Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Today in sexy spaceships...

Have you ever looked up at the stars and wondered what it we be like if we could strand humans on the arid, radiation-baked wastes of another planet? You have? Well then you are clearly some kind of monster. Or possibly Elon Musk.
"Monster? Yeah, monster like a fox."
-Elon Musk on his
ridiculous scheme
Space-X's advanced new rocket thrusting
out into space on it's way to penetrate
the supple atmosphere of Mars. What?
Today at The International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, Elon Musk announced-hey, is it me or does The International Astronautical Congress sound like something totally made up? I'm not saying it is, and this is like there 67th big meeting, but still. Anyway, Musk presented a three and a half minute, totally not sexual video about how he's going to put humans on Mars. Wait, who said sexual? Step one, super phallic spaceship is launched into a parking orbit. Step two, the booster rocket re-enters the atmosphere, lands back on its platform and picks up a fuel tank, launches again.

Once back in orbit, the booster releases its load and-huh? The fuel pod. What did you think I meant? Anyway, the pod then hooks up with the spaceship and exchanges fluids-you know what? Fluids. Liquid fuel. Get your mind out of the gutter.
Pictured: Space-X's passenger module and fuel pod totally doin' it.
Above: an unrelated picture of Arizona.
Here for no reason, of course...
Fully engorged...with fuel, the spaceship then deploys some kind of crazy sci-fi solar sail and the passengers spend the next two and a half years learning to despise one another and seriously regret their decision to let Elon freaking Musk launch them on a one way trip to an empty, dry, inhospitable landscape. Ok, I'm probably making it sound way worse than it really is and Musk's plan is to send waves of passenger ships and over the next forty years establish a self-sufficient colony.

"Hey everyone, it's me, the only human
on Mars? So what's new on Earth?
Did we ever get Winds of Winter?"
So where do you sign up? Nowhere, that's where. At present, sending people to Mars is not only super-risky but also stupendously expensive. $10 billion per person according to Musk. Yeah, billion with a B. Musk with an M. But he's hoping that scientific advances will bring that down a bit. Like, to $200,000. Which, ok, more power to you. But seriously, you do not want to be an early adopter on this. Like, what if the technology doesn't get cheaper? Sure, you'd be the goddamn Leif Erikson of Mars, but if SpaceX ever goes out of business you're kind of screwed.

Yes. Exactly that safe.
Also, even if SpaceX is around forever-and why wouldn't it be? Tech companies, right? Safe as houses. Anyway, it sounds like the first few decades of living on Mars are going to suck. It'll be all building pressure domes and growing space crops. Sure, maybe I lack the frontier spirit, but for real, nobody ever plays Oregon Trail and thinks to themselves, man, sure wish I lived back then. A life of perpetual toil and the prospect of death lurking around every corner?

I don't know about you, but I don't think Elon Musk's pornographic space shuttles are quite there yet. Instead, I suggest you wait forty years and book a cheep flight to the bustling spaceport in New Muskville or whatever. Get a hotel room, see the sights and enjoy the fact that you didn't spend the last four decades absorbing cosmic radiation and peeing in your space suit.
"Hey Nicole, get your ass to Mars! Get it? Like Ahhhnoold?

"Kevin, if you say that one more time I'm going to crack your faceplate and watch you suffocate. 
I will laugh as you writhe in agony in the dust of this rusty shithole of a planet. Swear to God."

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