Wo Shi Laowai – Wo Pa Shui

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StarTrek with Chinese Characteristics?

Posted by MyLaowai on Wednesday, November 7, 2007

I’m sure you’ve heard the old chestnut:

Q. Why aren’t there many Chinese in StarTrek?
A. Because even in the future, they can’t be made to work properly.

Racist claptrap, of course. I’ve actually been wondering about the role of the Chinese in the StarTrek universe, and I reckon there are plenty of Chinese out there, amongst the stars. Don’t believe me? Try these on for size, then…

Top Ten Possibilities for Chinese in StarTrek

10. The Arbazan
A highly conservative semi-humanoid race known for their ultra-right, almost fascist, political and social policies, with a reputation for arrogance. They are perennial sources of right wing dissent among the liberal Federation. They are easy to take offence, and find haven in boring, bureaucratic jobs or mundane research jobs.

9. The Jarada
Jarada are known for being quite vengeful if wronged and actually ate the ship’s crew who mispronounced their greeting in 2344.

8. The J’naii
Androgynous race from the system of same name. Federation principles of tolerance and understanding run contrary to J’naii law (which requires rigid enforcement of a code that prevents J’naii from exhibiting any sign of gender specific behaviour, amongst other things). Violators are subjected to a brainwashing therapy without appeal.

7. Lenarians
Often found as miners, or working in other menial professions, their original homeworld has been lost to antiquity. In their exodus from a polluted homeworld they lost the records of the pre-exodus times including the coordinates of their homeworld. All that survived were isolated stories and legends. Their technological progress has been very slow, and they hold a resentment against the Federation because of its rapid progress.

6. The Pakled
These humanoids maintain a profitable cargo shipping consortium along the Federation / Cardassian border. They have an obsession with stealing advanced technology they did not develop. Pakled ships usually have stolen or copied Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian, and Federation technology. Because of this they often find trouble with governmental shipping contracts, preferring to stay to grey-market or low budget shipping. Their simple speech conceals their highly cunning and ambitious nature.

5. Tamarians
Faintly reptilian race with yellow skin, and a language that could not be understood until 2368. Their language translates into a system of stock phrases and metaphors. It was later understood to be metaphoric analogies to Tamarian myths. Unfortunately, little else is known since their language is still largely unknown and they have limited interest in interchange since the first language breakthrough.

4. The Vorta
With a generally humanoid appearance except for very tight skin and a light grey complexion, they are easily identified. They have negligible social, artistic, or scientific activity and seem to exist almost exclusively for the purpose of administrating the Dominion and commanding the Jem’Hadar.

3. Tribbles
They eat and reproduce, apparently without having sex. That’s about it, really. Oh yes, and they make an annoying “tribbletribbletribble” sound when happy.

2. The Borg
A Borg is linked into a collective mind where the concept of the individual is meaningless. The Borg exists solely to assimilate other races into it’s Collective. They are the greatest strategic threat to the Federation today.

…and finally, the Number One Candidate…

1. The Ferengi
Greedy humanoid race first encountered in 1266 by Marco Polo in 2364 in the Delphi Ardu system. Possessing a rigid and inflexible code requiring males to relentlessly seek profit while females are left naked and submissive, they appear as short humanoids with skin tones ranging from dull yellow to dark brown. They have no firm alliances and prefer to maintain business with all sides. Many rogue Ferengi pursue profit as pirates: this is legal only through a loophole in their laws.

So, there you have it – The StarTrek universe with Chinese Characteristics. I leave you now with a list of the known Chinese Laws of Acquisition

1. Once you have their money, you never give it back.
3. Never pay more for an acquisition than you have to.
6. Never allow family to stand in the way of opportunity.
7. Keep your ears open.
8. Small print leads to large risk.
9. Opportunity plus instinct equals profit.
10. Greed is eternal.
13. Anything worth doing is worth doing for money.
16. A deal is a deal… until a better one comes along.
17. A contract is a contract is a contract… but only between Ferengi.
18. A Ferengi without profit is no Ferengi at all.
19. Satisfaction is not guaranteed.
21. Never place friendship above profit.
22. A wise man can hear profit in the wind.
27. There’s nothing more dangerous than an honest businessman.
28. Whisper your way to success.
31. Never insult of a Ferengi’s mother… insult something he cares about instead.
33. It never hurts to suck up to the boss.
34. War is good for business.
35. Peace is good for business.
40. She can touch your lobes, but never your latinum.
41. Profit is its own reward.
44. Never confuse wisdom with luck.
47. Never trust a man wearing a better suit than your own.
48. The bigger the smile, the sharper the knife.
52. Never ask when you can take.
57. Good customers are as rare as latinum – treasure them.
58. There is no substitute for success.
59. Free advice is seldom cheap.
60. Keep your lies consistent.
62. The riskier the road, the greater the profit.
65. Win or lose, there’s always Hupyrian beetle snuff.
75. Home is where the heart is… but the stars are made of latinum.
76. Every once in a while, declare peace… it confuses the hell out of your enemies.
79. Beware of the Vulcan greed for knowledge.
82. The flimsier the product, the higher the price.
85. Never let the competition know what you’re thinking.
89. Ask not what your profits can do for you, but what you can do for your profits.
94. Females and finances don’t mix.
95. Expand… or die.
97. Enough… is never enough.
98. Every man has his price.
99. Trust is the biggest liability of all.
102. Nature decays, but latinum is forever.
103. Sleep can interfere…. [cut off]
104. Faith moves mountains… of inventory.
106. There is no honour in poverty.
109. Dignity and an empty sack… is worth the sack.
111. Treat people in your debt like family… exploit them.
112. Never have sex with the boss’s sister.
113. Always have sex with the boss.
121. Everything is for sale, even friendship.
123. Even a blind man can recognize the glow of latinum.
139. Wives serve, brothers inherit.
141. Only fools pay retail.
144. There’s nothing wrong with charity… as long as it winds up in your pocket.
162. Even in the worst of times, someone makes a profit.
177. Know your enemies… but do business with them always.
181. Not even dishonesty can tarnish the shine of profit.
189. Let others keep their reputation… you keep their latinum.
190. Hear all, trust nothing.
192. Never cheat a Klingon… unless you can get away with it.
194. It’s always good business to know your customers before they walk in the door.
202. The justification for profit is profit.
203. New customers are like razor-toothed greeworms. They can be succulent, but sometimes they bite back.
208. Sometimes the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer.
211. Employees are the rungs on the ladder of success. Don’t hesitate to step on them.
214. Never begin a business negotiation on an empty stomach.
217. You can’t free a fish from water.
218. Always know what you’re buying.
223. Beware the man who doesn’t make time for oo-mox.
229. Latinum lasts longer than lust.
236. You can’t buy fate.
239. Never be afraid to mislabel a product.
242. More is good… all is better.
255. A wife is a luxury… a smart accountant a necessity.
261. A wealthy man can afford anything except a conscience.
263. Never allow doubt to tarnish your lust for latinum.
266. When in doubt, lie.
284. Deep down, everyone’s a Ferengi.
285. No good deed ever goes unpunished.

3 Responses to “StarTrek with Chinese Characteristics?”

  1. Definitely the Ferengi. Never the Borg, they are organized.

  2. Keir said

    I found in Tibet that their word for foreigner is ‘ferenhgi’. How about that?

  3. MyLaowai said

    Oh, the irony!

    BTW, I found in China that ‘irony’ is what they make rice bowls out of…

    heh heh heh

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