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May 8, 2019 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Xeron Thrusts. Blinds. Rotating cats.

Man and woman in space ship at console.1951 Flight to Mars (USPD., artist life/

“Well, Babe, it’s just young me on a long flight to Mars. So…” (1951.Flight to Mars/USPD/

Xeron thrusts. Sounds like either a superhero or an adult entertainment personality.

Or some suspended belief SciFi situation. (And who isn’t doesn’t on occasion to contemplate swinging that cat by the tail? Ye who is innocent, cast the first stone or hairball.)

Casting about, the space guys are tweaking the space works since Dragons can just be counted on for so far – whether flame out GOT Rhaegal or SpaceX-17 which arrived on schedule at the Space Station today unlike it’s uncrewed twin that flamed up and exploded last month.)

Traditional space vehicle chemical rocket fuel propellant is heavy, takes up too much room, and there’s no topping off the tanks in space..yet.

Unfolding currently is the Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) project focusing on real gossamer solar wings: either fan-like or a long ribbon rolling out like a window shade. After launch, the plan is to unfurl the solar scarfs to collect sunlight, convert it to electrical power to be fed into fuel-efficient, electrostatic thrusters to generate electrons in the thruster’s magnetic field.

Then the electrons ionize the inert gas, Xenon, creating a zooming exhaust plume of plasma to shove the spacecraft forward. (More about NASA’s SEP here.)

Go, Xeron, go! Sounds super. Just like Prometheus using krypton.

Two Spacemen in lunar landscape. Radar Men from the Moon, 1952. Republic Pictures,, artist life/

“Glad these space suit pants hold a sharp crease so we can make a good impression on the locals babes.” (1952.Radar Men from the Moon/USPD/

What did I tell, ya’? Stuff of myths, legends, and superheroes. But what do you expect when among stars?

While you’re spaced, circle around for news about the orbiting outpost, Gateway that will be escorted into space near the moon and held there by high powered SEPs to act as a low orbit rest/refuel stop for long range space vehicles – sort of like a highway Buc-ee’s here on Earth.

Men with car trouble in gas station Last Frontier hotel, 1948 (Janice Waltzer/Flickr/

Eerie similarities: out in the middle of wide open spaces, exploring the Last Frontier, men looked for the stars, dealing with vehicle issues… maybe “Travel the USA” was just a practice run for outer space? (1948/Janice Waltzer/

Coming back down to Earth with blinding speed, the sun is shining through different windows this time of year, so different blinds must be adjusted so RC Cat can sunbathe.

Give us a break. She whines if we don’t. And mauls the blinds. I am not buying new ones again. She has teeth and not afraid to move things with them.

Hell has no fury like cat denied access to sunny windows.

If there’s a positive, it’s that Staff can spring into action and collect the accumulation of shunned cat hair in the previously preferred locations without snarls interference by occupant.

That’s why it’s call Spring cleaning. The cat said so. We thought it was because you had to be fast and spring clean out of claw swipe range. But, no.

Cat hanging over bird cage (Rijksmuseum/ USPD.artist life,

“What? Hurricane season trial run? No, that is not what is meant by boxed lunch.” (USPD/

She’s like a sunflower: rotates with the sun. 

Fortunately the window screens are in good shape, so she won’t get on a roll and end up in some strange universe. She’d definitely see stars. You just don’t know about Black Holes.

SciFi has proved right more than once.

Star and cat crossed.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

Cat face in dark. (Israel Defense Forces, AWIS art competition/FLickr/USPD.Released by IRF/

When you wish upon a star sometimes you get an autograph. But don’t expect acknowledgment from the cat star. (AWIS/



Leave a Comment
  1. sustainabilitea / May 8 2019 6:44 am

    One of the weirdest/most disturbing stories of some years ago, was when in California somewhere (of course), there was a city council (or some such group) meeting and something was mentioned about a black hole. A black member accused the person mentioning it of being a racist. 😦 Sigh. Nothing like our current culture of over-sensitivity and being offended by everything.


    Liked by 1 person

    • shoreacres / May 8 2019 7:35 am

      How well I remember Miss Dixie’s howls of protest when the sunlight disappeared from her favorite spot. It was pathetic and amusing, all at once. As for dealing with vehicle issues… Let us just say that if going into a ditch is on the agenda, best to do it in a nice, small Texas town where everyone is helpful. How’s that for a tease? (The good news is that there was no collision, exactly, no damage to me, and apparently only damage to the front grill and fenders. I drove home from Seguin with no problems at all — even the headlights escaped damage.)

      Now, shall I tell you about stepping on the snake? Some weekends are better than others….

