I never really was into astronauts. I saw the movie “The Right Stuff” when it first came out, and never turned back. I was hooked! Former history major, I dove head into the Mercury 7 project, Sputnik, Gemini program and the Apollo program. What really is bizarre for me is that I am realizing , thanks to news feeds, that it is going to be 50 years next month that Neil Armstrong first landed on the moon.
I recently caught the documentary on CNN,” Apollo 11″, which showed behind the scenes film of what happened before the flight through when splashdown of the capsule occurred. It was really something to see film of the guys whose voice you recognize from hearing a historical clip of moon communications. It truly was a different day. All male engineers in white shirts with pocket protectors and ninety percent of the control room smoking either cigarettes or cigars: I am sure today’s Mission Control is a different picture.
Even the technology has grown in leaps and bounds from what the film shows that was there in the control room. The computers we know now were only a dream back then. The food the astronauts ate was geared for space (remember TANG?) and now, with the space shuttle and international space station, they were making pizza in space!
If you have a historical itch about the space program the needs scratching, check out the documentary “Apollo 11” on CNN. Don’t forget “The Right Stuff” and “Apollo 13”, to check the program out further. It’s really amazing.