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Craigslist ad seeks suicidal astronaut

A job ad on the Alberta Craigslist site offers a most enticing prospect for a budding astronaut. There's one small drawback, though: the winning candidate is not expected to return to Earth.

Just because there's a recession, it doesn't mean you can't find your dream job. So allow me to direct your boundless ambition toward an ad on Craigslist's Calgary site.

While many people scour Craigslist to see if Starbucks or Bed, Bath and Beyond might be seeking additions to their cheery teams, the poster of this ad is searching for an altogether more adventurous type, proudly announcing "Astronaut Needed (Northern Alberta)." Is that the cough of a million scoffs I hear? Perhaps. But this is truly an interesting opportunity, to say the least. Just look at the first, enticing sentence of the ad: "Astronaut needed for experimental flight to Titan."

Perhaps you might be concerned that this ad was not, in fact, placed by NASA. Please, let me put your mind into horizontal mode. The advertiser assures all applicants that he has been "working on this project for near 40 years." Indeed, the only reason he is seeking an Armstrong for his flight is that he himself seems to have weaker limbs now that the years have passed.

You might also be wondering what kind of craft will shuttle you into orbit. Well, again, I can be your Xanax. The advertiser declares that his secret craft is "the result of my professional experience and imagination while serving the U.S. military in advanced aeronautics as a scientist." You see, this man is a veritable expert in his field. This spaceship enjoys "a revolutionary propulsion system and its fuselage is fabricated with the most advanced material."

Looks like a fun place to me. CC Flying Singer/Flickr

Surely, you can have no more concerns. Surely, you are ready to reply to this advertisement, beaming at the idea that you will soon be beamed into the great beyond. Well, in the interests of full disclosure, let me draw your attention to some of the finer details. In the advertiser's own persuasive and humane words: "I am certain you will make it safely to Titan but there will not be enough fuel to get home. This is for someone unique that has always wanted to see the universe first-hand and has perhaps a terminal view on life here at home. Here's your shot at romantic history."

Yes, that's right. You won't be coming back. At all. Ever. So perhaps you might want to check what the nightlife is like on Titan. Because that might be the only way you could really create romantic history.

Should I have failed to deter you from applying for your life's (and death's) dream, do note that the job specs declare that you should be no taller than 5 feet 10 inches and "relatively slim." One imagines that any appearances in a Ralph Lauren advertisement might enhance your chances of being chosen.

Oh, and the advertiser also requires that you should be "mentally sound."