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Photos show ALH84001, a Mars rock once thought to contain alien life
"Organisms" on Mars Rock are Life---But Not from Mars
NASA Scientists say they've solved riddle of Mars rock.
Yourtown---- (NOTICE: Any names of towns, locations, people, institutions, etc., used in these sample fake newspaper stories, are purely fictional, chosen at random, and are not meant to portray or represent any real person, place or deed. Remember that no matter what name a writer chooses to use in any fictional story, there is a real person (or many persons) SOMEWHERE who have that exact name.)
Scientists studying the Mars sample ALH84001 have reached a conclusion regarding whether or not it contains the fossils of alien life forms, announced Diane Freeman, spokeswoman for the NASA panel.
"We have definitely concluded the rock harbors the remains---I said remains, not fossils--- of life forms," Ms. Freeman said to a somewhat confused crowd of reporters Saturday afternoon. "The organisms are organic. They are the leftovers of carbon-based life forms. But they originated right here on Earth."
A stunned crowd murmured their disappointment.
"As you know," Ms. Freeman went on, "There has been considerable controversy regarding this sample. In order to get to the bottom of it once and for all, we began a trace of the sample, a very painstaking trace of its movements from the time it was discovered, until it was placed into safe keeping in our laboratory. We've concluded that there was only one brief period when the sample was not under complete and unbroken quarantine by the scientists who brought it back to the United States. I'll introduce Mr. James Reavner to explain what we've discovered."
"Sample ALH84001 was technically 'exposed' for approximately 60 to 90 seconds, in the men's room of SeaTac Airport near Seattle," Mr. Reavner explained. "Mr. Farquarson, the man who was actually carrying the rock in his briefcase, had entered the men's room at this location during a brief layover of his flight to Los Angeles. At some point during his time in the men's room, he was approached by another gentleman, a Mr. Alex Gardner---actually he was spoken to by Mr. Gardner from an adjacent stall. Mr. Gardner's request was simple: 'Do you have any toilet paper?' Mr. Farquarson replied that his roll was empty as well, but that he thought he had a travel kit in his briefcase, and he would be happy to share with Mr. Gardner. Mr. Farquarson did, in fact, find some travel wipes, and he passed several to Mr. Gardner under the stall divider. While fumbling to pass the wipes, their hands touched briefly. We have discovered that what we thought was an alien life form from Mars, is actually the result of that contamination from Mr. Gardner to Mr. Farquarson in the men's room at SeaTac Airport. It is not an alien life form at all, but a rather virulent and aggressive form, a certainly rare form of jock itch, introduced by Mr. Gardner when he brushed hands with Mr. Reavner, and Mr. Reavner then later touched the Mars sample.
We deeply regret our handling of the sample, and we deeply regret the false alarm that has spread to every corner of the planet."
Mr. Reavner then invited questions from the reporters.
See Jobs at NASA Page D-5
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