“A perfect axis rotation of 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.09 seconds?” one onlooker was heard commenting. “Yup. She’s definitely still got it.”
As well wishers fawned over Mother Earth with presents consisting heavily of asteroid shields, the solution to climate change and more ozone layers (you can never have enough), she graciously accepted all they had to offer. She did, however, pause in the gift opening to huffily blame the earthlings’ past climate change issues on the fact that she had been going through menopause for the last few years.
Tearing the festive paper from yet another gift, Mother Earth gasped in excitement before holding up a framed photograph featuring her posing dramatically with arms shielded, pretending to be swallowed up by a black hole in mock horror while on vacation in Andromeda.
“My husband, Father Time, thought it was in poor taste, but of course it’s hilarious,” she said, a starry look in her twinkling eyes. “Anyway, this will look lovely on my mantle. Thank you!”
After Mother Earth had unwrapped the last present – extinct male and female dodos – she put her hand to her heart, speechless with flattery. Finally she spoke, her eyes clouding over with a rainfall of tears.
“Thanks to each one of you for making my, ahem…3 billionth birthday a time I will never forgot,” she said. “Especially with Father Time over there to remind me!”
With hushed whispers, the crowd mouthed the words “3 billionth” confusedly to one another. Meanwhile, Father Time acknowledged his shout-out with a tap on his watch, indicating her speech was getting a bit long for his taste and that it was time to wrap it up.
“And, 3…billion…years or not, my surface is still as young and smooth as a Galilean Moon,” she declared stubbornly to the guests. “Your Botox is my erosion and tectonic processes! It also probably doesn’t hurt that I’m made entirely of chemicals.”
“I don’t think everything has to revolve around me,” she finished, “but try telling that to my sun! So, thank you for today and please – enjoy some cake and ice cream.”
As the birthday cake was cut and pieces were passed around, Mother Earth put her arms around Father Time and tittered resignedly that the dessert was going to go straight to her circumference. He consoled her by affectionately squeezing her lower continents and telling her that her peaks were still just as perky as ever until a guest told them to get their own galaxy.
Taking it into the next room, Father Time then presented her with a pair of lustrous diamond earrings and a matching pendant necklace. Upon careful inspection, she accepted his gift with much joy (even though she had created them) and – being made from zircon, herself – told him that she knew he wouldn’t dare attempt to fool her with zirconium jewelry.
“Even if you tried, I’m made of 34. 5 percent iron so I can still kick your intangible butt at my old age,” she pointed out. “Now tell me honestly – do I look 4.5 billion years old?”
“Not a day over 3 billion,” he replied back quickly. “Besides, you’re a young 4.5 billion.”
“I don’t know why anyone would want to acknowledge how old I’m getting anyway,” she retorted. “If I die, they all die!”