DSKY-DSKY Him Sad: Official ILB Thread For The Heroic Age of Manned Spaceflight

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Based on recent readings by myself and the real James of ILB, James Morrison, of Leaving Orbit: Notes from the Last Days of American Spaceflight, by Margaret Lazarus Dean and Ian Sales Apollo Quartet series, the latter of which does a very satisfying job of mixing alternate history with real Apollo hardware and jargon as well as making an concerted effort to describe what it felt like to be a part of it, to walk on the moon and hear your own breathing inside your helmet and your spacesuit, to have difficulty bending your knees or fingers inside that spacesuit despite the reduced lunar gravity.

If I am including fiction I suppose I should definitely count the relevant Ballard Memories of The Space Age stories although I haven't read them all, because I think he also took pains to think hard about the real space program, albeit the filter of his unique imagination, focusing on it being gone, like Raymond William's on the organic society.

Give 'Em Enough Rope Mother (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 20 June 2015 17:11 (eight years ago) link

The Margaret Lazarus Dean book mines a couple of interesting veins as she deftly compares her experiences watching space shuttle launches with that of Oriana Fallaci and Norman Mailer writing about the Apollo missions as well as befriending a NASA employee and his dad, a 30-year veteran of the shuttle program and respectfully telling the parts of their story she has access to. For me the parts involving the dad is some of the more interesting and affecting in the book,.

Give 'Em Enough Rope Mother (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 20 June 2015 17:15 (eight years ago) link

Here is some stuff I put on from RIP Neil Armstrong, there are some other recommends from others an that thread as well

After the good book with the title Moonshot, the one by Dan Parry, I read Moondust, by Andrew Smith, where he interviews all the surviving moonwalkers and tries to find out what it was like- rave review from Arthur C. Clarke and J. G. Ballard! Then Andrew Chaikin's A Man On The Moon, which is kind of a standard work that narrates all the Apollo missions which, although it has its longueurs when they are on the ground, does a really good job once they are in flight. Then the most excellent How Apollo Flew to the Moon, by W. David Woods, which goes into as much technical as you could want without reading the actual NASA manuals. Paged through Al Worden's Falling to Earth, saving up Mike Collin's Carrying The Fire, which is supposed to be the best of the "nose cone histories."

― Albee Thousand (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, December 31, 2012 9:44 PM (2 years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Mike Collins. Lately my apostrophes have started floating in microgravity.

― Albee Thousand (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, December 31, 2012 9:45 PM (2 years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Did not read Gene Cernan's book or Chris Kraft's, nor Deke!, although the last is supposed to be pretty good. Nor 2012's Forever Young.

Give 'Em Enough Rope Mother (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 20 June 2015 17:22 (eight years ago) link

I've got to get that Oriana Fallaci book. I'd never heard of it before reading Leaving Orbit, but it sounds marvellous.

James Redd, I can also recommend a film to you, 'Apollo 18', about a secret 18th Apollo mission, that finds hostile lifeforms on the Moon. Very, very good on all the 1970s tech and so forth, if a bit flawed because of being yet another "found-footage" movie.

Another excellent book is Jed Mercurio's 'Ascent', a novel about a Soviet Korean War pilot turned cosmonaut who is selected for a secret Moon mission to beat the US.

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Sunday, 21 June 2015 08:47 (eight years ago) link

great thread title, btw

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Sunday, 21 June 2015 08:48 (eight years ago) link

thx. Just read about two thirds of Ascent -can't put it down- and it is indeed excellent and perfect for this thread. The Korean War flying stuff reminded me a lot of the late James Salter's The Hunters, which obviously takes place on the other side of the Yalu River.

Yes, I loved The Hunters, and Ascent really captured the same atmosphere well.

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Tuesday, 23 June 2015 08:26 (eight years ago) link

Ten pages left - will he make it?

The Clones of Baron Funkhausen by Proxy Syndrome (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 24 June 2015 01:54 (eight years ago) link

it's... complicated

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Wednesday, 24 June 2015 03:19 (eight years ago) link

*finishes, claps*

I knew that was going to happen.

That really hit the spot, thanks so much for Thw recommendation, James.

My pleasure. it's a great book, weirdly little-known. But just beautifully done.

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Thursday, 25 June 2015 00:41 (eight years ago) link

read both leaving orbit and ascent on a long flight a couple of days ago - thanks for the recommendations, guys, i really enjoyed both of them. i'll be visiting the kennedy space center in a few weeks and leaivng orbit was the perfect prep.

bizarro gazzara, Saturday, 27 June 2015 15:16 (eight years ago) link

Please report back on your visit.

