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Sunday, July 20, 2014

The first unplanned words from the moon

by John MacBeath Watkins

When Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon, everyone was eager to hear man's first words from another
world. We all know what he said, and we all know about the controversy -- he muffed his lines and failed to say "a man."

But what interested me that day in 1969 was the first unscripted words from the moon. And they told me more about the moon, and less about mankind. Here's what Armstrong said after his famous line:

And the—the surface is fine and powdery. I can—I can pick it up loosely with my toe. It does adhere in fine layers like powdered charcoal to the sole and sides of my boots. I only go in a small fraction of an inch, maybe an eighth of an inch, but I can see the footprints of my boots and the treads in the fine, sandy particles. 

Now, that's an authentic astronaut talking the way those guys talked.

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