Plaster Rock — After one of the 7 Canadians — a 29-year-old Yukon man — dropped out of the running for the project for personal reasons, Mars One has offered a chance at taking a one-way trip to Mars in 2025 to a desperate New Brunswicker instead.
Mars One, the Dutch-based non-profit organizing the controversial mission, said the 7 Canadians are now among a list of 100 would-be astronauts worldwide, and soon that number will be pared down to 24 through a series of suitability tests. The mission to form a livable colony on Mars is expected to cost around $6 billion, but scientists at MIT in Boston are questioning whether it’s even feasible to keep humans alive once they arrive on the Red Planet.
“I don’t really care what goes on once I get there,” said Don Baldwin, 39, already confident he’ll be selected to take the trip of a lifetime. “What’s the worst that can happen? I’ll be so bored and lonely I’ll just die right away? I’m from Plaster Rock — bring it on.”
The tiny Victoria Country village recently made headlines when a UFO crashed in a remote area off Route 108 and an alien died of boredom. While Minister of Tourism, Heritage and Culture Bill Fraser attempted to save face by calling the area a “beautiful destination,” Mars One caught wind of the news and decided to hand-pick a candidate from Plaster Rock.
“We realized a few things when that alien perished in the desolate New Brunswick wasteland,” said Anneke Boerefijn, head researcher with Mars One. “For one, Plaster Rock appears to be a place that not even a sophisticated, developed life-form accustomed to travel can survive for long. There’s such mental tedium and utter absence of visual stimulation — naturally, we thought someone born and raised in the area would be perfectly suited for the bleak and unrelenting conditions that await us on Mars.”
“Not only are Plaster Rock’s proud citizens experts at withstanding extreme boredom, but they appear to be desperate to get as far away from the village as possible — Mr. Baldwin is practically begging us to skyrocket him out of the Earth’s atmosphere for good,” she further explained.
Baldwin confirmed Boerefijn’s statement, saying he’s already packed his hockey bag with a lifetime supply of Reader’s Digest magazines and cans of Alpine. “They’re a lot more compact than the bottles,” he explained while cramming one last beer into the bag. “This here’s pretty much all I need to stay entertained indefinitely.”
The other Canadian candidates — 4 from Ontario and 2 from British Columbia — are in the process of thoroughly preparing by researching conditions on Mars, getting in peak physical shape and of course readying themselves to ace the sure-to-be-rigorous suitability testing. Baldwin, however, isn’t concerned that he’ll be weeded out. “Jesus, those Westerners are some high-strung, eh?” he said. “I’m pretty sure they’ll pick me — I’m a cool guy and everyone around here likes me. I can probably bribe those Dutch guys with an Alpine, anyway.”