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November 15, 2012


by James Thurber

“WE’RE going through!” The Commander’s voice was like thin ice breaking. He wore his full-dress uniform, with the heavily braided white cap pulled down rakishly over one cold gray eye. “We can’t make it, sir. It’s spoiling for a hurricane, if you ask me.” “I’m not asking you, Lieutenant Berg,” said the Commander. “Throw on the power lights! Rev her up to 8500! We’re going through!” The pounding of the cylinders increased: ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa.

The draftsman has been working on the computer producing blueprints of an automated mail sorting machine.  His thoughts are deeply lost in the three-dimensional world of design, and have veered off course into a distant part of the galaxy.  His employer interrupts his voyage to ask, “is that layout getting done yet?”  Oh…yes, I am doing it right now” the draftsman blurts out.  Soon he is again drifting into hyperspace:  ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa.

Even after four years of unemployment the draftsman has still not returned from space, and he is using the skills of design to fabricate a bold new reality.  Join us on a voyage of science fact, where the imaginary crawls out into the world of the material norm.  To understand the draftsman we might consider the Dutch artist M.C. Escher.

Perhaps excessive time spent considering the world of three dimensions opens one to a fourth dimension, or possibly even more.  Some feel that imagination is more important than knowledge.  At least it is free to explore possibilities without awareness of the consequences!  A designer may become aware of possibilities that the engineers may want to use.  So he informs them of available opportunities, and they can evaluate them. 

After thirty years the engineers decided that the draftsman was no longer relevant, so they demoted him to the “unemployable” caste.  Little do they realize that he is actually departed into an alternate reality, a parallel universe!

One rude reality interrupts the voyage; the draftsman may now become a homeless senior.  A new home is found in the form of a fourteen foot travel trailer.  His current life possessions fit well, and a new life plan is enabled.  If he can’t join them, he can lick them; he will compete with his former employers!  (Is this Walter Mitty or Don Quixote?)

 Having worked in aerospace on airframes, turbine engines, and rockets, he has a few lessons stored up.  He has also communicated with the world of rocketry in his spare time.  Something is happening!

The new house has no permanent base…it is a freely mobile ship of adventure!  Communications are established with the alternate universe of new space enterprise. 

Arizona had provided the Space Access 2010-2012 meetings to share information.  Adjusting to the new mobile life, the “Captain”  is planning a mission.

Previous Space Access meetings had showcased the designer’s concept to optimize missions to low earth orbit space launch. 


And the dream became a fact with a history of one successful flight that will lead where a few are already going. 

This is the Xcor design that is leading the way. They provided services to meet others needs and now they are on their way to their own vision. They are among the new industry leaders now. Good work, Xcor!




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