Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Space Alien's Hanukkah Visitor


The Eighth Night of Hanukkah

It was Saturday, December 9, 1741  (q.v.).  
The sun had set ending the Sabbath and beginning the eighth day of Hanukkah.  

The Space Alien had just finished lighting the eighth candle on the menorah and was looking forward to dining on the crispy latkes frying on the stove, when there was a loud knock at the door.






A Visitor on a Cold Night


The Space Alien hurried to open it,  and there in the frosty winter night stood the composer George Frideric Handel (née Georg Friedrich Händel) with a worried look on his face and holding a large sheaf of manuscript papers.


The Space Alien 
Welcomes a Friend
Come in, my dear friend!" said the Space Alien, helping the great composer shake the snow from his overcoat and boots.  "You are always welcome in my home!  Please sit down, and let me serve you some freshly made latkes!"   



A Delicious Platter 
of Latkes

"What are latkes?" asked Handel, easing into a chair and staring at the platter placed before him.  "These look just like kartoffelpfankuchen, potato pancakes!"

"Yes," said the Space Alien, "but on Hanukkah we call them latkes, and here is some applesauce and sour cream to eat them with!  Enjoy!"

Handel dug into the platter, after adding a generous sprinkle of the cinnamon and sugar the Space Alien offered him.  

"So delicious!" he exclaimed. 
But then he turned to the Space Alien and the look of concern returned to his face..  


Handel Worries 
about his Music
"I'm having a problem with this  composition," said the great composer.  "It will be performed for the first time this coming  April 13 at the New Musick Hall on Fishamble Street in Dublin."  

"I'm sure it will be my most beloved work,"he continued, "but it still needs something, and I don't know exactly what.  Can you have a look?"

The Space Alien picked up the manuscript and began to inspect the pages.  
  
The Prophecies of Isaiah


"Oh this is wonderful!" said the Space Alien.  "Pure genius! 



And you are so brave to include the predictions of the prophet Isaiah about the coming of the Messiah!" 

"Well, they've all come true!" said Handel. 

"Not in my book they haven't," murmured the Space Alien, "but let's not discuss that now!"

Then the Space Alien turned to Handel: "I think I know what this work needs more than anything!"

"Oh please, tell me!" begged the composer.

"Well," said the Space Alien thoughtfully, "it's a long work with many splendid recitatives, arias and choruses which, while beautiful, may overtax the energies of singers and audience alike."


"I was worried about that very thing," said Handel.

A Baseball Fan Helps the Composer

The Space Alien continued: "Perhaps it needs something spirited and uplifting placed about three-quarters of the way through, like the 7th Inning Stretch of a baseball game when everyone stands up and sings Take me out to the Ballgame; something to get everyone re-energized!"

"What's a baseball game?" asked Handel. 

"Ah, it's...oh it doesn't matter. You need something to get everyone, even the audience, up on their feet to approach the final portion of this magnificent work with renewed gusto!"

"But how could I do that?" asked Handel.

The Space Alien thought deeply about this for a moment and then leaned in close: "I think you need to give everyone an opportunity to stand up and sing a special word that everyone knows and loves, a word like Hallelujah!"


"Oh my goodness," said Handel, "That's a brilliant suggestion!  Let me see if it works!"


Handel Adds to The Messiah
The great composer pulled a pen and a bottle of ink from his large coat pocket, wrote furiously on the manuscript for a few moments.  

Then he handed it back to the Space Alien.

"What do you think of this?" he asked.


"It's perfect!" said the Space Alien.  "Everyone will love to sing this and its energy will enliven every concert hall where it is performed!"



Let's Toast to Success!

"Now," continued the Space Alien, "let's finish these latkes before they get cold, and drink to your success with a glass of Mogen David wine!"

"With pleasure," said Handel, "but tell me, what is this Hanukkah that you are celebrating with special candles, food and wine?"


"It is a very special time, my dear friend," answered the Space Alien, who proceeded to tell the great composer about brave Judah Maccabee and the miracle of Hanukkah.   (To learn more, click here.)



