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  • Major Tom floating above and beyond the 60 mile boundary that separates Earth from outer space.
    A paper-thin shield is seen as an expanse of blue, a shield between life and the dark void of space.

    Ground Control: “There's a rip, Major Tom. We need you to repair the rip.”
    Where’s the rip?
    Ground Control: “To the left of your portal. Do you see it?”

    Yeah, I see it and you want me to what?
    Ground Control: “Plug it.”
    How? With what? It’s spewing and spreading CO2 farther and faster than I could possibly travel.

    Ground Control: “Major, remember your primary objective.”
    How am I suppose to turn off a spigot to outer space?
    Ground Control: “Simply maneuver your craft inline with the objective and start the filling spray.”

    What filling spray? Is there something here you haven’t told me? Where do I get the filling spray?
    Ground Control: "Major, need I remind you that you are performing a vital mission? The anti-carbon monitor is to the right of your control panel. Do you see it Major Tom?"

    I‘ve located the panel. It says, in an emergency break the glass. Should I break it?
    Ground Control: "Yes, Major, break the glass."

    OK, I’m holding the device.
    Ground Control: “Excellent, now suit up and exit the craft.”
    Wait, a minute here. You want me to walk out into that river of CO2 and spray this little container?

    Ground Control: “That’s your prime objective.”
    I’m at a loss for words here, Ground Control. How about you taking your little spray can and put it where the sun don’t shine.

    Ground Control: “Major, the spray will start a chain reaction.”
    Will I be a part of the chain reaction?
    Ground Control: “No, Major. Your anti matter barrier will protect you from the objective.

    Exiting the space ship, container and shields in place.
    Ground Control: “That’s it Major, a little to the left, more to the center, no, a little more to the left. Major, it is imperative to the success of this mission that you follow these instructions to the letter. Yes Major, you are now in line with the objective, try to stand firm in place."

    I’m in outer space with a river of CO2 hitting me head on and your telling me to stand firm. Ground Control, I’m standing firm, waiting for countdown to start reaction.

    Ground Control: "10, 9, 8, 7….3, 2, 1 disengage and press."
    Ground Control, this is Major Tom. Canister is empty. Ground Control, this is Major Tom. Do you hear me Ground Control? Do you hear me?

    • • •

    “Last week, the fragility of that thin blue shield was underscored by the news that we’ve reached a daily average of 400 parts per million (ppm) of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. That’s the highest level in at least 3 million years. In less than two centuries, we’ve increased atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) by 42 percent—by burning fossil fuels, degrading our forests and disturbing our soils. And it’s still going up.”

    Listen to Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield’s own recorded version of David Bowie's Space Oddity on YouTube.
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