Warp Speed

Stupid Warp Core Explosions

Long before Geordi La Forge was the chief engineer of the Starship Enterprise in 2364, he was my roommate at Star Fleet Academy in the late 1980s. Some of you may be wondering why Geordi was in the academy in the late 1980s, yet found himself on Captain Picard’s ship some 376 years later (yes, I used a calculator).

To this day, it’s difficult for me to talk about it, but there was a terrible accident involving the transwarp drive. Apparently, while on a routine training mission to the Altair system, the warp core exploded, throwing Geordi and the rest of the crew into the future, or something like that.  Suddenly, and without warning, Geordi was gone from my life.

The guy was simply an amazing roommate.

Geordi was motivated to make a good life for himself and was a voracious reader of technical manuals. I was always tempting him to come out to the bars with me to drink some Romulan ale, maybe pick up some Andorian girls and head over to the holodeck for some adventures. Geordi wasn’t interested in drinking – or listening to Tom Petty cover bands, which were all the rage back then. He was content to remain in the apartment.

He was a whiz at fixing things. In fact, the only thing he couldn’t do was successfully program our VCR to record television programs. Then again, no one in the 1980s could do that. It wasn’t his fault we missed the Dukes of Hazzard finale, though I know he blamed himself.

Once, during the aftermath of a terrible earthquake, he was able to get our power back on by reconfiguring the trillium-D transmuter, after realizing that there was a malfunction in the teryon subspace grid, or something like that. I was just going to book a room at the Marriott.

Most people would buy a new microwave when theirs failed to warm up a potato. Not Geordi. That guy rewired the circuitry using some sort of positron emission, or something like that. Afterwards, the microwave heated a potato in 1.2 seconds – or, as I jokingly referred to it, “warp factor two!” We both laughed at my quick wit.

There was this one harrowing evening when our dog, Ensign, got loose in the neighborhood. Geordi concocted some sort of Lexorian transporter buffer, using his tricorder, thereby containing any life form in the protective bubble it created, or something like that. This allowed us the time to track down our fluffy friend and beam him home before catastrophe, or a ruthless cab driver, hit.

Geordi motivated me to be a better person. My grades were always hovering around a 1.6 in Starfleet Academy during my freshmen year, which prevented me from playing on the basketball team. Also, my lack of skills prevented me from playing on the basketball team. Geordi tutored me in a variety of difficult courses, including molecular physics, nucleonic propulsion, and Spanish.

Eventually, he helped bring my grades up, but I quickly decided that Starfleet wasn’t for me. Neither was basketball. Both required far too much dedication and commitment. Besides, I’m not a fan of flying: either the friendly skies or from galaxy to galaxy. Considering what happened to Geordi, I’d say I made the right call to pursue an office job. Traffic sucks but at least I’m in my own time.

With Geordi’s ingenuity, he could’ve found a way to get back to us, I’m sure. But honestly, I think he was/will be content to remain there, in 2364, where his advanced skills could be put to better use. Seeing him on the television, doing amazing work and constantly saving the lives of the crew of the Starship Enterprise, is really a gratifying thing.

Still, I miss the guy, and not just because of our enduring friendship. Frankly, I could use his help reconfiguring the microwave. It’s 2017, and it should not take 10 minutes to heat a potato.

My hope is that Geordi will read this in 347 years (yes, I used a calculator) and know that I’ve found success in my life, despite losing my best friend.

Live long and prosper, Geordi.

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