AOH :: TREK-084.TXT|
Another TNG parody: "What do you MEAN, it's been backordered?"
From: richer@HQ.Ileaf.COM (Al Richer)
Subject: A Star Trek Parody
Keywords: parody, humor, bizarre
Sender: Klueless the Scavenger
Reply-To: richer@HQ.Ileaf.COM (Al Richer)
Organization: Interleaf, Inc.
Date: Fri, 6 Mar 92 12:37:27 GMT
Star Trek, The Next Generation
What do you MEAN it's been backordered!!
Bridge of the Enterprise, in orbit around planet Backwater IV:
Data: Captain, the colony below will be in danger of losing its main life-
support capacity within 72 hours if we cannot locate a replacement filtra-
tion vessel for their equipment. Unfortunately, the filtration material
in the device is incompatible with our replicators, so we must locate an
original one if possible.
Picard: Well, then, it seems we have no choice. Does the computer indicate
a potential source of supply for this device?
Data: It seems that the only extant supply of these vessels was salvaged
by a Klingon itinerant mechanic and traveler some twenty Earth years ago.
Riker: No, don't tell me. We're going to have to deal with Klueless the
Scavenger! Captain, we can't do this! That man makes the Ferengi look like
a higher life-form!
Picard: Now,Number One, relax. Klueless has often been of great service to
both the Federation and the Empire in obtaining materials and equipment
no longer thought to exist anywhere in the Galaxy. This brings to mind the
times that Klueless has aided colones and planetary governments by adapting
obsolete machinery and parts to maintain vital equipment, often saving
lives in the process....
Geordi: (mumbled, in background) Yeah, as always, a Klingon Army knife and
Picard: If we must do this, we must. Mr. Data, set a course for Packrat II,
warp factor 6. Engage....
The Junk Pile Strikes Back
The Enterprise glides into orbit around a small asteroid, far from its
sun. The only thing visible in the dim light from the parent star is a
wasteland of old machine parts, crates, materials and other things best
not examined too closely. The view from the screen on the bridge elicits
gasps of disgust from the assembled crew.
Picard: So this is the famous Packrat II. I wonder what made Klueless set
up shop so far from the traveled routes of the galaxy?
Riker: The rent was cheap.
Picard: Mr. Worf, open a hailing frequency to the surface. Let us see if
our Mister Klueless is at home.
Worf: Hailing frequencies open, Captain.
On th viewscreen, a shaky, distorted image of a humanoid appears. The
humanoid seems to be adjusting controls trying to clear the image, but to
no avail. He finally grabs a length of steel rod, and smacks the side of
the console with it.
At the same time, the image snaps into sharp focus.
What we see is a Klingon far removed from any we have ever seen before. He
wears the outfit of a warrior, but it is dirty with grease and dust, and
sports a pouch containing what seems to be tools where a Klingon's dagger
and sidearmwould be. The body contained in the outfit has obviously long
since given upany pretense of remaining fit, and slouches comfortably in
the console seat.
Klueless: Good morning, or whatever time it is up there, Captain Picard. I
received your message detailing the time of your arrival and the reason for
your visit to my little workshop. Please feel free to come down and visit,
and we can address your problem.
Picard: Mr Klueless, if you would, we are in a great hurry to obtain the
vesseland return to the colony that needs it. If we could negotiate for its
purchase and beam it up now, we would prefer this.
Klueless: Captain, much as I would like to do this, I'm afraid I need your
help. I know I have one, but WHERE is not something that immediately comes
to mind. My inventory computer (waving to a machine in the background, at
which point Geordi exclaims "My God! A Macintosh II! That must be 300 years
old...") isn't the most communicative device in existence, especially since
I hooked it to that old M-5 unit I picked up on my last trip to Terra. I
need your help to locate one for you.
Picard: Very well, sir. An Away Team will be beaming down momentarily to
assist you in the search. Picard out. (To Riker) Mr. Riker, I will be
leading this team personally. It is rumored that Klueless has a shuttle
craft from the original Enterprise down there, and I'm hoping to get a
glimpse of it, if I may. The other members will be Commander Data and
Commander LaForge. Both of them should be able to help us identify the
vessel shipping crates. Mr. Riker, the bridge is yours (Picard strides
off the bridge,followed by Geordi and Data.
