I’ve always been fascinated by science fiction.  My daughter shakes her head, and looks the other way.  Fortunately, Charlie, my son “caught the bug” early on, and I had someone to use as an excuse to see the latest alien or Star Wars’ movies.

The conversation began when I mentioned that we’d probably find life on Mars in underground communities as deep as seven or eight levels and, since there’s evidence of water having been on Mars’ surface, it was now down below.

Sighing, Charlie said, “The reality of intellectual life underground on Mars is unlikely because any type of miniwave communiction would have been detected by now.”  His concept is that an underground single or very limited cell organism may live near hot spots where water is available.  “Also”, he continued, I believe unearthing these living beings, however small, could be treacherous to our society because of unknown viruses.  Our bodies’ defense system wouldn’t be able to adapt to them fast enough before we became ill, and possibly died from them.”

I responded that, from the photos I’ve seen of Mars, especially the supposed canals, these are intelligent beings who have to be about our size for such construction.  Further, our space vehicles carry equipment to test atmospheres or lack thereof when we arrive.  Also, our astronauts wear protective clothing plus breathing apparatus and, on their return, go through decontamination.

Charlie shrugged his shoulders.  “Water dwellers indicates the possible presence of phosphorus, and light enabled by underground magna flows.  This would provide light for small ecosystems in the unseen caverns of Mars.”  I nodded in approval, and he continued, “Think of the ultra deep sea Angler fish that uses a phosphorus-enriched antenna as bait to catch curious prey.  According to NASA’s space exploration schedule, it will be 20 years before man sets foot on Mars, let alone explores water-filled caves deep beneath Mars’ undaunting surface.”

Smiling, I knew all of those sci-fi movies and books had produced a man not afraid to look into the future, and a mother who wants to live to see Mars for herself.  In Charlie’s words, “Extraterrestrial life does exist, and it’s up to us to accept that and not destroy it, or ourselves, in the process.”