Help Me, Zond 4 (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 27 June 2015 15:53 (eight years ago) link

will do!

bizarro gazzara, Sunday, 28 June 2015 05:54 (eight years ago) link

I so want to get into the vehicle assembly building!

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Monday, 29 June 2015 23:58 (eight years ago) link

You know, I first became vaguely aware of Mercurio when I saw his JFK book on the new arrival shelf in the library. Was not in the mood to read that one at the time and wasn't sure he would be able to make it work, but dimly recall thinking I would want to read the one about the cosmonaut.

How I Wrote Matchstick Men (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 4 July 2015 17:11 (eight years ago) link

Yeah, the jfk one didnt appeal, but his first book, Bodies, is very good

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Sunday, 5 July 2015 01:04 (eight years ago) link

I just picked up a copy of Ascent from my local public library. Looking forward to being gripped.

Aimless, Wednesday, 8 July 2015 01:37 (eight years ago) link

Have no idea whether it will be your cup of tea, but definitely interested to hear your opinion, as always.

How I Wrote Matchstick Men (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 July 2015 23:34 (eight years ago) link

Started reading it last night. The Korean War has ended and our hero has just been banished to the Arctic.

It is hardboiled in a way that I find only moderately engaging, as opposed to, say Hammett or Chandler, but I just finished 400pp of late-stage Henry James, so this is a welcome change regardless. It's short enough I am sure I'll stick to the end.

Aimless, Wednesday, 8 July 2015 23:47 (eight years ago) link

You might prefer The Hunters. Salter writes of manly doings with little trace of macho posturing, having a warmer side that is pretty deftly managed, never feeling fake or forced.

How I Wrote Matchstick Men (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 July 2015 00:09 (eight years ago) link

He is such good writer that it is kind of intimidating to try to say anything about him without feeling that one is not measuring up to his standard and damning him with faint praise.

How I Wrote Matchstick Men (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 July 2015 00:21 (eight years ago) link

I enjoyed Ascent, but it was pretty obvious to me that the book was conceived as an ending in search of a beginning. Mercurio succeeded well enough in finding the beginning he needed that the book hops past some questionable transitions and gets you to the payoff ending. It's not the kind of book that requires pondering, so I won't inflict any on ILB. Suffice it to say I was adequately entertained.

Aimless, Friday, 10 July 2015 18:39 (eight years ago) link

Glad you liked it even that much.

Askeladden Sane (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 11 July 2015 01:21 (eight years ago) link

read the first three of ian sale's apollo quartet and half of the fourth on another long flight, again thanks to this thread.

i enjoyed the first two a fair bit, thought the third fizzled out a bit (and i wasn't entirely convinced by the characterisation of jerrie cobb, especially her christianity) and i'm struggling a bit with the self-conscious authorial interjections in the fourth. it's true he's definitely good on the tactile, sensory parts of spacefaring, but i wish he'd been a bit less obvious with flashing the fruits of his research via namechecking bits of equipment and endless acronyms.

bizarro gazzara, Monday, 13 July 2015 12:25 (eight years ago) link

From Subterranean Press:


We've just received a number of copies of Harlan Ellison's The Top of the Volcano back from one of our wholesale account. Some are perfect, some are slightly worn. We'll put new dust jackets on copies to bring them up to snuff, and are happy to offer them at only $25 per copy, a wholly great price for an oversize hardcover that clocks in north of 500 pages.

Have at them! Think I'll keep an eye peeled for *even* cheaper

dow, Monday, 13 July 2015 19:43 (eight years ago) link

Sorry, wrong thread!

dow, Monday, 13 July 2015 19:44 (eight years ago) link

Lol. Just don't let HE find out or he just might try to shut us down.

Crawling From The Blecchage (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 13 July 2015 19:47 (eight years ago) link

Agree that the first two AQ books were the best and that there was a dip afterwards. Third one veered close to being the most obvious alternate history 101 inversion and therefore seemed the slightest. Fourth one though I thought was a satisfying wrap up of the whole thing and brought together a bunch of interesting stuff- golden age sf, women in sf, astronauts and their wives and nurses and Vehicle Assembly Buildings.

