Scientists at the Bakersmith Astronomy Laboratory in Yuba City, California were excited this summer when they finished building the world’s most powerful telescope: the Paladin 3000-K.

“It’s always great to get a new piece of equipment,” said Laura Furness, the lab’s director. “We went right to work with it.”

The “Pal”

The “Pal,” as it’s commonly known, was switched on during the first week of August. “Our first target was Mars,” Furness said. “It’s close enough to see clearly, and we’ve always been fascinated with it.”


Last week Bakersmith made a shocking discovery about the red planet. “The first thing we saw was a landmass that looked like the United States,” Furness said. “We zoomed in and saw a city like Yuba City, then a building like our building, and then a telescope, like our telescope. There was a woman standing next to it. She looked familiar. When I waved, she waved back. That’s when it hit me.”

Furness and her scientists soon realized that what they thought was Mars, and what astronomers have thought was Mars at least since Christian Huygens peered through a telescope in 1659, was the earth reflected through a giant floating space mirror.

“Wavelengths make it look red,” Furness said. “And space dust has, until now, made it hard for people to see the reflection clearly.”


Since the discovery was announced, the lab has been flooded with visits by celebrities and other luminaries wanting to look through the Pal and find out the truth about Mars. “Matt Damon dropped by,” Furness said. “He was in that Mars movie, and did lots of research, so he was a little defensive, but as soon as he waved and saw his reflection wave, he was on board.” Other celebrities had different ideas. “Kylie Jenner had her people make a special camera to fit around the eyepiece so she could take a picture of her reflection,” Furness said. “It’s a new kind of selfie. When she left, all the younger scientists in the lab all started doing it.”

An intensive examination of the surface of what was previously thought of as Mars has revealed that the planet is identical to Earth, though in mirror image, with a few key differences. “On reflection Mars,” Furness says, “there is no Vermont. That’s weird. The people from Vermont still exist, but they belong to neighboring states. Bernie Sanders is a Senator from Massachusetts. Oh, and certain flavors of soda are different. If we go very close-up on the menus of restaurants, we can see that there’s quite a bit more pineapple soda. That surprised us. Oh, and also dogs can talk, though we can’t yet hear what they are saying.”


Furness adds that after the Bakersmith group finishes its observations of “Mars,” which has now internally been renamed “Earth Reflection 1,” they will turn their attention to the other planets in our solar system. “Early data suggests that most of the other planets are also reflections in various hanging space mirrors,” Furness says. “Pluto probably looks small because the mirror is far away, and slightly convex. Jupiter looks gigantic because it’s a concave mirror. The famous red spot is just that: a spot on the mirror.”

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