This week's meeting is about Clones!
Many years ago, the Star Trek society was very small with too few members for a good atmosphere. The captain at the time, Captain Fraser, grew worried. Over four terms he watched the society's membership dwindle, gradually, as at each meeting there would be fewer people than the last. The captain didn't notice straight away, of course, but the nagging feeling that all was not right began to grow. The number of members fell from fifteen, to ten, to four. In time it became impossible to fail to notice the poor turnout, and the Captain went into denial. He would phone and email people asking why they weren't there, so that he could listen to their excuses and convince himself that they would all return at some meeting soon, just as soon as they weren't so busy. This didn't last long, because it was around then that the first meeting with only one member occurred. That day, in the fourth week of a busy Trinity term, Captain Fraser went to the meeting as usual, put a tape into the machine and was about make some comment out loud about the poor science in the episode when the reality hit him. The society was dying. Something needed to be done.
After a few more 'meetings' by himself the Captain formed a plan and took action. In a desperate bid to save the society, Captain Fraser used his access priviliges to break into the Oxford genetics lab and steal the DNA of hundreds of ordinary people. The DNA was experimental, and couldn't survive well outside of the computer-controlled environment at the lab. Captain Fraser knew this and did his best to rush the DNA back to the Star Trek society room where he'd rigged up a similar environment. The almost tripped several times in the dark streets of Oxford but he reached the room in just nine minutes. He put the DNA in the machine and found that almost 90% of it had become unusable in the time he'd taken to travel. The disappointment was crushing, but at least the remaining DNA was of twelve prime candidates for Star Trek Liking Gene Insertion. He altered the subjects' DNA to make them love Star Trek, and cloned himself a new society.
In the years following that, the twelve clones attended the society every week, not knowing they were clones. The society blossomed and no-one ever found out just how the membership had increased so quickly. Perhaps it doesn't matter.
Some say that the events of that story are an entertaining legend, but there are others who say that those twelve still go to the society, never knowing who they are! It could be you! You could be a clone!
So you should come and watch some episodes about clones, and maybe you'll learn something and you'll be able to figure out if you're one of the twelve or not!
This week we were planning to give everyone a taster of The Animated Series, too, with the seventh episode, "The Infinite Vulcan", where there are two Spocks.
We're in the normal room again this week, so biscuits and refreshments will be provided! Woo!
Greetings, hungry people!
For the first TrekSoc formal of this term Ian invites us to St John's! It's on Thursday. Ian writes:
Star Trek 'Formal' for John's on Thursday 3rd.
Attire: Casual, with gown.
Time: Beam in at 7pm, SJC Lodge (on St. Giles), for 7:15 prompt start
Cost: 5 strips of gold pressed latinum (£5). Either bring cash on the day, or pidge a cheque/cash to Ian Cutress, St. John's
If you wish to attend, let me know (email@example.com) before midday on Thursday the 3rd, so I can inform the kitchens of numbers.
So please come!
After the formal we plan to have our first film night of term too. We'll watch Star Trek 1 & 2 : The Motion Picture and The Wrath of Khan. I'll bring it up at the meeting on Monday. In the mean time be aware that any of you who haven't already seen these films must watch them, because they're both really good. The Wrath of Khan, in particular, is reckoned to be one of the best Star Trek movies (definitely in the top three, if not better, in pretty much everyone's reckoning).
Live at least until Thursday evening and prosper.
Greetings, space feminists!
The theme this week is Strong Females, where we will watch agressive women and try to hide how intimidated we feel.
In our society sexism is widespread in the workplace, high streets, TV and homes. TV cameras look at men as little as possible and stare women up and down constantly in a way that would get you slapped if you tried it in real life. Children grow up watching adverts where boys play with toy racing cars and make them run over Disney Princess dolls, and girls play with Barbie and Ken dolls and have Ken come home drunk and beat up Barbie for being a slag but it's her own fault. Children watch and form expectations about their futures, which subconsciously become self-fulfilling.
That's why everyone should watch more Star Trek!
We're gonna watch Tasha Yar beat up the bad guys with her sweet moves and implacable determination. We're gonna see Kes overcome the worsts cards life can deal, and Kira keep her cool and kick cardassians' butts. We may also watch Dr. Crusher save the ship and Ro Laren give Geordi a run for his money, but we won't see T'Pol taking any crap from any man. But most importantly we're gonna tremble as Janeway takes charge of an entire quadrant and makes the men around her scream for their mothers! XD
(We probably won't be watching any TOS, because the dickensian women invariably faint, cry, hug Kirk, generally fail to cope, and talk incessantly how difficult it is for a woman to not be constantly overcome with emotion and/or hormones. Sometimes they have a period all over Spock.)
