boutell: (shave)
[personal profile] boutell
My wife is convinced I want to move to Mars. She has expressly forbidden me to do so. She has nothing to worry about.

Not just because nobody's moving to Mars any time soon, not even Elon Musk.

Not just because I'd be a terrible astronaut. I'd calculate the coordinates correctly, then open the airlock in an absent-minded quest for wheat thins.

No... because life on Mars is a godawful small affair. A long-term Mars colonist who spent his time knocking about in a suit on the surface would hit his lifetime radiation limit within a few hundred days.

A permanent resident would have to spend almost all of their time deep underground, protected by a shield of rock.

If you told me I had to do that on Earth, I'd probably say "as long as there are salsa clubs and I can play Starcraft."

Mars would have a tiny population of dancers and around 13 minutes of Internet lag. Gee, no thanks.

If we're lucky and smart, someone may get to go. And I hope they go to stay, because creating a second fully independent biology is the best way to understand what we must do to preserve life on Earth. But I'm happy to participate via awesome sky-crane-propelled robot.

Date: 2014-06-10 07:27 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Amusing post thanks

Date: 2014-06-10 04:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Besides, via robot, you have the seat with the clearest view.
From: [identity profile]
You're familiar with Mars One? I'm still not entirely sure it's legitimate or just a pipe dream with a web site.

Your comment about radiation reminds me that my wife keeps telling me to read Mary Roach's Packing for Mars, which apparently discusses the huge amounts of radiation astronauts would be exposed to en route, even before they got to the surface. But I think astronauts value the exploration and advances over their own lives: it's a risky business.

Think of all the new dance moves that could be performed in low-gravity environments.

A timely post: I spent an hour or two in a Wikipedia hole last week reading about colonizing space and the amazing ideas people have concocted.
Edited Date: 2014-06-10 04:19 pm (UTC)

Date: 2014-06-11 11:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm with you. Bad internet connections at hotels are enough to drive me bonkers. I can't fathom what it would be like to live with 13 minutes of internet lag. It was bad enough with the old 9600 baud modems back in the day.

Clearly, I've become spoiled, and I'm ok with that.

Date: 2014-06-20 06:38 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Godawful small affair.
Haha hahaha.

Grown up position

Date: 2016-10-22 03:57 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
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