Saturday, June 15, 2013

A Space Emission


Russian scientists jammed a group of lizards, mice, gerbils, and other animals into a space capsule and blasted them into orbit for a month. They wanted to see how space travel affects living things, apparently forgetting that people have been bobbing about in space for decades now, many of them fluent in Russian. A few more years of progress and they might succeed in firing off some amoebae. They have been blasting men into space for a good while, although mostly healthy, strong, smart men, and not the ones you might have picked out yourself; and then, for the most part, they bring them right back again. Still, it's a good start. Something needs to be done about overpopulation.

One of the puzzles our Russian friends are trying to unravel is the effect of microgravity on sperm motility. (We seldom hear about "zero gravity" conditions anymore, because something somewhere is always tugging on somebody, however feebly.) Will sperms motivate with their usual zeal, or will they just loll about hoping to wander into an egg? Unknown. Sex acts in space, or any kind of space emissions--which we are assured have not yet taken place in an extended trip undertaken by healthy male humans in their prime, wink wink--are fraught anyway. Any sort of poking motion will have the effect of banking the pokee into the corner pocket. But we'd like to think such a thing could be accomplished in a species that, after all, was able to repeatedly negotiate procreative acts in a confined area with two bucket seats, a dashboard, and a stick shift.

It strikes me that sperm motility is the least of the obstacles to space sex. Already we have had to overcome the problem of separation when it comes to matters of the toilet, because what we are attempting to push out fails to detach without the gravity assist. And most of us have seen the video of the astronaut trying to wring the water out of a soaked towel. The water refuses to depart the towel,
instead sliming the astronaut's hands like some alien plasma monster. If we are really going to get into the business of space sex, the old conundrum of who has to sleep on the wet spot becomes quaint. Assuming the wet spot can be induced to detach at all, it will be floating around the space station like a giant loogey. You get enough healthy male astronauts in their prime, it could look like Satan's lava lamp in there.

I'm not sure anyone who thinks we need to look into making space babies should be entrusted with enough money to run a space program.  I can see the upside of getting a bunch of us off the planet, but not if we're going to just go and crap out some other place.

67 comments:

  1. Satan's lava lamp...that was the bit the caused the coffee to hit the keyboard.(That couldn't happen "up there" so maybe future astronauts can save all their funny stories to read in space?)

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    1. I seriously recommend the Keyboard Condom. I have one. Mostly it just keeps gray hair and skin flakes out of the keyboard, but even that's a help.

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    2. hey hey! can I take credit for the keyboard condom? no? ok, can I take credit for you MARKETING one with the URL of your blog on it?

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    3. Yes! I remember you suggested that marketing opportunity! I already had the condom...but shouldn't we be able to brand it? Murrth Pad. I put you in charge.

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  2. Considering some of the other places that gerbils have allegedly been jammed into, I doubt the ones in the Russian experiment were complaining.

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  3. Seriously, the Russians may be the best people to deal with some of these issues. They have a pragmatic streak. The story goes that in the days of the space race, NASA spent a lot of money trying to develop ball-point pens that would work in zero gravity, while the Russians just gave their astronauts pencils. If there's a simple solution to the conundrums raised by space shagging, they'll find it.

    Or we could just wait until we have a space station big enough to spin for artificial gravity. Problem solved.

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    1. Really? About the pencils? I love that. It reminds me of something similar, or it would, if I could remember anything. As it is, a little abandoned corner of my brain is shooting blanks right now.

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    2. I hesitate to mention this (for a millisecond) but I thought shooting blanks was what happened after a vasectomy. Would you like to rephrase that?

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    3. Nope. I am a connoisseur of blanks. They're all over the place. This blog is where I string together all the words that are in between the blanks, edit out the blanks, and pretend I am coherent.

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  4. You know, Murr, I read all your posts and then sit and stare at my keyboard wondering how I can respond, leave you a comment that lets you know how much I enjoyed the very strange journey I just took through your latest emission. This one is no different. Let's hope we don't get the answer to your queries in this post any time soon...

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    1. I'm just always happy to see you and your smiling face here. You could just say HI and be decorative.

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    2. OMG - DJan - I feel THE SAME EXACT WAY after reading her posts!

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  5. Sperm motility in micro-gravity? What brought this up? Are the Russians secretly trying to breed -oh, I dunno - space wolfhounds? Killer bear astronauts? And are having no success but they don't know why?

    As for "space emissions" those guys are on camera and monitored every second they are up there. Unless someone likes being watched, I should think that would inhibit conscious activity. As for the unconscious - can you imagine the fun down on earth as they note the respiration, pulse and blood pressure readings on the sleeping spaceman? "Hey, Sanderson's having a wet one! Hurr hurr hurr!"

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    1. As for "space emissions" those guys are on camera and monitored every second they are up there. Unless someone likes being watched, I should think that would inhibit conscious activity.

      That sounds horrible. Kind of like what it would be like having Santorum as President.

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    2. How in the world do they ever get their noses picked? I worry about that.

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    3. The word "Santorum" should never be used in a conversation about zero-gravity space sex and floating fluids! Need I remind you what "santorum" is slang for!?

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  6. Thanks for the image: I was about to log out and go have breakfast...

    Sex in space could be interesting... Sex anywhere is interesting. Some of the places I have...that is another story.
    the Ol'Buzzard

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  7. You've given lava lamps a whole new dimension.

