Monday, March 23, 2009

NASA Probe in Search of Life Quickly Completes Mission; Returns to Earth

Shock and bewilderment crept across NASA headquarters this afternoon when its spacecraft, Kepler, successfully touched back down after only 16 days in space. Officials slapped each other on the back and cracked open bottles of champagne. Early indications suggested that the spacecraft had completed its mission, namely, locating sources of life in outer space. But jubilation over what at first was thought to be an earth-shattering discovery quickly gave way to frustration over a programming technicality that ruined the entire mission.

Scott Mayberry, who has spent the last seven years of his life working for NASA as the head of the Kepler project, explained that the probe had indeed completed its objective. The probe had in fact found life in space. The only problem was that the probe indicated Earth as the source.

“I guess we all got so caught up in the excitement of the project that we forgot to let the probe know that we already were aware of life on our own planet,” said Mayberry. “But the spacecraft did exactly what it was supposed to do. It located life and then returned home to for processing.”

Kepler’s logs indicated that the spacecraft quickly pinpointed earth as a potential candidate for life. The probe spent the next 13 days testing its hypothesis and then returned home once its analysis was complete. The $18 billion project was seen as an enormous failure, and comes at a time when the Obama administration needs some positive feedback from government spending initiatives.

“Well it just makes you laugh,” says Donald Rodenbaugh, assistant project manager. “You know this reminds me of the time in 1989 when we sent a probe to explore Mars and then we found it four days later loitering around the candy bars in a Philadelphia supermarket. But these things happen and you just have to move on.”

Further examination of the probe's logs indicated that the probe located signs of life on earth but did specify that the life was intelligent. Mayberry was able to shed some clarification on this matter:

“I am pretty sure this is a subtle attempt by the probe to mock the staff and I,” he said. “I have poured my heart and soul into that thing and now the craft is mocking me for making such a technical mistake. But I’ll win in the end because I know where all the blow torches are”

NASA’s next scheduled launch has been delayed over fears that all the Lego’s they used were not properly covered in tin foil.

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