Crawling From The Blecchage (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 18 July 2015 18:00 (eight years ago) link

The more I read/think about the US manned space program the more depressing it is that such a vast, science-driven, hugely expensive state-funded enterprise was possible back then, mere decades ago, but not now when it's needed vs climate change

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Friday, 24 July 2015 04:59 (eight years ago) link

if only putin would threaten to solve climate change

difficult listening hour, Friday, 24 July 2015 06:13 (eight years ago) link

yeah, what better way to reverse global warming than a cold war?

just picked up mike collins' carrying the fire, andrew chaikin's a man on the moon: the voyages of the apollo astronauts, and deborah cadbury's space race: the battle to rule the heavens. hoping to get them all finished before i make it to the kennedy space centre in a couple of weeks. which reminds me, i need to see if i can get tickets to have lunch with an astronaut while i'm there...

bizarro gazzara, Friday, 24 July 2015 08:43 (eight years ago) link

the cold war was prosecuted because the political and military leaders of the USA felt that the USSR was an existential threat to the nation, whereas climate change is merely an existential threat to the entire world.

Aimless, Friday, 24 July 2015 16:51 (eight years ago) link

two weeks pass...

finished a man on the moon: the voyages of the apollo astronauts a couple of days ago and i'm about halfway through carrying the fire at the moment. a man on the moon is a really good run-through of the apollo programme, based on late-80s interviews with most of the main players. chaikin sketches the characters of the astronauts really well and it gave me a much better appreciation of the achievements of the later missions. chaikin is also excellent at conveying the sensations of space travel: what it's like to wear a pressure suit on an eva, what moon dust smells like, etc

carrying the fire is fantastic so far - collins is a good writer with a dry wit, and he does a great job of delving into the roles each astronaut played in the development of apollo as well as explaining some of the technical aspects of spaceflight in an understandable way.

i also rewatched my blu-ray of for all mankind, which never ceases to make me emotional.

i'm off to the kennedy space center tomorrow. kinda think i might keel over at the sight of a saturn v or a shuttle.

bizarro gazzara, Monday, 10 August 2015 01:11 (eight years ago) link

saw the shuttle atlantis, cried


bizarro gazzara, Tuesday, 11 August 2015 00:15 (eight years ago) link

Do tell

Eternal Return To Earth (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 11 August 2015 00:34 (eight years ago) link


atlantis has its own building at the space centre, and nasa has carefully stage-managed your experience before you see it for real for the first time. you watch a short dramatisation of the shuttle development process, then a really gorgeous montage of shuttle mission footage on a massive screen. then the screen lifts and behind it is the atlantis, lit dramatically and tilted on its side with the cargo bay doors open.


it's smaller than i'd have guessed but it's absolutely gorgeous, all flowing, elegant lines contrasting with a surface which is pockmarked and rough-edged from 33 visits to space. the sight of it hit me like a ton of bricks and i was instantly teary. i spent a lot of time as a kid reading and thinking about the orbiters - i was six when the challenger disaster happened and i vividly remember crying while watching it on the tv - but i was still surprised by how moving it was to see a shuttle for real.

there's also an amazing full-scale model of the hubble telescope in there, along with some replica space suits:


we also took a trip in the space shuttle simulator, which is cool as hell and does what feels like a reasonable job of recreating the experience of blasting off into orbit, including the lying-on-your-back wait for takeoff. then we took a guided bus tour around various locations including the mindbogglingly huge vehicle assembly building, which is every bit as massive as i expected and more, and launch complex 39, from which apollo and space shuttle missions took off and which is now leased to spacex:


then we stopped off at the saturn v / apollo building to take a look at the actual control room from apollo 8:


and the saturn v stack, which is as intimidatingly huge as the shuttle is compact and friendly. it takes up a whole building and it is fucking massive:


even with a super-wide lens i couldn't fit the whole thing into the frame. it's insane and inspiring and terrifying to think that there's two million working parts in it, any one of which could malfunction and stop a launch (explosively or otherwise):


also on display: the apollo 14 command module and al shepard's moon-dust-crusted space suit:


i have a million other pictures and things to say but this is too long already. it was an incredible experience and i loved every second of it.

bizarro gazzara, Tuesday, 11 August 2015 01:33 (eight years ago) link

I am so envious. Lovely write-up!

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Tuesday, 11 August 2015 06:37 (eight years ago) link

thanks! one more thing: I was convinced at first the mercury and gemini capsules we saw must have been scale models, but nope, they actually are incredibly small and claustrophobic. mike collins called the gemini 'a flying men's room' - doing 14 days in orbit in a space only very slightly larger than the seat you're in while having to go to the bathroom right next to your copilot seems like a special kind of hell.

bizarro gazzara, Tuesday, 11 August 2015 11:34 (eight years ago) link

i meant to say how much i love the photos, too. is the spacesuit behind glass? I assume there's no way of touching it, getting a little bit of moon on your fingertips...