Write in with episodes where a major or minor female character doesn't let the side down! =D
This week we're in the Harris Lecture Theatre, next door to the normal room, because we couldn't get the booking. We meet outside Oriel Lodge at 7:45 for the meeting at 8:00 as usual. Sadly, there will not be any biscuits or refreshments because the women have been too busy, enjoying gender equality and going to jobs, to do the cooking (and because food isn't allowed in the Harris Lecture Theatre).
See you there! It's gonna be great! XD
Greetings, warp engineers!
The first meeting of a glorious new hilary term is approximately 1.3523837222 days away! New members are welcome, as always!
This week we will be learning about weird experiments.
In the future, science is so important that there are little or no laws restricting what experiments can be done, and scientists are unconstrained ethically. There are apparently no official sanctions against testing giant energy beams that will destroy planets in the event of a malfunction, nor against the secret genetic modification of innocent people, nor even against creating new life forms without any safeguards limiting their potentially deadly powers. We will be examining the effect of legal loopholes like this on societies, individuals, and starship captains.
We will likely learn that man should not play God and that actually science is evil. But it's sci-fi so we'll forget all about that when we go back to our labs (or arts students' equivalents) on Tuesday. ^_^
The meeting is at Oriel at 8:00. We'll meet outside the lodge at 7:45.
We will have a variety of new experimental biscuits and unknown drinks, and we are studying their effect on humanoid life-forms. We need you to be our test subjects, and to eat as much as you can of them! Of course, if you don't consent we'll just teleport them into your stomach anyway, for SCIENCE!
Reply to suggest episodes. I'll bring a copy of every episode suggested, for us to choose from on the night.
I hope everyone has had a most pleasurable and productive vacation and are raring to start a new term.
Attached is the Hilary termcard packed full of exciting theme nights. All that's missing are formals, so keep your offers coming.
I look forward to seeing you all at our first meeting on Monday of 1st Week :)
Live Long and Prosper,
Greetings, hopeful Starfleet trainees!
It is time to launch the starship TrekSoc on a new eight-week mission to discover freaky new worlds and far-out civilisations! TO RECKLESSLY POWER IT INTO PLACES WHERE NO-ONE'S BEEN BEFORE!
The theme nights for this new year have been decided, and the termcard could very well be being written by Captain Nicola at this very moment! :O
Now you're all packing for the new term, I'd like to ask a favour. Can you please bring to Oxford all your Star Trek DVDs, and let me know you're bringing them. I'd like to be able to call on your collections on Sundays/Mondays when I'm gathering together episodes for the meeting. You will probably recieve some sort of confectionery thank-you or something :)
(We already have: all of TOS, seasons 1-3 of TNG, all of Enterprise, and all the movies. I'm going to buy TNG season 4 for myself at some point this term too, but not straight away because I'm watching House season 3 first.)
This term we plan to have another three formals! The society's two previous formals, last term and last Trinity, were GALACTIC successes, so we're having more! At this point we'd like to get an idea of where we might be going, so if you'd like to host a formal at your college please email me back, and say what days of the week formals are on, and we'll get back to you in a week or two when we start sorting it.
It's a great opportunity to show off your college and your formals and make the other trekkies reluctantly admit that your college is actually better than theirs, maybe, in the right light.
Finally, to anyone who hasn't been along to a meeting yet, please come along this term! We plan to remodulate the subspace emitters and discomoboooodulate the laser hydraulics, and simulations suggest it will increase fun by up to ONE GAZAMAJILLION PERCENT! ^_^
So see you there!
Happy packing and see you soon!
Greetings, primitive alien races!
Now that the 8th week email deluge is over, here are the results of the Termly General Meeting (TGM)!
We had so many ideas for theme nights and activities that we're not sure we'll need another TGM for at least a year. The ideas are gathered at the bottom of the email, and even bullet-pointed for easy reading!
Please have a read of the ideas, and email me back saying if there are any you'd really like to see next term, and add any ideas of your own (especially if you weren't at the meeting)!
Please also feed back on the snacks and refreshments. At the meeting people said they wanted a return of the orange juice, and more cake. They also said that they wanted more cake. So if there are any snacks which you think are tragically absent (or any that you think we should stop bringing), write in!
And of course, if any of you on the mailing list didn't make it to a meeting this term, we'd still love to see you next term! Write in and come along!
