The Mothership

Artist's_impression_of_ʻOumuamua.jpg
This is an artist’s rendition of Oumuamua. Scientists are not able to see what the object actually looks like.

Family lore has it that my mother is not human. My stepfather always called her, “The Doom Goddess” (origin of this nickname unknown) and claimed she was from the Mothership. Me—well, they say that I was made out of recycled milk cartons, but we all know that’s just an effort to protect my halfling identity.

As you can imagine, space talk is nothing new at the family dinner table. I grew up obsessed with the stars, spacetime, quantum physics, and the true nature of realities. I took classes in astronomy & extraterrestrial life in college, read Quanta with vigor, and one silly Friday night I even got an amplituhedron tattooed on my arm. How could a girl whose mother would someday be beamed back to the Mothership not feel the need to explore such topics? That said—there’s a real lack of useful reporting on the matter of extraterrestrial activity, so over the years I’ve gravitated to the more pursuable realms of experimental physics.

Luckily, my parents (both PhDs in geology, from Columbia and Johns Hopkins) have been keeping an eye on extraterrestrial ongoings as well. At family dinner last week, they told me about Oumuamua – the first object from outside our solar system to ever be detected & confirmed. A quarter-mile-long and  gracefully spiraling through our solar system at 85,700 miles per hour relative to the sun, Oumuamua is completely inert, and it displays an aspect ratio unlike any ever recorded in our solar system. NASA has been calling it an asteroid, but due to the fact that it’s not acting like an asteroid (or a comet for that matter) it’s actually classified as an “interstellar object.” My mom? She’s calling it the Mothership. Naturally, my interest was piqued. Could it be so? Post supper, I decided to do a little more digging on the subject. I uncovered an interesting string of events, leading to what seems to be the closest thing to a public admission that UFOs are real ever made by our government:

  • Mid-October: Oumuamua is detected by researches in Hawaii.
  • October: Luis Elizondo resigns from position leading the Pentagon’s Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, in protest of excess secrecy & internal opposition.
  • October 11: To the Stars launches, with Elizondo in a key position. The mission of this public benefit corp is vague, but it seems clear that a primary goal is to end stigma against discussing extraterrestrial topics, and promote scientific and cultural advancement by integrating previously hidden information (unlike the Pentagon, To The Stars encourages us to see aliens as allies)
  • October 14: Oumuamua makes its closest pass to Earth (15 million miles)
  • December 16th: Pentagon admits that they are studying UFOS with the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program

For one thing, I’m just going to say that I’m happy to see UFOs and extraterrestrial studies getting shown in a new sort of limelight. I hope that this continues – that we see this information moving out of the shadows and the tabloids, and into proper reporting and research. And that extrastellar object that’s flickering above us? Is it just a big rock that the Forces That Be saw fit to harness for hype and fundraising? Or is there something more to the story? Hard saying, but I’ll be keeping an eye—just in case it is the Mothership, and there’s a chance for this kid to pay the grandparents a visit.

 

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