Friday, August 1, 2008

FAQ Avalanche

Nick Walker of Jackson, MI asks: Can I become a participant in the study?
Pillownaut answers: Yes, go to the Human Test Subject Facility website. There are links to articles and details about all studies at Johnson Space Center -- more are due to begin soon.

Darryl in Phoenix, AZ asks: What do you look like standing?
Sarcasmo answers: Turn your computer monitor sideways.

PetLil of Henderson, NV asks: Are you married? Is someone watching your kids?
PillowNaut answers: At the moment, no subjects here are married or have kids… it appears we all travel too much! I am also the only woman, but another is due soon. More men than women appear to join the studies in general, both for family-care reasons and screening reasons (males are less likely to upset blood test schedules with hormonal cycles).

Pugh Family asks: Do you ever get to lay on your belly instead of your back? And what’s going to happen with your "cycle"?
Sarcasmo answers: My friend has my cycle in storage, but when I’m done here I’ll go ride it again.
PillowNaut answers: He’s kidding. I hope. We can move onto our stomachs or our sides anytime we like as we read, talk, watch movies, sleep, etc. For meals thrice daily, we prop up on one arm. We each have one pillow, which we may fold in half. As for my "cycle," I use the same feminine products I used at home for overnight. It will come and go as it pleases with a mind of it's own, as usual!

Mitchell K. Dixon (City not named) asks: I read your schedule, wow, that’s a lot of stuff to go through! You poor soul. How did you get suckered in to this? And what would you usually be doing right about now in real life? :)
Sarcasmo answers: There was no suckering, I chose to do this. I was curious to see what sort of cool stuff goes on at NASA. And of course … cha-ching! In real life, I’d be feeding my horses on the farm and wrenching on my vehicles.
Pillownaut answers: The schedule is sometimes hectic, and many tests are strenuous... but however it looks, I assure you my office job was waaay more painful and aggravating, LOL. I would normally be doing IT work, or more to the point, explaining things to middle managers who don't understand IT work ;)

Dave (City not named) asks: Thanks for your commitment to the space program! You will have to tell us if you are reading any good books over this time period. What does the man in your life say about this adventure??
Pillownaut answers: The only men in my life right now are my awesome new buds here, and they seem fine with it :) New idea for a link! I’ll create a list of everything I’ve read, what I’m reading, and maybe films we watched. Devin’s list might fill a blockbuster store by now.
Sarcasmo answers: Oh, definitely up into the triple digits on my diet of 3 movies per day.

Leigh In The Meadow comments: After all this, they should automatically qualify you to actually GO up in space! Good luck with the experiment. :)
Sarcasmo answers: I’d go!
Pillownaut answers: What he said. (And interestingly, we will spend more time "simulating" micro-gravity than the majority of individual astronauts have ever spent IN IT ;)

Jason Miller of Kokomo, IN asks: I would like to know what you miss most about being upright. Thank you.
Pillownaut answers: I miss running, roller-blading, going to the gym … and seeing the SURFACES of furniture around me, because I cannot sit up to scan my environment and my reach isn’t that far! I miss being able to wash my hair without rolling around on it at the same time… and I do wish we could have chocolate.
Sarcasmo Answers: Mobility, driving a car, and riding my horses. Plus I’d love a soda and some chips.

Renegade comments: As trivial a job as it might seem to some, you are doing an important thing for the space program. I don't know how you can do it, I think I'd go crazy stuck in bed for that long! Kudos to you! Check out my NASA Celebrates 50 Years blog post!
Pillownaut answers: Thank you! Great pictures on your site! Crazy is relative... we might argue that we’re already half-way there. Or in Devin’s case, drew the map.