[ExI] space program from the worm's eye view, was: hi lee!

spike spike66 at att.net
Fri Nov 27 20:06:06 UTC 2009


> -----Original Message-----
> From: extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org 
> [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of 
> Harvey Newstrom
> Sent: Friday, November 27, 2009 9:14 AM
> To: ExI chat list
> Subject: Re: [ExI] hi lee!
> On Thursday 26 November 2009 5:23:54 pm spike wrote:
> > Unemployment rate in Florida: yes bad, but I have seen it 
> worse in the 
> > north end of Brevard county, back in 1970 and again in ~1978.  My 
> > folks took a hell of a beating on real estate, and oh by the way, 
> > would your brothers want to buy a house for a hell of a bargain in 
> > Titusville?  Hmmm, didn't think so.
> Ha!  We're still trying to sell Mom's house.  I was hoping 
> you would want to buy a house for a hell of a bargain in Palm 
> Bay!  (Hmmm, didn't think so.)
> Dad got laid off from the Apollo program when it ended.  My 
> brothers are going through de ja vue all over again!
> --
> Harvey Newstrom <www.HarveyNewstrom.com>

Hey been there done that, have the scars.  In 1969 the pink slips were
falling like the leaves of autumn.  In my neighborhood, about a third of the
dads were employed on Apollo.  Many of the rest had businesses that depended
on that third.  We abandoned our house: my folks lost nearly everything but
didn't actually declare bankruptcy.  The bank wouldn't take the house back,
asked them to send in ten dollars a month, five dollars, anything they could
just to hold that title and keep the bank informed of where they were.  Our
old neighborhood was a ghost town, nearly half the homes vacant between 1969
and about 1974.  We eventually moved back into the old house, sold it in
1976 when things were picking up again.

Something that isn't in the history books is how cruel it was to work on
those programs in the early days, when no one really knew if it would amount
to much.  My brother followed into the biz in 1979, got his pink slip last
year after 29 years as a rocket jockey.  He still hasn't found work.


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