Have a good Christmas! (or human or alien festival of your choice, celebrating midwinter or other season appropriate to the climate of your planet)
OK here are the ideas. Some of them have explanatory notes.
- Best of Enterprise/TOS/TNG/DS9/Voyager - choose the very best two or three episodes of each of these series, and show them across the second half of term
- Animated series - Show some of the animated series as a taster, because most of us won't have seen it
Night ideas (different from simple theme nights):
- Trivia & games - Star Trek themed, of course
- Mad libs - for one episode of an evening we watch with the sound off, and each character is instead voiced by a TrekSoc member. Hilarity ensues!
- Film marathon - committee members' time permitting
- Costume party - Come in Star Trek fancy dress and watch episodes where the characters basically do the same
Theme Night ideas:
- Time travel
- Visits to the 20th century
- Transporter accidents
- Weird holodeck
- Mirror universe
- Weird experiments
- Ship separation
- Self-destruct - Episodes where the ship's self-destruct is activated (for real or in a bluff)
- Drugs - Drugs, narcotics, addictions
- Extra-galactic - Episodes where they leave the galaxy
- First contacts
- Abandoned - Featuring abandoned ships, space stations, planets, etc.
- Tests/challenges/riddles - Episodes where the crew are tested by aliens seeking to learn about humanity
- Mind games
- Weird arts - Alien cultures
- False gods - Episodes with aliens that worship lies, machines and impostors
- Languages - Alien languages and language barriers
- Prime directive dilemmas
- Medical dilemmas
- Annoying guests - Episodes where the ship hosts a guest who's just intolerable
- Empowering females - Episodes with strong women
- Ridiculous romances - Episodes where someone falls in love in an implausibly short amount of time
- No make-up - Episodes where actors who normally wear huge amounts of make up (e.g. Michael Dorn, Armin Shimerman) get to play another character
- Particular characters - Episodes following a particular main or guest character
- Accidental horror (again)
- Martial arts
- Gems - The best of Star Trek
- Hidden gems - The best but less-famous of Star Trek, that deserves to be better known!
Ideas I've had and written down during term:
- Murder mysteries
- Justice/trials/criminals/escaped criminals
- Superpowers - (people with superpowers - except Q, don't want him monopolising it)
- Genetic engineering
Tomorrow (Monday) is the fabled Termly General Meeting to be held at Atomic Burger on the Cowley Road at 7pm.
So far the people booked are:
If anyone else would like to join in if you get back to me asap as it might be possible to extend the booking.
We shall indulge in burgers aplenty and brainstorm some exciting ideas for next term, so come prepared with an empty stomach and a full mind.
Live long and prosper,
Next week we shall replace the regular meeting with the TGM! As decided last week this shall be at the fine emporium that is Atomic Burger (see http://www.atomicburger.co.uk/ for menu, location etc.) on Monday of 8th Week meeting at 7pm followed by Pub.
So that I can book a table in advance please e-mail me ASAP if you'd like to attend the meal (by Friday at the very very latest).
Please also put on your thinking caps as the TGM is when we come up with theme nights, socials and other fun things for next term.
Live Long and Prosper,
Greetings, energy beings donning human appearance!
The theme for this week is espionage! The episodes we'll be watching are secret, and all information about them is classified. We can only speculate that they may feature things disguised as humans smuggling invaluable technologies, romulan agents apparently double-bluffing starfleet by pretending to defect, and non-humanoid enemies moving undetected throughout people's minds and ships' subsystems at will.
The meeting is at Oriel at 8:00, but DON'T TELL ANYONE ELSE BECAUSE IT'S A SECRET. Meet outside the lodge at 7:45, where we will recognise each other using the secret passphrase. Come alone.
Our top agent has travelled through the neutral zone into Romulan space to try to steal some cake. If everything goes well, she'll and smuggle it back into federation territory this week along with the usual refreshments. The Romulans will be looking for her so we'll need to distract them by suggesting episodes to watch. This will jam the Romulan communications and give her an escape window. The mission is a team effort. Cake depends on its success. Don't let our agent down.
Below is the message from the Wolfson Ball Committee about the Intergalactic Ball I mentioned ...
Live Long and Prosper,
Wolfson College warmly invites Sci Fi fans to our Intergalactic Winter
Ball. All members of the Star Trek society are welcome on Space
Station Wolfson. We would appreciate if you could please forward the
message below around your mailing list.
The Wolfson College Ball Committee
You are warmly invited to the Grand Intergalactic Ball aboard Space
Station Wolfson - Saturday 9th week, 11th December 2010.