"Well, it's here SOMEWHERE..."
The Away Team beams down in front of Klueless' workshop, which looks not
unlike an old spceship.Faded letters spelling out the name Jupiter II are
visible on the hull above the open loading door. As they walk toward it,
Picard notices and points out interesting bits of junk, such as remnants
of old spacecraft,lander vehicles, V'GER, Robbie the Robot, and other bits
of less-identifiable machinery.
They step inside, only to be assaulted by the smell of coffee, solder flux,
overheated metal and carbonizing electronic comp[onents.
Geordi: This is like stepping back 200 years. Most of the stuff in here
hasn't been made since the early 2200s.
Klueless appears, looking strangely at home in this environment.
Klueless: Good day, gentlemen.
Picard: Good day. This is my Engineering Officer, Commander LaForge, and my
helm officer, Commander Data. Have you had any success locating the vessel?
Klueless: Yes, I have. I finally persuaded my computer (grinning and
hefting the metal bar seen earlier, as Data winces) to give me the
Unfortunately, the last one I have has been used. I don't think a little
ale fermentation would have hurt it, do you? (Picard and LaForge share
incredulous looks of disgust).
LaForge: As long as the filter is intact, we can clean it.
They follow Klueless back out of the workshop to another building which was
once a spaceship. An American Airlines logo and the words "Valley Forge"
adorn this one, which seems to have been a large freighter.
Klueless: Ah, here we are. (Takes a wrench, begins to disconnect the filter
vessel from the plumbing around it) Why don't you help yourselves to an ale
while I get this disconnected? The chilled ones are in the cooling unit
Picard: (with a barely repressed shudder) No, I think we'll pass. Can we
assist you in any way?
Klueless: No, just stand back.(Gives the wrench a twist) Incidentally, do
youhave anyone who can install this? If you're planning on following the
standard installation procedures for this type of device, it won't work.
LaForge: Captain, he's right. The maintenance engineers destroyed the spare
they had trying to install it according to the directions. Seems they were
translated to the local language using a dictionary, and no one really
understood the original language..
Klueless: (muttered) Damned Rigellian manuals...I think they write them that
way so they can sell you a new one when you break the first one.
Picard: Mr. Klueless, I would be forever in your debt if you would
accompany us back to the colony to assist in the installation.
Klueless: Speaking of debt, Captain, we still have not agreed to a price
for my services and the vessel. What do you suggest?
Picard: Well... I don't really know. What did you have in mind?
Klueless: (twists wrench again, barking a knuckle,cursing fluently) I'm
never going to buy Craftsman tools again. Actually, I could use a slightly
newer computer system (eyeing Data possessively).
Picard: (interrupting smoothly) Well, I'm sure we can come to an
agreeable solution. (to LaForge quietly) Geordi, have we still got
that computer we salvaged from the ship wreckage around Jupiter in the
Sol system last year?
LaForge: You mean the one that sings "Daisy" and tries to kill people?
Sure, we have it, but it's nothing I'd use.
Picard: Look around you.
LaForge: You're right. They'd make a lovely couple...
Klueless: (Gives a final tug, and the vessel pops free of its mounts)
Here we go. Let's get moving. (Tosses tools into a case) Shall we?
Picard: Four to beam up with cargo, Number One.
When in doubt, get a bigger hammer
Picard, LaForge, Data and Klueless beam down to the engineering area
of the colony immediately upon Enterprise's return into orbit. As
introductions are being exchanged, there is a muffled boom, and a faint
vibration shakes the floor. Along with this,alarms begin to sound,
indicating total failure of the main life support systems.
Klueless, on viewing this, changes strangely. Rather than the shabby
Klingon, a different man inhabits the tool-bedecked uniform. His back
straghtens, and a glimmer comes into his eye. Rather like an old war-horse
when the bugles sound, he knows what to do.
