This morning I received a letter from the post office, marked “Return to Sender.” While the address was vaguely my own - what the post office thought to be a 7, I suspect was actually a 4, along with other, more alphabetical mysteries - I remain unconvinced that I actually sent this letter, or any letter, to anyone in the last five years. Still, the letter arrived at my house, and being curious, I opened it.
What I found both thrilled and astonished me, and I have included it for your perusal.
Dear Tom Hanks,
I have studied your film work, and I am not impressed. Undoubtably, you receive many letters praising your range, expression, and relatability. I am unmoved. This is not a fan letter, but a summons. I challenge you to a race to the moon.
One year from the postmark on this envelope, I will be launching an independent space campaign, in a rocket of my own design, where I will break through the stratosphere, travel through the cold vastness of space, and plant my flag on the dusty, lifeless sphere that orbits the planet Earth.
Given your history with moon landings, I suggest you begin your preparations immediately. In the interest of fairness, I will warn you, I have been training for this for half of my life. I am 22.
My training has been extensive and thorough, including:
-subsisting on only dehydrated ice cream for upwards of three months
- trampolining three hours a day, every day, to prepare my muscles for the “bounciness” of a zero gravity environment
-peeing through a tube into a vacuum cleaner
Included is a diagram of my plans to show you that I am serious.
See you in space, “Jim”