To celebrate today's 40th anniversary of the Moon landing, I thought it might be fun to try and infuriate an astronomer by asking the most insultingly dumb space-related questions possible. The only thing I didn't plan on? Finding an astronomer who not only can take it but dishes it right back. The results, as they say, are intriguing.
Let's see if we were able to break his spirit even a little bit, shall we?
(Please be aware: Question #10 contains spoilers for the end of Battlestar Galactica.)
1. I’m a Gemini. Can you tell if I’ll be lucky in love this month?
Great to know that you're a Gemini. Whether you'll be lucky in love this month has more to do more with how low your standards are and less to do with when you were born. However, if you were born in the 1950's and matured sexually in the 1960's, I gather your chances for love back then would have been greater.
2. Why don’t the aliens get more credit for building the pyramids?
Credit is a hard thing to come by. The hope is that President Obama's "Yes We Can" approach to the economy will cause credit to flow. And who knows, perhaps then the aliens will get their due...after they pay for health care that is.
3. Speaking of aliens, have you ever been to Area 51 and if so, do they have a cafeteria and if so, what’s the food like?
I have been to Area 9 and 3/4. Hogwarts was nice.
4. To me, the Moon looks like a sort of light cheddar but I’ve heard others refer to it as a brie. What flavor do scientists think it’s made of?
I believe the consensus is that the Moon is made of gouda.
5. Warp drive technology: what’s the big hold-up?
Budget cuts. Our warp engineers are now working at the Sunglass Hut.
6. How much money did the government save by faking the Moon landing rather than actually going there?
I believe the savings from the Moon Landing were just barely enough to fund the Watergate break ins.
7. Why do observatories always close when it rains? That doesn’t seem fair at all.
I refuse to answer this question on the grounds that it might incriminate me.
8. You know that alien face on Mars? Do you think the alien monsters who made it really captured its good side?
Are you referring to Gondar? Gondar was the artist that NASA arranged to sculpt the face on Mars. Though Gondar hails from Omicron Persei 8, it is my opinion that the sculpture faithfully resembles the subject. In this case, Gondar was sculpting a dune.
9. If an asteroid ever comes close enough to the Earth to threaten our existence, will Bruce Willis – or a movie star like him – have enough time to get into space and blow it up?
Bruce Willis can do anything.
10. What the hell happened with Starbuck?
Don't get me started. My blood boils when I think of all the time and energy I invested in that show. Angels? Really? Angels? Ronald D. Moore should have his pens and pencils taken away and his fingers broken for that ending. It's damn near criminal. I'd be surprised if charges weren't being drawn up at The Hague.
THE RESULTS: Confuse him with an astrologer, insinuate his Moon landing was fake, promote the idea of a cheesy celestial body and the only thing that angers the astronomer is "Battlestar Galactica." Go figure. I wonder what it'll take to enrage a physicist?
A very special thank you to astronomer and all-around good guy Michael Narlock for taking part in this absurdity. Listen to Mike every Friday night on "Event Horizon", an online radio show on astronomy.fm. Or check out his work at Dome3d.com.