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Wednesday, 12 August 2015 02:10 (eight years ago) link

yeah, it's behind glass unfortunately. there is a little chunk of moon rock you can touch, though!

bizarro gazzara, Friday, 14 August 2015 00:10 (eight years ago) link

if you've got the time, this massive five-part waitbutwhy.com piece on spacex's history and insane future ambitions is definitely worth a read: How (and Why) SpaceX Will Colonize Mars

bizarro gazzara, Wednesday, 19 August 2015 08:28 (eight years ago) link

i finished mike collins' autobio recently - it's really fantastic. goes in to a massive amount of detail about his flights but it's never dull or difficult to follow, and his occasional slightly catty asides about the other apollo astronauts are amusing (he really seemed to have it in for donn eisele for some reason)

i'm about halfway through deborah cadbury's space race: the battle to rule the heavens, which focuses on the work of wernher von braun and sergei korolev. there's a fantastic action-adventure movie waiting to be made about the race of the allied powers to track down and win over german rocket scientists after wwii ended, which cadbury goes over in detail in the opening chapters. she very effectively communicates the utter horror of the slave camps which produced the v-2 rockets, which i didn't know much about - 60,000 slaves worked on the programme, subsisting on 1,000 calories a day which the nazis calculated would keep them alive for six months. 20,000 of them died.

the thought that the heroic age of manned spaceflight was built on the horror of slave labour is something i knew about but reading about it in some detail is still pretty horrible.

bizarro gazzara, Wednesday, 19 August 2015 08:39 (eight years ago) link

I have a faint memory of that Clooney movie 'The Good German' looking as though it was going to be that film, and then going off into other, much more boring, directions

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Thursday, 20 August 2015 00:49 (eight years ago) link

there's a fantastic action-adventure movie waiting to be made about the race of the allied powers to track down and win over german rocket scientists after wwii ended

it's gravity's rainbow

korolev had quite a story iirc. the revered father of soviet rocketry, called "the designer" like someone's called the godfather, died of complications following surgery that could not be successfully completed because of injuries sustained decades earlier in the gulag.

solzhenitsyn's the first circle a not-bad tolstovian novel about the relatively comfortable (as in, not actually designed to kill you) scientist-slave gulag camps. some truly nightmarish meetings about deadlines.

playlists of pensive swift (difficult listening hour), Thursday, 20 August 2015 01:28 (eight years ago) link

You just reminded me of this novel, http://www.theguardian.com/books/2012/feb/26/konstantin-tom-bullough-review, about Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, the first great Russian rocket scientist: it was very good

as verbose and purple as a Peter Ustinov made of plums (James Morrison), Thursday, 20 August 2015 05:26 (eight years ago) link

i've read and enjoyed gravity's rainbow but i dunno if 'fantastic action-adventure movie' would be my main choice of descriptor for it

called "the designer" like someone's called the godfather

the CHIEF designer no less!

never read the first circle, i'll add it to the list

bizarro gazzara, Thursday, 20 August 2015 08:22 (eight years ago) link

Apollo 18 is on Netflix but expiring on the 2nd, so watching now. Thanks for the extensive reporting, bg.

Exile's Return To Sender (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 30 August 2015 21:25 (eight years ago) link

never previously noticed the op, but i am now going to brag that i worked in a minneapolis bookstore with margaret lazarus dean 25 years ago

she was great but unfortunately my most visceral memory of her is being at a party at her house when her cat ran out into the street and was killed

: /

mookieproof, Wednesday, 11 August 2021 01:17 (two years ago) link


terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 11 August 2021 01:31 (two years ago) link


No Particular Place to POLL (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 11 August 2021 02:51 (two years ago) link


Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Thursday, 12 August 2021 02:35 (two years ago) link

Not I, no.

No Particular Place to POLL (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 12 August 2021 03:44 (two years ago) link


terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Thursday, 12 August 2021 03:48 (two years ago) link

one month passes...

Today I went on a college tour with daughter #2 and at one point the guide said “two of our alumni worked for NASA as astronauts. They flew to the Moon and the International Space Station!” I don’t think it will come as a surprise to the readers of this thread that I asked him if he was sure about the first part of that last sentence and that I was a bit skeptical when he said “Yes!”

