WBEZ | neil armstrong http://www.wbez.org/tags/neil-armstrong Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Neil Whosis? What You Don't Know About The 1969 Moon Landing http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/neil-whosis-what-you-dont-know-about-1969-moon-landing-110511 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/krulwich.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Forty-five years ago, this week, 123 million of us watched Neil and Buzz step onto the moon. In 1969, we numbered about 200 million, so more than half of America was in the audience that day. Neil Armstrong instantly became a household name, an icon, a hero. And then &mdash; and this, I bet, you didn&#39;t know &mdash; just as quickly, he faded away.</p><p>&quot;Whatever Happened to Neil Whosis?&quot; asked the&nbsp;<em>Chicago Tribune</em>&nbsp;in 1974.</p><p>This is a missing chapter in the space exploration story. We like to think that after Apollo 11, the first duo on the moon became legendary. We know the names Aldrin and Armstrong now (or, at least many of us do), and we imagine they&#39;ve been honored and admired all this time, the way we honor our favorite presidents, athletes, and war heroes. But that&#39;s not what happened.</p><p>In his&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/books/titles/331366334/no-requiem-for-the-space-age-the-apollo-moon-landings-and-american-culture">new book</a>,&nbsp;<em>No Requiem for the Space Age</em>,&nbsp;<a href="http://history.uconn.edu/people/tribbe.php">Matthew Tribbe</a>&nbsp;describes how only a year after the landing, a vast majority of Americans couldn&#39;t remember Neil Armstrong&#39;s name.</p><p>&quot;One year ago his name was a household word,&quot; said the&nbsp;<em>Philadelphia Sunday Bulletin</em>. But when the&nbsp;<em>Bulletin</em>&nbsp;asked its readers in 1970 to name the first man on the moon, the guy who said, &quot;One giant step for man ... ,&quot; 70 percent of Philadelphians didn&#39;t know.</p><p>As Tribbe points out, the&nbsp;<em>New York Times</em>&nbsp;did a similar study around that time, asking the same question in an informal telephone poll, and in St. Louis, only 1 in 15 respondents got it right.</p><p>In Portland, Maine, it was 1 out of 12.</p><p>In Milwaukee, 5 out of 12.</p><p>In New York City, 8 out of 22.</p><p><em>The World Almanac&nbsp;</em>(a one volume, pre-Internet&nbsp;<a href="http://www.worldalmanac.com/">compendium</a>&nbsp;of everything you needed to know) had Armstrong&#39;s name in the index in 1970, but in 1971, Tribbe says, they took it out. You could still read about the moon landing; Armstrong was still mentioned in the text, but while early &#39;60s hero-astronauts John Glenn and Alan Shepard stayed in the index, Armstrong didn&#39;t. Readers, apparently, weren&#39;t looking him up.</p><p>Armstrong, of course, noticed. &quot;I had hoped, I think, that the impact would be more far-reaching than it has been,&quot; he told&nbsp;<em>The Chicago Tribune</em>. &quot;The impact immediately was very great, but I was a little disappointed that it didn&#39;t seem to last longer.&quot;</p><p>Same&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106749753">for Buzz Aldrin</a>: &quot;I&#39;m certainly a little disappointed,&quot; he told&nbsp;the&nbsp;<em>Philadelphia Sunday Bulletin&nbsp;in 1970</em>. After a world tour, a White House dinner, countless ticker-tape parades, Aldrin had left the space program, divorced, skipped from job to job. By the late &#39;70s, he wrote in his 2010&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/books/titles/331733791/magnificent-desolation-the-long-journey-home-from-the-moon">autobiography</a>,<em>&nbsp;Magnificent Desolation: The Long Journey Home from the Moon</em>, Aldrin was working at a Cadillac dealership in Beverly Hills &mdash; where he&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thenational.ae/news/the-dark-side-of-the-moon">failed</a>&nbsp;to sell even one car in six months.</p><p>What happened? The space program, so glamorous, so exciting for a short while, failed to keep the public interested once the moon was conquered. As&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/books/titles/320780493/the-right-stuff">Tom Wolf writes</a>&nbsp;in his book&nbsp;<em>The Right Stuff</em>,&nbsp;by 1970, &quot;Things were grim. ... The public had become gloriously bored by space exploration.&quot;</p><p>Astronauts as a group seemed a little lonesome, directionless.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.harrynilsson.com/">Harry Nilsson</a>, the songwriter, wrote a tune in 1972 that went, &quot;I wanted to be a spaceman/ that&#39;s what I wanted to be/ But now that I am a spaceman/ nobody cares about me.&quot;</p><p>In his book, Matthew Tribbe explores some reasons for this falling off. He says the orderly, top-down, get-it-done, military/engineering style that created NASA (and was largely responsible for its success), bumped into a more skeptical, more mystical youth counterculture. Feats of engineering and technology didn&#39;t mesh with the campus kids&#39; enthusiasm for rebellion, self-expression, and a more open-minded approach to race, gender and drugs. NASA&#39;s engineers seemed like a tribe apart. They were widely admired &mdash; yet, over time, became defensive.</p><p>Tribbe also says the space race was basically a Cold War exercise, a USSR vs. America dash to the moon, and once the U.S. got there first, then second, then third, then fourth, the race was over. People asked, &quot;Why continue?&quot; And NASA didn&#39;t have a very good answer for that one.