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SOL Cinco:
Sol 5 Summary Report (SSR) for 13APR2016​

Person filling out Report: Drew Canham

Summary Title: Houston, can we get a pet? (We promise we’ll take care of it …)

Mission Status: Bacon-y

Sol Activity Summary:

Hola, Mission Support,

Operation Day Cinco in progress. I finally was allowed out of the Hab. Commander-in-Training Otsmar led Jaxom and I on EVA. We did well. JonnyB, Karen and Victoria worked within the Habratory® (yes, it’s trade-marked) doing research, making wonderful oatmeal cookies I hinted about for a few days but didn’t bother to make, and I suspect taking power-naps. We enjoyed a wild rice soup with bonus veggies and crackers for lunch.

It’s time to get serious here. We’ve decided to help re-design the MDRS—a Version Deaux if you will. While MDRS-V1 has been great and continues to serve its function well, we can do better. Malibu Barbie is smarter than you might think; she inspired one of our first must-have enhancements:

· Bay Windows (See attached). Imagine a day inside the hab, reading a nice book, looking at the never-changing Martian desert, curled up like a cat in the sun. Bay windows would also help resale value down the road. At some point, we’ll have all these habs on the then old part of town. Let’s think ahead here. Investment idea: Love It or List It—Mars and or the Duct Tape-er Upper.

· Different stairs. We’re thinking escalator, but perhaps we should save that for when we have established social classes and elitism on Mars. I suppose it will be inevitable. I mean right now titles don’t matter, but I am sure that will get old fast. So, in an effort to be rational, we’re requesting non-tree-house stairs.

· A garage. Where else are we going to put all the junk we accumulate?

· Another bathroom or two. A six bedroom house plus a loft—and only one bathroom! And, come on, I think the current situation is technically two ½ bathrooms. I should pay more attention to all that HGTV my wife watches. Resale, people. (P.S.: Love you, Elaine.)

· A dumb-waiter or freight elevator. Just using the pulleys could be fun. I mean, ask for the Moon right. (I know what you’re thinking, the Moon is so 1960’s, but clichés are what they are.)

· A fire pole. Yeah, I know. We just want one.

· Individual Habratory® space. Academics want to feel special. We need our own labs, or we’re prone to bolt to another “the-desert-is-always-browner-
on-the-other-side” place. (Also, I would like a bathroom in mine.)

· A nice area for the pet we’re hoping you’ll let us have, Houston. We’re thinking one of those miniature teacup pigs (see attached). They’re pretty darn cute. [And, we like bacon. From a social-science lens, life on the farm produces tough people. We need tough people on Mars; it’s not easy up here. If we had to kill our pig, it would toughen us up. That could be useful if things got real on Mars, or we just wanted bacon. To be fair, I honestly don’t know whether farmers are tough; I didn’t grow up on a farm (Fern didn’t seem to want to part with Wilbur; Charlotte was a bit partial to him, too). Farm folk might just say that to feel good about themselves. They’re usually pretty strong though, so I wouldn’t mess with them.] We could call this new area the Pig Pen.

· While just an accessory, a toaster-oven could be quite handy. With some effort and duct tape, I’m sure it could double as an incubator or some science-y device used during EVA rounds, helping to “justify” the need. Pop-Tart heater-upper (practical need) and some sort of “Martian-Species” egg warmer (Bazinga!; mission critical). (Note: I really only like Frosted Cherry Pop-Tarts; I hate to be that guy, but it’s not negotiable.)

Over dinner, we’re going to discuss what we would call MDRS-V2. It’s important to get that right. After a few landings, we would have MDRS-V1, V2, V3, etc. We’d feel just like a number. Kind of old hat . . . we want to feel special; needed.

MDRS lessons:

1. For your viewing pleasure, check out Tom and Jerry in Cat Nebula, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0n7_lXJlbM. It informs the reader about dehydrated food issues and the daily challenges we face here. There is also a special guest appearance in this feature.

2. We’ve pre-named our pet pig Ares (see attached). (Mr. Wiggles was a close second. We’re hoping it’s harder to say no when the pig has a name. And a face. See above again if you haven’t committed to getting us a teacup pig yet, Houston.)

3. Referring back to a previous SOL report, “Beefish” and “Chickenish” are pretty good. MDRS is pretty progressive—vegan friendly menu options available. Please call ahead. I’m still the only Drew up here.

4. Otsmar let us look at Jupiter and the nearby moons at the Observatory last night. One at a time of course. Absolutely wonderful—the definition of the rings and the brown colors were stunning. Worth the trip alone. We also looked at the Moon. Breathtaking. I almost had a feeling.

5. Really, Frosted Cherry Pop-Tarts are the best.

6. If you are ever worried about rationing, or distributing portion sizes fairly, Otsmar is your man. This morning, he was making sure Commander Rucker wasn’t abusing her authority by spot-checking the size of her chocolate chip pancake. Luckily, she was within regulation. Mutiny averted. (See attached.)

Anomalies: We almost over-filled the loft water-tank (but didn’t); Karen is the Commander for a reason (well done, boss). We also spilled some flavored drink of some sort. We aren’t as perfect as we thought. Hopefully that notion will prove to be an anomaly.

Weather: Very nice outside, but we are worried that our opportunity to use the observatory will be limited. We’ll cope by having a movie night. Research idea: eating popcorn in space suits—a how-to guide. Stay tuned.

Look ahead plan: We’re excited to test Victoria’s Search & Rescue Rover. Malibu Barbie will finally contribute. She’s been laying around all week. (In case you’re wondering, Astronaut Barbie got nervous at the last minute and wouldn’t come. HR should have caught that in the screening process.) Weather permitting, we’d like Otsmar to dazzle us with cosmic wonders (no pressure, friend).

Crew Physical Status: We are doing very well. In preparation for the HSO Report today, I was cleaning up the Medical Facility (a.k.a. the first-aid cabinet). I organized everything in some bins I found, and noticed some Band-Aids. It got me thinking about the kind we “used to” have at my house (Disney Princesses, Hello Kitty, etc.)—gosh, those things make you feel better. We don’t have that here; medical attention is very clinical. No bedside manner. Which, I suppose, is my fault since I’m the HSO Officer. I mean, I am a Doctor, but not the kind that helps people. If I had feelings, all of this would make me sad. Speaking of which, those old Johnson & Johnson Band-Aid commercials were heart-warming. “I am stuck on Band-Aids, and Band-Aid’s are stuck on me.” Precious. Now you’ll have that jingle stuck in your head all day. (Also: I wonder if there was a huge knock-down, drag-out fight over which Johnson got his or her name listed first?) One the other hand, life on Mars is tough. Look out, Ares.

Upcoming EVA: Rover EVA’s.

Drew Canham
XO and HSO (aka Dr. Initials)

Drew Canham, Ph.D., J.D.

VP for Student Success

McLennan Community College