Source - An asteroid called (52768) 1998 OR2 classed as 'potentially hazardous' by NASA flew safely past the Earth on Wednesday.
The asteroid was 3.9 million miles away from the Earth on its closest approach - which is about 16 times further than the distance to the Moon.
The Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico is tracking the space rock - that is between 1.1 and 2.5 miles wide as it makes its orbit around the Sun. ...
The asteroid is classed as a PHO (potentially hazardous object) because it is bigger than 459 feet (140 metres) and will come within five million miles of Earth's orbit.
NASA says despite this designation, no known PHO that the agency is currently tracking poses an immediate danger to the Earth.
I don't mean to sound dismissive toward anything the good people in the smocks at NASA say, because when you literally do the job the rest of use when we need a metaphor for complicated tasks, you deserve some slack. But they'll also have to forgive me if I'm in no mood to trust government agencies telling us something is not a threat to us. We've heard this song before.
Besides, what would NASA say if 1998 OR2 was taking dead solid aim and about to turn us into space gravel? Would they issue a press release saying, "April 29th: Save the Date for the Apocalypse?" Tweet "Listen, the last one didn't kill ALL the dinosaurs. We still have birds, right?" They lied to cover up the fact Nazi scientists got us to the moon, they'd certainly fudge the numbers on our imminent destruction. Especially given there's not enough time to send Stamper, Frost and Rockhound up with some tungsten carbide drilling equipment and a couple of nukes. And that the National Aeronautics and SPACE Administration hasn't put anybody into actual space in about a decade. So yeah, it's fair to say I'm having minor trust issues.
More to the point, it just feels like an asteroid is coming to wipe us out. It would be the most 2020 thing that could happen. The next logical progression. God clearly doesn't like the way we've been digging in an getting too comfortable in the box, so he's thrown us the Viral Brushback Pitch. When that didn't work, and we kept crowding the solar system, he's coming in with the Interplanetary Chin Music. Followed by drilling us in the planet with the Celestial High Hard One. And if we charge the great Cosmic Mound and both benches empty, that is not a brawl we are going to win.
Oh well. It'll put us out of our misery at least. I'd say it's been fun but lately that's not true.
P.S. You know what really killed the space program? It was run by engineers and not by writers. So we got names for things like Lunar Excursion Module and Solid Rocket Booster, instead of words like starship or Millennium Falcon. So now the instrument of our worldwide extinction is going to be a giant rock named "1998 OR2," which sounds like a label your dad put on your home videos or a Van Halen album. If it were up to me, I'd have named the thing Fist of God or Mjolnir or Carole Baskin's Husband's Revenge or something. These guys have no imagination.