Week in Review

Whew. It’s been a crazy week. Your mother and I have been taking turns for a couple of weeks now, one of us picking you up and bringing you home, the other staying at work until 10, 11, 12…. On Thursday you went to spend the night at Maddie’s house so we could both work. (We ended up being at our respective offices until about 1:30am.) You’ve been a champ about it, and we appreciate it.

You’re such a big kid these days. There’s a lot I’d like to describe for the record, and I’m having a hard time knowing where to start. We’ll come back to that.

Music. We have been listening to music in the car lately. Via last.fm, here are the most-played artists in the past week:

  1. David Bowie
  2. The Knife
  3. Iggy Pop
  4. Air
  5. Boards of Canada
  6. Queen
  7. Portishead
  8. Sufjan Stevens
  9. Van Halen
  10. Massive Attack

News. President Obama canceled the space program. Or something. I’m sure that you’ll know all of this by the time you read it here, but I think this is a good time for a brief recap. Our nation first went to space in the 1960s. We were having some insecurity about whether we were the superest superpower, and we were worried that the U.S.S.R. would get into space first and either drop bombs on us or else just make us look like jerks. So we rounded up all of our top Nazi scientists and made the space program. And it was good.

Since the 60s, we’ve been kind of goofing around. We landed some people on the Moon (and brought them back home), made a space station in orbit with international partners, and put up some very useful satellites. The best of these satellites are part of the Global Positioning System, which lets me search for nearby Starbucks locations when I’m in a strange neighborhood.

But the central point is that space so far has been a huge disappointment. There have been no sexy aliens, no quirky parallel universes and absolutely zero pitched laser battles. And over the same time period, we have done a really good job of making these things up in the forms of TV shows and major motion pictures. Until we have reached the point where the space program is really not necessary.

Floridians and fanboys are going to be upset about the funding cut. But Floridians and fanboys are always upset about something. They’ll have to face the facts, and the facts are: (i) space is not actually cool; (ii) the space program is lousy economic stimulus; and (iii) our economy is about to do one of those numbers where the stuffy university dean climbs sputtering out of the swimming pool, sees something shocking and then loses his balance, arms pinwheeling, his mouth and eyes comically wide, as his center of gravity moves slowly back, back, back until he’s back in the pool again.

Gotta run.

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