As the sun sets on the 11th of December 2010, let us transport you to
a ball unlike any other... Wolfson college is transformed into a space
station for one night only! All manner of creatures will cross
galaxies to see and be seen at this lavish affair. Mingle and take
refreshment on the elegant promenades, be snapped alongside the
flamboyant extraterrestrials. Take time to relax in the splendid
viewing gallery on the upper deck, and indulge in your favourite
terrestrial treats. In search of a rougher ride? Brave the battle
against space pirates in the laser arena - emerging victorious into
the cool air of the artificial night. Find entertainment also in the
lower decks: experience delightful jazz as well as on-stage antics.
Meanwhile, on the main deck, humanoids are taught breathtaking steps,
animated by live music from the stage, until the evening reaches its
climax, and all differences are lain aside as the guests fill the
TICKETS NOW ON SALE! Please visit our website for all the details and
to order ticket: www.wolfsonball.org
A wide variety of entertainment (including laser quest!), drinks and
food are included throughout the night (9pm-4am)- all of this for only
£55 per person (non-dining), or £49 each for groups of 6 or more. So
hurry up, gather all your friends and prepare yourselves for an
evening of extraterrestrial delight...!
We look forward to welcoming you to the Winter Ball of the year!
The Wolfson College Ball Committee
Greetings, sentient computers!
The theme for the meeting this week is outrageous technology! Star Trek is packed full of amazing technology that we love to think about. Who can say they haven't already spent an hour today daydreaming about what they would do if they had a transporter? Or a replicator? Or a holodeck?!?
But by Star Trek standards even these wonders are actually normal!
This week we will stare open-mouthed in awe at technology created by advanced science that we can't understand or even dream of or *even* conceive of (but may already be able to disprove experimentally). We'll see devices that can transfer souls from one being to another being, possibly of a different species or even life-type! We'll see colossal machines that routinely control the power and fate of stars, wristwatches that can send the user through temporal and dimensional microfractures, and science experiments whose success runs out of control causing havoc as limitless energy thunders through the galaxy! We'll gape dumfounded at materials that can rearrange their molocules at whim to have any properties at all, field generators that wreck the distinction between perception and physical reality, and starships that can transform into cars! Eyepieces that solve world hunger! Communicators that explode, killing everyone but the user! Lasers that bring people back from the dead!!
And much, much more.
The meeting is on Monday at Oriel at 8:00 as usual. We meet outside the lodge at 7:45. There will be gigarefreshments and ultrabiscuits provided.
Don't forget to send in episode suggestions! If there's a suitable episode you know of then I'd be glad to hear about it, and I'll bring it along.
Greetings, crew of the Enterprise!
I am assembling an away team!
On Thursday this week, which is tomorrow, there is the inter-society GEEK QUIZ hosted by the Doctor Who Society. It takes place in St John's North Quad Lecture Room, and starts at 8pm.
It is a team quiz, and the idea is that people bring the rounds of questions. Not everyone needs to bring a round but we should probably have at least one round between us.
Nicola can't come, because it is against regulations for ships' captains to lead away teams.
As the first officer, I am leading the away team. I'm asking for volunteers. Who intends to come and represent Starfleet and TrekSoc at the Geek Quiz?
Once I have volunteers I'll mail out tomorrow to arrange the beam-down coordinates and time.
I'd appreciate it if someone other than me wrote the questions. If we have a few people in the away team then we can put together a round or two if you just write a few questions each.
It'd be good if questions were very *very* vaguely Star Trek themed, but it's more important that people from other societies aren't left clueless :P
Please email me to say if you want to come! And please indicate if you have or if you will write some questions.
Here is the relevant extract from the original message I have from the Doctor Who Society:
"We'd love it if your society wanted to field a team, but if only one or two people can come, that's fine, and we always have a couple of combined groups taking part.
The Geek Quiz takes place on Thursday of Fifth Week every term. This year that's 11 November, in the St John's North Quad Lecture Room, starting at 8pm.
It's not like a pub quiz - anyone can bring a round with them, and we encourage as many people as want to to do just that. The basic structure is that we form teams, and go round the teams in turn asking for a set of questions - if anyone in that team has prepared some questions (normally a round should be worth around ten points - allocated them as you see fit), they can then stand up and ask them. In the past these have been on anything you can imagine, from cult theme tunes on kazoos to fan fiction to computer assembly languages - although house rules state that any round where only you/your society will know what you're on about are generally frowned on."
