As I type this, I'm watching the clock and anxiously waiting for the next scheduled attempt to communicate with the Mars rover. The Great Galactic Ghoul -- that mysterious Mars monster reputed to have eaten the two-thirds of martian probes that have gone missing -- clearly just took a little time to amble over from the Beagle landing site. It got there in the end.
The situation's not without its humour, though. A correspondent on the sci.space.history newsgroups notes that things started to go wrong when the Australians were communicating with Spirit, then "their snake- and spider-infested telemetry station suffers the all-too-common 'storm' as the Foster's-addled lads that comprise its 'crew' muck about inside of its antenna playing cricket....and WHOOSH! The subtle touch of death via the British Commonwealth's limitless space experience strikes down Spirit, just like it struck down Britain itself.. Remember all those Soviet Mars probes that didn't work...remember how Britain gave the Soviet Union all those free jet engines after WW II? Well.... I'll bet those Soviet Mars landers had BRITISH COMMONWEALTH MADE PARTS ON THEM!!! This must mean WAR."
We have been warned. Myself, I reckon Beagle got Spirit through the top of the carapace with the hydraulic spike, and is even now pushing it over to Viking, the House Robot.
Good luck in getting the thing back, chaps, and let's hope the second rover lands safely this weekend. On the current odds, out of Beagle, Spirit and Opportunity (the second rover), one should survive and prosper: fingers crossed (and tentacles, them what has 'em).