Good morning, and welcome to United Airlines Space Shuttle flight number 909 to Kuala Lumpur and continuing on to the Moon base at Copernicus Crater City. Please remain in your seat throughout takeoff and after entering orbit. If you must leave your seat, keep your magnetic boots on and walk slowly and carefully. Do not remove your boots and try to float down the aisle carrying your boots. Do not wait until the head of one of your fellow passengers or a crew member is between your boots and a metal wall and then let the boots go, pretending not to know what will happen.
Under no circumstances should you cover your mouth with one hand, make false radio static noises and say, “Houston, we have a problem.” Nor should you fashion a realistic alien pseudopod out of phosphorescent Silly Putty and surreptitiously place it on the shoulder of the passenger in front of you. Nor should you make strange gurgling sounds, clutch your heart and yell hysterically, “The little bugger’s biting through my chest cavity!”
When being served your in-flight meal, please refrain from asking the flight attendant what went wrong with the food replicators. Do not refer to any crew member as “Seven of Nine” or “Two of 36D,” and do not mention, even obliquely, your own “very personal Borg implant.” Keep the lid on your drink at all times. Do not attempt to “liberate” your drink from the “unnatural restraints of a weak, contemptible gravitational field.” If your drink should accidentally escape from its sealed reverse-pressure container, do not slap the ball of liquid and disperse it into a thousand tiny globules.
If you are seated near an emergency exit, do not ask the flight attendant for an electric screwdriver under the pretext that you are “just one lug nut away from Nirvana.” Do not place a holographic decal of a Hubble telescope photo of a supernova on the window and ask your fellow passengers what that strange light is out there. It would also be a mistake at this point to cut a Ping-Pong ball in half, draw scraggly lines on the pieces with a red felt-tip pen, insert a piece into each eye socket and moan, “Oh my God, not that solar flare thing again!”
When the order is given to turn off all cellular phones, laptop computers and portable DVD players prior to takeoff, it would be considered a serious breach of security to keep pounding the mouseball and screaming, “More thrust, damn it, we need more thrust or we’ll never achieve escape velocity!”
Passengers are strictly forbidden to pull down the oxygen masks directly above their seats unless first instructed by a non-imaginary crew member. Further, they are not to breathe into the mask, cough as if suffocating, and declare, “My people need at least a 40 percent chlorine mixture to maintain normal body metabolism.” Simulated body spasms and cries for anyone present to erect a level 10 force field and fill it with your world’s atmosphere could be disruptive to other travelers.
If you need to use the restroom, it would be best to withhold any loudly uttered comments from within the cubicle along the lines of, “My arm! It’s got my arm!” or “Cut it out—that tickles!” Do not bang your fist on the inside wall and issue a warning about the wormhole reopening and the need to reverse impulse engines.
During our final approach and landing, please avoid assuming a head-down crash position atop the nearest flight attendant and imitating an air-raid siren or any type of emergency vehicle or injured seagoing mammal.
If you are unable to read or understand these instructions, do not ask the passenger next to you to read the instructions silently to themselves while you attempt to perform a Vulcan mind-meld.
Finally, we ask that while waiting to exit from the spacecraft, you refrain from any high-decibel outbursts in which you plead frantically for someone named “Hal” to “open the pod bay doors.”
We hope you enjoy the flight, and thank you for choosing United on your first day of lunar work-release.