Space

I was a child of the 60s. I loved the music and especially I loved the journey into space. I could tell you anything about it, even the names of the first seven astronauts: Alan Shepard, Gus Grissom, Gordon Cooper, Wally Schirra, Deke Slayton, John Glenn, Scott Carpenter.

History records that Shepard was the first American in space, and he was one of the lucky ones to walk on the Moon. Glenn was the face of space for the USA. He was the first American to orbit the Earth, and the oldest person in space. Grissom died in the Apollo 1 fire in 1967. And so on, you can look them up.

The next group included Jim Lovell, Neil Armstrong and John Young.

Of all these mentioned here by name, Lovell is still alive, and many more of the ‘original’ astronauts are on the go, such as Buzz Aldrin and Dave Scott.

Of the twelve who walked on the Moon, four are still alive, Aldrin, Charlie Duke, Scott and Harrison Schmitt.

And while we all remember Apollo 11, and 13 probably, how many remember Apollo 12? Pete Conrad and Alan Bean walked on the Moon. They were more productive, more confident. The pressure was off somewhat.

In later life, Al Bean took up painting. He appeared in documentaries about space, including In The Shadow Of The Moon, a must see if you are interested in space.

It was announced yesterday that Mr Bean had died after a short and sudden illness. This follows Gene Cernan and John Young, both of whom died recently.

It is sad to think that if America wanted to go to the Moon this year, they couldn’t do it. The technology and the know-how no longer exists.

Trump

It’s too easy to make fun of Mr Trump. Because of how he is, what he does.

We know he is stupid, we know he is unhinged, we know no-one can stand up to him. His irrational tweets show us, and we don’t need to read books to know this. You look at the family, the friends, people in the White House, senior Trump advisors, who used to be fashion correspondents.

But Mr Trump is the President of the USA, the leader of the western world, the most powerful person on this planet.

Doesn’t that scare you?

So, i am off to New York city. I will meet people and talk to locals. They will not talk about Trump. In NYC, you cannot get away from Trump. He ‘owns’ so many buildings, but it’s like he doesn’t. Get something about Trump from a local, and it’s generally disgust. They don’t like uncouth, common people.

Trump’s buildings have his name all over them. A tv programme said that Trump Tower has been shown to be the least ecologically efficient building in the world. There was a fire recently. Someone died. Had Mr Trump chosen to install sprinklers, to protect the people and the building, this would not have happened. Mr Trump dismissed the whole thing with “well built building”, in a tweet.

All Mr Trump wants to be is the most famous person in the world. Possibly he is, and, for many, a source of amazed laughter.

Unfair play

I have no interest in sport of any kind. At school we had to play rugby in the winter and cricket in the summer, but no-one ever explained what you had to do, so it was difficult. Maybe you were just supposed to know, but mine was not a sporting family. My dad watched football (soccer) a bit, but that was that.

I do, once in a blue moon, watch cricket. Maybe once a year. The shorter games can be entertaining.

Cricket has been in the headlines recently, when Australian players were shown to be using some yellow thing to alter/damage the ball to gain an unfair advantage over the South Africans they were playing. When challenged, they lied about it, bigly. Having been caught out, we were treated to the three players who admitted being involved, plus their coach, hosting press conferences and crying for the world. Thinking of all the millions of dollars they would be losing I suppose, and the fact they had been caught lying. But who cares that they have wrecked their careers, if indeed they have.

Now, other players in the past have been caught ball tampering, so it’s nothing new. And I am guessing that very many more have got away with it, so it’s not that unusual.

So what? It’s just a game, a sport, throwing a ball and running about a bit. For lots of money, of course.

The words ‘sporting’ and ‘sportsmanship’ are common in life, and indicate some level of fairness. But sport isn’t fair. Some people are better than others, and some people win without letting others have a chance. It’s competitive, not fair.

But I don’t mind that. I truly believe that athletes should be allowed to take drugs, tamper with balls, cheat in whatever manner they like, just so long as we know. Knowing that athlete X ran such-and-such a distance in record time but had taken drugs A and B is fine. You can accept it or reject it, as you choose. Either way it’s meaningless. We would have two tier races, people who were ‘enhanced’ and those who are ‘normal’.

Several sports are said to be sports for ‘gentlemen’. Cricket is one, so is snooker. But cricketers lie often. They claim catches when the ball has clearly hit the ground. They say that a ball has not hit the boundary rope when it has. They claim for lbw even though the batsman hit it. That’s how sporting they are.

 

 

 

Spam etc

Sadly, this site is under attack and nonsense is being left in the comments. It seems there are people who will happily spoil anything. The ones I have just deleted seem to have Russian e-mail addresses attached.

Please don’t click on anything that looks suspicious, ever. Always assume that people are out to get you until you are sure otherwise.

If the spam attacks continue, we will close down.