Space really isn't what it used to be. First we had Austrian buzz-junkie Felix Bumgardener ballooning into the upper reaches of the known vomisphere, before stepping out of his airborne toilet and falling at the speed of sound, to land head-first in a bucket of room temperature Red Bull.
Then mildly-erotic-dancer-turned-kind-of-opera star Sarah Brightman announced she was paying $35m to go up into orbit, where she planned to stage a one-woman production of The Pirates of Penzance.
While I would have to concede that these are both acts of some valour, especially in Ms Brightman's case (although we should bear in mind that this is a woman who is no stranger to fear... she did used to wake up next to Andrew Lloyd Webber every morning), these activities don't do a great deal for the supposed sanctity of space, do they?
What next? I'll tell you what. This week the International Space Station released footage of two of its astronauts - station commander Sunita Williams and flight engineer Akihiko Hoshide - preparing for a spacewalk by Vogue-ing in the airlock after someone was kind enough to pump Madonna's 1990 hit through the intercom. This concerns me in two ways. First, is this really the kind of behaviour we expect from our star voyagers? Is this what Yoda and Spock would have wanted? Second, who's picking the music for their trip? If I ever find myself floating in orbit above the world, I certainly hope I wouldn't have to listen to Papa Don't bloody Preach.
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