Klueless: (turning to the nearest technician) Turn off those damned ALARMS!
Techie: We can't (eyeing Klueless) ..sir. The overrides aren't
working..and neither are the backup support systems. We've no life support
Klueless: (strides to a panel, opens it) Just what I thought. (begins to
rummage , pulling out circuit chips and flinging them to the floor in
Techie: You can't do that! Those are the main computer controls for the
support plant ..
Picard: (to tech) Let hm be. He knows what he's doing.
The technician jumps forward only to be restrained by Picard and Data.
Klueless, undaunted now by the maelstrom of alarms, reaches into his
tool pouch and selects a mysterious device made up of hinged metal
pieces folded together into a compact mass.
He begins to nonchalantly flip out the pieces, examining each before
returning it to its spot and removing the next one. What is revealed is a
bewildering assortment of tools and gadgets. Sonic screwdriver, pliers,
forceps, small laser, large laser, cutting blade(serrated), cutting blade
(smooth), pocket tricorder, disruptor, antimatter container, etc.
Finally,a wicked-looking blade a foot long is revealed, and with a grunt of
satisfaction, Klueless plunges the blade into the center of the console.
Sparks fly, and the alarms cease. Seconds later, there is a whir, as the
pumps and fans of the backup life-support systems power on.
Klueless pulls the knife out of the panel, holding a circuit module on the end
of the knife like a maiden aunt holding a dead lizard.
Klueless: Klingon Army knife. Never leave home without it.(He waves the module
toward Picard, who can see that it has RADIO SHACK stenciled on its side).
Never trust a circuit designer. They have no idea what the real world's about.
The patch I've made here isn't going to last long, Captain. We'd best get
that vessel in, and be quick about it.
Tech: The filtration area is down this way. Please follow me.
Klueless: Well, then, MOVE!!
The startled tech jumps, as does everyone else except Picard, who just
The Away Team plus Klingon go to the filtration area. The old vessel has
burst, damaging its mounting and some of the connecting pipes. Klueless,
with Data and Geordi, cut away the damaged vessel. Unfortunately, the
mounting is too badly damaged to permit installation of the replacement.
Klueless: Let me look at this for a moment...
LaForge: You'd better make it a short moment. Those auxiliary systems don't
sound too happy handling the full load.
Klueless: (spying a pile of scrap and leftover material at the far end of the
room) What is that pile of material?
Tech: That's nothing but old cargo slings, and a few containers of sprayable
epoxy that got used for the floors when they built the place. There's nothing
there we can use.
Klueless: Maybe YOU can't, but I think we've got something here..
The Klingon steps toward the pile of junk, while the Enterprise crew looks on.
He stops, turning suddenly toward Data.
Klueless: Commander Data, can your phaser be set to produce heat of, oh shall
we say, 200 standard degrees?
Data: Yes, it can. I fail to see, however, what this will do for the present
Klueless: You'll see. I think that this will work out perfectly.
With the Enterprise crew's help, Klueless rigs a webbing sling to the damaged
mounts for the vessel, also running webbing supports to other parts of the
machinery, as well as the floor and walls. Into this he places the filter,
aligning it with its inlet and outlet tubes.
LaForge: It's a nice try, but it'll never hold up to the vibration and
pressure when the pumps start back up. The pipes will whip, and then the whole
mess will come loose again.
Klueless:Oh, I don't think that will happen. I'm not done quite yet. Now
everyone stand back. This is going to make a bit of a mess,I'm afraid.
Using his trusty Klingon Army knife's laser, Klueless beheads the epoxy
containers, pouring the remains of each into a container and stirring it. He
then upends the container, pouring the rapidly-hardening mass over the webbing
and vessel, saturating the webbing with the fluid.
Klueless: Mr. Data, would you please heat the vessel and its attachments to
cure the epoxy, please?
