We put aside most of our other TV watching to watch Space Stuff. It started with a meant to be fill in viewing of the first episode of From the Earth to the Moon, but we all got hooked. We've been mixing the appropriate movies in at the right moments. _The Right Stuff_ really should have gone first, but we didn't think of it until part way through and watched it then. But we watched _The Dish_ after the Apollo 11 episode -- it was very cool to see the same mission calls and dialogue in a different context-- and last night we watched_ Apollo 13_ as a runup to the FtEttM Apollo 13 episode. It's a testament to the movie that even though I've seen it several times, and even though it's a real life story so I knew what happened even the first time, I still get tense as the minutes drag past and the capsule doesn't answer after ionization.
This has been the story of the engineers; even when it focuses on the astronauts, it's in the role of working with the design teams, how they shape the vehicle and the program, their determination to be more than monkeys. And even though I'm a space geek (poor zdashamber and cyranocyrano get subjected to me and fellow space nerd tersa geeking back and forth), FtEttM really makes me *feel* what an insane feat of engineering it was. A three part machine to deliver another machine into space, which splits into two machines, which then go off on their own missions, each of which split *again* into two machines... tersa called it the matryoska doll of technology, and I could not disagree. And many of them made by different companies and team, and all having to fit together. It's nice to feel it as the miracle of technology it was, instead of taking it for granted.