George Frideric Handel
When the Space Alien completed this account, Handel became quite excited and finally stood up from his seat and declared "This is the most magnificent story!  

It's a theme I shall surely address in another work in the near future!"  

(Editor's Note: Just five years later, he did so, albeit in another context.  To learn more, click here.  To hear a famous chorus from Handel's oratorio Judas Maccabaeus, click here.)


That was all so very long ago, but the Space Alien has never forgotten!


These days, the Space Alien, a fine singer  (q.v.), loves to join your editor each year singing in Chicago's Do It Yourself Messiah (q.v.),  and always recalls with special fondness that magical evening 275 years ago, feasting on latkes and drinking sweet Concord grape wine with George Frideric Handel in the glow of the Hanukkah candles, and, most of all, being present at the creation of the great Hallelujah Chorus which you may also hear by clicking here.


(Editors Note:  We realize some of our loyal readers are music scholars who may have some doubts about this account.  We would ask them to consider how many facts herein are easily verifiable, and this should impart confidence about the remainder, consistent with current standards of truthiness.)

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The Space Alien, Your Editor, and the entire staff of the Space Alien Gazette wish our Loyal Readers good health and much happiness in 2017.
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Saturday, December 17, 2016

The Space Alien Gives a Practical Gift

Your editor returned home from a hectic day in the insanely busy newsroom of the Space Alien Gazette.  She hesitated to turn on her TV for fear of what the news from Washington would be.   But as she took off her coat she saw the Space Alien waiting in her living room, greeting her with a big smile and an ornately wrapped box topped with a bright red bird.

"I wanted to give you a special holiday gift!" said the Space Alien, handing her the package.
A Beautiful Gift

A Holiday Gift for You!

"It's beautiful!" said your editor!

"Well open it," said the Space Alien, "but you can't keep the bird; he's just on loan!"

"I can see that!" said your editor, opening a window as the handsome red bird took flight.



The Red Bird Took Flight

Your editor then opened the package, carefully unwinding layers of ribbon and wrapping paper, to reveal a wall clock.

"Well this is a lovely gift!" she exclaimed.  "It's something I can use every day!"

"It's special," said the Space Alien, pulling a battery from the tissue paper and inserting it into the clock.  "See how it runs!  Just click here to have a look!"

This Clock Runs Backwards!
"Oh my goodness," exclaimed your editor.  "It IS a clock but it runs BACKWARDS!    And look!  All the numbers are backwards too!  Whatever will I do with this?"

"I thought you'd need it," said the Space Alien. "Didn't you say that the new administration would turn back the clock?"

Your editor sighed "Yes indeed, they already seem to be turning back the clock -- on human rights of every sort, on civil rights and civil liberties, on the environment, on education, on health, on labor, on consumer protection, and perhaps on any hope of world peace! The list goes on and on!  We'll be moving backward, not forward!"

"This is true," said the Space Alien thoughtfully, "and maybe you are also concerned about turning back the clock on even the modest gains made in recent decades towards overcoming tribalism in order to form a more perfect union."

"Exactly!" said your editor, marveling once again at the Space Alien's deep understanding and eloquent expression of her own distress.

"Then this clock will help you keep track of it!" said the Space Alien, carefully hanging the new timepiece on your editor's living room wall.

Your editor spent a moment watching the counterclockwise movement of the second hand.

"Where did you ever find such a thing?"

"I found it on Amazon"

"But you don't have an account there -- or anywhere else for that matter!"

"Oh, I used your account," said the Space Alien a bit sheepishly.  "You know I don't have a credit card or even a birth certificate, but I have such an honest face they took care of me right away."

"It's a thoughtful gift!" said your editor.  "I guess we'll all be needing one of these sooner or later!"

"Probably sooner," murmured the Space Alien.  "So everyone who wants one can just click here."

"How long do you think this clock will run?" asked your editor, a worried look on her face.

"Hopefully no longer than four years," muttered the Space Alien.



