misc

SPACE IS COOL, GUYS

When I was a kid, I used to spend hours pouring through our set of Isaac Asimov's Library of the Universe, especially the volumes "Colonizing the Planets and Stars" and "The Future in Space". I even collected a whole pile of National Geographic issues documenting the Apollo space program. The idea of space dazzled me, even though I'd never want to go myself--just the grandeur of it, the epic scope. But around high school I began losing interest, especially as NASA started mothballing their space shuttle program. Sure, there were talks about creating some kind of successor space plane, but that never happened, and it looked like the whole space thing was just ... not going anywhere.

Sure, I heard rumors of private companies wanting to find ways to make space travel commercially viable, but for a decade or so I wrote them off as mere pie-in-the-sky fancies. And then I saw one of these landings from SpaceX:


Yeah, that got my attention--it looks like the kind of thing you'd see in the old "future of space" predictions from the 50's and 60's--or some of the speculative drawings in the the Asimov books I'd loved so much as a kid.

And then I watched this:


Not live, alas, but I would've if I'd known when it was happening. I've seen it several times now, and still feel slightly giddy every time. There's a car in space. And it's going to get flown off in the direction of Mars. How rad is that? It really does feel kind of like we're living in the future--at least a little bit. I hope that feeling never goes away entirely.

(Though with a little less of this sort of thing, one hopes)
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Space is extremely bloody cool. plus you know, quite literally, lol. Seriously though, as a kid I'd spend hours with my curtains pinned outwards over the head of my bed and I'd snuggle down under my duvet and stare into the blackness and count the constellations. It was always such a peaceful time.
Oh, that sounds lovely. I must admit to being able to pick out only a handful of constellations by sight--but I do have enough of them that the night sky is a friendly thing. There's always a little moment of joy when the turning of seasons bring Orion back to where we can see him.
I have always loved space and all that goes with it. If I lived near a planetarium, I would be there all the time!