Elon Musk just can’t catch a break sometimes. On Thursday, the SpaceX CEO confirmed that one of its Falcon 9 rockets had completed hold-down firing at Vandenberg Air Force. The launch is a big deal: the rocket will carry 10 Iridium Next satellites to kickstart a new satellite phone system, and it’s the first launch after an explosion in September that left scientists scratching their heads over what went wrong. After identifying an extremely complex fuel tank failure that caused the explosion, SpaceX is back in action. It’s great news, and Musk confirmed that the team’s next rocket launch will take place “next week.”
This has led to a flurry of drama around when exactly the launch will take place, spurred by conflicting definitions of what “next week” means. SpaceX had initially confirmed the launch would take place on January 8, this Sunday. However, NoozHawk reports that local notices for boaters and pilots say the launch will take place Monday. Inverse has asked SpaceX for clarification.
One redditor said Musk’s tweet confirms the launch is on Monday. “Seeing as Monday is literally next week, I’d assume so,” said johnkphotos. But KitsapDad wasn’t buying it: “I don’t even know what the normal one is called but in America, Sunday is considered the first day of the week.”
“I was taught they are like bookends, one is at either end of a shelf of books,” said John_The_Duke_Wayne. “Sunday and Saturday are at either end of the calendar week, so they are “weekends”.”
This led to “slack jawed disbelief” from frowawayduh. “So, as you leave the office on Friday, do you say ‘Have a great weekend, then have another. I will see you again Monday’?”
Could religion provide some answers? It doesn’t appear so. “Not sure what part of U.S. you are in but for most of my life, the week begins on Monday and ends on Sunday - the Sabbath,” said AloisHammer. “”Sabbath” is Saturday, isn’t it?,” said idubrov.
So, when’s the real launch date? Judging by the local notices, most likely Monday. It makes sense: weather reports suggest wind speeds of nearly 17 miles per hour on Sunday, compared to just under nine miles per hour on Monday. Unfortunately, as Monday is definitely next week, this means we still don’t know for sure when Elon Musk starts his week.
Photos via Getty Images / Scott Olson