When news broke that the Mars Foundation, funded largely by millionaire Dennis Tito, wanted to man a trip to Mars with a married couple, a chorus of earthly laughter could probably be heard from the red planet. The trip will take 501 days and the vessel will fly out to Mars, swing around the planet snapping pictures, and return to earth. No problem.
I know I chuckled, imagining my wife and me cooped up together in a space pod for 16 months. That’s a long time to be stuck with someone. No breaks or nights out with the guys. No peace. Probably not even the chance of a long uninterrupted poop with a new National Geographic. My wife and I would kill each other long before re-entering the earth’s atmosphere became a concern.
But I’m sure there are adventurous couples prepping their submission videos as we speak—Pick us! Pick us!—and no doubt that a number of couples could manage it well. But that would be boring.
I propose that Match.com sponsor this expedition.
The company runs the data and squeezes the algorithms and produces a compatible pair. Then that couple meets at the hangar, shakes hands, straps in and blasts off. Bravo will co-sponsor and 15 onboard cameras will record every second of the mission. It will be the ultimate reality television show and you could essentially run it for 16 months straight—Bravo could cancel the rest of its programming and advertisers would kill one another to place their products on the spaceship.
To placate the snobs who will reduce this to the cheeseball entertainment gimmick that it is, this pioneering space couple will also collect science for the Mars Foundation and volumes of sociological, sexual and psychological information for every other egghead studying the proceedings.
The expedition is scheduled to take place in 2018, so we have 5 years to find the perfect pair. If Match.com passes on the opportunity, maybe we can send these couples:
• Donald Trump and Bill Maher
• Dennis Rodman and Kim Jong Un
• Simon and Garfunkel
• Prince Harry and Jonny Depp
• Key and Peele