Twelve Days of Space Christmas

After SpaceX managed to successfully land the first stage back today for the first time, I was tweeting about what a great year for space it has been. Then, when Twitter user @_logik suggested I do a Twelve Days of Space Christmas song, I immediately jumped on it! And since this wonderful year has given us such a wealth of info from bodies that are out of this world, each of the twelve listed below are achievements specific to 2015.

Twelve Days of Space Christmas

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me
A close up from 67P.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Two used stages
and a close up from 67P.

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Three years of Mastcam,
two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Four syzygies,
three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Five underworld moons.
Four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Six floating men,
five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Seven Titan flybys,
six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Eighth Venus orbiter,
seven Titan flybys, six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the ninth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Nine X-ray telescopes,
eighth Venus orbiter, seven Titan flybys, six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Ten rocky exos,
nine X-ray telescopes, eighth Venus orbiter, seven Titan flybys, six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Eleven day HAMOs,
ten rocky exos, nine X-ray telescopes, eighth Venus orbiter, seven Titan flybys, six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me
Twelve months of space,
eleven day HAMOs, ten rocky exos, nine X-ray telescopes, eighth Venus orbiter, seven Titan flybys, six floating men, five underworld moons, four syzygies, three years of Mastcam, two used stages, and a close up from 67P.


The first version of this song was a desperate stab at rhyming things with the actual gifts from the song. While I could get “A selfie from Curiosity,” I couldn’t find enough space-exploration related terms from this year that rhymed with “turtle doves” or “calling hens”. I also briefly debated about making them a little cryptic, but wasn’t able to fit things into the meter. So that was scrapped too.

Some rejected lyrics:
A selfie from Curiosity – Sadly, though it rhymes, there’s more than just one one.
Five ISRO launches – ISRO has mastered the PSLV and launches have been consistently regular over the years. I thought the very first sightings of Pluto’s moons deserved the mention more.
Eight habitable bodies – Kepler has discovered eight planets that are in the habitable zone. Two of them are not rocky, but might host rocky habitable moons. But habitability is such an iffy topic, I decided to go with Akatsuki instead.

Overall, 2015 was a great year indeed for spaceflight and exploration, right from Pluto to two VTVLs.  Here’s hoping 2016 showers us with images and data from New Horizons and Juno and Mangalyaan and everything else that is out there.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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