[Mission Record, 23 March]
Mir to Baikonur! Come in, Baikonur! Josef here:
Thanks for sending up new Zhirinovsky book:
It had tiny air gun hid inside.
Are using gun to rivet aft cabinets;
Twine we tied them with has finally died.
Doing much better keeping wrenches:
Since last week, have only had one break once!
And that one, well, it hardly counts anyway,
Has been our manual thrust control for months.
Yes, we know have lost mile or two of altitude--
We don't think there's any reason to despair.
Our signal reception, it's much stronger now!
(Too bad that "Seinfeld"'s going off of air.)
What more worries us these days is forward panels
Since Oleg, he knocked belt right off of drive. (Fool!)
Vasily is working on temporary fix--
I know those pipe cleaners date from '85!
[Mission Record, 18 April]
Mir to Baikonur! Come in, Baikonur! Oleg here:
Thanks for sending up replacement cable;
Too bad it is half centimeter short.
With Josef's help, we jumpered across gap:
Used his golden toothpick Hero Award.
Vasily has panel motor running now--
And, no, I was not drunk or tired or blue!
I just thought I saw rat--can you blame guy for that?!
You stay up here for year--you'll see them too!
Leak in Spektr module getting worse;
We can hear hiss whenever there is hush.
We emptied whole spray can of StopLeak in there;
Now toilet, it backs up each time we flush. (You can't imagine.)
You'd better relieve me pretty soon!
I'm going...I'm going right up wall!
I start doing things and can't remember why,
Push buttons for no reason at--
[Mission Record, 1 May]
Mir to Baikonur! Come in, Baikonur! Vasily here:
Thanks for sending up nice May Day package,
Those bouillion cubes of borscht were really fine.
But sad to say, cabinets broke loose again;
Next time could you send up some more twine?
Yes, Oleg, he is some better now,
But we still don't let him close to instrument board.
Sometimes he seems almost normal,
And then we catch him with his ear to floor.
(Says he hears "space crickets.")
No, no, that's not all, Baikonur.
I fear it is my duty to relate
That Josef got excited when he swung main hatch to--
He jammed it, breaking seals, sealed our fate...
Well, maybe not, if shuttle gets here fast enough,
Or Germans pony up for one more launch,
But I think I ask you do me one last favor
'Cause I've got this sneaky nagging little hunch...
You know how we'd play poker with Americans?
Well, I've stashed pile of dollars in Locker Three;
Should be just enough for two liters of Smirnoff's--
For *that*, St. Basil's priest might even pray for me.