Monday, October 17, 2011

The Great Satellite Caper

It was late September and the news media was alive with the tale of the crashing satellite. I had talked about it with my class at school that very day and we had discussed where it would land and where it was coming from. It tied directly in with the subject we were discussing, the layers of the atmosphere. My students left school knowing the satellite would not fall in their backyards but eager to see where it did fall. I arrived at my mom's house for a nice dinner and somewhere along the way we began discussing the satellite. That was when she dropped this bombshell, "Today when I picked up Becky I saw a piece of the satelliteon the road near her work." I laughed at her and figured she was kidding but she wasn't and she was determined to be heard. She insisted she saw it and that she had shown it to Becky. So I ask, "How do you know it was a satellite piece?" Her responsewas "It was sitting in the middle of the road, what else could it be?" I had several arguments to dispute that but I decided to take a different route. "Did you get out and look at it?" She had not of course. "Mom, I am still not understanding why you think this was part of the satellite, were other people noticing it? Were the cops around?" No one else seemed interested and no cops were involved. "So.... you saw what looked like a piece of the satellite and you did not immediately stop and scoop it up?" That had not occurred to her but what had was "I was just relieved that the satellite had fallen and that we no longer needed to worry about it." I continued asking questions. "were ther any craters in the ground? Had it even left an impact on the concrete? It hadn't of course and my only real question was why she thought it was a part of the satellite. I could not discern any facts or reasons that she thought it was the satellite. As far as I could tell she figured it was a satellite because it was in the middle of the road and it was metal. I started asking about why Becky had not insisted on stopping and getting a good look. She was not sure but thought maybe Becky was just relieved like she was. I realized I was getting nowhere and all of a sudden I wanted this piece of the satellite. She offered to get the satellite the next day but I was nervous that it might actually be the real satellite and that I might miss my chance. I was playing the odds you see. I figured it was a win win. Either I would find a piece of the satellite inexplicably in the middle of the road in a business zoned area of Phoenix or I would find some random piece of metal that I could write a blog about. So we hopped in my truck and she showed me the way. It was not where it had been and it was not until we were leaving that she saw that some one had moved it out of the road. We stopped the car and we grapped it and gently put it in the truck and now I want you to tell me.... do you think this is part of the satellite? Should I call NASA?


Anonymous said...

how could you doublt your own mother?

Michael Williams said...

I just report the facts as they happened and as a respected journalist (aka unknown blogger) I have to go in with a little touch of the skeptic's eye.

Dale said...

I like it.