When I announced that I’d be doing a post a day, I asked my throngs of adoring fans to offer some suggestions of topics that I should cover. Clearly, my brilliance had cowed and intimidated all but the bravest of my legions of admirers, because I only received one response. Jon Wolf asked me to talk about the dragon that lived in the rings of Saturn. As soon as I heard his desperate entreaty, I knew I had to respond as quickly and thoroughly as possible to clear up the myths and misconceptions about said dragon.
There are many myths about dragons in general. Most people realize that dragons as we know them never actually existed in Europe, Asia, Africa. etc. Yes, there are myths and legends about the existence of enormous, scaly, flying and just plain bad ass creatures all over the world, but the majority of people believe that real dragons simply don’t exist. A reasonable stance to be sure, but true in only the most parochial sense. The real truth, (that only a few of us have had the drive and vision to discover), is that dragons are real but they don’t live on Earth. If one puts just a little thought to this, it quickly becomes clear why.
There is simply no way a creature that large could generate the lift necessary to fly under it’s own power. No matter how large the surface area of the wings, or how powerful the muscles, it’s too much mass to get off the ground with the speed and energy available to biological organisms. Dragons love to fly, and they can’t fly on Earth, therefore, no dragons on Earth. It’s elementary logic.
So in order to shine the light of truth on this sadly ignored fact, I’ve come up with a list of facts about our Solar System’s dragon(s) that I think you should read:
1) There isn’t just one dragon living in Saturn’s rings, there are two. Their names are Bruno and Jack-Jack. They have tremendous amounts of sex. There’s not much else to do out there, but they’re not complaining.
2) Jack-Jack is short for Jacqueline Jacobi. This is a little strange because dragons typically do not use surnames. She’s never bothered to explain it, and the few beings who have brave enough to ask about it never lived to regret their insolence.
3) Almost every current story and myth about dragons can be traced to the one particular dragon named Marshall. Somewhere around 4200BCE during what we would call a “mid-life crisis” he got hammered, flew a bit too close to Earth’s gravity well and was trapped here. After a few decades of anger and frustration in which he laid waste to much of what is now Northern Europe, he mellowed out, grew a mustache and ponytail and moved to a small cottage on the shores of the Yangtze.
4) The moon landings were not faked, but they were an integral part of a massive government conspiracy. In fact, the launching of Apollos 12-15 were a massively successful ruse to distract the media’s attention away from a secondary launch site in Central Florida, exactly where the “Astral Orbiter” now stands at Walt Disney World. First Kennedy and then Nixon authorized these covert missions in order to establish regular contact Bruno and Jack-Jack and hopefully gain their support in the Cold War.
5) When they were first discovered, Pulsars were assumed to be distant dragon flames. We have since discovered that they are actually exotic remnants of stars, given their bizarre characteristics due to the massive violence and energy of a supernova event. However, in private, most astronomers prefer to stick to the “Dragon Flame Interpretation”, when asked about it, they will pretend they have no idea what you’re talking about.
6) Academics, bureaucrats, artists, scientists and philosophers have know of real dragons for centuries. They keep their existence a secret not out of a fear of the public’s reaction, but because dragons are so damn cool that the jerks who gave them wedgies and the snobs who rejected them in high school don’t deserve to know about it.
7) Far from living in isolation, dragons are in regular contact with humanity, and enjoy many of our cultural exports. Bruno enjoys Iron Chef America, but still prefers the original Japanese version. Jack-Jack loved Battlestar Galactica and can even forgive the heavy-handed ending but when pressed says: “I actually liked the finale, but really, Starbuck? WTF?”. They are both serious Munchkin fanatics. Bruno’s musical tastes tend toward Progressive Rock and New Wave while Jack-Jack is massively eclectic, listening to everyone from Rascal Flatts to Franz Ferdinand.
8) One dragon scale is about the size of a cheese Pazzo from Amato’s. (Noteable because that is one of Jack-Jack’s favorite Earthly foods.)
9) The closest humanity has ever come to conflict with dragon kind was in 2007 when they Bruno was quoted at saying: “You know, that Cheney guy is kind of a tool.” Once the impracticality of sending 50,000 troops to Saturn’s rings was explained to the Vice President, the conflict was avoided.
10) If you ever come face to face with a dragon, panic and beg for mercy. You’re probably in no danger from the dragons, but you are now stranded, floating in the rings of Saturn, surrounded by massive balls of ice and debris. What the hell were you thinking?