He POLLS So Much About These Zings (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 2 October 2021 22:34 (two years ago) link


terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 2 October 2021 23:07 (two years ago) link

“the moon” soundstage maybe

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 2 October 2021 23:08 (two years ago) link

(apologies, didn't realise this was ilb. still, looks like nobody cares about the unheroic space age)

koogs, Sunday, 17 October 2021 12:00 (two years ago) link

It’s technically on ILB, but no worries. It has been repurposed for wider usage.

Double Chocula (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 17 October 2021 12:11 (two years ago) link

two months pass...

mr veg gave me Andrew Chaikin’s “A Man on the Moon” for Christmas :D

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 25 December 2021 19:24 (two years ago) link

Excellent. Although be forewarned that it does take its time, um, getting off the ground.

Santa’s Got a Brand New Pigbag (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 December 2021 19:31 (two years ago) link


terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 25 December 2021 19:53 (two years ago) link

Can I get a readout on that POLL rollout alarm.

Santa’s Got a Brand New Pigbag (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 December 2021 20:23 (two years ago) link

we got you. we’re go on that alarm

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 25 December 2021 20:43 (two years ago) link


Santa’s Got a Brand New Pigbag (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 25 December 2021 21:14 (two years ago) link

I’m only a little way in but god Chaikin is such an effective writer, and structures the narrative so well to keep you wanting to read more - i love that he’s not drowning you in backstory, keeping The Guys front & center, what theyre thinking/feeling & just kinda peppering in backstory where it’s important/illuminating

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 27 December 2021 07:03 (two years ago) link

Yeah, that is definitely the most detailed telling of the story that I came across but he totally keeps things moving along.

Heatmiserlou (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 27 December 2021 14:35 (two years ago) link

today’s notes

i enjoy the synchronicity of having a Chuck Berry AND a Sam Phillips on the Apollo mission staff


i do not enjoy the waste management system

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 28 December 2021 06:55 (two years ago) link

(technically this was yesterday)

Today is the 49th anniversary of the Skylab strike, the first strike in space. Astronauts protested micromanagement, employer spying, and long hours. They demanded a day off, breaks, and greater autonomy, NASA refused so they struck. NASA gave in to their demands after one day. pic.twitter.com/YtT7yDqdI4

— EddieDempsey (@EddieDempsey) December 29, 2021

mark s, Thursday, 30 December 2021 17:33 (two years ago) link

my favorite detail from the Chaikin book so far is Ed Mitchell’s secret ESP experiments during Apollo 14

(sorry it’s kinda long) (but worth it)

Monday February 1, 1971  7:37 am Houston Time, 16 hours, 35 minutes Mission Elapsed Time.

…(Stu) Roosa noticed a light coming from underneath the right hand couch, where Ed Mitchell was in his sleeping bag. Roosa assumed Mitchel had turned on his flashlight because he’d gotten tangled in a strap. He could not have guessed the real reason Mitchell was awake , that he was conducting his own private experiment in extrasensory perception, unknown to anyone except a handful of people on earth.

… About three weeks before the flight, a chance conversation inspired Mitchell to take advantage of the fact that he would become one of the few human beings to leave the planet. As some of his colleagues knew, Mitchell had long been fascinated by the study of psychic phenomena, for which neither science nor religion offered a satisfying explanation. He’d become acquainted with a couple of surgeons in Florida who shared his interest. Together they wondered, was it possible to transmit thoughts across a hundred thousand miles of space? In the midst of the all-consuming preparation, Mitchell told them “Line up some people and we’ll do a little experiment on the flight.”

And so they did. Each night of the trip to and from the moon, Mitchell planned to perform the experiment, waiting until forty-five minutes past the start of the sleep period, when he had privacy and quiet. He kept his plan a secret from NASA, knowing that the agency would be completely unreceptive to the idea. He said nothing about it to his crewmates. The test subjects had also agreed to keep quiet. And Mitchell wasn’t worried about what would happen if someone found out: with all the cancelled missions he was already certain that Apollo 14 would be his only spaceflight.

Now, floating in his sleeping bag, Mitchell pulled out a small clipboard bearing a table of random numbers. Each number designated one of the standard symbols used in ESP experiments: a circle, a square, a set of wavy lines, a cross, a star. Mitchell chose a number and then, with intense concentration, imagined the corresponding symbol for several seconds. He repeated the process several times, with different numbers, knowing that on earth, four men were sitting in silence, trying to see the pictures in their own minds. After several minutes of this, Mitchell put the paper away and closed his eyes.