</p><p><strong>Fantastic, Beautiful, Fantastic, Beautiful</strong></p><p>But most intriguingly, Tribbe devotes a whole chapter of his book to, of all things, rhetoric. People, he thinks, were eager to hear what it was like to escape the Earth&#39;s atmosphere, to travel weightlessly, to touch down on an alien planet, to be the first explorers to leave &quot;home,&quot; and too often (much too often), the astronauts talked about these things using the same words &mdash; &quot;beautiful,&quot; &quot;fantastic&quot; &mdash; over and over. If space exploration was to be a grand adventure, it needed explorers who could take us there, tell us how it felt, explorers who could connect with those of us who can&#39;t (but want to) come along. Inarticulateness, Tribbe thinks, hurt the space program.</p><p>And yet, though Armstrong never got more eloquent, when he died last year his passing was widely mourned; his name, his image, his talents celebrated. He was a hero again. What changed? I think (and I&#39;ll talk about it in my next post) a lot of the change had to do with language. Stay tuned.</p><p><em>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/krulwich/2014/07/16/331362649/neil-whosis-what-you-don-t-know-about-the-moon-landing-45-years-ago" target="_blank">via NPR&#39;s Krulwich Wonders</a></em></p></p> Wed, 16 Jul 2014 18:22:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/neil-whosis-what-you-dont-know-about-1969-moon-landing-110511 Romney 'unplugged' causing headaches for supporters http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/romney-unplugged-causing-headaches-supporters-102478 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP809456605997.jpg" title="GOP presidential candidate and motormouth, Mitt Romney AP Photo/Charles Dharapak" /></p><p><strong>Lead Story:</strong> Mitt Romney might stand a chance of winning this election &ndash; but only if he keeps his mouth shut until Election Day. First there was <a href="http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-09-12/romney-criticized-for-handling-of-libya-protests-death">that misfire regarding the attacks</a> on the U.S. embassy in Libya last week, a reaction that drew criticism even from fellow conservatives. Then there was that less egregious whoopsie-daisy in which Romney <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/romney-middle-income-between-200k-250k-142150881--election.html">said &ldquo;middle-income&rdquo; means you make between $200,000 and $250,000</a> a year, just as the Census Bureau <a href="http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/income_wealth/cb12-172.html">reported</a> the real median income in the United States is $50,000 a year. Now <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/secret-video-romney-private-fundraiser">comes video</a> from a fundraiser earlier this year during which Romney unloaded on Obama&rsquo;s base. The speech is <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/andrewkaczynski/leaked-fundraiser-video-shows-romney-saying-47-of">full of quips</a> that could prove a headache for the candidate but none more damaging than <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnB0NZzl5HA&amp;feature=player_embedded">this</a>:</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/XnB0NZzl5HA" width="560"></iframe></p><blockquote><p>There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that&#39;s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what&hellip;These are people who pay no income tax.</p></blockquote><p>Snap. Setting aside the bit about income taxes and Romney&rsquo;s own issues with that, it&rsquo;s interesting to hear him admit that he can&rsquo;t win more than 53 percent of the popular vote. And buried in the video beyond that most sensational passage is a swipe at Latinos, which our own <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/achy-obejas/2012-09/romney-takes-swipe-latinos-secret-video-102481">Achy Obejas has an excellent take on</a>. Of course, <a href="http://www.mediaite.com/online/hidden-cam-vid-of-romney-talking-about-obamas-dependent-47-percent-of-voters-a-problem-for-gop/">as <em>Mediaite</em> points out</a>, had this come from a campaign insider or pundit, it would have been dismissed, &ldquo;Because, in campaigning and electioneering terms, it is 100 percent accurate.&rdquo; Romney <a href="http://gawker.com/5944076/mitt-romney-stands-by-comments-made-in-leaked-video">briefly defended his comments</a> and the context of the comments at a press conference Monday night.</p><p>The debates should be interesting.</p><p><strong>Also:</strong> It&rsquo;s going to be awful hard for Chicago rapper Chief Keef to claim his social media account was hacked this time. Keef is in hot water with photo sharing service Instagram for <a href="http://www.vibe.com/article/instagram-cancels-chief-keefs-account-after-sex-photo">posting a photo of himself receiving oral sex</a> from a young woman. Instagram subsequently banned Keef who then <a href="http://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/247411850352922624">wondered aloud</a> on Twitter &ldquo;Why dost thou photo app remove thy photos?&rdquo; except with more swearing. He then <a href="http://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/247764404047847424">expressed his admiration</a> for a particular kind of woman and probably set about getting into trouble yet again. . . until some sort of authority figure in this young man&rsquo;s life decides enough is enough and at least takes his phone away.