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McAdams On: The Moon

Grandad thought it was faked in a studio. He wasn't alone. Scores of people simply didn’t accept that humanity could propel one of its own the moon, capture the whole exercise on television, and bring said hominid back to terra firma. The idea was preposterous to a man who farmed with draft horses. There’s only so much progress a mind can accept.

Personally, I cannot accept the popularity of reality TV. I lived through junior high once without killing myself. What mind-bending force could possibly drive a desire to relive those emotional dynamics via so-called “reality” TV? I have not had any form of pay TV for nigh on six years now, and I’m happy to say I properly can use the word “adumbrate” in a sentence.

“Producers adumbrate reality in the eponymous TV genre.”

(That felt good.)

Be that as it may, as one perceived toothless, welfare-dependent and trailer-dwelling because I won’t pay for television, I don’t know two-thirds of the folks in the People magazines my neighbor leaves at my front door. As I understand it, however, there are two people now referred to as “stars” because they had a boatload of kids.

Can you say, “overpopulation?”

There’s another show where beautiful young women vie for the attentions of an aging rock star.

Can you say, “bleeeeccch?”

There are countless others, I’m sure, because I constantly hear the question, “haven’t you seen that?”

A T-shirt bearing the phrase, “No, I have not,” is now on my Christmas list.

But I did see Neil Armstrong bounce around on the surface of the moon like a guy-shaped helium balloon wearing Doc Martens. I believed then that he was up there, and I still do. It meant something, it was intelligent, and it was inspiring. It was the cynosural outcome of some of the most brilliant and adept minds of the time in aerodynamics, physics, space travel and television transmission.

If only reality TV could compare to reality.

If my grandfather were alive to see what’s on TV now, he’d probably write a check to NASA.