The internet is a perilous place, especially when you’re a young person with no filter on social media. Someone with the Twitter handle @NaomiH_Official, otherwise identified as Naomi (and sometimes identified as a furry, though who knows), announced that she’d been awarded an internship at NASA on her timeline. She chose to do this in a sentence that includes the F-bomb. While her friends were fist-pumping in celebration, a man named Homer Hickam discovered her tweet as well.
It’s quite a roller coaster of tweets.
Hickam is a former NASA engineer who is currently on the National Space Council, which oversees NASA. He found Naomi’s tweet, and commented on it, “Language.” His Twitter account doesn’t appear to be verified, or maybe Naomi just didn’t know who Hickam was. Either way, she decided to respond with yet more colorful language, until he revealed his identity.
The interchange got so much attention that Naomi set her account to private, and then it started being rumored she’d lost her internship.
(UPDATE: Naomi did, in fact, lose her internship over the incident.)
This story is a literal nightmare for anyone interested in developing a career in aerospace, but she is the Internet’s hero:
Personally, I feel pretty bad for Naomi, as absurd as that whole back-and-forth was. But I wouldn’t be quick to label Hickam as a narc—on his blog he writes that he isn’t the one who got Naomi fired:
“Later, I learned she had lost her offer for an internship with NASA. This I had nothing to do with nor could I since I do not hire and fire at the agency or have any say on employment whatsoever. As it turned out, it was due to the NASA hashtag her friends used that called the agency’s attention to it long after my comments were gone.”
“She reached out to me with an unnecessary apology which I heartily accepted and returned with my own. After talking to her, I am certain she deserves a position in the aerospace industry and I’m doing all I can to secure her one that will be better than she lost. I have also talked to the folks that had to do with her internship and made absolutely certain that there will be no black mark on her record.”
This is the best possible outcome for telling someone deeply respected in your industry to suck your d*ck and b*lls. It’s kind of understandable that no one on Twitter believes some rando criticizing their language is for real, but if you’re excited about a job, try to make the announcement PG. You never know who is reading.