New Year’s Day morning, while I had my tea, I spent time feeling guilty about neglecting PaperGirl over the holidays and some time recovering from a mild headache.
But I didn’t spend much time on either of those things because Claus suggested we go to a museum. Capital idea, old chap. We looked online and found many museums are closed exactly two days a year: Christmas and New Year’s Day: The Art Institute, the Field, etc., etc. But we persevered and discovered that the Adler Planetarium was open for about four more hours. If we shook legs, we could make it with plenty of time to enjoy our afternoon there.
When we arrived, we found that the big exhibit in place was one on the moon landing! Way cool. They had the original spacesuits, the thingy the astronauts rode back home that splashed into Cape Canaveral, pictures of the astronauts’ families as they watched the landing on television (those were particularly incredible), a moon rock, Jim Lovell’s rejection letter from NASA in ’69 telling him he wasn’t picked for the Apollo 11 mission. (Lovell went on a bunch of other missions after that, though, reminding us all to never, ever give up…trying to be an astronaut.)
About three-quarters through the exhibit, Claus reminded me that there is a huge conspiracy theory claiming the moon landing was fake, an elaborate hoax orchestrated by the U.S. government out of fear of falling further behind the Russians in the space race. I had heard of this theory but hadn’t looked into it; conspiracy theories make me uncomfortable and not because they force me to question my beliefs, but because the greasy hair of the conspiracy theorists makes me feel like I need to take a bath.
This afternoon, we watched a documentary on the moon landing conspiracy theory. There are theories about doctored pictures, the way the flag appears to be waving (this would be impossible, as there is no atmosphere on the moon), discrepancies in audio/video records, and on and on. Claus and I, though we are not scientists, picked apart every claim and argument presented. It’s a pretty weak case, but there was one thing that troubled us. Did you know that after the briefing right after the landing, Neil Armstrong never gave one interview? Zero. And when you look at all the footage of him and the other guys during the briefing, he looks like a man going to the guillotine. He looks like a guy who’s been indicted: grave, depressed, hunted. That doesn’t mean the moon landing was a hoax. But Neil Armstrong clearly knows something not many people know — the proof is on his face. The exhibit was way better than the documentary, but of course these two things have different objectives and my objective is to gape at human ingenuity.
On that note, I forgot to link back to the New Year’s post from last year, where we can all reflect on my Gramma’s tips for New Year’s Day, which is over! Whoops!