Not Your Father’s Acorn

Chicken Licken was afraid of an acorn, thinking the sky was falling when it hit her on the head. When The Man of Steel went soaring through the skies cries of birds and planes could be heard. But this time it’s NASA’s UARS (Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite) and it’s heading your way. Or it could be. You have a 1 in 3,200 chance of getting conked on the head by this satellite, which has run out of fuel and is scheduled to hit earth the end of this month or early October. NASA has compared getting hit by this spent six-ton hunk of junk to getting hit by orbital debris with odds of 1 in 21 trillion. They’re sort of worried because most satellites that fall from the sky, which apparently are numerous since the dawn of the space age burn up during re-entry, but UARS is so huge and breaking apart and half-ton pieces may just make it to earth.

So, where will these pieces fall? They have no idea because the satellite is in an orbit with a radius of 57degrees north or south of the equator. So, somewhere in the States? Africa? Europe? An ocean? It’s all a crap shoot, which kind of makes me go hmmm, since they can put a man on the moon and meteorologists predict the weather, sometimes to the neighborhood (except the ones I listen to who tell me the next day what the weather was the day before) why can’t they follow this thing more accurately? But weekly updates and daily updates are planned until UARS makes landfall. So, until then, it’s best to stay alert and be prepared.

Here’s something to consider while you’re running for cover. Heinz is unveiling it’s newly designed “dip & squeeze” ketchup packet, the first new design since 1968.  Tearing off the “cap” end allow you to squeeze, just like the packet you’ve known all these years and the peel off “bottle” end allows for dipping your fries. It’s a cute idea, but I really don’t see the point, other than to showcase a new product. After all, there was nothing wrong with Coke when it seemed necessary to create the epic fail Coke II. But maybe in the scheme of things, it was just an advertizing ploy so Coke could thenceforth label their beverage “Classic”, without coming across as self-indulgent. But that’s the cynic in me and anyone who knows me knows I’m full of it. Cynicism!

As far as the new ketchup packet goes, which holds three times as much ketchup as the old relic that is soon to fade into oblivion, unless you’re looking on the shelf on my refrigerator door, I really don’t have a personal problem with it, but as they begin to appear in your fast food restaurant, I can’t help but think how they’ll store this heftier package.

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