Aug 19, 2012
David Oh, along with wife Bryn Oh and the couple's three children, Braden, 13, Ashlyn, 10, and Devyn, 8, switched to Martian time as soon as the rover Curiosity landed on Mars.
"We want the family to be together on this adventure, and it is an adventure to land on Mars and go exploring," said David Oh.
A day on planet Mars is 39 minutes longer than a day on planet Earth, so the Oh family members have been waking, eating and sleeping at strange hours. At times, breakfast is at 3:00 pm Earth time.
Each time there is a mission to Mars, NASA scientists and engineers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California make the time change for a period of three months.
When the rover Curiosity landed on the surface of Mars, NASA mission control operators switched to Mars time, and David Oh took his whole Los Angeles area family on an adventure that has kids around the world green with envy.
David Oh switched from directing cruise operations to directing surface operations once Curiosity landed on the red planet.
The rover works during the day and sleeps at night like a mechanical vampire.
Earth engineers give the rover new commands every Mars morning, so scientists must work on Mars time.
For their Mars time experiment, the Oh family cleared their schedules for August 2012, then installed blinds in every room to shut out all daylight.
Eldest son Braden Oh, 13, started a Tumblr blog called MARS TIMR to share his family's experiences after the Californians switched over to Mars Time at the beginning of August.
On Braden's blog, he reported that the Oh family had dinner at Denny's at 3:00 am and enjoyed Hollywood Boulevard landmarks in the middle of the night, which was freaky but cool.
Inspired by NASA scientist David Oh and his fearless family, many California kids begged their parents to let their families be Martian families too.
Most parents declined, of course, but some are letting their kids test a Mars Time schedule on weekends.
Many kids have discovered how hard it is to go against a natural Earth schedule and have given up.
However, the family of David Oh continues on as California's martian family, almost as famous as the Parrot on Mars.
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