The International Space Station has a sheep problem

Dragon vs sheep

Friday afternoon SpaceX launched a rocket to the International Space Station carrying an emergency shepherd, on a mission the private space company hoped it would never have to undertake.

A transmission from the ISS 27 days ago had sent shockwaves through SpaceX management. Bleating has been heard coming from the Dragon 2 capsule that was docked with the space station.

From then, the situation escalated quickly. Mission engineers and controllers scrambled to implement a rescue plan for a scenario that was all but unthinkable: there was a sheep loose on the space station, no-one on board was qualified to deal with it and, as of that day, all radio communication with the ISS had been lost.

It was an event SpaceX had fought hard to prevent. During testing of its high-tech rockets sheep had cropped up like ghosts in the machine, their wool or droppings causing vital components to fail at crucial moments. No-one knew where they had come from.

The engineers were baffled but eventually believed that, through software debugging and hardware fixes, they had designed the ruminants out of the system. But they could never be certain.

The launch of the two astronauts to the ISS on May 30th was fraught with tension but, when the capsule docked with the space station the following day, the engineering team believed they were out of the woods. Then, a week later, the radio call came.

“Thankfully, one of our propulsion specialists had a brother who was a shepherd,” Martin Blake, a lead on the rescue project, told top sheep farming publication Shepherding Today. “We called him, filled him in on the situation, and he jumped on the next flight.”

The next two weeks saw a Dragon 2 prototype refitted for active flight while Alan Manson, the shepherd, and Jess, his dog, were retrained to do their jobs in zero-g. A special carbon fibre space crook was even designed and built in the limited timeframe.

The emergency launch was a sheep-free success, but there has yet to be any communication with the space station. Now all SpaceX, NASA, and the world can do is hold its collective breath and hope there’s still a chance for the crew aboard the ISS.

Boris the Builder: “If you build it I will come”

Britain's Prime Minister Doris Bronson fisting a speech
“I’m going to build things with your bare hands!”

“…And to those who say Build Build Build is an unimaginative slogan I say, it’s a lazy slogan more than it is unimaginative. But that’s beside the point. We’re going to build, baby, we’re going to build big tall things and do things with roads and we’re going to build a bridge to the Moon, motherfuckers, a big bridge so we can trade cheese with the Moon Men. Those Moon Men love cheese. It’s a new deal. The old deal was pretty shitty and so is the new one, but it’s a new type of shitty deal for the 21st century – extra shitty and with less privacy somehow. Build build build until we get tired or run out of building materials. The whole country’s going to sound like hammering and there’ll be builders’ cracks as far as the eye can see, baby. That’s Britain, motherfuckers – arse cracks and banging. Plus there’s going to be a 300ft tall solid gold statue of me in Parliament Square, sticking my cock in Churchill’s ear. Brexit Britain!”

Trump: I invented everything and made it famous

Donald Trump, pictured here being a narcissistic douchebag
“Coffee tables, no-one could put their coffee and coffee table books anywhere before that.”

“…Space, yeah, I invented that. I invented cars, I made them famous. I was the first person to put spaghetti with meatballs, not a lot of people know that. And computers. I made them famous, I invented them, invented the Microsoft, the Windows, you know. Elastic, tennis balls, smoke. I invented them. I invented smoke. Skin cream. I thought of that. No-one had thought of that until I thought of that. Birthday cards. People just used to go, you know, “Hey”, to people when it was their birthday until I invented the birthday card. First aid was one of mine. Before that there was only second aid. Gravel. Iceland. Peacocks. All mine. And let me tell you, I created reminders. Everyone, they’d forget things all the time until reminders came along. I did captions too. No-one knew what photographs were about until captions came along. I’m just naming things now, but then I invented naming things…”