And he said, “No Thanks.”

Last night’s sojourn to the planetarium turned out pretty well.  All things considered.

Like the “rocket launches” advertised?  Were film canisters half-full of water.  Drop in a bit of crushed Alka-Seltzer, shake, turn upside down.  Tick, tick, tick…POP!  Canister achieves an altitude of, say, two meters.  (Max Q is unknown.)

Impressive, but Boy was looking for more…fire.

He was a bit more enthused about the vacuum bottle experiments.  What happens to you when you’re in a vacuum?  Well, if you’re a marshmallow with a smiley face like our Mr. Astronaut, you get really really big, then you crush yourself when the air rushes back in.  Kinda cool.  If your blood is like Pepsi, then you boil all the gaseous material right the hell out.  Fairly spectacularly.  And if your organs are like that Solo cup full of shaving cream, then they expand so much they fill the entire 3-gallon vacuum bottle.  (That was a kid favorite.)

Otherwise, it was a whole bunch of meh from Boy’s point of view.  It’s a good thing I had the flash of insight to bring my iPod, because otherwise there’s no way he would have made it through.  At least this way he had something to distract him from asking me if we could go after 30 minutes, and every 5 minutes thereafter.  To his credit, he actually made it a couple of hours before he asked for the first time.

I will say that the featured presentation of the evening, the newly High-Def’ed version of the 1989 documentary For All Mankind, was absolutely worth the trip.  It’s all archival footage from NASA (at the end of the movie, the audience got a great chuckle out of the first line of the credits:  “Filmed on location by the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration”), and the only narration (other than the voices in the footage) is interview audio from Apollo astronauts.  That’s it.  Just them telling their stories, paired with images from the story.   Embedding is disabled on this segment of it, or I’d share directly, but here – I’ll link to it.  Give it 10 minutes – it’s awesome.  I might have to buy a copy to add to the old DVD collection.   Wow.

Boy was vaguely interested – especially in the scenes of the guys running and occasionally falling down on the moon.  (I bet had he not had headphones in he would have been equally fascinated by the discussion of how the astronauts went to the bathroom in zero gravity.)

The hit of the night for him, though, was the brief Ewan McGregor-narrated movie beforehand on astronaut training, equipment, etc.  Most of it was geared for an older audience, but there was an amusing computer-animated sequence clearly intended for kids which depicted why astronauts wear those cool-looking space suits.  They did this by having a wizened little scientist guy subjecting an astronaut to the effects of space.  With the astronaut ending up like Wile E. Coyote.  First he can’t breathe, and he dies.  Then he experiences no pressure, and bursts like a balloon.  Then he freezes into a block of ice.  Then microwave radiation cooks him.  Then cosmic rays mutate him in to a big strand of DNA with eyes.  (Boy thought he looked like bacon.)  Then he has to dodge meteors until finally he gets splattered with Sputnik itself.  All of these deaths get a chuckle out of Boy.

Especially since the little guinea-pig astronaut guy was introduced as having my first name.

Great.  Oedipus lives.

The real insult, in my opinion?  He took one bite of his Moon Pie and said “No Thanks.”  Huh?  MY kid?  I had him take another bite.  “Nah.  You can have it.”

There’s somethin’ wrong with that boy, I’m tellin’ ya.

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7 Responses

  1. I need a Moon Pie Now!

    Don’t look at me. This one’s MINE! 😀

  2. I didn’t like moon pies when I was a kid either. They weren’t sweet enough and took a lot of chewing. Give him time – they’re one of my favorite things now.

    To be honest, I like the banana ones better than the chocolate ones, and that’s what they were handing out last night.

  3. I’m not sure why but I’ve never visited a planetarium (there goes that damn song again). It sounds like it was really cool.
    And don’t alert the Redneck Authorities, but I don’t like Moon Pies either. I think it’s the marshmellow filling.
    I do like RC Cola though.

    Maybe you want the Plan! A! Tarium! (duh-duh, duh DUH) to Leave! You! Be! (duh-duh, duh DUH!)

    *evil grin*

    The Redneck Authorities have been notified and will be knocking on your door as soon as Cooter sobers up enough to be able to hotwire the truck again.

  4. I think Moon Pies are gross. I seem to remember some horrible “Larry the Cable Guy” movie where he had a secret compartment in his truck just for Moon Pies.

    Moon Pies are fine. Larry the Cable Guy movies, on the other hand…

  5. He doesn’t like moon pies? Wow, I have to sit down, this is just shocking. I ate those things like they were going out of style when I was his age.

    Me too – but to be fair, I should admit that my parents should have just owned stock in Little Debbie. Nutty Bars, Star Crunch, Oatmeal Cream Pies, Fudge Rounds, we plowed through ’em all.

  6. […] and the documentary For All Mankind that Boy and I saw in the planetarium last year on the anniversary of the moon landing.  First verdict:  This is pretty damned cool.  I will agree with Crisitunity’s BF that it […]

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