Apollo 11 (+35)
July 16, 2004 1:08 PM   Subscribe

Today, it is 35 years since Apollo 11 landed on the moon. For detailed records of the events of that day, read the Apollo 11 Lunar Surface Journal. You can also take a look at the National Air and Space Museum's Apollo collection, or view photos from The Apollo Archive Image Gallery. Today, Neil Armstrong (who had meant to say "one small step for a man") leads a mostly private yet busy life, while Buzz Aldrin maintains a somewhat more public profile. Michael Collins, the much lesser-known astronaut who stayed in lunar orbit that day, went on to become Director of the National Air and Space Museum. As for those of you who still think the moon landing was faked, give it another think. Happy 35th Moon Shot Day! (Can you believe it?! The f-ing moon!!)
posted by brownpau (25 comments total)
Crap, crap, crap. I really have no idea why I thought it was July 20 today. Today is the anniversary of the LAUNCH, not the LANDING. (Bangs head on table.)
posted by brownpau at 1:10 PM on July 16, 2004

The actual anniversary is next Tuesday (and thank god too, if it had been today, my name would be Neal since I was born 35 years ago tomorrow--made it here just in time).
posted by trox at 1:10 PM on July 16, 2004

holy shit. bobby fischer sodomized the red swollen moons of abu ghraib.
posted by quonsar at 1:16 PM on July 16, 2004

In any event, excellent post.
posted by bondcliff at 1:16 PM on July 16, 2004

(I still can't believe I wrote that whole thing, thinking it was the 20th. Matt, if you are out there, I pray thee, could you change "landed on the moon" to "launched for the moon?")
posted by brownpau at 1:17 PM on July 16, 2004

Tang, anyone?

Great post. A true child of the Space Age, I miss how groovy everything was back then. Sigh.
posted by WolfDaddy at 1:23 PM on July 16, 2004

I was going to paste to say you'd forgotten Alan Bean, because everyone forgets Alan Bean, but it turned out I'd forgotten he flew on Apollo 12.

It's kinda fitting, really.
posted by tapeguy at 2:09 PM on July 16, 2004

Ah, one of my earliest memories is sitting in the living room at my grandfather's house down in Florida, watching the moon landing and listening to him say it wasn't real.

(He was also quite convinced that Johnson had Kennedy shot.)
posted by JanetLand at 2:25 PM on July 16, 2004

posted by esch at 3:15 PM on July 16, 2004

MetaFilter: living in the future since 1969
posted by mwhybark at 4:40 PM on July 16, 2004

35 years? Shit, I am getting old. I remember sitting in a classroom at Beachhaven Primary School listening to the moon landing on the radio because TV sets in schools were unheard of. One of those defining moments in history where everyone who can remember it knows exactly where they were and what they were doing.

*tactfully ignores brownpau's inability to read a calendar*
posted by dg at 5:52 PM on July 16, 2004

When I lived in Miami, a local bookstore had a signing featuring Buzz Aldrin. Sadly, the signing required an entrance fee, and I was broke at the time. Probably just as well. I woulda stood there saying "Dude, you' wlked on the Moon! That's so fucking cool!" and I would've looked like an ass.

But Buzz is cool as this clip shows.
posted by jonmc at 6:36 PM on July 16, 2004

The other thing about this week is the 35th anniversery of the night Mary Jo Kopechne met her fate. I wonder what Ted Kennedy is doing Sunday?
posted by faceonmars at 8:58 PM on July 16, 2004

Please note that as everyone celebrates the moon landing, and acknowledges the coolness of these guys having been there, no one is saying, "I can't wait until we go back!" The moon is the ultimate, "Been there, done that" experience. It's like swimming out to the platform in the middle of the lake. Once you're out there, what do you do? You look back at the shore. You wave to your friends. Then you swim back.
posted by Faze at 6:23 AM on July 17, 2004

Landed on the moon? Says who? Scientists.

What do they know. They all have their biases. Look at that Global Warming plot. Or the Ozone Hole hoax.

Scientists. You can generally trust 'em in terms of the products their research generates - like microwave ovens and computers, stuff like that.

But when they start to make these crazy claims - "Global Warming", Ozone, "Evolution", why should we trust them ?

When I want to know the real truth, I go to the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine
posted by troutfishing at 7:05 AM on July 17, 2004

I highly recommend adding the From the Earth to the Moon HBO mini-series DVDs to your collection, if this kind of space-nerd stuff is up your alley.

The mini-series was produced by Tom Hanks and the rest of the team that made the Apollo 13 movie. It covers the entire Apollo program, from the Apollo 1 tragedy through its premature ending due to budget cuts. They are extremely well-produced, as well as educational and entertaining.

The Apollo 11 episode is especially interesting, highlighting the rivalry between Aldrin and Armstrong and Aldrin's jealousy after he wasn't chosen to be the first to exit the lunar lander.

There's also a great episode about the Apollo 12 mission, featuring Al Bean, played by Dave Foley. It's by far my favorite episode of the 10.

If the landings were faked (sure, troutfishing...), they probably used the sets from this movie. ;)
posted by hawkman at 8:51 AM on July 17, 2004

I despair that we will ever go back.

Troutfishing: Leave the accusatory sarcasm to specialk420 and foldy, they have a head start.
posted by darukaru at 9:18 AM on July 17, 2004

Accusatory sarcasm is fine as long as it's high quality, you avoid descending to the level of "downright nasty harpy," and it avoids the ~chuckle~s and ~guffaw~s and ~other such expression~s.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:38 AM on July 17, 2004

Anybody remember Space Food Sticks? I begged my mom to buy them for me so I could eat the same food the astronauts had. Heh.
posted by reidfleming at 12:12 PM on July 17, 2004

darukaru - I feel I've earned the right to that pitch. I've paid my dues through dozens of posts and hundreds of comments in the battle to drive back it's real world manifestations.

But maybe I still lend it energy there...hmmm
posted by troutfishing at 7:41 PM on July 17, 2004

Meanwhile - brownpau, my apologies for the derail. I'd mention, though, that NASA folk are among the heaviest supporters of Climate Change research and Gaia theory ("weak" Gaia at the very least ) .
posted by troutfishing at 7:45 PM on July 17, 2004

I remember the date as July 21st, because, being self-centered, it's 10 years and 2 days before my birthday. Which of course means I'll be 25 next friday.
posted by drezdn at 8:53 PM on July 17, 2004

Reid, I remember Space Food Sticks. Kind of like chocolate Slim Jims, if my memory serves. (And if my memory doesn't serve, it's probably because I ate too many of the damned things.)

Space Food Sticks and Tang, the gourmet meal of my space-obsessed youth.
posted by mkhall at 7:31 AM on July 18, 2004

Truth be told, those Space Food Sticks tasted like ass. But I ate them too.
You could sell anything in the late 60s by saying it went to the moon.

-the pen that wrote upside down
-The wind-up razor

Can't recall any others now ('cept for tang, of course--the king of product placements)

There's also an upscale eyeglass mfr that still brags about making the coatings for the glass on the space suit helmets (Surely not Vuarnet?)
posted by Fupped Duck at 10:12 AM on July 20, 2004

> the pen that wrote upside down

Why not use a pencil?

Spider Robinson tells this anecdote in one of his books, from his Globe and Mail column (which Google refused to return, probably because the Globe refuses to be spidered -- hey; I made a funny :-), but this isn't quite his version.

I liked the sticks too; can you still buy em? [checks link] Guess so.
posted by baylink at 4:48 PM on July 21, 2004

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