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6:00 a.m. - 2003-02-03



Did you guys hear a space ship from Mars blew up and sent crazy aliens down to earth and now in Texas they've got all these aliens running around and trying to get in people's stomachs? Or something?

(Mental note: Quit dropping acid and watching CNN all day)

Sooooo...the president held a news conference on Saturday to call this latest NASA fuck-up "a national tragedy".

I disagree. And I'll go a step's barely a tragedy. The most tragic part of it is that billions of our hard-earned tax dollars are being used to fund a program that is virtually worthless in my book.

Granted, a statement like that leaves the floor open for debate. And since I could give two shits about an opposing view, I will simply state my view here and be done with it. Of course, there will be those who will read this entry and think that this is a diary where their view counts too, so they will foolishly leave their thoughts on the Message Board because that makes them feel better about themselves.

Guess what?

In my book, you're WRONG. Get your own damned diary and do your best to justify spending billions of tax payers money on building space shuttles that blow up and shower an entire state with burning toxic debris. And please...let me know that you've written an opposing view to my opinion on your own webpage so I can make damned sure I avoid your insane ramblings like the Bubonic plague.

Space travel is a waste of our money. We spend trillions of dollars to send these thrill-seeking jackoffs out into space to "Explore". To do "tests". To see how monkeys will react to different atmospheres.

Guess what? We've been doing this for about 30-40 years and it hasn't benefited those of us on earth one single iota, has it?

Has any space mission EVER saved the people on earth from gigantic meteors barreling toward us, threatening to blow us up?


But it HAS sent flaming pieces of toxic space shuttles hurtling toward Texas, where the weathermen are forced to say "You've got a 30% chance of rain and a 90% chance of having a flying burning elbow knock you senseless if you go outside today."

Gee! Thank you NASA!

What are some of the major accomplishments of NASA so far? Other than blowing up people who couldn't be satisfied with the thrill of downhill skiing?

The correct answer is "None that benefit my big ass."

I'll be honest ... like most Americans I have no idea what the people at NASA are doing. Are they up there in space trying to figure out if it's safe for human beings to live there? Are they erecting satellites that will help us spy on Iraq and assisting in the perpetration of war? Are they on the lookout for little green men who moan "Phone Home!" every few minutes?

Whatever it is, I believe it's a waste of money. Money that could be better spent focusing on the things that desperately need our attention right in our backyard. Like homelessness. Or paying our teachers what they're freaking worth. Or hiring highly-trained assassins to take out Bjork once and for all.

But nope. Gotta have those billions of dollars to send a handful of people up in space so that they can be on Jay Leno for three minutes and give him lame punchlines to his jokes.

If that's the case...let Jay Leno fund the NASA program. He seems to be the only one who benefits from it.

Now then...what happened on Saturday ... I'm not going to try and fool myself ... yeah...there were tragic elements involved.

There are seven families who lost loved ones. Probably several children who lost one of their parents.

But how does that make this a "national" tragedy? Kids lose their parents every day. You don't have all the networks abruptly halting programming to cover car accidents where the parents of small children have perished. So why this? Had it not been for the fact that the damned thing blew up over Texas and was spraying deadly pieces of spaceship and flaming eyeballs all over the state, this is easily a story that could have been spewed during the last five minutes of the NBC Nightly News.

TOM BROKAW: "And finally ... a space ship blew up today, killing seven people who knew when they took the extremely dangerous job that they could potentially die. So kids...if you're the least bit afraid of instantaneous death ... quit saying you want to be an astronaut when you grow up and opt to be a coffee table book writer instead. The risks of dying while writing a coffee table book are 0.21 percent. This is Tom Brokaw. I'll see you tomorrow."

I had to sit in church yesterday as our interim pastor decided to alter the usual method of doing things so that he could "pay tribute" to these fallen men and women (no pun intended). He stood up there...fighting back tears and talking about how these people's children have lost their parents and how that we as Americans had to "pull ourselves together" and "move on with life".

