Popular astronaut. Journal Entry: March 14, 2009 Apparently IÂm not alone up here. In another compartment in the module is a monkey. He's got this little machine that provides food and water, and he's hooked up to medical monitoring equipment. But what the heck is he doing up here? He wasn't mentioned in my mission briefing. Which was actually kind of rushed now that I think about it. I guess it makes sense. Looking at my checklist, it looks like I'll be working on his toilet quite a bit later on. Journal Entry: March 16, 2009 The food here is terrible. The larder is fully stocked, but with really inappropriate food. ItÂs got nothing but soup in here. And not astronaut soup. Cans of Chunky. ItÂs like someone raided a Costco for a f*****g space mission. How am I supposed to eat this? Is this someoneÂs idea of a joke? It's been a week and this place is already covered in brown smears. All that toilet maintenance can't be helping. Journal Entry: March 20, 2009 I should be able to see Earth out of one of these windows, right? I canÂt believe I hadnÂt noticed that until now. When I checked in with control, they said it was normal. Apparently IÂm in a highly elliptical orbit. They called it a Bigh-Bie orbit. Never heard of it before. Named after its inventors presumably. I could have sworn I heard them snickering when they said that though. Journal Entry: March 28, 2009 OK, this is bullshit. Every other task on my checklist involves using the toilet and then immediately taking it apart. s**t is literally getting out of control. Diary, do you know what comes out of an astronaut who eats nothing but soup? Or a monkey at any time, in any situation? This whole place is disgusting. ___ TRANSCRIPT OF HAB MODULE ARES-1B COMMUNICATION TO HOUSTON- MISSION CONTROL Â 0815hr 04/16/2009 MC: Hi, Tim? This is Mission Director Mike Atkinson here. Have you been communicating with control on this frequency? Because the people on this line are not Mission Control. Do you know a Ron Berton or Aaron Grimhorst? HM A-1B: Yeah, I know those two guys. MC: Yeah, OK. Look, I donÂt know what those guys told you, but this is supposed to be an unmanned mission. I donÂt even know how you got in there. This is a real situation. HM A-1B: YouÂre telling me, Mike. I have been cleaning up my own s**t for two weeks now. Also, what do you mean by unmanned mission? MC: Well it looks like these guys played a bit of a prank on you, there. This was an unmanned mission - well, a one monkey mission - and Aaron and Rob somehow snuck you on board. IÂm not exactly sure how Â this actually represents a pretty fundamental failure of several hundred different protocols. We're actually kind of lucky you're still alive. But, if you've got air, water and food, I guess you can hang out a bit longer. In the meantime weÂre going to have to see how this affects the mission. You sit tight, OK? HM A-1B: Can do Mike. IÂve got another toilet check coming up on my checklist anyways. MC: Uh, yeah. Yes. Stick to the checklist. We may get back to you on that as well. ___ TRANSCRIPT OF HAB MODULE ARES-1B COMMUNICATION TO HOUSTON - MISSION CONTROL Â 1942hr 04/16/2009 MC: Hi, Tim. First thing I want you to know is that weÂre going to be disciplining Aaron and Rob. What they did was not cool. I want you to be sure that this kind of behavior will no longer be tolerated. Right now HR is redrafting our Tolerance and Harassment Policy to make this kind of thing explicitly prohibited. HM A-1B: ThatÂs good. MC: Furthermore, Aaron and Rob will both be speaking with a counselor, and this incident will go on their permanent records. I canÂt really go into the details, but between you and me IÂd be surprised if either of them gets much more than a two percent raise this year, Tim. HM A-1B: I am glad to hear that. What about the rest of the timeline? IÂm still scheduled for reentry maneuvers on Thursday? MC: Yes. No. About that. You are actually traveling towards Mars at a very high speed. HM A-1B: I see. MC: WeÂve had the boys running the numbers here to map out a way to get you back to Earth, and it turns out the answer is pretty simple. HM A-1B: Oh good. MC: I said simple. Not good. You are not coming back to Earth. ItÂs just completely physically impossible. The guys tell me we could send you to Jupiter. Do you want to see Jupiter? IÂve heard itÂs pretty big. YouÂll, uh, almost certainly starve to death before then, but you know. An option. HM A-1B: ... MC: You still there Tim?