Guys, if you’re a monkey, and you’ve been rescued from the zoo and brought to a space laboratory, you should probably not celebrate(again, not a huge revelation). Maybe your inevitable death will take on meaning as a result of your sacrifice and all that, but then again, you’re a monkey, so you don’t understand that idea. Basically, you understand that you’re dying alone and terrified in a tiny box.
But how are you dying? God, this is a morbid topic. Why am I writing this?
If you’re Albert I, the first monkey astronaut, you’re suffocating. Probably because scientists strapped you into a V-2 rocket and didn’t worry about your need to breathe. If you’re Alberts II, IV, or V, you’re being squashed to a hairy pulp when your parachute malfunctions. I know what you’re thinking: Albert III must have made it! No sir, Albert III exploded. This makes sense. All of these Alberts were strapped to rockets. Somehow, Albert VI made it all the way back down to the planet, then died from overheating while waiting for pickup in the New Mexico desert. At this point, NASA scientists figured out their error and stopped naming their monkeys Albert. Gordo, the next proper space monkey, also died due to parachute failure. This is only the American list, and it goes on and on. Tiny monkey screams, guys. That’s the sound of progress.
The first monkeys to survive space flight properly were named Able and Miss Baker. Both fulfilled all of their duties and returned safely to Earth. Miss Baker lived a long and fulfilling life, including two marriages. Seriously. They married this squirrel monkey to two successive mates. She died of natural causes. Miss Baker is the only happy story in this blog entry.
Able’s triumph was short-lived, as she died four days after her landing of anaesthetic-related problems during surgery, probably unrelated to her adventure. Fair enough, shit happens. You know what else happens? Taxidermy. In tribute to her heroism, Able has been stuffed and mounted in a display at the Smithsonian. Much like Neil Armstrong?
The point is, we’ve been using animals to further human pursuits for far too long. Why should a monkey give a shit about humans making it into space? It’s high time they rose up and destroyed us. That’s what I learned today.