Tuesday, June 27, 2006

"Earth to NASA - Come in NASA (static SFX) - NASA, we have a problem..."

The graphic above is from a CNN.com story regarding the upcoming shuttle launch.

There is no question the headline is awful. The question is, "How does a grief-giving headline make it into the story in the first place?!"

There are three likely reasons:

Reason 1. The entire NASA PR department scheduled vacation time at the same time.

Reason 2. Aerospace Engineers are socially inept and can't relate on an emotional level with the general public.

Reason 3. NASA really believes the shuttle is a piece of junk.

Click on the headline to take you to the story - read for yourself how top NASA officials can't agree on whether or not an impending launch is safe. In short, we have a top-management bicker-session going on about the safety of the shuttle.

"It's gonna blow up!"
"Is not!"
"Is too!"
"Is NOT!"
"Is TOO!"
"Is NOT you...you...Yoda™ face!"
"Piquard's gay!"
"Kirk's a jerk!"
"I know you are, but what am I?"

The risk of putting fragile, soft people into explosive rockets is obvious. We KNOW this isn't a trip to the mall. But to turn each pioneering act of space-travel into an office pool is messed up.

OR...Reason 4: NASA is selling commercial space on the live launch.

"Guys, we can get 100 Gross Rating Points if can get some 'thrill' back into these launches! We toss out some doom&gloom, bite our nails, maybe show some tearful goodbyes...crying kids, mom, dad, wringing their hands, it'll be HUGE!"

I hope it's Reason 4.