For Twenty Bucks, I'm Pretty Much An Astronaut

I essentially joined Space Club and I'm over the freakin' moon about it!

March 18, 2016
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A tough, dark winter day in Seattle usually only becomes perfect with a trip to the coffee shop or a dark bar. Let the brooding begin.

“Maybe I should negatively blog about something?” I thought as I angrily sat in solitude. “Maybe I’ll do some retail therapy?” Yes, perhaps a new NASA shirt to replace the one I’m wearing will make me feel better. Excellent.

Sitting in the window seat of Cafe Solstice on Capitol Hill, I scrolled the mobile webstore looking for something out of this world to buy from NASA’s online shop. Finding nothing, I somehow stumbled upon the NASA Federal Credit Union. Holy crap. This is my chance to pay for the dumb things in my life - like the tasty local beer in my bitter cold hand - using a debit card with a NASA logo*.

That’s when it the next bit of bad news came to bear upon my already grumpy shoulders: you have to work for NASA to get the card... Oh well, it would probably be too hard to find an ATM anyway…

Then I noticed this at the bottom of the eligibility options:

"I would like to become a member of the National Space Society (NSS) - this membership is complimentary and entitles me to join NASA FCU. Please send the monthly NSS email newsletter, NSS Downlink..."

Sign me up, crater face!

For twenty bucks (annually) I became a contributor to a grassroots space enthusiast collective - The National Space Society aka Space Club! KICK ASS! I’ll just be here waiting for the call to head to Cape Canaveral for my zero-g training, nerds.

Months went by with nothing. Probably just part of the training.

Days ago, out of nowhere, my lovely fiancé handed me a piece of mail and said, “you’re going to freak about this.”

Holy crap! WHAT’S INSIDE?! Probably special info about how I’ll be studying the rings of Saturn, or gazing into the eye of that storm cell bigger than 200 Earths on Jupiter! Turns out, it was just a radical welcome letter from the NSS explaining the benefits and helpfulness of my space enthusiasm including:

  • Ability to send space leaders your opinions
  • Opportunities to participate in Space Ambassadors program or Campaign for the Future opportunities to speak with members of Congress! I HAVE SO MANY OPINIONS ON STUFF!!!
  • Member-only discounts on space-related books, merch and memorabilia
  • Member-only invitations and discounts to NSS events!AND ability to join the NASA Federal Credit Union!
  • They also sent me a very official (paper) member card, assigned me an official member number,
  • AND THEY SENT ME THIS FREAKIN’ PATCH OF AWESOMENESS!

STS 135 was a historic mission. It was the last of the NASA space shuttle program. You’ll notice only four astronauts were sent up. They could only send four up because the other shuttlecraft had already been decommissioned and any space rescue would have to come from the ISS which could support four extra humans without problems and get them home, one at a time, over the course of a year. Pretty sure that’s why they didn’t ask me to go...

I hope you've read this far and decided "hey, I should join my fellow nerd Gregr and join Space Club." Go here to start.

*Bonus point if you recognized that card number.