Saturday, February 25, 2017

Cosmic conversations

He: I heard they shot a rocket into space the other day. Going to Mars? The moon?

Me: heading to the International Space Station with a load of supplies.

He: so, what kind of supplies?

Me: if I had to guess, I'd say food and toilet paper...

He: ha ha. Wonder what they'd do if they ran out of food.

Me: they'd have to eat each other.

He: what, like you eat my hand and I'll eat yours? Kind of impractical.

Well, at least one of us is sensible.


He: I heard they discovered a bunch of new planets...

Me: yeah. Far far away. They call them exoplanets.

He: and one of them could be another earth...

Me: lots of people on this earth are probably ready to pack up and leave. New planets to plunder. Too bad they are so far away. 39 light years.

Considering a light year is 9 trillion km, it'll probably take 500 years to get there.

[Apparently the current fastest spaceship would take more than 18,000 years to travel 1 ly. So my calculation's a bit off. A lot off, according to the link..]

space travel time

He: guess  they have to invent warp speed. Beam me up, Scotty...

Me:  who knows – maybe they already have and aren't telling anyone. I think they're also working on teleporters. The future is now.

And now I have his picture in my mind. Billionaire explorers land on new earth and find it's a beautiful unspoiled world inhabited by peaceful natives who take care of their planet. There will be a "take me to your leader" moment. And then the natives will be decimated. Oh, wait, didn't all this already happen?

He: maybe they learned their lesson...

Me: I have become a pessimist where earthlings are concerned.

And here's a cute lesson on our own solar system.