UnNews:U.S. returns to the moon

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8 January 2024

The flight of the Vulcan launch brags, "We're Number 1", though nearby radio antennas look away.

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida -- The United States is set to return to the Moon for the first time in over 50 years, as the Vulcan Centaur blasted off Monday for a soft landing.

NASA has partnered with private companies, outsourcing the jobs of reading inspiring scripts over loudspeakers and frying schoolteachers to a crisp. Thus, the launch was undertaken by United Launch Alliance, the parent company of both United Airlines and soccer club D.C. United.

The spacecraft will take a "roundabout" course toward the Moon. This is because, if you aim toward the Moon, it is somewhere else once you get there; even D.C. United's strikers know that. The probe will not use "warp speed", as that didn't work out well for America last time. However, it will carry the ashes of Lt. Uhura, who always wanted to "go where no man has gone before." Captain Kirk's ashes will not be on board, as actor William Shatner is not dead yet, though his own molecules are arguably underused.

The unmanned Peregrine lander carries five U.S.scientific payloads, along with fifteen others for Hungary, Mexico, and the United Kingdom. These will measure cable signal on the Moon, see if there is free WiFi, and measure how long it takes to get a pizza delivered. The Mexican payloads will determine whether the moon's low gravity could make it easier to fry tortillas, while the U.K. experiment attempts to see what one would have to do to actually get a conservative government.

Update[edit]

8 January 2024

Several hours into its historic flight, Astrobotic said the lunar lander was experiencing a "propulsion anomaly" that was found to be a fuel leak. Consequently, the robotic arms aboard the Peregrine have been reprogrammed to cancel the planned dispersal of human ashes into space. Instead, they will go with a cremation.

American wunderkind Elon Musk criticized NASA's selection of United Launch Alliance. "If they had gone with SpaceX," he explained, "there could have been a fireball on the launch pad and we could have had their cremation without going into space at all!"

Update[edit]

15 January 2024

Technicians have determined that "none" is not enough fuel to go through with the planned lunar touchdown. Consequently, they have opted to try for a lunar field goal, kicking the spacecraft through the celestial uprights to settle for a mere three points. The Peregrine lander is now hurtling back toward Earth, and its sponsors will have their cremation even sooner than planned.

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