In space news, a dot in space that you can barely see was discovered to be in orbit of another dot in space you can barely see. NASA has decided that it’s a planet.
The new planet was discovered as part of the Strategic Exploration of Exoplanets and Disks with Subaru program, which seeks to explain how planets are formed by sitting in an Outback with the radio on, then making up stuff about space without ever going there. A spokesman for Subaru explained that love is what makes an exoplanet an exoplanet, causing the interviewer to get up and leave.
The new discovery has provided a rare outbreak of bipartisanship between left and right. Left Brain spokesman Michael McElwain of the Goddard Space Flight Center announced that the planet, orbiting the left-brain named star GJ 504, would be called GJ 504b. Miranda Johnson of Mrs. Marino’s 2nd grade art class, representing the Right Brain, announced that the planet (pictured above) would be magenta-colored, stating that she hadn’t used that color yet, so it was the sharpest crayon of the 64 in the box. Asked for comment, Masayuki Kuzuhara of the Tokyo Institute of Technology said that he was disappointed that Johnson had not chosen Burnt Umber, put praised her for staying inside the lines. Kuzuhara also reiterated that NASA definitely did not take stock footage of Neptune and Photoshop it to look magenta for the announcement, no matter how it looked.
Scientists are excited because its existence contradicts current theories about how planets are formed. One researcher noted, “This is among the hardest planets to explain in a traditional planet-formation framework.” Possible explanations being considered include “The traditional framework is wrong.” and “It’s just a speck on the lens. I thought you were going to clean the telescope, Bob!” (Bob has since been reassigned to the Space Barbie project.)
(Disclaimer: Scientists love it when their theories are wrong. The biggest fear among scientists is that they will run out of science, and be forced to do jobs were being wrong has consequences. Also, scientists are notoriously bad at retirement planning.)
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