CAMP PENDLETON – Leaders of the fledgling United States Space Force – which President Trump requested the military create in 2019 and millions of Americans considered a publicity ploy – announced today they have received ‘hundreds of thousands of inquiries’ about enlistment as the spread of COVID-19 takes a toll on hospitals and payrolls nationwide.
“Last month, Americans thought Space Force was a joke,” said U.S. Brigadier General Alonzo Martinez as he grabbed a blow-horn from a subordinate and approached the gate of the Marine Corps base he commands. “This month, Americans want a job, preferably one that gets them off the planet.”
“The problem…,” said Martinez as he raised his blow-horn at a throng of citizens loitering outside the gate, “is that none of you space cadets knows where or how to enlist … and that’s because Space Force doesn’t exist! In fact, prior to today’s press release, the last anyone heard about Space Force was in January, I think, when the press complained about the uninspiring uniforms our astro-commandos would be required to wear — get this, regular camouflage fatigues … for interstellar warfare! How moronic is that?”
Martinez didn’t wait for the ‘space cadets’ to respond before his continued shouting at them on the blow-horn about the absurdity of the new agency.
“Around then, I think someone in the Department of Defense or Air Force – whoever the hell is running the program – finally figured out a logo for Space Force, at least, and then … bam! COVID-19 hits, and now everyone and their dog wants to sign up.”
Martinez lowered the blow-horn and mumbled to his subordinate, “I wished these youngsters were as eager to sign up with us.”
Among the throng, T.J. Reynolds stepped forward to speak to the general. The 19-year-old unemployed high school graduate from Yorba Linda said he first considered joining Space Force as he and his friends played Eve online over the winter holiday.
“I thought zapping space aliens sounded pretty cool,” said Reynolds to the general as he clung to the gate. “Then, the pandemic came, and I lost my job at Starbucks, sir. I figured it was time to step up and do my part for myself … and the nation.
“Do you have any suggestions how young and eager Americans like me, who want to help make the world a better place, can get involved?”
Martinez glanced at his subordinate, who shrugged.
Again, the general raised his blow-horn.
“Get involved with what, young man?” said Martinez. “The Marine Corps? The Peace Corps? Didn’t you hear anything I said? I have contacts at the National Guard, if that interests you. If you enlist now, they might even let you pass out ventilators … if we can get them … from China or whichever damn country makes things anymore. If you hold out and join in a few months, you might even get to help suppress riots in the streets…
“How about that? Is that the kind of opportunity to get involved you’re looking for?”
Martinez waited for Reynolds to respond, but the young man appeared to slither down the gate and pile at the bottom in a heap of human worthlessness.
“That’s what I thought,” said Martinez, shaking his head. “Now, I suggest you and your friends run along and do what I’m sure you do best — sit around and play video games and let your imaginations go wild. Keep yourselves and your families safe and well, and when society gives the all-clear signal, I urge you to return outside and resume your normal Terran life.”
Amanda Cho, April 6, 2020