I know I can depend on you! Meet me in transporter room 8. You'll know if when you see it, it looks exactly the same as all the other transporter rooms...
~First Officer Alun
Greetings, space adventurers!
This week is our second social of term, formal hall at Oriel!
We had formal hall at Oriel last year for the first time, also organised by the wonderful Nicola, and it was brilliant fun! Next term we'll be looking to do formals at other colleges but Oriel is easier to organise for now. Thanks everyone who has sent Nicola £9:95 for their meal already.
We welcome late sign-ups to formal hall!
If you want to come please email Nicola to say so by midnight tonight, and put cash or a cheque in her pidge by 8:00am tomorrow. It's fine for you to sign up still so long as you do *both* of those, on time.
Those coming to the meal will meet at Oriel at 7:00pm tomorrow night for the meal which starts a little after seven. This week the meeting will start slightly late, to give the diners time to finish their meals. Those not coming to the meal meet at Oriel lodge at 8:00pm for the meeting at 8:15pm.
There will be refreshments and crisps and biscuits as usual, but people who come to hall will probably be much too full with hearty warm delicious Oriel food to be able to partake. ^_^
The theme this week is "The Needs of the Many". Star Trek gives us all an entertaining investigation of the moral and ethical dilemmas faced IN SPACE! We'll see captains weighing the fate of species against the rights of individuals, doctors pushing their Hippocratic oath to breaking point, and officers finding that the prime directive perhaps doesn't always demand that they do the right thing.
Please send in your episode suggestions to me! I'll bring every episode suggested.
Hope to see lots of you at both events!
The meeting this week is halloween-themed! We'll be watching the scariest, creepiest, most disquieting episodes in the whole of Star Trek. Starfleet officers will be driven mad by invisible foes, civilians will scream uncontrollably at grotesque alien beings and cultures will be terrorized by nightmare creatures from folklore brought to life. I must ask you all to go through the pain of remembering the most terrifying experiences you've had, and to talk about them. I need to know which episodes you've found most disturbing, and I need you to steel yourselves and prepare to watch them again. I must warn you that this meeting will be extremely distressing, and should anyone find it too much, there will be opportunities to leave the room and receive counselling.
Before the meeting please inform the committee of any pre-existing mental disorders or phobias to help us ensure your mental safety.
There will be refreshments and biscuits available, but I must ask that you only eat them if you're sure you can handle watching the episodes without becoming sick with fear.
We will meet outside Oriel lodge at 7:45 for the meeting at 8:00. I'm afraid that since the country has just put the clocks back the darkness at this time will be much more deep and enveloping, and choking. If you know you are prone to seeing dark, shadowy creatures flitting about in the shadows in the corner of your eye then please bring a torch. Remember, if just one member of the group becomes hysterical with fear then a panic could start, making us more vulnerable to accidents, and physical and mental attack. With proper care taken, however, I'm sure we can all make it through the night, and be stronger for the experience.
Greetings, members of Starfleet!
This week we have our first social of term! We're going to The Chequers at 6:30, before the meeting, to eat, drink and chat about Star Trek. It should be a good way to chill out after the trauma of having finished the weekend and then spent the day struggling to adjust to it being Monday again.
Chequers is in an alley off the south side of the high street, it's easiest to find it just by looking for the sign. We'll wait outside until 6:30, and you can meet us inside if you arrive after 6:30.
We'll still be outside Oriel at 7:45 for the meeting at 8:00, if you can't come to Chequers but you want to join us at the usual time.
The meeting this week is on the theme of "Characters you love to hate" featuring the most annoying characters we can think of, but that we nevertheless feel strangely compelled to watch...
Perhaps you like an episode with Wesley in, or perhaps you find Barclay strangely charismatic, or perhaps even you find you can listen to Neelix talk for more than five seconds without screaming. Well, we've dedicated this week to just such characters. Through watching them we can all broaden our enjoyment of Star Trek, by teaching each other tolerace and a new understanding of these irritating, irritating people.
Please think of your favourite episodes on this theme and hit 'reply' to send them to me. I'll bring a copy of every episode you suggest to the meting.
Don't forget that as usual there will be free refreshments and nibbles for all!
To anyone who missed me collecting memberships last week, a reminder that the first meeting you attend is free but otherwise, meetings are £1 for non-members and memberships are £5 for a term, £10 for a year, £17 for life.
Also, you should all join the Oxford Star Trek Society facebook group! It's not been used much since it was set up, but I hope to change that, with your help. It's at http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=8731153518.