You all know what day it is - my nerd Superbowl, the anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing.
Watching, Rocket Men
to celebrate, and it's fantastic. Tears, here. It's amazing to me, still, how this stuff never gets old - seeing 'my boys', they feel like family, to me. Not enough time spent on the Mercury and Gemini programs, nor on the Apollo 1 tragedy, but, that's just me.
Still bits, here and there, that I've never seen, and that's thrilling - and so much that's become familiar canon, to me. Jim Lovell, walking that walk with Frank Borman; how exhausted, they must have been. Tough little Gus Grissom, Ed White's elation during his, 'million dollars'-spacewalk, Wally Schirra's perfect hair and John Young, lying on his back to get the water out of his spacesuit..Geno Cernan, 'down among 'em' - still one of my favorite home-made ringtones. Gene Kranz' vest. The look of absolute wonder on Chris Kraft's usually-terrifyingly-stern face and Charlie Duke's jerk!flomp of relief when the Eagle touched down - and his endearing-as-hell flub, 'Twanquility'..
And Neil Armstrong. Can't touch that. His voice - as wound-up as I imagine he ever got, yet calm as glass to us, 'normals' - still fills me with warmth and pride and such affection and admiration. The perfect man for the job; there simply are no words. And yes, I still remember watching it live, as a newly-minted six-year-old, allowed to stay up and witness this event, lying sideways on the back of our fabulous aqua sofa, marveling. That that was a MAN, up there. On the MOON. Walking AROUND. A man, like my father, like the mailman, like our neighbor, Mr. Quinn, blah, blah, blah. But still incredible, to me.
I know you guys hear the same thing, every year, on this day, but y'know - You can skip it. You can. I understand, and it won't bother me. But it won't change, you know. I still feel it, just as strongly, and for that, I am grateful. For all mankind.
My absolute all-time favorite:
And this one's next - as I've actually NOT SEEN IT: