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2012-08-25 10:48 PM
Everyone's Gone to the Moon
As a matter of fact, I do remember where I was on July 20, 1969. I just don't remember why we were watching the moon landing at the house next door. The Sixties are a little hazy for me, not because I was "on" anything (I wasn't), but because I found it difficult to embrace my youth. I'm a much better old man than I ever was a teenager, for whatever that's worth.
Anyway, I wasn't alone that day in 1969. The whole world was watching, almost literally. It might have been the biggest one-day global event ever. And if you watched Neil Armstrong taking his first steps and planting the flag on the moon, you couldn't help being caught up in the moment. His voice was all business, but he couldn't stop himself from hopping around, testing the low gravity. I think anyone would have been hopping at that moment, but he was the one who got to do it.
When I heard that Neil Armstrong had died today, it brought back that time in my life. Nothing makes me nostalgic for my own youth, exactly, but I do get a misty feeling when I remember how the world was changing in those days, and how hopeful we were that all the changes were for the better. I still think that's true, even though course corrections since then have sent us reeling in the wrong direction more often than not.
Wherever we are now, we would be somewhere else if not for the scientists and pilots who took us to the moon. It was a project that brought people together in a way that we could use in this divided age. John F. Kennedy set a national goal, and we met it, and we were proud. I wonder what we'll be proud of 43 years from now.
In other news, the Petaluma Little League team lost in the U.S. championship game, but that isn't the story. The story is that they were down, 15-5, with three outs left and rallied to tie the game and send it into extra innings. In the end, Goodlettsville, Tennessee, won by the incredible score of 24-16 and will face the team from Tokyo for the world championship.
But our guys gave us thrill after thrill over their run at the World Series, including today despite the loss, and they will come home acclaimed as heroes. We don't take that kind of spirit lightly. When everyone thinks you're done and you fight on together to the end, you become a shining example of what teamwork and sportsmanship are all about.
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