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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Magellan Issues a Frightening Ultimatum. Pictures of the Old Magellan's Last Mission. Utah Finalists to Mars. The Imaginarium

Hello Troops,
     Lately I've been impressed with Connor L's  work at both the CMSEC and the DSC.  He understands becoming indispensable is the key to success and job security.  
     The director of the CMSEC recently rewarded Connor's enthusiasm and dedication by generously granting him a measure of decision making in regards to the Magellan (and I hear a collective 'GULP' from all you loyal Troubadours and Space Center fans).  
     What will Connor do with that power?  Some might think a mass firing of the current staff and the immediate hiring of his friends and family would be at the top of Connor's short list.  A bit of cronyism is to be expected when it comes to powerful government positions.  Why would it be any different at the CMSEC?  
     "So Connor, what are you thinking?  Any changes in the works?" I asked on my last visit to the CMSEC.  I watched as his eyes stopped at each person in the Magellan control room.  Andrew shifted nervously at his 2nd chair station while uncomfortably tugging at his shirt collar.  
     "Geez it's gettin kinda warm in here," Andrew muttered.  
     Farpoint Cadet Jake H. quickly surrendered one of his volunteering candy bars and made a well timed offering to his flight director.  Connor snatched it out of his hand with a grunt and muttered, "'Bout time.  Now Get back to work!"  
     "You've got them well trained," I observed.  
     Connor darkened the room with a sour smile.  "Watch this."  He held up his hand and snapped his fingers twice. The staff and volunteers jumped to their feet.  "Yes Sir!" they shouted in unison.  
     "See what I mean?" Connor explained. "They know that in here, It's My Way or the Highway."  He paused and waited for the staff to react to his cleverism.  It didn't come.  He spoke louder.  "I SAID IT'S MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY!"  The staff complied and laughed until he snapped his fingers.  The room went silent.  
     "I'm impressed." I lied.  
     "Well, you gotta show 'em who's in charge.  I'm the Alpha Male and nobody - I mean nobody's gonna forget it."  He looked at me, then a memory found its way into his expanding skull.  "By the way,  you like to embarrass me in that blog of yours.  Ya, I've seen the pictures you take and post."  
     "It's never done intentionally."  I moved to increase the distance between us.
     "That's going to stop, Kapeesh?  You know, being a friend of mine has its advantages.  Not being a friend.....  well,  let me put it this way.  You've gotta good imagination - right? After all, you built the place.  So take my advice and USE that imagination.  Don't do anything stupid.  Are we square on this?"  
     "We're square," I answered and quickly changed the subject. "Where do you want to take the Magellan in the future?"  His answer went a bit longer than I had time for, so I asked him to write it down and send it to me.   
     His response is below.

The Great and Powerful OZ
aka Connor L.

Connor L Muses on the Magic Marvel which is the Magellan.                        
Hello All! 
     My name is Connor. Most of you know me from the Magellan (CMSEC) and the Atlantis (DSC). I'm a student at Lone Peak High School and work as a Magellan Flight Director at the CMSEC.  I've also just recently been named the Set Director of the Atlantis simulator at the DSC.  People say I'm entertaining to watch when I fly. I'm also super picky on video and have even had Mr. Williamson tell me during my training "This scene is a mess..." But that's beside the point.
    Being the primary Flight Director' in the Magellan, I kinda get to make little decisions now and again. One of those decisions was to give the Magellan a theme for the year. I wanted this theme to match what I expect from my staff this year, as well as the Farpoint cadets. I've settled on this quote as this year's theme. So without further adieu....the theme! 

     This theme describes the Magellan's way of going about things this year and the stories we're going to tell. 
     Your probably thinking, "We work at a Space Center. Isn't that different enough?" My simple answer is "no". Most of you guys know me;  you know how frustrated I get when I fly the same mission more than once in a row.  You know how much I love stories and you know how much I love the Magellan. Why not combine all of those into what we're trying to accomplish this year. 
     The Magellan opened years ago as a Babylon 5 space station.  Soon afterwords, it was reimagined into a Star Trek DS9 Star Base. Shockingly, last year we received new controls that turned the Magellan into a starship. 
     I think most people will agree with me when I say the Magellan has had an identity crisis ever since it opened.  Should it be a space station or a starship?  Should it be like the Voyager or something different?  
     We're on a mission to give the Magellan an identity. Not only do I want to tweak the Magellan's personality, I also want it to be...different. I want to make it a fun place to volunteer (not that it wasn't before), I want to push the envelope on stories we write and tell.  I want us to actually be in the running for the trophy next summer. I'm super proud of last year's staff when we managed to get a 1.02 on a camp rotation! 
     We're coming back! I want the Magellan to be feared in staff meetings ;)
     To make this happen, my staff and I going to have to step it up so you Farpoint Cadets - get ready for lots of changes.  We're going to make this next summer awesome! We're already developing our new story 'Paradise Lost' and someday it'll be ready to fly. Get ready to work hard and have fun in the Magellan this year.  I'm excited for the opportunity my staff and I have to work with you.

Connor L. 

The Troubadour congratulations Connor on his vision and wishes the Magellan, and its staff and volunteers, the best of luck as they claw and fight their way to the illusive 1.0.

Mr. Wiliamson  

The Old Magellan's Last Mission

     I'd like to show you the pictures I took of the staff and volunteers that worked the last mission of the old Magellan before it was demolished and the Magellan we know today was built. The day after these pictures were taken, construction on the new set began.  The new Magellan opened a few months later for the summer season.
     Please forgive the photograph's resolution. They were taken with the Space Center's first digital camera. The faces are fuzzy but our old timers will recognized the staff and volunteers who worked that last mission.

Space and Science News

8 Utahns Among Finalists to Travel to Mars
From KSL
PROVO — Eight Utahns are among 1,058 finalists who are vying for a spot on a mission to colonize Mars. They were recently whittled down from just over 200,000 applicants from all over the world.
Kitty Kane, a hairdresser from Provo, is one of the candidates and she said she knows she will have to leave her life behind. However, if selected, she said she would take a one-way trip to the red planet.
"There's a lot of good you can do, going to space for humanity," Kane said. "I didn't ever think that a regular civilian could be the first person to go to Mars, but that's what's happening."
The venture, organized by Mars One, is backed by several aerospace companies including SpaceX and Lockheed Martin. It's privately funded, and its creators hope to garner donations from the public through their website, and ultimately by creating a reality show type program where people will be able to vote for their favorite candidates.  Read More of the article.  Read More about Mars One.

The Imaginarium
The Ordinary Becomes The Extraordinary

Task: design and build a fountain.
There is the traditional fountain exposing a serious cancer of creativity

Then there is the fountain designed by a student of the imagination.

One Awesome Watch.

Two buttons that tell the truth about politics.

Something for us Dr. Who and Harry Potter hybrids.

Having some imaginary fun with Disney and Potter

Your MisFortune Cookie

Get it? Trix and Illusions? Get it?
I'm lovin it.

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