I was really fortunate while playing pool for beer in Los Lunas. Winning them cans of beer allowed my pool stick to intercept the following alien ltransmission.

I was standing right at the pool table preparing to break when the overhead light started juggling. That took my attention away from making the eight-ball. There was no way to make it if all the lights went out. While I was looking over head a stream of light started shining on the end of my pool stick. When that hit I started receiving a voice from outer space.

A cloudy voice said, “Earth watch,checking in. Crackle. Spacecraft shield successful. Atmosphere monitor working fully.Detector readings processed fully. Atmospheric conclusions transmitted in advance. Mental evaluation process follows. Crackle.”

That sentence jarred me. It was just like watching Star Trek as a child. At least back then Spock never interrupted a pool game. I’d just have to make sure there was something to read every time the commercials started. That show had let me learn some alien people thrived on logical thinking. One could easily win pool games played when you outsmart the opposition.

I heard the cloudy voice again. It said, “Total outlook positive. Earth atmosphere made suitable for settlement. Crackle. It has been transformed by nuclear bombs into one we can thrive with. Our nutrition will also benefit without pure oxygen to corrupt it. Crackle.”

At least I had been old enough to understand more when my favorite science fiction show had been canceled. That allowed me to pick up on The Next Generation just about right away. Catching those TV shows had matured my mind fast enough to get straight As as a Junior in high school. I didn’t have to argue with my sister anymore. She’d just get on the phone with someone and let we watch what took place in outer space. My mind would only orbit on the hollow deck.

That cloudy voice spoke again. It said, “Atmospheric correction taken place. Radioactivity increased. Nuclear war caused by Iran has made this planet so radioactive the native creatures can no longer inhabit it. Spacecraft evaluation tells new ones for distances over 50 light years. Settlement is worth deep space flight. Crackle.”

Deep space wasn’t abandoned right away by the TV stations. I was able to continue watching it after the Next Generation got cancelled. Deep Space Nine even had an alien in charge of it. Watching it allowed me to become equipped with social life in outer space. It’s just that there were a whole lot of other TV shows in competition with my choice. It could hardly be followed as I got older.

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