APOPHIS: terror from above

Forget about invasive species, we have a much larger problem. Remember how the dinosaurs bought it?

‘Apophis’, an asteroid larger than 2 football fields, could possibly COLLIDE WITH EARTH in 2029. I guess we forgot since we had more important issues on our mind like watching the ever-changing shape of Steven Tyler’s lips on American Idol when he sings along with an act. “Apophis” is an ancient Greek word meaning OMG we’re gonna die!

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Our scientists said it will fly within 18,300 miles of earth in April of 2029. To give some perspective, in the vastness of space, if your head were the sun, Apophis would be the tip of the hair of a tiny dingle-berry on the inside of your nose. A direct strike would be a little worse than tweezing one of those inside nose-hairs. As painful as that can be, losing the planet would be worse. For those on Twitter, it will be worse than driving through a ‘dead zone’ and dropping a really important Tweet about where you are going to meet after the show.

The astronomers knew that an asteroid that large would do more harm than the yellow caution light at any intersection in Miami. Let’s assume that NASA scientists are smarter than you and I. These are not the same people that in 1960 predicted we would all have a private airplane/car in the airstrip behind our nuclear-powered home.

NASA says it will not hit us. Russian scientists, on the other hand, say it will on April 13th 2036, but would disintegrate into smaller parts resulting in smaller collisions one of which will hopefully hit Lady Gaga’s wardrobe closet.

We think they’re using kilometers instead of regular old USA miles and that’s the problem. If they had been using centimeters, we wouldn’t be in this pickle.

During the 2029 pass Apophis will be visible from Europe, Africa, and western Asia looking like a somewhat bright star moving rapidly across the sky or an eye ‘floater’ that cannot be swatted away.

Apophis will make two modest approaches to Earth in 2036. A modest approach means it won’t hurt us but only scare the hell out of us. The planet Venus will come closer to Earth in 2036 than Apophis will. That will not scare us at all but conspiracy theorists will make up a story about Venusians coming to take our women and cite the 1950’s outer space movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Every year, the Earth is hit by about 6100 meteors large enough to reach the ground, or about 17 every day, research has revealed. The Guinness Book of Records names Gwendolyn Habbard of East McKeesport PA.as most unlucky person in the world having been ‘grazed’ by a meteorite and lived. Having gone through that most rare of experiences, she now lives in a bunker deep under her back yard.

The vast majority fall unnoticed, in uninhabited areas. But several times a year, some land in places that catch more attention. Technically, there is a chance it will hit in 2036 said the head of NASA’s Near- Earth Object Program Office but that chance is one in 250,000 or about the same probability that you’ll hit a Lotto prize of maybe $12 in your lifetime, so rest easy. If something happens in the vastness of space that causes the meteor to hit us, glance off of us or come close enough so that we can see the gleaming eyes of the aliens that steer it, go see Gwendolyn, she’s got room.

 

 

 

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