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OutNerd This…

space shuttle simulator

…50 years ago I built a mockup of the Command and Lunar Modules in my home…

Man was landing on the moon. I was 13 and a complete spaceflight nut. I took over two rooms of our house in Rochester, New York and spent a year building a full mockup of the interior of the Apollo Command and Lunar Module. The local press heard about it and sent a reporter and photographer to my house. I told my parents the press could not come in because we were engaged in a simulation of a lunar landing mission. The best they could do was to print a short article:

I had written to NASA and requested templates of all the control panels for the vehicles. There being no Homeland Security , and NASA, being in full blown ‘let’s please the taxpayers’ mode, was happy to oblige. Over the course of a year, I recreated the interiors using scavenged buttons and switches and diodes. I created pages and pages of flight plans ….

…and operations manuals:

I recruited my little brother and a friend to help me simulate a lunar landing mission, from liftoff to splashdown. And of course, every Apollo mission had to have its own flight patch:

Clearly, I merit induction into the Nerd Hall of Fame. As one of my crew recently opined: ” If there had been Adderall 50 years ago, maybe none of this would have happened”.

Julianne July 20, 1969 50 Year Anniversary of Man’s Greatest Technical Achievement…and my rise to Nerd Stardom.

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