Pg 355-357 A Man on The Moon, Andrew Chaikin

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 12 January 2022 00:39 (two years ago) link

Astronaut Mark Kelly once smuggled a full gorilla suit on board the International Space Station. He didn't tell anyone about it. One day, without anyone knowing, he put it on. (source: Reddit) pic.twitter.com/v7aVunL7QF

— SPENCE, TODD (@Todd_Spence) January 9, 2022

(Details are slightly wrong but the video is wonderful)

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Wednesday, 12 January 2022 02:22 (two years ago) link

i have watched that video SO many times
fkn hilarious

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 12 January 2022 02:25 (two years ago) link

eleven months pass...

Rolling Obituary Thread 2023

^ death of Apollo 7 astronaut Walt Cunningham

koogs, Wednesday, 4 January 2023 12:01 (one year ago) link

five months pass...

I hadn't checked in with LM5's YT channel in awhile and completely lost a day watching his Top 100 Space Moments video series. Really well done and even with footage I hadn't seen before.


Elvis Telecom, Tuesday, 20 June 2023 07:14 (nine months ago) link


Elvis Telecom, Tuesday, 20 June 2023 07:14 (nine months ago) link


Elvis Telecom, Tuesday, 20 June 2023 07:14 (nine months ago) link

one month passes...

Fell into another YouTube hole - this time on the Homemade Documentaries channel. Outstanding quality with footage I've never ever seen before. Charlie Duke himself started commenting on his Apollo 16 doc. His Voyager doc is better than anything I've seen come out of NASA.

Elvis Telecom, Wednesday, 26 July 2023 05:08 (eight months ago) link

three months pass...

RIP Ken Mattingly, bumped from Apollo 13, eventually flew to the moon on Apollo 16, stayed around for a couple of shuttle flights. (Gary Sinise played him in Apollo 13), 87.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 2 November 2023 21:40 (five months ago) link

aw RIP

werewolves of laudanum (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 3 November 2023 03:59 (five months ago) link

three weeks pass...

Rolling Obituary Thread 2023

^ Frank Borman obit and links posted by Elvis T

koogs, Sunday, 26 November 2023 10:32 (four months ago) link

Borman did release his own book in 1988: Countdown: An Autobiography - iirc it's pretty much a downer. If you read his NASA oral history interview, he's the super-intense military guy who you want commanding the first crewed flight of a Saturn V to the moon (when Anders sees Earthrise and starts taking pictures, Borman immediately says "hey, that's not scheduled") - but his own book is the super-intense military guy trying to figure out why his home is broken, why his wife is an alcoholic, and why the Eastern Airlines unions really hates his guts. Spoiler alert: he hates their guts too.

Elvis Telecom, Tuesday, 28 November 2023 11:07 (four months ago) link

I have heard several interviews with Borman. He came across as someone who spared no one's feelings, including his own, and gave not an inch to sentiment. Even his description of seeing Earth from space was prosaic. He did have a lot of interesting stories, though.

immodesty blaise (jimbeaux), Wednesday, 29 November 2023 22:50 (four months ago) link

two months pass...

i guessed "manned" isn't strictly correct: https://crookedtimber.org/2024/02/19/death-lonely-death/

anyway, an evocative post from a site i only very rarely check these days, abt the tin can we threw furthest

mark s, Wednesday, 21 February 2024 12:49 (one month ago) link

Poor voyager

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Wednesday, 21 February 2024 20:44 (one month ago) link

y'all have seen The Farthest right?

assert (matttkkkk), Wednesday, 21 February 2024 22:48 (one month ago) link

This one is good too. I drive past the office building featured in this a couple times a week


Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 22 February 2024 08:31 (one month ago) link

Love The Farthest.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Friday, 23 February 2024 00:43 (one month ago) link

What video is that, Elvis? Stupid YT is geoblocking it.

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Friday, 23 February 2024 00:43 (one month ago) link

it's the trailer for It's Quieter In The Twilight - a 2022 doc about Voyager's flight team. It's streaming in a couple of different places, but you can find it on the torrents

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 23 February 2024 03:53 (one month ago) link


Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Friday, 23 February 2024 04:39 (one month ago) link

I think I posted this one before? The Homemade Documentaries YT channel has been making space documentaries that are routinely superior to any of the NASA ones - especially his Voyager one


Elvis Telecom, Friday, 23 February 2024 04:45 (one month ago) link

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