Re: aging old fossils

Viper (
18 Mar 1999 05:52:41 -0000

On Mon, 15 Mar 1999, Bart De Pontieu wrote:
>On Sun, 14 Mar 1999, Robert Reeves wrote:
>> Just goes to show we are bunch of aging old foscils.
>> There are noticably fewer young satellite observers than there
>> are old guys like us.  I wonder if we as a group are a historical
>> anomaly?
>the past few years. There are over 600 subscribers to SeeSat-L/D, I doubt
>more than 50 were active in the 60s. Over half of the attendants at the
>Eurosom meetings are younger than, say, 35 -- hardly what you would call
>fossils :-)
>A not-so-old-fossil,   Bart at

By such a standard, would John Glenn be considered to be an "aging old
fossil"? I think it would perhaps be more appropriate and respectful to
say that many of the younger subscribers here lack the good fortune
to have been around as active participants during the Apollo heyday
of the space program, myself included.

I was for many years a hardware engineer, data analyst and programmer
at two large NORAD spacetrack radars as a way of life and not just a hobby.
Although I did not come along until shortly after the days of Apollo, I
consider myself to have been most fortunate and greatly honored to have
worked with and to have been mentored by some of those same "aging old
fossils" who forged paths by the seats of their pants and who made the
space program what it is today. Think about it for a moment... the data
products and formats which we use today did not just happen by
accident... they were hammered out of the dirt by those "aging old
fossils" as a matter of necessity. If I have one regret, it is only that
I came along a few years too late to have taken an active part in the
space program during the Apollo days and before and to have been one of
those "aging old fossils" myself. With the bureaucratic mess that that
AF Space Command has made of the space program over the past 10 years,
today's young fossil wannabes cannot possibly hope to experience the
same environment which made boldness and creativity come so naturally as
in older days.

The bottom line is that those "aging old fossils" just might have
something to offer that can be found nowhere else and this should be
considered before thoughtlessly grouping them into a category which
might possibly imply that they are being set aside with yesterday's

appreciates those "aging old fossils".