Spaced out

 作者:高鹊辰     |      日期:2019-03-08 06:03:00
Thirty years after Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on the Moon, the lunar landing remains the quintessential human triumph. After all, nobody starts a sentence with: “If they can eradicate smallpox, why can’t they…” No, it’s always: “If they can put a man on the Moon…” that presages a plea for a techno-fix. The 30th anniversary celebrations on the Web have begun already. NASA’s history office has created a site devoted to the Apollo 11 landing at www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/ap11ann/introduction.htm. Meanwhile, the National Space Society is reliving the mission day by day at www.nss.org/apollo/countdown/home.html. On the official site there is no debate about whether Armstrong fluffed his famous line: “One small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind.” Judge for yourself at www.moments.com/sound/step.au or http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/lunar/a11step.aiff. It might also be worth asking Aldrin what happened. From 16 July, he’ll be answering questions at www.askanastronaut.com. Among the objects left by Aldrin and Armstrong on the Moon are an American flag and a plaque reading: “Here Men From Planet Earth First Set Foot Upon the Moon. July 1969 A.D. We came in peace for all mankind.” The plaque bears the signatures of the astronauts… and Richard Nixon. It could have been worse: the name of former UN secretary-general Kurt Waldheim—allegedly involved in Nazi crimes—hitched a ride on Voyager. See http://vraptor.jpl.nasa.gov/voyager/record.html. Want a lunar passport? Dennis Cole, the “Head Cheese” of the Lunar Embassy at www.lunarembassy.com might be the person to contact. His idea of setting up a fictional embassy to mark the anniversary is not much crazier than the Hilton company’s idea for a Lunar Hilton and an Orbital Hilton—made from spent shuttle fuel tanks. Meanwhile, botanists, cooks and janitors can apply for supposed jobs in space at www.spaceisland.com. More on these topics: