They climbed for hours because there were no roads, choking on dust and hauling bags loaded with equipment. Klieg lights, tarps, helmets, a strange inflatable vehicle. When they reached the top, the commanding officer put the Rolleiflex on the tripod and said, One picture before we clear the set. The lieutenant and private grinned next to the sign and the camera clicked.

Now will you tell me why you brought me up here? asked the private. His lieutenant laughed. We’re going to do something out of this world, you and me, and we need to do it right away because the Reds— it’s a matter of national morale.

They began to argue. Yelling turned into shoving and soon both men were bloodied, panting and crumpled in the cool mountain dirt. They fell next to the bag with the shovel, pick-axe, and American flag. Only one man made it down.

Recent surveys indicate that as many as 20% of Americans surveyed believe that NASA’s moon landings were faked. The Flat Earth Society believes they were sponsored by Walt Disney and staged by Hollywood, based on a script by Arthur C. Clarke and directed by Stanley Kubrick. More.

Sister Dora Alexander – Russia, Leave God’s Moon Alone
from Music of Mardi Gras. Smithsonian Folkways, 1958 | buy mp3s

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