      Liked by 1 person

      • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 8 2019 10:56 am

        Dancing with Mr No-shoulders, eh? Well that deserved a slither over for the swampy news. (Oh, the first alligator looking for a B&B after the rain, spotted. gator wranglers gonna be busy)

        Liked by 1 person

    • shoreacres / May 8 2019 7:36 am

      Oops! I didn’t really mean my comment to be a response to yours, although I enjoyed yours a good bit!


  2. D. Wallace Peach / May 8 2019 7:18 am

    Cats are the only ones enjoying sunny windows this time of year. Time for a little vitamin D out here in the rainforest! (If only the sun comes out today). 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 8 2019 7:26 am

      RC Cat is glaring at the window again today. More rain. She is sure we have hidden the sun on purpose just to spite her. Better reload the catnip mousies or she’ll torment the dog by sitting in front for her until there’s a leaping response, then she’ll complain the dog is bothering her. Sigh. No uninterrupted time until that sun returns HaHa. Thanks for adding a sunny remark

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ally Bean / May 8 2019 10:00 am

    I agree that cats are like sunflowers, rotating toward the sun. I don’t know how I’ve missed that connection before this. Wasn’t Texaco the one with the slogan: “you can trust you car to the man who wears the star”? Somehow that seems prophetic here.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Maggie Wilson / May 8 2019 11:23 am

    Speaking of cats and gas stations and mid-century marketing – wasn’t it Texaco that urged motorists to “Put a Tiger in Your Tank!” They gave away plush tiger tales to mount to the gas cap, or some cuteness.

    As for space travel, I don’t know if it’s me and my tendency to prefer both feet planted firmly on the ground, or what… but seriously, don’t you think we’d be better off putting all those space X dollars to use here on Earth?


    • Maggie Wilson / May 8 2019 11:24 am

      that would be tiger TAILS, of course (oh the humanity!)

      Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 8 2019 11:56 am

      We actually had one of those tiger tails! Back when people laughed and had fun.
      Seriously, NASA has done a poor job raising awareness of how much people who never plan to set foot on any space vehicle has benefited from space exploration – and the products/medical knowledge, treatments, procedures that came from the space program that are considered ordinary stuff now.
      Anyway, private companies like Space-X, Blue Origin, Virgin Galactic ( and others: are commercial businesses – not government agencies/government money – and working to develop private industry business that will eventually bring in money for them.
      You wouldn’t demand the airlines, travel industry partners like hotels and destinations hand over their money earned to be spent by the government…who often tends to spend/deliver money for political reasons instead of for real practical needs and often uses poor judgement/naive decisions to fund projects…Remember the “shovel ready projects” which held such promise, then. turned out to be a nothing but money gone – vanished without a trace. Private industry is usually more efficient as they must do well and earn a profit or cease to exist.
      Some are explorers. Those who see space/science/technology may be the hope for the species AND for the earth’s fragile environment.The limited supply of exotic metals isn’t going away for smart phones, robots, computers, cars and solar batteries…not to mention growing food and medical bio-supplies in space. Other countries like Japan are already launching to explore the concept of mining the moon and asteroids…
      Others are nesters and nurturers. Both have their place and value. People can do both directions – there’s enough human energy and desire – if there’s a will. That’s the catch, as always.
      Thanks for adding that tiger to this tank!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Maggie Wilson / May 9 2019 5:01 am

        I learned something here, thank you. I see that NASA and the mining industry share common public relations issues.


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 9 2019 9:47 am

          NASA too starry-eyed to think they need to do that. While there’s no mining in this area, I’ve seen dreadful environmental scars from the old mining areas in other states. New methods seem to have brought some industry changes to mining….in this country anyway, not so sure about other places. Earth is the only rock we currently have. Need to take as much care as possible of it

          Liked by 1 person

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 10 2019 6:41 pm

          Hey look at this Branson’s Virgin Galactic is moving to NM as tourist space travel gets closer. Cool!

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Kate Crimmins / May 8 2019 1:20 pm

    RC is invited to drop in for a sun visit. Most windows have the blinds up about a foot for the cats. We do that because replacing got expensive and the dear cats didn’t want to bother us so they tried to do it themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / May 8 2019 1:50 pm

      We always laugh as we walk down the street – you can tell who has pets as the blinds are up…and little faces looking out. Molly always nods at her friends smirking she’s outside and they aren’t…and shows off by waving what ever stick or pine cone she has collected along the way. The are like preschoolers. (RC is quite miffed as yet another day of rain so while the blinds are open, the office window is not, so the morning Perch of Sniffs is unavailable. Routine disruption is most annoying.) (Careful, we caught her looking at Google maps and flight schedules…)
      Thanks for brightening the day with a comment

      Liked by 1 person

  6. LordBeariOfBow / May 13 2019 11:21 pm

    That RC Cat has Staff trained and dangling, no two ways about that, Can’t you get her a trip on one of those space craft things? She might enjoy it.


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