This year I fell for the Mars Hoax. Hard. I bought a telescope and planetarium software to plan a viewing of the red planet with my eldest son. As we scanned the skies using the software, we were able to look at anything and then magnify it into a large, beautiful image. We had a great time. As the image of Mars was growing on our computer, through magnification, we started to pretend that we were in the cockpit of a ship traveling there. "Mars needs women!" I shouted. We giggled with glee. "O Noes!11! we're gonna crash!!! AHHHH!" Great fun.
The software told us that Mars was to rise above Bloomington's horizon at 3:30am this morning, so yesterday we planned a breakfast and he came up with the idea of Solar System pancakes: Whipped cream for the Sun, M&Ms for the planets (Earth blue, Mars red, Mercury orange) and drizzled chocolate for the orbits. Yum!
Last night at about 6pm a friend suggested it might all be lies. Indeed. LIES! Those damn internets.
Now I had the dilemma of explaining all of this to a child.