Never Too Late!

Never Too Late!
any resemblance to anyone real or imaginary is mere bad luck
we are all lying in the gutter, but some of us are trying to get up


Crime and Virgin cosmonauts

Vice magazine, still a monthly in their hardcopy dead-tree edition, have begun publishing new stuff weekly on the web. A lot of the new weekly content has been very Russia centric. Why so? Ah - Vice seem to have developed some sort of unholy union with Moscow-based alternative English newspaper eXile, or at least with editor Mark Ames, probably a thoroughly horrible man, who seems more-or-less single-handedly responsible for most of the new Vice weekly's new Russian web material.

Russia impresses me. The blatancy of the elitny crass noveau-riche kleptocrat oleaginousgarchs. The fact that the place is so blatantly fucked up (when I went to Viipuri/Viborg, the historic city taken from Finland during the Second World War, it was cratered and collapsed walls blocked back streets and it looked like it hadn't been repaired since the war), when Strategic Rocket Command outside Moscow have their electricity cut off for non-payment, and yet they have a fucking space programme!

I am, as you know, a great believer in Space and in exploration of other planets. When I saw that (Sir) Richard Branson (Brit entrepreneur, Virgin brand) was investing in commercial space-flight, I was pleased, and I wrote him a letter to that effect. Then I told him the artist's impression of the first Virgin Galactic flight in 2012 or whenever, a spaceship painted in Virgin colours, had made me think of a submarine, and would he like a submarine (with portholes for 12 passengers) painted in Virgin colours for some publicity stunt, and it would only cost him £300k (this being the size in the gap of the budget of my submarine-building friend of a friend). I got a polite letter back from him saying no. I'll reproduce our correspondance, only I can't find it right now, and tell you the whole story later. Well. When the final human leaves earth for that final time and looks around and the sun will be big and red burning the orange-haze sky... yes, I'm sure it will be most poignant.

1 comment:

Indigobusiness said...

This illustrated spaceplane is almost identical to the Rutan designed plane they won the big money Space prize with. I forget what it was called exactly.

The wings are in that upright position to let it gently reenter the atmosphere without burning up. The tail/wings then tilt back down to the flying position and it is then more conventionally aerodynamic.

The reentry position was designed after the flight of a badminton shuttlecock.

Burt Rutan has long been a hero of mine. Not to mention Branson.

I've always been more preoccupied with inner space, but I did have my Heinlein years.