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Old May 13 2013, 08:45 PM   #33
Re: Episode of the Week: 2x15 "Pen Pals"

Riker has every right to be condescending to his underlings! He's the boss. Also, by this point, he's quite familiar with the Worf (née Tasha) routine of suggesting a needlessly violent scenario, and needs to nip it in the bud.

Fundamentally, I'm far from convinced that a "why?" indicates Riker would be off base here. Even after completely ruling out foul play, the Geology Department would have a thousand "whys" left. Conversely, even if the events were simple geology by all known standards, there's no way to rule out that it was all set up by a mischievous god, from the divine family that likes to insert fake fossils on the planets it creates and holy messages in randomly selected oil stains and backward-played LP records. It's about percentages and practicalities, and Riker would be in a position to say "The chances of foul play are so low that using this sentence for saying so is a waste of breath", so he doesn't.

It's fruitful communication at its best: Riker puts his underling on the right track with an injection of useful information and eliminates slack from his research machine.

Timo Saloniemi
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