"We need to snap out of this," said your editor.   "Look outside; there's light, there's hope!"



"Yes, " answered the Space Alien, "with light comes hope!"

"Then the greatest gift we can give our loyal readers," said your editor "is our pledge to keep on producing the Space Alien Gazette as a shining light of inspiration and cheer!"

"Right on!" said the Space Alien.  "We'll never give up and we'll never give in, and certainly we'll have plenty of work ahead, but just for now, let's relax, enjoy the season and thank our readers for their loyalty!"

MAY ALL OUR LOYAL READERS RECEIVE GIFTS OF LOVE, HEALTH, AND JOY
NOW AND IN THE YEAR AHEAD!
WITH EVERY GOOD WISH FROM 
THE SPACE ALIEN 
AND
THE ENTIRE STAFF OF THE SPACE ALIEN GAZETTE

Thursday, December 8, 2016

The Space Alien Questions the New Direction for NASA

These Trucks to be Retired
An earlier post showing these Space Alien Gazette delivery trucks (q.v.) prompted a loyal reader to advise that these diesel trucks were terrible polluters that would harm our environment and contribute to climate change.   The Space Alien immediately decided that henceforth, the Space Alien Gazette would be delivered by bicycle messenger.


These Bikes to be Repurposed

Accordingly, the bicycles depicted here are being repurposed and redecorated for our use.  


We are currently interviewing applicants for delivery jobs, to be compensated with free subscriptions to the Space Alien Gazette.

Environmental quality is of great concern to the Space Alien, as reflected in a deep interest in the work of the U. S. National Aeronautics and Science Administration (NASA) over nearly six decades both in exploring Space and in observing Earth.


Hubble Telescope Explores Space 
The Space Alien was distressed to learn that NASA's Earth science (q.v.) proposed budget (which documents  effects of climate change) may now be limited to deep space exploration.  

To learn more about this click here.   Apparently this was prompted by fears in some quarters that observing changes on Earth could confirm the role of human activity in causing them.  To see what NASA has said and photographed about this,  click here.

According to NASA's FY2017 budget estimates (q.v.)

"This budget request continues to fund a strategic suite of missions to study the Earth, Sun, solar system, and deep space. Earth observations continue to allow unprecedented study of climate change, weather, and natural hazards." 


But could this exploration by NASA now be at risk under a new administration?  And could attention to our environment in general be at risk?  Could we be returning to the days when human health was threatened with industrial smog and where our water was laced with toxic effluent?


From the Space Alien's
Living Room Wall

The Space Alien cannot understand why anyone would not want to learn about the condition of their home in order to keep it pleasant and -- most of all -- livable.




The Space Alien wonders where else but Earth humans could make their home.  It is especially puzzling to the Space Alien that topics such as climate change and the role of humans in bringing this about, as well as questions concerning events such as terrific storms and destructive floods in this regard are all too often subjects for political debate rather than scientific inquiry.   


Sometimes when the Space Alien uses words like "climate change," or worse yet "carbon footprint" or worst of all "anthropogenic" (q.v.), some humans make angry faces or say  "Shush!" or "Don't talk about that!" or "It's a hoax!"  Sometimes they just tell the Space Alien "we don't like your politics!"   The Space Alien doesn't understand why some humans don't want to talk about keeping a nice, livable home.

The Space Alien knows that it is not polite to talk about your underwear or about the stuff that comes out of your nose, especially at nice dinner parties, but why does the topic of maintaining a livable home seem to arouse such ire in some quarters?  The Space Alien recently read an article about this here but still doesn't understand the need to tiptoe.

Centuries ago the French philosopher Blaise Pascal pointed out to the Space Alien that where the stakes were high it was best to bet on the safest course of action rather than risk catastrophe.  (For more about this encounter please see the post http://spacealiengazette.blogspot.com/2016/08/the-flossing-wager.html.)

