Chapter 06.1

Wednesday, June 6, 2018 (Gusday, Sagittarius 50, 0031)

Boredom is a serious issue that a crew can face while traveling through space for extended periods of time. Early one morning, Carl chirped at Tom, “Are we there, yet?” and Brandon thought Tom was going to smack him.

But, Tom was just playing around as he raised a backhand and quoted to Carl the old Stooges line, “Why, I oughta…”

Dating back to the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo days, many of the astronauts have found space travel to be an almost spiritual experience. Maybe it was just the sight of earth from such a high altitude. Maybe it was the Zero Gee. Whatever it was, the experience has inspired some to compose poetry while traveling through space, and later after returning home. Others, such as Alan Bean, picked up a brush and began painting as a hobby and turned it into an extensive body of works shown in galleries worldwide.

Beginning in his senior year of high school and continuing in college, Brandon was quite a space advocate and wrote about it. During his sophomore year in 1992, one of the founders of the Space Studies Institute, Gerard K. O’Neill passed away. That year Brandon penned:

Ode To Gerard K. O’Neill

Now we’re strapped into our seats, prepared to launch at nine
Staring straight up towards the sky, your seat right next to mine
The Space Shuttle Atlantis, with passenger refitting
One hundred-sixty personnel ready, waiting, sitting

As soon as these clouds pass they’re gonna light this candle
And then we’re really gonna fly, so, find yourself a handle
In less than seven hours we’ll eat our second meal
Then, over the horizon we’ll see the great O’Neill

The flagship of our Starfleet, the Gerard K. O’Neill
The first of many starships built from lunar steel
The first ship ever built from ore mined from the moon
Although ’tis nearly obsolete and decommissioned soon

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