The tragedy of Haumea.

There was once a peculiar dwarf planet in our solar system known as Haumea. Little was known about it except its unusual, elliptical shape from its rapid spinning most likely caused by a collision with a large passing object. NASCA (National Aeronautics and Space Conquistador Administration) launched the Pikabu space probe that sent back the first images of Haumea, allowing us to get a first glimpse of the elusive planet. Not long after the Pikabu sent its first image, it was whacked like a baseball into deep space when it was struck by one of the planet’s elongated edges. But that first image gave us some valuable insight.

Much of Haumea was covered with ice, making it an ideal source of water for manned missions venturing to the outer skirts of the solar system. Astronauts enthused at the prospects of using their sleds and ice skates to traverse the planet’s vast icy terrain. And so, the first manned mission to Haumea was planned with the launch of the USS Fiasco.

However, the mission ended in tragedy when the Fiasco was whacked like a baseball into deep space while trying to land on the rapidly spinning planet. The ship and its crew were lost forever.

As is standard procedure when it comes to missions with fatal mishaps, NASCA launched the USS Hasta La Vista Baby to destroy Haumea to avenge the demise of the lost crew. The planet was indeed blown up to tiny smithereenies before the fragments were harvested and flown back to Earth for sale as garden mulch at Dome Hepot stores. The extraterrestrial mulch was in such demand that customers were greatly upset when supplies ran out. But that’s another story altogether and shall be told another time.

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Operation Snow Shovel.

It’s a known fact that all visitors to Florida are required to leave the state after Easter. However, these visitors think themselves as being too clever to comply with the native residents’ wishes to have their beloved home state back after surrendering it to the visitors’ hostile takeover during a lengthy occupation otherwise known as “tourist season”. The residents’ pleas have repeatedly fallen on deaf ears and the governors of the visitors’ home states have failed to take action to resolve this crisis.

Well, residents have taken matters into their own hands by launching an ambitious operation to round up and remove these unwelcome visitors by force. Nicknamed “Operation Snow Shovel”, it consists of dozens of helicopters flying over Florida’s major roads and highways while keeping a sharp lookout for out of state visitors. Should one be spotted, the helicopter lowers a powerful magnet and lifts the offending car off the road and flies the car to the state border. If the visitors tries to re-enter Florida, they are pelted with squishy oranges.

Needless to say, Operation Snow Shovel has not been popular with visitors who still insist on staying in Florida beyond their welcome. However, the operation continues as native residents ponder other strategies to regain their sacred homeland and prevent it from falling into the hands of unwelcome visitors who insist on carrying out their annual tradition of “tourist season”. Rumor has it that natives are considering enlisting the services of a certain city in Florida known for launching missions to outer space.

The Pac-Man Eclipse.

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Tonight the world will be treated to a unique lunar eclipse known as the Pac-Man Eclipse. Its origins come from an asteroid that was originally on a collision course with Earth. Asteroid 7154.4704 was large enough to punch a hole right through Earth to leave behind a doughnut-shaped planet, but an international effort was able to quickly neutralize the threat. Well, kind of.

Specialized satellites were placed in orbit to destroy the asteroid with lasers but a glitch caused them to instead cut off a large pie-shaped slice of rock that now orbits the Earth. Every so often this large chunk of asteroid casts a large shadow across the Moon’s surface to create what is now know as the Pac-Man Eclipse.

Astronomers consider the Pac-Man Eclipse a major eyesore and are considering repairing the satellites to destroy the remnants of Asteroid 7154.4704, but have put those plans on hold as this unique eclipse has won the hearts of people from all over the world and has helped boost video game sales.

The next Pac-Man Eclipse will take place on October 26, 2020.

Pink police car nation.

Yesterday my wife and I took part in the Relay For Life at the South Florida Fairgrounds. She’s been fighting cancer for 20 years and has not given up yet. As her caregiver, I too have felt the burden of cancer from hearing bad news from her doctor and sitting in the waiting room as she underwent numerous surgeries to remove tumors from her lungs. Yet here we both were at the walk to celebrate her survival and my role in helping ensure that survival.

The Palm Beach County Sheriff was present at this event, and they brought with them something I’d never seen before. A pink patrol car. Talk about a strong source of support.

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On the back window is this sign:

This pink patrol car is the first law enforcement vehicle its kind in the United States, and was created to show support for cancer research and cancer survivors. We want YOU to know that law enforcement’s role is not only to SERVE AND PROTECT our community, but to promote a sense of giving and support to anyone diagnosed with cancer.

WE CARE ENOUGH TO DRIVE PINK

Well said.

The cool side of curiosity.

One of my favorite radio stations is WKGR (also known as The Gater) which specializes in classical rock music. One day as I was listening to a song I was particularly fond of, there was a short interruption in the signal that briefly took the station off the air. Later the DJ came on and said there was a problem with the transmitter in Martin County that got fixed, so he replayed that same song.

I’ve since become aware that the radio station itself is not far from where I live here in West Palm Beach, and I’ve even driven past it numerous times. On the building itself are logos for some of the other radio stations that serve my area. That got me curious about where the DJ’s work. For years that curiosity kept nagging me until finally I decided to send an e-mail to the afternoon DJ to put to rest this nagging question once and for all.

I have a question that’s been nagging me for quite a while. Years ago I remember hearing you say that the transmitter for the Gater is in Martin County, and I know the radio station itself is on 45th Street. It does look like a rather small building for the radio stations serving our area. I keep thinking it must be crowded in there! Is there a separate location where you DJ’s broadcast from?

Later on that same day I got this response.

Actually our building is huge. There are 50 desks (not all occupied) in the sales area. We have 6 on air studios, a giant bullpen, 10 bathrooms, manager’s offices, on-line too. Call me and I’ll give you a tour sometime.

Even better, the DJ gave me his phone number. I’ll take him up on his offer for the tour of the station as soon as I find some time in my busy schedule. Finally, I’ll get to meet one of my favorite DJ’s in person.

It’s cool to be curious.