on the preferences of her captain George Bogler, who passed away suddenly in 2010. George was always a fan of TOS, Starfleet Engineers (especially Scotty), and Captain Archer’s dog in ENTERPRISE.

In the past few years, we’ve lost several crewmembers who have now transferred to the Porthos – last year we lost Commodore Richard Henline, one of the founders of the USS Kelly. This is just one way in which we can remember those friends we have lost.

“What’s the fun in exploring if you know how it all turns out?” –Commander Charles “Trip” Tucker

(Ship motto of the USS Porthos)

From Star Trek, the Original Series, we learn that Vulcans believe in a concept called Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations, or IDIC. The Vulcan symbol is actually the symbol for IDIC – a triangle intersecting a circle and creating a gem. Completely different, yet when combined together they make something beautiful.

This concept is something I think gets lost, especially in today’s politically charged climate.

Now, we all have different opinions, and sometimes those opinions are at odds, but we also have a love of Star Trek – otherwise we wouldn’t be in this fanclub, would we? The thing we need to remember is that 1. our clubs are a place to come together, not to tear each other apart, and 2. politics has no place in our clubs because of how divisive it can be.

That said, we need to remember Gene Roddenberry’s himself wrote about diversity in TOS:

“We’ve each learned to be delighted with what we are. The Vulcans learned that centuries before we did.”
“It is basic to the Vulcan philosophy, sir. The combination of a number of things to make existence worthwhile.”
– Kirk and Spock, “The Savage Curtain”

IDIC represents the belief that beauty, growth, progress, etc. result from the union of the unlike – even opposites. In other words, that we are better together than we are apart.
(See this article about IDIC from Women at Warp, a Roddenberry Podcast.)

So, whether we meet in person or on social media, please remember that we are all fans of Star Trek. The Great Bird of the Galaxy himself would agree that it’s better to build one another up than to tear each other down.

We had a lot of news at our last Tactical Meeting/RPG night. First, Jill reported on the progress the Seventh Fleet Acquisitions team has made toward creating a Monopoly-type game based on Starfleet Command’s Seventh Fleet. She was able to show the graphics she has been putting together with help from various members of the Fleet (most notably, Captain of Engineering Ross Trowbridge of the USS Rendezvous). Our own Michael Frogget of the Engineering brought examples of 3D printed pieces for the games. (I’m sensing a theme here…)

Jill also showed us the new USS Kelly lending library. If you are working on a rank advancement, you may need access to reference materials you don’t currently have. Well, others do!
Active members will soon receive an invitation to a website called Lend Items where they can create a free login. We are using this as a library program, as it has the capability to automatically remind us when the books are due back.
Once Jill gets the loan-able items loaded into the program, you can see it in the lending library. (This will eventually include media other than books, such as DVD sets of the Star Trek shows.) Then you can log into the USS Kelly lending library and reserve an item. Make arrangements with Jill to check it out and pick it up. When it is due back, you’ll receive an e-mail reminder!

Next we went over our upcoming activities…

  • October 26th, 7:00 pm – Mad Hatter. This is basically a Halloween Hat party. Bob Patterson will host at Bob & Jill’s home. Start time is 7:00 pm. Bring snacks to share while we watch family friendly Halloween movies.
  • November 16th, 7:00 pm – Kooking with the Kelly. Back when the Kelly was young(ish), Commander Ruth Burns created a cookbook with Star Trek themed recipes in it. This has now been digitized, thanks to Commodore Marla Trowbridge. For this activity, we will be cooking a recipe from the cookbook together. You are also encouraged to bring side dishes/deserts/etc. also created from the Kelly Kookbook. (Jill will be providing a Warp Core Breach.) More details to come.
  • December 14th, 7:00 pm – Christmas Dinner. This annual event is simply going to be going to a restaurant. We may also be doing a White Elephant gift exchange. If you know a place that we can hold this, please get in contact with the Senior Staff (Captain Nada, Admiral Hollinger, Lt. Commander Jill Bogler-Patterson or Melissa Andrew) as soon as possible. We need to get this booked before all the places are taken.
  • January 25, 2020 – Admiral’s Banquet. This will be hosted by the White Buffalo. More details as they come.
  • February, date and time TBD – Lasertag. We are looking at doing Lasertag, and have someone in mind to run it. We are waiting to hear more. If this doesn’t pan out, then we’ll move our proposed March activity to February.
  • March – 3D Printing class. Do you want to know more about 3D printing and how it is used in business, the medical field, costuming, and more? Well so do we! We’re looking for someone to spearhead this event so we can all learn how to create our own 3D models.