The ever-logical Space Alien was convinced that even with incomplete information about the efficacy of flossing it was better to floss your teeth than to risk losing them, and applies the same reasoning to deciding whether we should keep track of the effects of climate change on Earth.



Could Humans Live 
in Deep Space?


Could humans relocate to space if Earth were uninhabitable?  




The Space Alien doesn't think that even the hardiest humans would last more than a millisecond in deep space, not even all dressed up in clumsy "space suits" they wore on the Moon or in the movie "The Martian" (q.v.)  The Space Alien is quite comfortable almost anywhere in space, but knows that humans would probably be miserable!

The Space Alien hopes that NASA will continue to photograph Earth to remind everyone who lives there to keep it safe and clean and livable!


Photograph of Earth by NASA

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Womankind Safeguarding the Future of Mankind

The Space Alien, who reads widely and incessantly, was pleased to read recently about brave women from India who have undertaken the protection of storks.   To read more about this,  click here.

The Space Alien has heard, but has never been able to confirm, that these magnificent birds find tiny humans and carry them to larger humans who care for them until they they reach full size.


Where the storks find these tiny humans, the Space Alien does not know.  But it is clear that these gentle birds are essential to the survival of the human species.  Since some of the Space Alien's best friends are humans, this is very much appreciated.

The Space Alien cannot understand why the humans cannot find their own little ones and must depend on storks for this.  Perhaps they just don't know where to look.   The Space Alien will continue reading and hopes to find answers.

Check these pages daily for news of this and other important discoveries by the Space Alien.

In the meantime, planet Earth owes a vote of thanks to these caring  Indian woman carrying out their important mission.

Friday, November 25, 2016

The Space Alien Studies the News

Your editor arrived at the insanely busy newsroom of the Space Alien Gazette and found the Space Alien sitting at a desk reading a newspaper.

"What are you reading?" asked your editor.

"The Chicago Tribune," answered the Space Alien. "I want to know what our competition is doing!"

"Good idea," said your editor.  "Let me have a look!"


The Space Alien moved aside so your editor could see the newspaper.



"Oh my goodness," said your editor "this newspaper is over 70 years old and this headline isn't even true!"

"I'm aghast!" said the Space Alien.  "How could this be? It was in the newspaper!"

"A newspaper isn't always the most reliable source" answered your editor.  "That particular headline was just a big mistake, but you can't believe everything you read in the newspapers."

"NO!" cried the incredulous Space Alien.  "Are you saying I should wait to hear it on the radio or see it on television?"

"Well, radio and TV are not always reliable either!"

The Space Alien looked stunned.

"How about the internet?  I'm sure people don't make things up on the internet!"

"That's even worse," said your editor.  "There are lots of made-up things there!"

"Even on Facebook and Twitter?" asked the Space Alien.

"Even there, people sometimes write things that are not true," answered your editor, as the Space Alien groaned.
The Space Alien was Crestfallen

The Space Alien was silent for several moments, thinking deeply, and then broke out in a huge grin.

"I get it!  I bet you can believe something if PEOPLE SAY SO!"

"NO!" cried your editor.  "'PEOPLE SAY' may be the LEAST RELIABLE of all!"

The Space Alien, who had always dreamed of being a reporter or even an editor of the Space Alien Gazette, was crestfallen.

"How can I contribute to the Space Alien Gazette if I don't know what's real and what's not?"

Your editor thought about this deeply before she spoke.

"I'll give you some links to help you tell the difference between real news and fake news."

"Here's a CNN article with some questions to ask of every suspect story, especially in Facebook."
http://edition.cnn.com/2016/11/18/tech/how-to-spot-fake-misleading-news-trnd/

"And here's a list of fact-checking websites"
http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/true-5-factchecking-websites/ (starting with http://www.snopes.com,  one of your editor's faves).

"So why don't we just get rid of all of that fake news?" asked the Space Alien.

"It's not always so easy," answered your editor.  "Here's an article about that!"
http://fortune.com/2016/11/17/fake-news-problem/

"I'll study these," said the Space Alien "because I want the Space Alien Gazette to be the very best!"

