Written by Dr Klaus L E Kaiser
Are you ready to evolve?
As Fox News reports, once man (and woman, I presume) have become settled on Mars, evolution to super-mutant Marslings (or similar) is inevitable.
This must be great news for NASA’s invitees to “… Fly Aboard Next Mars Rover.” Your “name plate” Boarding Pass has already been preprinted, with the departure date a little over a year from now. You might want to start packing soon. You even get Frequent Flyer points, just for signing up. So far, some 1.5 million “flyers” have signed up.
Really, what could be holding you back? It promises adventure, recognition, new vistas, and this super-mutant future for your extraterrestrial offspring.
Hollywood – the NASA version
On second thought, it’s not much more than “Hollywood – the NASA version.” All this “Boarding Pass” entitles you to is to have your NAME inscribed on a microchip, presumably with millions of other earthlings that may be sent with a rocket in July 2020 to our planetary neighbor, Mars. That journey is expected to get your name there about seven months after departure, i.e. in February 2021.
No living passengers, just a computer code on a microchip. The entire world population could go on this excursion, on a small “thumb-drive.”
OK– But what about this super-mutant evolution? Isn’t that worth taking the risk?
Sorry, there is yet another fly in the ointment.
Evolution – it isn’t always straight forward
As you may know, past evolutionary developments gave rise to massive and fearsome creatures on Earth. From saber-toothed tigers to massive dinosaurs, from useful bacteria to life-threatening viruses, evolution on this planet has produced all kinds of organisms.
Over the earth’s geological history, most of such former species were entirely wiped out — or evolved further to survive under the new conditions. And, it may come as a surprise, physical size and strength were not exactly what the new conditions fostered. Rather, they called for adaptability and fleet-footedness. It was the newly arrived, relatively tiny mammals that survived the demise of the fearsome dinos.
In other words, your super-duper mutant future Mars-offspring could just evolve into a novel kind of marsling-worm or -amoebae. No guarantees, either way. My preference though is to stay right here on Earth, in the first place.
But it’s always good to think ahead.
In fact, you may dream of your future mutant Marsling offspring, a thousand million years later, while sitting happily somewhere on Mars’ Elysium Planitia equatorial plain, sipping a cool drink at a day-high of only MINUS 6 F (-20 C). They better start crawling into some warm hole by nightfall. Then, despite the Mars atmosphere being nearly 100% carbon dioxide (versus 0.04% here on Earth), the nights are definitely a bit frigid, mostly in the neighborhood of MINUS 150 F (or -100 C).
Apart from griping about the lack of global warming (AKA “climate change”) on Mars, they may even be wondering how to move to the not so distant Blue Planet, AKA the Earth.
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