NARRATOR: On the 13th hour of the 13th day, NASA launched Apollo 13. A million things could have gone wrong, one did.
ASTRONAUT 1: Houston, I think we have a problem.
CAPCOM: What is it?
ASTRONAUT 1: It's when something goes bad, but that's not important now. We seem to have had an explosion in the fuel tanks. We are losing pressure in the beer 2 tanks.
ASTRONAUT 2: Yea, Game over, man! Game over!
ASTRONAUT 3: Get a hold of yourself! Anyway, Gene Kranz is down there. He will find a way to get us home.
NARRATOR: Yes, Gene Kranz. The Father of Flight Direction, the Pillar of Patriotism, the Icon of Intelligence.
GENE KRANZ: Get me ECLSS, Get me PROP, Get me a real introduction!
CAPCOM: It looks real bad sir. They have lost almost all their beer. Without it they will not be able to get back home alive.
GENE KRANZ: Look, you figure something out and you do it fast! We have never lost a man in space and we sure as hell won't lose one on my watch!
CAPCOM: But your shift isn't for another three hours?
GENE KRANZ: Oh, really?....Well, screw 'em.
NARRATOR: The flight control team worked feverishly to come up with a solution. If the crew of Apollo 13 could not fix their beer tanks, it was likely they would not survive.
CAPCOM: OK, 13, we've been talking about it and here's what we want you to do. First interconnect the beer-2 tanks to the RCS thrusters. Close the chili pepper iso valves 3-4-5, open the tequila hydraulic units, and since fuel cell 3 shut down, we'll reconfigure the jalapenos. We also want you to reconfigure the sensor array to do a full baryon particle sweep on all decks and search for dilithium crystal signatures.
ASTRONAUT 1: Hey, this isn't Star Trek, but we'll do what we can.
ASTRONAUT 3: Oui, oui, I am not afraid.
NARRATOR: Back in Houston, NASA holds a press conference.
PAO: Good afternoon, I'm Pat McGroin, and I'll take questions from the media.
Rep3: How did this tragedy happen?
PAO: It appears that one of the beer tanks had an explosion, and all of the beer on one side is gone. Miss Sharon Tell will show what it looked like: [shake up beer can and open].
Rep1: Why did you change from the traditional hydrazine and oxidizer mixture for propellant?
PAO: Well, beer and chili are a potent hypergolic mixture. In plain English, that means that beer and chili explode on contact with each other. Plus, it's cheaper.
Rep2: Will the Oilers ever reach the Super Bowl?
PAO: Not without a change in Oilier upper management. With Bud Adams controlling the money, we'll never see the kind of quality players in Oilier uniforms that we need.
Rep3: Now that NASA has sent men to the moon, what is next?
PAO: We will strive to continue to push the boundaries of manned space exploration to the ends of the Solar System. (pause) Or Just screw around in Earth orbit for 20 years with no clear vision until the congress gets totally tired of us, cuts our funding and a third of our workforce gets laid off. We really haven't decided yet.
NARRATOR: The Flight controllers start assessing the situation. Everything goes well.... at first. Slowly, though, the flight controllers realize that something is still pushing the crew of Apollo 13 off course. If left unchecked, it could truly be "game over, man."
CAPCOM: OK, 13, we've discovered that you're still leaking beer foam, and it's pushing you off-course.
ASTRONAUT 2: Game over, man!
GENE KRANZ: Cut that out! That was a previous movie. Now we know it's risky and that you didn't cover it in your training but you'll have to attempt a Final Abort Return Trajectory maneuver.
ASTRONAUT 1: Surely we don't have to perform the F-A-R-T maneuver...
GENE KRANZ: That's right, you'll have to FART. And stop calling me Surely. Since you're low on gas, we need you all to eat some chili and patch yourselves into the RCS jets.
ASTRONAUT 3: Mama always told me life is like a bowl of chili. You never know what you're gonna get.
ASTRONAUT 2: But what kind of chili?
ASTRONAUT 3: (ASTRONAUT 3 puts cotton in lower lip) We've got Surfin Chili, Outhouse chili, Planet Texas chili, BARF chili, Red Baron chili, [fill in more chili team names]...
CAPCOM: We need you to eat some Planet Texas chili. That has the most MTU's.
ASTRONAUT 1: MTU's?
CAPCOM: Yes, Methane Thermal Units.
NARRATOR: So our fearless (gets cut off by ASTRONAUT 2)...
ASTRONAUT 2: Game over man!
NARRATOR: So our,...brave, crew busily works on the makeshift patch that will hopefully save their lives and bring them and their spacecraft back home.
(Astronauts come out with dryer vents duct taped to their butts)
(Whoopee cushions are going off offstage)
ASTRONAUT 1: (holding Chili with dry ice in it) 13 to Houston, 13 to Houston, We have eaten all the Planet Texas chili that we can stand. Has it shown any effect?
CAPCOM: Affirmative 13, FARTing has corrected your trajectory and you are on a return course home. All of us here are real glad to see you through. The whole country has been following and we don't even have CNN yet. Is there anything you would like to say to the children of this nation.
ASTRONAUT 1: Houston, we can't wait to get back home and eat some SURFIN' CHILI!
(skit ends with a T-E-A-M DRINK cheer)
Comments? Suggestions? Send 'em to me at WizardImps@hotmail.com
Page content and layout © 1996-2000 Michael Grabois and Astra Enterprises.
Last updated: August 7, 2000