Last but certainly not least, we were finally able to present the promotion certificates that we’ve waited so long for…

So after all of that, what did we do at the last USS Kelly role-playing game? I’m glad you asked!
Our current mission: escort two representatives away from the docks. Unfortunately, we ran into some local law enforcement – and their pets. We spent the entire gaming session fighting our way out of trouble.
Eric’s character rushed headlong into trouble because she is a little nuts – and she was tired of being shot in the back. Michael’s character kept trying to heal us and keep us out of trouble. Richard’s character kept attacking anything that was attacking us. Jill’s character was able to charm one of the Bandit Leaders into spilling the beans on the whole operation, including who hired them and why as well as the paper trail leading all the way to the head of the corrupt government usurpers.
I guess “fighting” our way out of trouble worked. Mostly.

I have never understood the thought that if you like Star Trek you can’t like Star Wars (and vice versa). After all, one of Star Trek’s guiding principles is IDIC – Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations.

For example, when I was little my dad & I watched Star Trek (TOS) reruns every week when they came on TV. It was something we enjoyed together, and one of the best memories I have of him. Then, when I was in grade school this strange space movie came out in movie theaters. I don’t remember a whole lot from the first time I saw that movie, but I just HAD to be Princess Leia for Halloween.

Now, several years later, I enjoy both franchises and many others: Doctor Who, Battlestar Galactica (both versions), Harry Potter, the DC television series (Arrow, Supergirl, etc.), the Marvel Cinematic Universe (Iron Man, Avengers, Doctor Strange, etc.). And I’m not the only one.

What other shows/movies do you enjoy apart from Star Trek? Somewhere among our crew you can find those who enjoy sci-fi, fantasy, anime, mystery, and many other genres. In fact, a few months ago we held an activity where we shared some other, non-Star Trek series that we enjoy. Together we enjoyed episodes of: Stargate, The IT Crowd, The Dragon Prince, Robocop (series), Babylon 5, and The Devil is a Part-Timer.

So with that in mind, we’d like to share a link with you. This is something our own Admiral Hollinger found on You Tube.

Remember in the original Star Wars movie where Darth Vader faces off against Obi-Wan Kenobi? It’s sort of just… there. Well, a group called FXitinPost redid it with current visual effects technology and a couple of actors filling in the more… energetic scenes. Check it out!

Does Star Trek or Star Wars have the greater influence on popular culture? That question was asked over the weekend at the FanX court (sponsored by a local law office), and our own Ensign Richard Blanck was part of that debate. His report is posted below, edited by yours truly…

– Jill

Ensign Blanck’s log Star date 73090.7. 

While attending this year Salt Lake City FanX (ed. note: Sept 2019), I happened upon usual venues I visited. I visited the Seventh Fleet Borg alcove display, Dr. Trek ( Larry Nemecek) and his booth, food vendors, Kyber Lightsaber shop, and other events and displays going on at Fanx.

Then I came upon Fandom court in the heart of the convention – a court of fandom law where fans of many different types of genres can come and plead their case before a judge and a jury panel of their peers. I usually move on to the next venue or panel, but then I read what the last case of the of the convention would be. Star Trek vs. Star Wars- Which franchise had the greater impact on pop culture.

After I signed up to litigate for team Star Trek, I endeavored to get as many of my fellow Fleet members involved as I could. I immediately went back to our base to see if anyone else way available to litigate with me. Unfortunately for me, all members we away or were going to be engaged in other events at time. I concluded that the only logical thing to do was to take the case on myself and hope my knowledge of Star Trek was sufficient for the case at hand. Then I found out that after litigating a previous case I forfeited my chance to litigate for team Star Trek.

Undeterred by that news, I commenced an intense search for all things Star Trek. I used all the sources I could find to strengthen my case against Star Wars, including gathering information from Dr. Trek. I spent the rest of the time at FanX compiling information. After I returned home I used the rest of the night to put my information into a legal format. I returned the next day to FanX ready to plead my case, though whether I had a chance to litigate was up to the court. I arrived early to the court to see if the team was full and it happen to have one spot left which was award to me.

Our Star Trek team consisted of people very knowledgeable about Star Trek: Mr. Andrew Sigrist, Mr. Justin Hegstrom, Miss. Heather Protzman, and myself.  We had 40 minutes to prepare our case as a team. With our combined knowledge on the subject of Star Trek we felt very confident in our ability not only to litigate the case, but win it. On on the Star Wars side of the case we heard a lot of chatter and not a lot of substance in their case planning.

The opposition started first in the case with their open statement that quote “We will show you through popularity, merchandising, monetary gain, and fan base, that Star Wars and not Star Trek has had the greater influence on pop culture.” 

We started off in our opening statement to the jury that “We will show through technology,  invention, influence on people, change of society norms and many other influences that Star Trek had on not just pop culture, but culture in general. And we will show that Star Trek influenced many of our favorite sci-fi shows, including Star Wars. We will show you by all this that Star Trek and not Star Wars has had the greater influence on  pop culture then Star Wars”.

