It's Friday again and instead of just directing you to a site with a synopsis of why I've featured them, I thought I'd have them visit here instead. So, today's guest of honor is Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise in a Galaxy far, far, away...wait, that's from another universe. I'll have you know that it was quite an accomplishment I pulled off but I managed to pull some strings with the Time Management Authority and here he is! And looking impeccably spry and handsome for someone who's just jumped back in time ~300 years.
Once I lure him aboard my ship with Starbucks Coffee and fresh scones with real Devonshire clotted cream and jam, we settle into the aft lounge to sit for the interview. My stomach roils as my heart races like a Metallica rif. Even my palms are sweating; good thing we already shook hands. This guy's a frelling SF icon, after all!
As if recognizing my discomfort, he gives me a warm and reassuring smile that invites intellectual intimacy. That's Picard's moniker: to ooze erudite competence yet blaze with genuine warmth at the same time.
"So, Captain Picard--"
"Please, call me Jean-Luc," he insists and flashes one of those smouldering intelligent smiles that George Clooney only wished he could deliver. Jean-Luc savors a bite of scone and clotted cream then he picks up the cup of steaming coffee. I notice that his pinky even extends as he sips quietly. Ah! These enlightened cultured men of the future! Then I gather up my self and begin the interview:
SF Girl: "What made you choose the career of a Starship Captain instead of, say, a gardner or garbage collector?"
Picard: Raising a brow just slightly at my last words, he responds with calm dignity, "Well, as you know I've always had an interest in fine wines and growing grapes as a vinter. In fact I do a little on the side ." To my surprise, he brings out a bottle of Chateau Picard red wine and hands it to me. "For you." I bluster my thanks and hope I'm not blushing as I accept the bottle. "Anyway," he continues amiably, "The way I see it, being the captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise is a little like gardening. I tend and water my crew and nurture them with sound direction and fair discipline. Yes, it's a little like gardening, SF Girl..." He ends with that beguiling heart-melting smile again.SF Girl: "So, Jean-Luc..." I delight in the fact that we're on a first name basis; clotted cream will do that, you know. "What's it like being the captain of a starship...keeping your rather disparate and unorderly crew productive and happy and that somewhat surly Starfleet Command at bay?"
Picard: His lips turn up into a slanted smile of understanding and I recognize true dedication in those sagely eyes that glitter with bright determination. "It's what I do," he says simply. "I make it so."
SF Girl: "Perhaps you could shed some light on the recent Galactic News press release about the environmental degradation of mining dilithium crystals on B planets and the wiping out of a whole race that depends on the special little light rays these crystals give off..."
Picard: I notice that brow creasing a little and his mouth firms. "It would be naive to think that any mining operation wouldn't have some impact. It's a balance of cost and benefit," he informs me. "I believe that reporter was a bit of a troublemaker from a far away galaxy. I think his name was Luc Skywalker."
SF Girl: "What's your opinion of the 50 trillion dollar deficit of the United Federation budget and the rumour that they're negotiating with some loan shark named Bib Fortuna from a nearby Universe for a loan?"
Picard: No comment. But he's now decidedly frowning with obvious disaproval. I've definitely got his goat and that frown is intimidating but I press on, letting a predatory smile slide across my face:
SF Girl: "Would you care to comment on the recent rumour that, in light of the dilithium debacle and the huge deficit, the Federation will be replacing your starship with a flying Smart Car?
Picard: No comment.
SF Girl: "Jean-Luc?"
Picard: No answer.
SF Girl: "Captain Picard?..."
Frell! He's gone. And he didn't even finish the scone and clotted cream. Clotted cream does that, you know...Gee, and I didn't even get a chance to ask him about how that safety manual was going with the crew...