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    1. Well, actually, I think I've always kind of seen them that way.

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  8. I have been fired a couple times in life, once by a German-Russian. It was such a long time ago but I am pretty sure it was the woman, not than man. It was reaLLy a misunderstanding, or in this case, a missus-understanding. A couple decades later my step-father was talking to me about visiting her in a retirement home, and I realized that they were cousins. SmaLL world.

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    1. Fired OFF. Not fired. Although many of us can be lost in space without ever leaving home...

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  9. Emission Control...we have a problem...

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    1. Houston, you won't believe what just floated past me ...

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  10. 57 chevy, elevator, swimming pool or deep space..

    Take it when you can get it..

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  12. There is insufficient laughter in this world and I drink too much tea. With this one post you dealt with both of my problems. Splutter, splutter - and thank you.

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    1. You know, all I really want is to make people laugh with me. I'll settle for laughing at me, though. That's why I used to play softball.

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    2. Oh with, decidedly with. In awe at your cleverness.

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  13. "...floating around the space station like a giant..." eeww! That's enough breakfast, send the eggs back to the kitchen...

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    1. Did you happen to check out the youtube video of the wringing-out of the towel in space? Worth it. I should have linked.

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    2. I almost never check you tubes, they take way too long to load on my computer.

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    3. Bummer. It's a really cool video. The astronaut squirts water on a towel and then try to wring it out. All the water moves to the outside of the towel and onto his hands and it all just blobs around like a plasma monster.

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  14. I suppose it's neat that another space experiment is being contemplated, but I really would like to see the ROI of space programs in general. I like to daydream about what the world would be like if all the money that's gone to space stuff had gone to fixing things on earth. Like, say, hunger.

    Very funny post, though. I'll never look at lava lamps the same way again :0)

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    1. I'm going to go against the grain here. I do not want to see any more money devoted to sending people to Mars or something like that. Who cares? But these little projects where they send the eepy eepy machines to Mars and they dig around and report that--I don't begrudge them a cent.

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    2. True, and you've reminded me of another kind of space program I do like - the deep-space cameras that are seeing back to the big bang (well, almost).

      I was thinking more about the man on Mars scenario in my comment.

      Dang it, you made me stop and think through my knee-jerk reaction! Humph :)

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    3. Oh no! Please confer my deepest apologies to your knee, which should always be trusted.

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  15. I will never think about space travel the same way again!

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  16. Murr, I just love your sense of humour. My belly rolls got a serious workout reading this post. And now I know why I have always felt the 'ick' factor every time I looked at a lava lamp!

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    1. I wonder if they still make them? And also, how did they make them in the first place, and what IS that in there?

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    2. They do still make lava lamps, my family loves them and I gave my son one for Christmas.

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    3. How old is your son? He could make his own.

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  17. You belong to a very select group of people who can still make me laugh even after I've spent the morning reading news articles about the next war.

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  18. Out goes the lava lamp. I can't even look at it anymore.

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  19. Satan's lava lamp. I love the mental image!

    I always wondered how zero gravity lovin' would work, and not just because of giant floating globs of space fluids. How would inserting tab A into slot B work with no gravity for resistance? You'd just have two people wiggling around. Make no mistake; Earth is the best setting for intimacy.

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    1. Oh I don't know. Back in the '70s just about nobody ever put up any resistance.

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    2. Bungee cords. Or tantric sex.


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  20. A profound(ly hilarious) post, as always. Have you heard of the Mars One project (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_One)? A Dutch foundation plans to send colonists on a one-way trip to Mars by 2023. The only thing that makes me believe it might actually work is that they intend to fund it by making it a reality TV show. Nearly 80,000 people have already applied. You can vote on your favorite would-be astronauts at the Mars One site: http://applicants.mars-one.com/

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    1. Oh My Goodness Gracious. Thanks, Steve. It's almost impossible to put four good friends together in a roommate situation and have it work out. One of us never does the dishes, one of us hogs the bathroom, one of us makes shlorpy noises while eating, and the fourth is annoyingly passive-aggressive about the other three. It's always something.

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  22. There was a documentary of the sorts of difficulties of life in space. They mentioned having sex as being one of them. Never elaborated on the "how-to", but now I must, absolutely must find out.

    There should be a caution at the header, advising readers to put down/swallow drinks and go to bathrm to pee before reading.

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    1. Murr is responsible for more soaked chairs and coffee-sprayed computer monitors than anyone else on the internet.

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    2. Soaked chairs? Way too vivid. Brrrr.

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  23. Murr, I can't remember the last time I guffawed like I just guffawed. Like belly-laughing at the ceiling while clutching my weeping eyes. Woof. Satan's lava lamp.

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    1. DON'T CLUTCH THE EYES! DON'T CLUTCH THE EYES! But thanks.

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  24. ould they even be able to get a...you know...a lava lamp of doom ejaculating device?

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    1. If I were Siberia, I'd be extra nervous about exploding space objects.

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  25. Funny post as always. And yes, they still sell lava lamps. I was looking for one a couple of years ago, saw some at Target on line, but there were lots of warnings about how hot they get, and that they could be dangerous.
    So, there you go. Wherever that is.

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    1. They do! I was thinking lava lamps might have been replaced by whooshy screen savers.

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