Saw something on Discovery Channel about the effort to get the Shuttle back up.
In one scene, there was a woman figuring out how to mix goo the astronauts could use to make tile repairs in space. It wasn't going well. But what killed me was the fact there were 11, count 'em, E-L-E-V-E-N guys standing around fingering their yam sacks while this was going on.
Your tax dollars at work.
By the way, if NASA can't prevent stuff from falling off the tank and whacking the leading edge of the wing -- why not create guards that can be jettisoned like the spent SRBs once it's up?