Visit SpaceCampUtah.org to learn more about the Space Education Centers in Utah. Visit SpaceGuard.org and ProjectVoyager.org for information on joining a simulator based school space and science club.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday's Sum Up

Hello Troops,
It's a snowy Sunday and I'm good with that because we have a two day weekend! You might be thinking my stating we had a "two day weekend" was odd considering most people have two day weekends (or at least two days off from work each week). Well, two day weekends are odd for those of us that work at the Space Center. We work six days a week, with Sundays our only dark day. So, those Monday holiday's that roll around once a month or so are blessings for us. They are reminders of how most people live. Please don't get me wrong, I enjoy what I do or I wouldn't be doing it, and I'm grateful I have work - especially work I love, but it is nice to experience life with two days off a week.

We had a fantastic overnight camp with awesome fifth graders from Cedar Ridge Elementary School. The kids were generous in their post camp survey praise, awarding perfect scores of 1 to the Odyssey and Galileo. Congratulations to the Odyssey for taking the much coveted "Director's Trophy" for the camp (the trophy given to each week to the simulator with the best scores from the campers). Adam was shocked to the point of shouting during our post camp meeting when the results were posted on the Discovery's white board. He thought he'd bombed.

And we also praise Christina and her staff of the Galileo. Although the two ships tied with perfect 1's, the Odyssey took the trophy because it takes 8 campers to the Galileo's 6. I'm compelled to apologise to Christine for the method used in posting the scores. I put the Galileo's scores on the board first, leaving all believing the Galileo took the trophy. I put the Odyssey's scores second to last. Adam shouted in disbelief as many cheered. Others booed because I'd led them to believe the Galileo had taken it. What can I say but "guilty".

I want to officially welcome Ashleigh to the Space Center. She is our newest volunteer. I also wanted to congratulate Jason F. on doing an awesome job as 'doctor' in the Odyssey on one of the Odyssey's Saturday missions. His character was played brilliantly.

The only bad news to report is the death of the Odyssey's new printer (new might not be an inappropriate term, I bought the printer on Ebay - hoping to save a buck or two). The printer gave up the ghost Saturday morning. It kept messaging that it was too busy to print the papers being fed to it from the Odyssey's Control Room. We checked the network cable - ok. We turned it off and on again, we reloaded the software, we did everything possible to bring it back to purpose but nothing worked. Its now been given a proper reward for its services. It sits in the dumpster at the back of the school. Another couple hundred dollars tossed down the gullet of that dumpster. I'll think twice about ordering printers from Ebay. Sometimes it isn't worth trying to go cheap. A lesson to be learned.

How about something cheerful? I'm not one for video games, even though many classify what we do at the Space Center is an elaborate video game. But I confess a weakness for Mario Kart. I tried other games and failed. Take Halo for example. I played it once in multiplayer mode. There were too many buttons on the controller to push and I got confused. My opponents took advantage of my handicap and took delight in slithering behind me and shooting me point blank in the back of the head as I struggled to back away from the rocky cliff. I just gave up.

Mario Kart is my one true video game weakness. I've played it on every system and became proficient enough to hold my own and occasionally come in third or fourth. So, imagine my delight when I found this new version of my beloved game.

I'd pay good hard earned American money to play this version of the game and have just the opponents in mind I'd like to play against.



And how about these selections from the Imaginarium?


This might be something to take to heart. Remember, the vast majority of people you interact with on a daily basis (except your mother) are not interested in your ponderings, so in a social situation remember the poster above. Think more and talk less.

This will help the next time you immerse yourself in that piece of fantasy. I'm wondering where we would find the Imaginarium. Suggestions?
The only other thing missing from this poster is Clovershire, home of my home away from home - Cloverdale.
Oh, I can't find South Dakota either. Yes, its my home state and deserves Fantasy status (I'd be careful if you're tempted to voice a contrary opinion, especially if you've never been to South Dakota - home of Mr. Rushmore, the Black Hills, the Badlands, Wall Drug, Devils Tower and the number one attraction - the guided tour of Mr. Williamson's childhood and teen haunts).

Finally, someone the dictators in the Middle East wish was on their side.


I'll see you in the trenches Troops. Enjoy your day off from school and try to do something constructive.

Mr. W.
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