—Neil Armstrong, 1993 speech at the Cincinnati Museum of Natural History
Even Neil Armstrong talked about global warming, in a gala lecture, his handwritten speech revisions on display here, Apollo anniversary exhibit. He said then that the predictions were wrong, the science would turn, deep strata of polar ice drills showing trapped gases, tree rings in old-growth Chilean alerce indicating the Industrial Revolution didn’t begin to doom us. He and other human bodies may have warmed the surface of the moon as much as six degrees Fahrenheit with the dark dust they kicked up: regolith. Nearly half a million people worked for the U.S. space program. The rocket that propelled those three as they left our collective sphere burned twenty tons of fuel per second. Aldrin’s gold visor still reflects whatever’s in front of it—visitors with cameras. Their survival kit for landing included a desalinator for sea water, sunscreen, a machete. Armstrong died from internal bleeding in a suburban hospital, pacemaker wires from bypass surgery pulled out wrong. That same year 97 percent of the Greenland ice sheet showed signs of melt: a record. The exhibit’s centerpiece is the great capsule, ten feet high, tanned with earth tones from the heat of reentry, blunt-end design in which the three shuddered with the friction as they pierced the atmosphere, part of the body once again.