Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Friday, December 28, 2012

I always wanted to go to Mars, or many other places in the solar system.

Excerpts from The Journals Of A 21 Century Schizoid Man;

Journal 34;

As a child I read many books about the solar system. I remember when there were people who still believed that there might be live on Venus. People imagine all types of Martians. Other types of life were considered on the other planets. But I never dreamed I’d live long enough to see the surface up close of such planets as Saturn or Neptune. Even more surprising are all the moons they found in these places and how different they are from what we imagined. Most of us just assumed moons would look like our moons. We did not imagine moons with oceans in them, or thick atmospheres, such as Saturn’s moon Titan has a thick atmosphere, mountains, and dry stream beds as we see on Mars and liquid in small lakes, which are probably methane. The temperature is -290 degrees Fahrenheit. It would be easy for DNA and RNA, the building blocks of life to form there, and possibly form primitive life in the liquid lakes.     
The best possibilities for life are oceans detected below Jupiter’s moon Europa and Saturn’s moon Enceladus. The moons seem heated enough by their planets that they have liquid water under their surfaces and enough organic materials for life to exist there. That doesn’t automatically mean those moons have life, but it is possible. A big question is how life could get to or evolve in such a climate. Some scientists still insist that there may be life forms in the top and colder surfaces of Venus.
The present surface of Venus is about 800° Fahrenheit .
After all these years, we have never sent people to Mars and we have yet to settle two main questions-does life still exist somewhere on Mars or did it ever?
Years after sending up spaceships and carrying out thousands of experiments, the question still has no answer. There are obviously no little green men, no Marvin the Martian or any of those other strange creatures we saw in all the old movies. Now we would settle for just a few microbes or two.
As much as I would love to stand on the surface of Mars, or Titan for that matter, unless some unforeseen breakthrough happens, I will die here on the surface of the Earth. In my lifetime, we went to the moon. If I live a little longer I might get to see the first human on Mars. As a child I had hoped for more than that. As an adult, I’ve just learned to be realistic. Most of the outer solar system is far away enough that I can still live with my fantasies of finding unique life somewhere in our near by space neighbors. Reality can always set it and point out that some of what we hope to find may be nothing more than just hope. But what is so bad about hope. At least I don’t speak Klingon.
There are still clubs of people who dress like characters and follow Star Treck and other science fiction fantasies that take place hundreds of years from now. We haven’t even sent a person to Mars yet Treckies and similar groups of people fantasize of worlds and people living on those worlds that almost surely don’t exist. The Borg; the Vulcans; the Romulans; The Klingon; and the. Ferengi; They almost surely don’t exist.
My own fantasies include stories about strange creatures found right here in the solar system. So why as scientific follower’s do such people show so little interests in the very solar system they live in. If we don’t explore the solar system around us, what is the point of imagining that some day we will visit human-like creatures that live in planets light years away?
We all like our fantasies, science fiction or otherwise. When I make up stories, I just prefer they happen closer to home, so I can fantasies walking on Mars or Titan some day.

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