"You are the heart and soul of the Space Alien Gazette" answered your editor.  "With your inspiration we will keep right on getting out the very best news to our loyal readers!"

"Oh, I like that," said the Space Alien.  "But just for today can I drive one of the delivery trucks?"

"Sure you can!"

"Can I drive a shiny red one?"

"Certainly," answered your editor with a big smile.  "Go take your pick from the fleet!"


Space Alien Gazette Delivery Trucks

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Monday, November 21, 2016

The Space Alien Observes Thanksgiving

The Space Alien, deep in contemplation about the real meaning of Thanksgiving, became aware of a feathery rustle in the yard.  Rushing into the chilly November air to see what was happening, the Space Alien found Tom Turkey taking a stroll.

Friendly as always, the Space Alien whooshed over for a chat with this colorful visitor.  

But as the Space Alien approached, Tom Turkey, made a dash for it!

The Space Alien called out "What's your hurry, Tom Turkey?  I was just thinking about the real meaning of Thanksgiving!  What are you thankful for?"

"I'm thankful to be alive and want to stay that way!" cried Tom Turkey, picking up speed.




Tom Turkey kept running but the Space Alien called after him!


"Hey, Tom Turkey -- you know I wouldn't ruffle your beautiful feathers!  And who would eat a turkey anyway?"

"You'd be surprised!" answered Tom Turkey.

But then he stopped!  Sensing that he was safe, he ran back to the Space Alien.






The ever-sociable Space Alien greeted Tom Turkey with an invitation:

"Say, Tom Turkey, why don't you come to my Thanksgiving dinner?  Everyone will be there and it will be lots of fun!"

"What are you having for dinner?" asked the doubtful bird.

"I'm fixing a YUMMY dinner" said the Space Alien "and it's all plant based!"

"How did you learn to cook?" asked Tom Turkey.

"Carol D'Anca taught me how!  She's my editor's friend, a real honest-to-goodness nutritionist, with lots of great plant-based holiday recipes!"

"Can I see them?" asked Tom Turkey.

"Sure! They are at https://www.foodnotmeds.com (where you may even get a "pop up" to receive a free pdf copy), or else at https://www.foodnotmeds.com/recipe/

Tom Turkey looked dubious.  "These recipes -- are they healthful?"

"Certainly," answered the Space Alien.  "I always take good care of my kind and caring heart."

"And there aren't any birds in them?" asked Tom Turkey.

"Of course not!  They are all plant based, unprocessed whole food and oil free!"

Tom Turkey whipped out a smart phone, looked over the holiday recipes, and offered to bring one of the desserts to the Space Alien's Thanksgiving dinner, an offer the Space Alien accepted with thanks.
The Space Alien and your editor wish all the loyal readers of the Space Alien Gazette a lovely Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

The Space Alien Travels to the Inferno and Back

Following the November 8 election the Space Alien, always sympathetic to dear human friends, shared in your Editor's despondency.  Feeling inadequate as a comforter, the Space Alien took off for deep space, and the Space Alien Gazette temporarily suspended publication.

Deep space now felt more chilly than usual, and having recently re-read the complete works of Dante Alighieri, the Space Alien headed for the fiery Inferno this poet had so carefully mapped.
Map of the Inferno by Dante Aigheiri

Upon arrival, the Space Alien was astonished to find the Inferno completely frozen over.  Fortunately, the Space Alien had brought along figure skates, and spent a few solitary days sadly perfecting Lutzes, Salchows and Axels, undisturbed by other skaters each apparently in his or her own depressed state.  

Exclusive Space Alien Photograph of Frozen Inferno

Eventually duty called, and the Space Alien, never a shirker,  returned to the once busy but now paralyzed offices of the Space Alien Gazette, where your Editor sat, a glazed look on her face and a safety pin on her shirt.

"What's that safety pin for?" asked the Space Alien.
Your Editor looked up from her computer: "Have a look at PBS, right here," she answered.  "It means that you are safe with me, and that I am your ally"

"Well duh, I already knew that" said the Space Alien -- "I just thought you hadn't sewn back that missing button!"