Data pulls his phaser, and after making a few careful adjustments, warms the
epoxy-covered vessel and the webbing. The epoxy immediately hardens, creating a
rigid structure and immobilizing the filter. They then move in and quickly
attach he inlets and outlets, as the noises from the swiftly-failing backup
systems increase in volume. Finally, a command sequence is given, and the main
system returns to operation, as grateful technicians shut down the beleagured
LaForge: I'll be damned. I'd have never thought of that...
Klueless: Well, Commander LaForge, you have the Enterprise, one of the greatest
arsenals of technology and power in existence at your service. Having all of
that doesn't encourage development of alternate means to the same end. However
those of us without access to such technology (waving deprecatingly toward his
tool pouch) tend to learn, rather swiftly, to improvise from available
materials under the pressures of time.
Klueless turns and looks about the room, surveying the now-functioning
Klueless: A character in Terran fiction I feel a great fondness for once
remarked about using 'orange juice and a rope' when he needed to improvise.
Though I have little fondness for imbibing fruit acids, I admire the sentiment.
Picard: That sounds familiar, but I can't place it. Who was the character,
someone from Shakespeare, or perhaps Tolstoy?
Klueless: I'm surprised at your lack of recognition, Captain. It was the
character 'MacGyver', from the video saga of the same name!
Picard: Ah, Yes! Now I remember. His was a name mentioned often in Starfleet
engineering classes, along with a countryman of his by the name of Murphy.
Klueless and Picard share a look of amusement, as around them the operation of
the plant returns to normal.
Well, you need a tune-up..
In the lobby of the support plant, the Away Team takes its leave of the
Klueless: (to Picard) Captain, I'm going to be staying here for a while.
If you would be so kind, I'd appreciate it if you'd arrange to have my
ship ferried to me here. I'll be needing more of my equipment than I have
with me at present.
Picard: I see no problem with having this done for you. Please consider it
part of the payment for the job you've done for us here. I am a bit
surprised,though. I'd have thought you'd want to return home as quickly
Klueless: No, Captain. That improvisation we installed isn't going to last
forever, and there aren't any more of those filter vessels available. I'm
going to see what I can do to get this setup a little cleaner before I go
The Captain's commbadge beeps, prompting Picard's murmured response:
Picard: Picard here, Number One. What's the problem?
Riker: A Ferengi ship has just entered orbit, Captain. From our sensor
readings, they've just activated transporters--
A large-eared shape suddenly materializes in their midst. It resolves itself
into the form of a Ferengi merchant, carrying a large, vaguely weapon-shaped
device. All of the Starfleet personnel hit the floor, drawing phasers.
Klueless: No, Don't shoot!
Klueless hurries over to meet the Ferengi, who has begun talking agitatedly.
Ferengi: Your computer told me I'd find you here, Klingon. We need to discuss
this device that you sold me --
Klueless:That computer and I are going to have a little talk about privacy when
I get back.
As for you, Ferengi, I warned you when I sold you that industrial phaser that
it needed careful handling. (reaches for large spanner from tool kit) This is
what you have to DO-
Klueless cocks his arm and swings, clubbing the phaser dead-center in the
control panel with the wrench. The unit immediately hums to life as it drops to
the floor with the Ferengi, who was unprepared for the blow.
Klueless: Sorry about that, but at least it's working. Now will you PLEASE get
on with whatever you were getting on with and leave me in peace.
Ferengi: This behavior is uncalled for. We will meet again, Klingon.
The Ferengi signals his ship and is beamed aboard, still muttering.
Picard: The Damon seemed rather irritated with you. Aren't you a little
concerned about his threatening you?
Klueless: (grinning broadly) No, Captain, I am not. I am aware that the
creature is without honor, and I think he's going to get an unpleasant surprise
when he tries to use that phaser for the illegal purposes that he purchased it
for. The minute he tries to use it outside of the legal power levels I set it
at, it's going to subspace broadcast his ship's ident code, with details of
what they're trying to do, over subspace emergency frequencies to the nearest
starbase, either Klingon or Federation. I don't think he'll be bothering me
Picard: Very well, sir. (Picard, smiling, taps badge) Mr. O'Brien,
three to beam up.
Alan J. Richer Mail: email@example.com
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