Star Wars started off their argument with the first definition of pop culture you find on google which stated “modern popular culture transmitted via the mass media and aimed particularly at younger people.” they continued their argument by stating statistics, fan base size, merchandising, source material, and overall popularity and monetary base.

Our opening argument completely ignored playing the “who is more popular” game with Star Wars. We stated that pop culture is more then just fan base and how much money a franchise has, but how it has influenced pop culture as a whole. We tried using our vast arsenal influence, tech, and other examples. Unfortunately, this was objected to every time we started down that road and the judge was sustaining every objection Star Wars called out. We closed out our remarks and yielded the floor to Star Wars.

While the opposition continued on their crusade of who is more popular, Justin asked us to find the “real” definition of pop culture. We regrouped for round two and opened our argument with the actual meaning of pop culture from the Cambridge Dictionary which stated that pop culture in “music, tv, cinema, books, etc., that are popular and enjoyed by ordinary people, rather than by experts or very educated people”. (On a side note, half of the opposition team left for other panels at this point, including their two best debaters, not waiting to hear us enter in the new definition of pop culture.)

The court allowed us four examination and cross-examination opportunities. We continued on our warpath to show that Star Trek has had the greater influence and effect on culture, and society in general. We threw everything at them. The first comic convention in May of 1972, first woman in command, first minority in command, women’s rights, first interracial kiss on television, I.D.I.C. (Infinite Diversity In Infinite Combinations), inspiration of people to become what they had thought to be unachievable. People became astronomers, astronauts, scientists, inventors, actors and actresses, engineers, and more.  The technological achievements and inventions that came from Star Trek are now used in every day life: cell phones, smart phones, iPads, the ion drive, tricorders, tractor beams, diagnostics beds, replicators (a.k.a. 3D printing), the hypo-spray, cloaking devices, voice interface computers, transparent aluminum, bluetooth headsets, google glass, portable memory, focused ultrasound technology, biometric data tracking, GPS, automatic doors, big screen displays, real time universal translators, teleconferencing, and the v.i.s.o.r. (a.k.a. bionic eyes).

After many back and forth examinations and rebuttals on both sides the judge called for closing statements from both sides. Star Wars was first and tried to close with the popularity and monetary/fan base angle. We gave our closing statement on the basis of change, invention, inspiration, technological creation and advancement, changes in society, influence it had on people, and that the inspiration of many sci-fi shows and movies came from the genius of Star Trek – including Star Wars. We closed our statement with a quote: “Star Trek softened up the entertainment arena so that Star Wars could come along and stand on Star Treks shoulders”.

The jury deliberated for 15 minutes and found that Star Trek has had, and continues to have, a greater influence on pop culture than Star Wars. Therefore Star Trek has the greater impact and influence on pop culture and society in general.  And with that I close this log entry.

Since the USS Kelly’s new spirit guide is the elephant, we thought we’d go over some interesting fact about them. All of the following information below on the African elephants, including the photos, are courtesy of the National Geographic website.

  1. African elephants are the largest mammals on Earth.
  2. Elephants are fond of water, and enjoy showering themselves by sucking water into their trunks and spraying it all over themselves.
  3. An elephant’s trunk is actually a long nose which is used for lots of things other than breathing and smelling. They will trumpet, drink through their trunk, and grab things – especially food.
  4. The trunk alone contains about 10,000 different muscles.
  5. Elephants use their tusks to dig for food and water, and also to strip bark from trees. Males also use them in battle.
  6. Elephants eat roots, grasses, fruit, and bark – about 300 pounds of it per day.
  7. Elephants don’t sleep much, and they roam great distances while foraging.
  8. Elephant mothers are pregnant for about 22 months – that’s nearly two years!
  9. Baby elephants shed their first set of teeth and tusks, just like humans lose their baby teeth.
  10. Elephants make powerful low-frequency rumblings to communicate over long distances.
  11. An elephant’s brain has a very similar structure to humans.
  12. When an elephant dies, their family grieves. They may even revisit the bones of their deceased for years, touching them with their trunks. Not many animals do that.

Remember, our next activity will be going to the Hogle Zoo to view these majestic animals. We will be going on Saturday, September 21st. Time TBD.

FLEET GAMES REPORT:
It was great seeing everyone at the Seventh Fleet Games last Saturday. Many of our crew were able to come up and participate. We didn’t win the bragging rights trophy (congrats to the Valkyrie), but I think we did well. On the other hand, we kicked butt at Shields… but that’s another story.

If you have pictures you’re willing to share, please contact me (Jill) by PM on Facebook so I can make arrangements to get them. (I’d prefer copies of the original files.) The pictures below are from Liar’s Dice.

SEPTEMBER ACTIVITY:
Our next activity will be September 21st. We will be going to the Hogle Zoo and looking at the elephants. Since September is our birthday and our new spirit guide is the Elephant, we figured this would be appropriate. Times and other details TBD.