CBS News reports that 74-year-old Joann Davis was nabbed in sting operation when she tried to sell moon dust to undercover government agents at a California Denny's. "Moon dust" here isn't some pithy senior citizen slang for meth but an actual piece of moon rock encased in a paperweight that Davis claims her husband, a "space engineer" gave her forty years ago. In an effort to sell the rock to raise some extra money, Davis contacted NASA in the hopes that the government agency could help her find a buyer. That's when federal agents, who suspected Davis was trying to peddle stolen government property, closed in on the wily intergalactic bandit.
When Davis entered the designated Denny's drop-off spot, the trap was sprung.
Unnecessary indeed. Personal discretion and situational awareness not being core tenets of NASA's moon dust unit, agents detained Davis for two hours of questioning. Though five months later Davis has yet to be charged with any crime, she is now without her moon rock, which, according to some estimates, could have a street value as high as $1 million. Unsurprisingly, Davis says that her experience was "humiliating."
If you need any more proof that America's space program is living on residual glory from its Apollo missions and playing Cold War-style espionage games at diners with taxpayer money, look no further.
And in related lunar news, Hertfordshire police have released audio of a very confused man calling 999 (that would be the British version of 911, not the number to call into Herman Cain's fictitious radio program) to report what he at first thought was a UFO, but what he later realized was only the moon. Whoops! The caller gave an accurate and sober-sounding account of the moon's position in the sky with characteristic British dignity, which leads me to draw one of the follow two conclusions: 1) he is a werewolf employing some very complicated form of misdirection; or 2) he took a nap when the sun was still out and woke up all disoriented when it was dark.