The Space Alien and your Editor sat quietly for a while.  
Then the Space Alien broke the silence:  "I guess we'd better get back to work!"
"Yes," said your Editor, "I guess we'd better."

Even when The Inferno freezes over,
the Space Alien keeps on working
because the Space Alien cares!

Sunday, November 6, 2016

In the Wake of the World Series, 2016

Exclusive Space Alien Photo
We thought our loyal readers who do not live in the Chicago area would enjoy this news of the aftermath of the Chicago Cubs historic World Series victory on Wednesday, November 2, 2016. 

The Space Alien took this photo of the Cubs entourage traveling from Wrigley Field to Grant Park along Lake Shore Drive, and immediately teleported it to your editor.  It was a beautiful day and everyone was eager to see the Cubs en route to the big rally!

The Space Alien was there to frolic amongst the happy Chicagoans who had taken leave of work and school (Chicago Public Schools had a previously scheduled closure that day) to participate.

A reported five million revelers gathered in Grant Park.  Some reports said this number, over twice the population of Chicago, was inflated.  But whatever the actual count, the crowd was one of the largest in recent Chicago history.    Public transit use was at the max (click here)  That Chicago was well prepared (for more on this click here) was reflected in the few untoward incidents.  Get a bigger picture and many great bits of memory-stuff from the Chicago Tribune here.

Of course the Space Alien was there and can be found in the picture below.
Space Alien joins World Series revelers in Grant Park
A Quartet of Champions!
The Space Alien joined happy Chicagoans as they sang Go Clubs Go, along with this talented quartet: Dexter Fowler (who opened game 7 with a home run), First Baseman, Anthony Rizzo, Pitcher Jon Lester and David Ross who at age 39 became the oldest player to hit a home run in the 7th Game of a World Series Game.  (To see the NBC correction about this click here.  For a great New York Times story about David Ross, click here.)

To see and hear this song with country singer Brett Eldridge leading, click here.
To check out the crowd singing along with the Space Alien, click here.

And the following day Cubs Fowler, Rizzo and Ross appeared on Saturday Night Live along with Bill Murray to sing Go Cubs Go, captured here.

The revelers in Grant Park were not the only ones singing Go Cubs Go!  The entire cast of the Chicago production of HAMILTON did so too! Here are some links to see and hear them!
TMZ: click here.
Washington Post: click here.
One of many You Tube videos: click here.


The Chicago Symphony Orchestra joined in with their rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" --  click here.   (Editor's Note: The Space Alien is a feminist and asked your editor to let readers know they could learn about the feminist history of "Take me out to the Ballgame" if they would click here,  and for more general information about this song  click here.)

The Space Alien watches out for fan safety!
For the ENTIRE exciting celebration on Friday, November 4 at Grant Park, here's a list of You Tube videos that recorded the whole shebang!  To see this list and find your faves, click here.

The Space Alien had taped hours of this event with a mini-videocam. Unfortunately this tiny device -- dropped when the Space Alien helped to catch a pole climber at Grant Park -- was presumably trampled to dust by the crowd.  The Space Alien appreciates that many other photographers were there to make up for this heartbreaking loss.

A Well-Deserved Rest
At the end of a perfect day, the Space Alien left Cubby Bear taking a well-deserved rest.  Cubby Bear, encouraged by the Space Alien, had done his job, cheering and leading cheers, to the very best of his ability, and he had done so cheerfully.  (If you have not read the post about this, click here).  He could now rest in the happy satisfaction of a job well done!

For a short video of great ball playing, including that all-important 10th inning of the 7th game, click here.  Cubby Bear was at his best, as you can hear from the cheering of the crowd!  And of course the Space Alien was there in the stands as well that night, both awesome eyes fixed on the ball and the players!


These scenes will live in the Space Alien's exceedingly long and detailed memory.

