Sunday, December 16, 2012

NASA Johnson Style, Standing Up for Space & Hadfield Hunting Photo-ops

As the world winds down for the holiday season and real nuggets of space news slowly role to a halt, other items of a more creative nature are rising above the internet background noise.

Of course, the video above is broad humor, based on another song currently making the rounds on You-Tube and in the mass media. According to the December 14th, 2012 article posted on The Verge website titled "NASA celebrates Johnson Space Center with 'Gangnam Style' parody," the parody was written and performed by students as a means to "inform the public about the amazing work going on at NASA and the Johnson Space Center."

UK Astronaut Timothy Peake. Standing tall.
Of course, other organizations aren't always so consciously aware of some of the silly things they do. Take for example, the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), which followed up a December 13th, 2012 news report from the Mail Online and others about how "£6,000 worth of VIAGRA and anti-smoking pills among items stolen from military bases" with a press release explaining why British military bases maintain a stock of these items.

As outlined in the December 14th, 2012 article on the Hyperbola website titled "On a lighter note: Whether you have joystick trouble or altitude sickness...Viagra is the answer says MOD," the MoD statement indicated that:
(although) the story claims that £5,885 worth of Viagra has been stolen. This is inaccurate as the medical supplies stolen included an amount of Viagra, but were not limited solely to Viagra. The article also does not reflect that Viagra has other medical uses; for example it is also often used to treat low blood pressure and altitude sickness.
There's a SGT. Bilko in every military.
Since one half of all International Space Station (ISS) astronauts get altitude (or space) sickness at some point during their stay, this suggests a new area of ISS research, one which could legitimately be sponsored by drug companies.

According to news reports, other items stolen from the MoD include a quantity of anti-smoking drug Champix, four computers worth £1200, an electronic jamming kit, night vision goggles, a senior officer's tent, a hot water tank, a set of badminton nets and a £500 karaoke rig. The MoD has indicated that the list includes "only items where investigations had been closed," as disclosing details of ongoing cases could threaten the successful recovery of far sillier items.

Photographer Chris Hadfield
Even Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, who's own personal silly season (as outlined in the September 24th, 2012 post "More Fun Than a Barrel of Chris Hadfields!!!") seems to be slowly winding down as his Expedition 34-35 trip to the ISS comes closer, has posted to, on the topic of "I will be living in space from December until May. What types of photos or video do you think I should take?

The post has received 500+ suggestions within the last 24 hours and contributions show no sign so far of "petering out."

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