“It was 36 years ago today” as John Lennon never quite said, when the first manned craft touched down on the surface of the Moon. In light of this, we bring you some classic Blather…
“The next notable entry into the Hibernian Space Race was Michael ‘The Big Fella’ Collins (1890-1922), recently hyper-immortalised by actor Liam Neeson in one of those ‘talkie’ moving pictures by esteemed local director Neil Jordan. Collins was one of the military blackguards (as opposed to the Black and Tans) behind the events leading to the formation of the Irish Free State in 1921.
He subsequently served as Commander-in-Chief of the Irish army. Thanks to the negotiations between Eamon De Valera, Harry Boland and NASA, Michael Collins was the first Irishman in space, remaining in lunar orbit while his Apollo 11 colleagues Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong went walkabout on the moon.
Some commentators reckon that Collins didn’t survive the impact of the command module into the Pacific Ocean on July 24th 1969, while the majority accept that he met his end in BéalnaBláth (The Mouth of Flowers), near Bandon, West Cork, on August 22nd 1922. Discrepancies between many of the reports lead to suggestions from some quarters that the moon-landings were hoaxed by Sinn Féin – subject matter for a forthcoming tribunal in Dublin Castle.”
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