Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Eve Q&A

Mrs. L of San Jose, CA says: Dang, I liked reading your posts on a regular basis. Couldn't you start doing research on other NASA stuff :) Go Sharks!
Sarcasmo answers: RESEARCH? Aw, that sounds like work. What Sharks? Where?
Pillownaut answers: Thanks, Hun! I wish! We'll just be on the NASA “fringe” now... reporting on space news or studies. I'm all about the “Unsung Heroes." The astronauts tend to get the press, but for every one of them, there are thousands of people behind the scenes, behind desks, under deadlines, holding wrenches, hunched over laptops, working in labs... ;) Go Sharks, indeed!

ActingUpAgain (Ray Robinson) of Louisville, KY asks: You might consider prompting others to take up the blogging. Maybe even test subjects in different areas. Considering the attention this blog generated, it would be a shame if this window into NASA activities be closed. Have you considered visiting current pillownauts for encouragement? Is there a shortage of test subjects now?
Pillownaut answers: I agree about the window into activities; we hope to stay in touch and continue to spread the word! Almost everyone in the program is now friended on Facebook. Many of those have blogs as well. I’ll continue to visit both staff and any subjects who are interested in making friends… it’s quite a bonding experience once you get to know “life in the ward.”
Sarcasmo answers: I know of three lunar study subjects who came through recently, but at present, the ward is completely empty.

Sound Man "G" of Springfield, MO asks: So, will y'all be eligible to restart the bedrest study? I am debating about applying, as I am in a transition process with Radiology Tech school...
Pillownaut answers: For safety and health reasons, NASA has time limits on when folks from past studies can re-apply for future ones, largely so muscles and bones can regain strength. We’ll have tests at our 6-month mark to see how our bodies have healed, at which point they would determine if we might be good candidates again. Good luck in Radiology school!
Sarcasmo answers: I don't know if I would pass the psychological exam a second time. jk ;) If my bone scan shows I am eligible, I don't know if I can return right away, because I'll be in nursing school -- but I'd be willing to arrange a semester off for NASA. I am sure they expected a slowdown during the holidays, but if anyone thinks they are healthy enough to qualify, definitely send in an application or call. Need to fill those beds!

Susan (City not named) asks: In your past post, you mentioned a NASA mailing list subscription? Can anyone get this?
Pillownaut answers: Absolutely… and there are multiple lists to choose from. A good place to start is the News Subscription Page, which has a list of what is available in both English and Spanish. I belong to the Space Science Updates and NASA For Educators list, which you can also find in the Education section. From the home page, you can enter an email address and set preferences, regularity, and even a subscription password, etc.
Sarcasmo answers: She is such a complete geek. I just watch the NASA channel.