November 30, 2020

Celebrating the Coolest Local Stuff

By Jay Kerner 

I got good mileage out of the prison piece I wrote a couple weeks ago.  Let’s face it, the cheap, easy laugh is all the low hanging fruit we’re groping for here.  Luckily, that’s my literary wheelhouse. 

So, following one of my own chief maxims: “If it worked once, beat it into the ground until people beg you to stop”, today I’d like to report in with another clichéd scenario.   

This is Major Jaybird to Ground Control. 

Here, my co-pilot and I are, sitting in our tin can, far above the world.  Planet Earth is blue (and getting bluer everyday!), but there’s plenty we can do! 

We’re blasting through the cosmos at warp speed in our tiny spaceship, on a mission of unknown duration.   

I think my spaceship knows which way to go, and it’s a damn good thing, because the GPS on my phone keeps telling me to turn towards the Sun in 18,784,618 feet. 

We have provisions for an extended mission and mad survival skills should it come to that.   I haven’t mentioned anything to the co-pilot, but after downloading that “Martian” movie, I’ve been secretly saving poop in Tupperware containers to grow space potatoes. 

I don’t like to think about how dependent we are on our life-support systems.  Our heating and cooling.  Our lights and communications.  With only the thinnest of membranes between us and the “instant death” outside these spaceship walls. 

We know all about your virus.  At least we know what they tell us.  Ground Control talks a lot of crap!  We’re also barraged with a torrent of contradictory transmissions.  It’s hard to know who to listen to. 

Due to the timing, your pandemic didn’t affect us at all up here, but it’s sure been interesting to watch the fallout.  Just wait till you see the latest batch of satellite pics!  In just a few short weeks, massive sections of the planet are visible from space for the first time ever!  We’re flat amazed at the rapid healing capability of Mother Nature. 

But we’re RWLOAO, (rolling weightless, laughing our asses off) at all your toilet paper frenzy.  Try doing your business in mylar baggies and get back with me.  Especially after Mexican Night! 

So, pull up your space panties, and I’ll share some interplanetary survival tips. 

Get some exercise.  Do as much as you can inside, but sometimes you have to leave the capsule if you dare!  You’ve got the gear.  Use it.  Masks and gloves complete the modern spacesuit.  Omit them at your peril.  You just don’t know what’s out there!  But get out if you need to.  Just remember, it’s space, and nobody can hear you scream. 

Back inside, take your time in that sterilization unit! 

Morale on long space missions has always been a concern and a certain amount of “fraternization” among the crew is to be expected.  Any right thinking lifeform would assume that the “Superior Officer” would take the lead in such matters.  However, as she so often does, the co-pilot has her own ideas, and dispenses morale on her own schedule.  On the plus-side, have I mentioned the weightlessness?   

It’s unspoken, but I naturally assume as crewmates of opposite sex, we’d potentially be tasked with repopulating the planet, should all you earth dummies kill yourselves off before we get back.  Sure, sure, I know that’s not currently biologically feasible in standard earth years, but who knows?  We could go backwards through a wrinkle in the space-time-continuum or something.  You don’t know!  I’ve watched plenty of Sci-Fi!   It can’t hurt to stay in “fighting trim”, as they say. 

Had we known this crap was going to happen, we’d have just gone ahead on to Mars.  Hell, we’d already be halfway there!  First footprints on Mars would totally kick the moon’s ass!  Ha!  I’d be all “Suck it, Neil Armstrong!”  Now, we don’t have the fuel to get there and back. 

But we can orbit indefinitely, with the occasional supply run to Space Station Aldi’s.   

We’ve got books, movies and music.   

We eat pretty well.  There’s a full space-kitchen but as time goes by we mostly just use a small counter-top cooking appliance.  Who knew George Foreman was a NASA contractor?   

Have to say we’re sick to death of Tang.  Pardon the language, but F-Tang!  If ever a shitty dehydrated citrus drink screamed out for Vodka, this is it.  (This is where my potato project comes in!)   

So excuse us if we tune out some of the noise.  I know, I know.  “Our circuit’s dead! There’s something wrong!  Can you hear me, Major Jaybird? Can you hear me, Major Jaybird?” 

Sorry, dudes, I’ve got the earbuds in.  You haven’t heard Dark Side of the Moon till you’ve heard it ON THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON! 

Major Jaybird, over and out!