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>And then: </strong>There&rsquo;s trouble in Halas Hall. Anyone who watched last week&rsquo;s Bears-Packers game already knows that. But now there are sparks between players as one Bear has publicly criticized the behavior of alternately worshipped and maligned quarterback Jay Cutler. Cornerback D.J. Moore <a href="http://espn.go.com/chicago/nfl/story/_/id/8391206/chicago-bears-dj-moore-said-jay-cutler-outburst-was-wrong">called Cutler out</a>&nbsp;for bumping and verbally berating offensive tackle J&rsquo;Marcus Webb during Thursday&rsquo;s trouncing, calling the actions &ldquo;wrong&rdquo; (Webb hasn&rsquo;t complained about the incident himself). All the drama overshadowed the good news that Matt Forte&rsquo;s ankle injury <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/news/bears-coach-smith-forte-does-163016545--nfl.html">is not as serious</a> as was previously suspected.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>RIP: </strong><a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/rip-john-ingle-character-actor-of-general-hospital,85051/">John Ingle</a>, character actor, from cancer at the age of 84. Ingle began his career as a high school teacher but began earning small TV roles in the early &lsquo;80s, eventually landing a major role on <em>General Hospital</em>. He&rsquo;s probably recognized most by non-soap opera fans as the principal from <em>Heathers</em>; most recently, he&rsquo;s appeared on NBC&rsquo;s <em>Parks and Recreation</em> and <em>The Office</em>.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</p><p><strong>Elsewhere</strong></p><ul><li><em>Newsweek</em> uses the latest outburst of anti-American violence in the Middle East as a <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-newsweek-cover-muslim-rage-20120917,0,382704.story">chance to go trolling with their latest cover</a>.</li><li>The <a href="http://archive.org/">Internet Archive</a> is <a href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443720204578002592487339454.html?mod=googlenews_wsj">putting up a slew of news show clips</a> dating back to 2009, available to users the World Wide Web over.</li><li>The search for a man who <a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/09/ohio-man-peeing-behind-barack-obama.html">took a potty break</a> on a hillside during a speech by President Obama came to a halt when the Secret Service claimed he was just an agent.</li><li>Marijuana is <a href="http://www.deathandtaxesmag.com/188617/colorado-and-washington-leading-toward-full-scale-marijuana-legalization/">closer to being legalized</a> in Colorado and Washington state.</li><li><a href="http://www.ajc.com/ap/ap/business/mcnoodles-to-be-launched-in-austria/nSDGN/">McNoodles</a> are now a thing.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Looking Ahead:</strong></p><ul><li>Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s request for an injunction against the teachers strike <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/city-no-ruling-teacher-strike-filing-monday-102465">won&rsquo;t be heard until Wednesday</a>, by which point an agreement may actually, finally, be reached.</li><li>The attorney for Adel Daoud, the 18-year-old charged with trying to blow up a downtown bar, <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-teen-accused-in-bomb-plot-in-court-today-20120917,0,615862.story">says Daoud was lured</a> into the plot by undercover agents.</li><li>Only in Chicago can a state lawmaker currently under indictment and already expelled from the state legislature <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/15215144-761/ex-state-rep-derrick-smith-leading-in-election-poll-despite-indictment-expulsion.html">still lead in the polls</a>.</li><li>As the Red Line gets rehabbed, the CTA is looking for art submissions to display at North Side stations. Apparently, shuttle buses will do as moving installations along the South Side.</li><li>I, for one, welcome <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/15215023-761/huge-burmese-python-found-near-waukegan-beach.html">our new suburban snake overlords</a>.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Sports&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</strong></p><ul><li>A Toronto Blue Jays player is in hot water for <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/yunel-escobar-eye-black-contained-gay-slur-photo-221529843--mlb.html">writing a slur aimed at gays</a> in his eye black over the weekend.</li><li>Sox Watch: The Pale Hose are now three games up on Detroit after <a href="http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_09_17_detmlb_chamlb_1&amp;mode=recap&amp;c_id=cws">they beat the Tigers 5-4 yesterday</a>.</li><li>The Cubs are <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120917/BLOGS04/120919794/cubs-attendance-lowest-in-a-decade">heading to their lowest attendance year</a> since 2003.</li><li>The Blackhawks &ndash; and the rest of the NHL &ndash; may be locked out for who knows how long, but Jonathan Towes is staying active and <a href="http://www.csnchicago.com/hockey-chicago-blackhawks/blackhawks-talk/Toews-organizes-open-skate-with-current-?blockID=774883&amp;feedID=10334">organized an informal skate</a> with current and former Blackhawks players.</li><li>Jay Mariotti is still alive, living in Los Angeles, and <a href="http://chicagosidesports.com/jay-mariotti-cutlers-bears-still-suck/">ranting about the Bears and their fans</a>. Good to see he&rsquo;s moved on.</li></ul><p><br /><strong>Finally</strong><br />Though he died almost a month ago, NASA has now shared this stirring video tribute to Neil Armstrong.</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1pQKZc2AXW0" width="560"></iframe></p></p> Tue, 18 Sep 2012 09:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/romney-unplugged-causing-headaches-supporters-102478