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July 20, 2004

July 20, 1969

On July 20, 1969, an event which i argue is the greatest accomplishment in human history occurred.


It was "one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind," as Neil Armstrong said. But, it must also be said that no one but an American has ever been to the moon. And we have every right to be proud of that fact.

We did it with vacuum tube computers and slide rules. We did it in the days before fax machines and e-mail and pocket calculators. We did it before copy machines and PDAs and DVD drives and laptops. We did it with computers that filled a whole room but were slower than the computer i'm typing on right now.

And when the computer miscalculated on the descent to the lunar surface, one American took the controls and landed the damn thing himself.


On that historic day Associated Press reported:

Two Americans landed on the moon and explored its surface for some two hours Sunday, planting the first human footprints in its dusty soil. They raised their nation's flag and talked to their President on earth 240,000 miles away.
And the whole world watched.

Be proud.

Update: Has Ted forgotten about this anniversary?

Posted by annika, Jul. 20, 2004 |
Rubric: History


Very nice annika. Tomorrow in history the first rant using the words "We put a man on the moon but we can't..." was used. yuk yuk

Posted by: Scof on Jul. 20, 2004

Nicely done. I had not gotten around to doing a post about this topic yet.

Greatest accomplishment? Yep, probably what I would choose. And a nice reminder of how different the world and resources were that made it happen.

Posted by: Jay Solo on Jul. 20, 2004

What about penicillin?

Posted by: Dawn Summers on Jul. 20, 2004

I *had* forgotten. With the new job, I've been crazybusy all day at work and too tired to surf much in the evenings. My brain is full of new and strange acronyms and processes I'm learning.

Besides, guys aren't *supposed* to remember anniversaries. ;)

Dawn, Penicillin was huge, but it would've been done eventually by someone. The moon was directed effort that would not have happened by accident. Now if you'd have said Hostess Snowballs...

Posted by: Ted on Jul. 20, 2004

I was 15 at the time, and although I was a big jock at the time, the fact that the LEM pilot, I'm thinking Buzz Aldrin, landed the thing himself, was and is so cool.

History was made that day, and I along with millions of others around the world--think about that--had a ringside seat.

Folks, those two guys, and Collins too, were truly pioneers.

Not to mention an example of true American spirit.

Posted by: joe on Jul. 20, 2004

Mmm...hostess snowballs.

Posted by: Dawn Summers on Jul. 21, 2004

Oh, come on people! It was all a FAKE!

Posted by: Rick Blaine on Jul. 21, 2004

I'm just an occasional visitor here so far, but I had to pass on this video of Buzz Aldrin taking out a conspiracy theorist who called him a coward and a liar, in case you haven't seen it.

Posted by: insomni on Jul. 21, 2004

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Posted by: cigarettes on Aug. 4, 2004

Interesting thought, but my memory of the day makes it seem a bit less eventful. My family and I were on the Navajo reservation (Dineta nation) that day and at the time of the landing we had stopped just off the res at a saloon for dinner. An old man at the bar watched closely, and then said (roughly): "No big deal. The ancestors went there a long time ago, before they came down here to live. There was nothing on the moon worth staying there for." Probably true, at least the last part.

Posted by: Eirik Johnson on Jun. 21, 2005