Jeepers. I did that as soon as I heard the news. The TV said that a space shuttle had blown up and I kept chopping onions. I don't even recall "falling apart" unless it happened so quickly I didn't even realize it.

You Charlotte, North Carolina recently, a plane crashed into a part of the airport before takeoff. I don't remember the exact number of people killed, but it was at LEAST 19 people ... more than double the 7 on the Space Shuttle.

Was THAT a national tragedy?

I uhhhhh...I don't recall anyone calling that a national tragedy. I recall it being a newsworthy item for about 20 minutes. And then we went back to George Bush's personal vendetta against Sadaam Hussein for taking a shot at his Daddy.

There's a shitload of kids that lost their parents on that little airport mishap too. But I don't recall my pastor stopping the presses and tossing several dozen prayers THEIR way.

And in case you're wondering ... I also don't feel sorry for dead race car drivers, stunt pilots in air shows, "Fear Factor" contestants, lion tamers and alligator wrestlers. Each of these people enter a dangerous profession with the sole benefit being the pride worn when they say "I'm a stunt pilot/race car driver/lion tamer" at parties and get blowjobs in closets from danger groupies.

It's not like these guys TRIED to get a safe job as an accountant and no accounting firms were hiring so they had to slum as an astronaut. There are a certain amount of risks that you take with each job...some more risky than others.

The true "national" tragedy in all of this?

That even after seven people lost their lives on Saturday ... people will STILL show up for work at NASA today and keep foolishly spending more of our hard-earned tax dollars to potentially risk the lives of even more thrill-seeking but virtually innocent people.

Welllll...that and the fact that we'll be forced to look at Stone Phillips' smug mug even more than usual over the next several days as he desperately tries to get to the "bottom of this" and find out just "what went horribly wrong".

I'll tell ya Stone. I've taken it upon myself to do a little research in the matter and I think it might have had something to do with the fact that they were travelling eight times the speed of sound at the time. There seems to a be a point where shit blows up when you go fast enough and dammit...I think we've found that speed.

Anyway...that's my two cents. Once heart goes out to the families of these seven people.

I wrote about it in a rare Saturday update (which was written before spaceship go "boom"), but if you think you have the chops to have an entry or two of yours published in a book, read my Saturday entry. I was contacted by a woman who is putting a book together of various moments in life and she wanted to use some of my can read all about it on the link I just provided you. Go read that entry if'n you think you've got what it takes.

I watched "Bully" and "Run Lola Run" this weekend courtesy of Swappingtons.

"Bully" was as good as I expected it to be and not nearly as disturbing as I thought it'd be. A buncha kids get high and have sex and get beat up a lot by one of their friends so they get high, have sex and decide to kill their buddy.

It's based on a true story. They even have photos of all the real kids at the end of the flick. I've got to say ... their Hollywood counterparts were a tad more attractive than the real deal. And after seeing the film, that ain't sayin' a whole helluva lot.

Anyway...good flick.

"Run Lola Run"??

In a word .... uhhhhh....German.

I had heard a lot about this film. It won the 1999 Sundance Award for best film.

Obviously, the people who voted for best film that year had better drugs than I did when we watched it. They must have had some mind-blowing stuff while I had Aleve.

It wasn't a bad movie. But it felt like I was watching a bizarre installment of Saturday Night Live's "Sprockets".

If you'd like to swap for it ... I've listed the DVD back up at Swappington's here. I'll send it to your house personally and even include a special secret surprise. Like a bookmark or a picture that Andrew drew or something.

Seriously ... can you BEAT that??

NOTE: It's already been snapped up. Sorry snooze, you lose.

Alright...I'm done ranting and raving.

Remember...if you see a piece of burning fusilage in your backyard, do not touch it. NASA needs it back so Stone Phillips can get to the bottom of this national tragedy.

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