The Space Alien gave the sleeping Cubby Bear a fond pat on a furry cheek, and then, grabbing a baseball in hopes of a catch, and traveling at tachyonic speeds exceeding the speed of light, headed off into deep space.

Wanna Catch?

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Notes and Corrections: 

1. A typesetter here at the insanely busy headquarters of the Space Alien Gazette omitted a link to the article about the feminist aspect of the song Take Me Out to the Ballgame, from the days when ladies did not normally attend baseball games.  This has been corrected above and here is that link again for your convenience: click here, to see it.

2. A loyal reader points out that the posted performance of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Riccardo Muti performing Take Me Out to the Ballgame was not performed during this World Series, but was actually recorded some time ago.  The Space Alien reminds loyal readers that in deep space, time and space may be distorted, so such errors are to be expected from time to time.

3. A better video of the Saturday Night Live presentation of Go Cubs Go went online after the first edition of this post went to subscribers and was substituted in this post, above, and here.   

Thursday, November 3, 2016

The Cubs are World Champions! (With Some Help from Cubby Bear and the Space Alien)

Game Seven of a hard fought World Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians found the Space Alien in Cleveland.  It was an exciting game and the Space Alien gave a special cheer as 39 year old* Catcher David Ross, now playing his last game before retirement, became the oldest batter to hit a home run in a World Series game.

 "Let's hear it for the Oldies!" cheered the Space Alien with uncommon gusto having worked through the disappointment of being unable to replace this retiring athlete as a Cubs catcher (q.v.).
David Ross Runs the Bases
But while the Cubs played brilliantly, by the 8th inning they had ceded an early lead to the Indians, worrying even the most optimistic fans.  

At the top of the 9th Inning the Space Alien sensed the presence of a furry friend nearby.  And there, extending a trembling paw, stood Cubbie Bear, nearly in tears!

"What's wrong, Cubby Bear?  Aren't you happy that the Chicago Cubs are in the World Series for the first time since 1945 with a chance of becoming World Champions for the first time since 1908?"

"Yes," whimpered Cubby Bear "but the score is tied now and I'm worried!"

"But you must cheer!" said the Space Alien.  "Cheering is your special responsibility!  The Cubs cannot win if you do not cheer!"

"I  know," cried Cubby Bear "but I'm so exhausted from worrying!  How can I cheer if I'm not cheerful myself?"
The Space Alien let Cubby Bear whimper his deepest concerns, and then spoke softly: "Cubby Bear, you have helped  your team in countless ways!   Now you must cheer for your team and know that whatever happens you have done your best!"


Cubby bear did so, leading the fans in exuberant cheering!  Their cheers  were so loud -- and so cheerful -- that the Cubs did better than their best! In fact, cheered by Cubby Bear and the fans, the Cubs WON with a great big W!!!     

Yes, the Cubs won the World Series, becoming the champions of the world and, as far as the Space Alien knew, the entire universe as well!  Encouraged by the Space Alien, the energetically cheering Cubby Bear had helped bring about that victory!




The Space Alien murmured "My work here is done; indeed, this year IS "Next Year" at last!  It was longer than the wait for Haley's Comet (Q.V.), but the Curse of the Billy Goat was lifted (q.v.), and Cubby Bear will always keep cheering!"    Then, with a brief backward glance at Wrigley Field, the Space Alien grabbed a  baseball and headed off into deep space! 
How About a Catch?
Traveling through space, the Space Alien will be singing "Go Cubs Go!"
You can join in song if you  click here!
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*To read the inspiring story of the Space Alien's disappointment and recovery in connection with the retirement of David Ross, please click here.  
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EXTRA -- this just in!  11/3/16.  En route to deep space, the Space Alien did a fly-by over Wrigley Field in Chicago where fans gathered last night to celebrate the Cubs victory in Cleveland.  A Space Alien Gazette photographer took this photo of the Space Alien in the midst of this crowd of joyous Chicagoans.    
The Space Alien joins thousands of Chicagoans celebrating the Cubs victory!