Tuesday Trifles

No, today’s post title is not meant to diminish of the significance of this day in 1969 in any way. Of course, that was the day that Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the moon.

In September of 2002 Aldrin gained more “notoriety” by punching a conspiracy theorist/lunatic who told him the moon landings were fake, staged in a Hollywood studio. I can’t say I blame Aldrin one bit.

From Wikimedia a picture of the crew of Apollo 11:

 

See the source image

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Speaking of space, today Jeff Bezos rode “into space” in a vessel designed and built by his company, Blue Origin. Both his flight and the recent flight of Richard Branson were sub-orbital, but still represent a huge turning point, in my opinion.

It is sickening to me how many cretins on social media think that what Bezos and Branson are doing is nothing more than billionaires flaunting their wealth. In my opinion, the fact that very few people actually know anyone very wealthy creates an antagonism similar to how the fact that few people actually know any Jews creates an antagonism towards them.

I have known very wealthy people and, without exception, they are/were very hard-working. In the same way that most non-athletes cannot comprehend the level of competitiveness among professional athletes, most people who are not wealthy cannot comprehend the work ethic that the majority of wealthy people have. Sorry, but that’s true, as inconvenient as it may be to politicians who deal in the politics of envy and to lazy POS who want to stay home, smoke weed and play video games. My wish for both of those groups is the same: Luzzim Brenna Vee Da Keen!

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Yesterday, Chevrolet officially announced that the Z06 version of the current Corvette generation, the C8, will be revealed this fall as a 2023 model year car. The consensus had been that the car would be revealed this month as a 2022 model year car, but given the UAW strike last year, the damn virus and the worldwide computer chip shortage, plans had to be adjusted.

As much as I am loathe to use any part of the Evil Empire (AKA Google), here is a link to a short video about the C8 Z06. The most heard “rumor” about the engine is that it will be a 5.5 liter (about 335 cubic inches), flat-plane crank, naturally aspirated V-8 and will be the most powerful non forced-induction V-8 in automotive production history. The best guess right now is that the engine will produce about 650 HP and 600 LB-FT of torque. It should be capable of revving to about 9,000 RPM. In keeping with the spirit of this part of today’s post, a picture of a (non Z06) C8 Corvette:

 

 

What will the C8 Z06 cost? I’m guessing, and it’s little more than a guess, that it will start at under $100,000, but depending on options could sticker at $120,000-$140,000. In the world of very high performance automobiles, that’s a bargain. Consider that the well-worn, but well-made Nissan GT-R, a car that hasn’t really changed since its introduction in 2009, starts at about $115,000 and costs more than $200,000 for the NISMO and NISMO Special Edition.

Long live the Corvette!

 

#TuesdayTrifles

#Apollo11

#WorkEthic

#C8Z06

#somanycarsjustonelife

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50 Years From History

Today is, of course, the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the moon and of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin becoming the first men to walk on the moon. I have nothing profound to offer nor do I have any new information. I think the Apollo program was an amazing achievement and, sadly, one we can probably not duplicate today. Too many people are satisfied with the banalities of today’s life and too many people think they are owed something by mere virtue of their existence. Real achievement only comes from work.

 

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From flipboard.com (originally from NASA, I suspect) a picture of Armstrong and Aldrin on the moon. I have mentioned this before, but after 500+ posts I am going to repeat myself—tough noogies. My father, who was born in Poland and didn’t arrive in the US until his mid-30s, was skeptical that the mission would succeed. He said it was impossible for men to go to the moon. IIRC, Armstrong and Aldrin first walked on the moon late on a Sunday. That was the only day my father closed his gas/service station before 10 PM so he was home to watch. When Armstrong first put his feet on the lunar surface I turned to my father and said, “What do you think now, Dad?” Yes, I guess I have always been at least a little bit of a wise-ass.

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The number one single on the Billboard Hot 100 the day that Armstrong and Aldrin first walked on the moon was In The Year 2525 (Exordium & Terminus) by Zager and Evans. Rick Evans actually wrote the song in 1964 while a member of a band called the Eccentrics. The song’s bleak view of the future was a stark contrast to the triumph of Apollo 11.

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The best-selling US car model in 1969 was, still, the Chevrolet Impala. About 777,000 were produced for the 1969 model year. Fewer than 2,500 were SS427 models like this:

 

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A picture of a lot offered at Mecum’s Indianapolis auction in 2017. Although I am comparing model year sales of the Impala to calendar year sales by make, the Impala outsold every car make in the US in 1969 except Chevrolet, Ford and Pontiac.

 

#Apollo11

#NeilArmstrong

#BuzzAldrin

#KipYaughn

#1969ChevroletImpala

#somanycarsjustonelife

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Hobgoblin Of Little Minds

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

In my opinion, people who blindly follow ideology are engaging in the hobgoblin of little minds. One of Emerson’s themes in his writings was that individuals should avoid conformity and false consistency and follow their own instincts and beliefs. I agree with that paradigm.

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Fifty years ago today Apollo 11 launched from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Unfortunately, I think this country is so divided today that the near-universal support this mission enjoyed would not exist. Was the level of support a foolish consistency? I don’t think so; the Apollo program was an amazing achievement.

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From autowereld.com a picture of the new Ferrari F8 Tributo:

 

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OK, so the car doesn’t really look much different than the 488 to me although Ferrari claims that this “new” design is the bridge to future exteriors. The engine is the same as in the 488 Pista, a 3.9 liter, twin-turbo V-8 that produces 710 HP and 568 LB-FT of torque. That is the most powerful V-8 Ferrari has ever produced. [So, should it be V-8 or V8? I use both; don’t want engage in the hobgoblin of little minds, I guess. :)] The car is supposed to be able to accelerate from 0 to 100 KM/H (62 MPH) in 2.9 seconds with a top speed of 211 MPH. Like all Ferraris the engine is mated to a 7-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission that can be paddle-shifted or used in auto mode.

From Ferrari’s website: “The name [Tributo] is an homage to both the model’s uncompromising layout and to the engine that powers it with a massive 720 cv and a record specific power output of 185 cv/l.” The base MSRP is about $275,000. By the way, the price of Ferrari’s stock (traded under the symbol RACE, of course it is) is up almost 70% year-to-date. The stock even pays a dividend.

Obviously, that’s a desirable automobile, but I think owning a red Ferrari is asking for trouble. Maybe owning any Ferrari is.

 

#HobgoblinOfLittleMinds

#RalphWaldoEmerson

#Apollo11

#FerrariF8Tributo

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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P.S. Nine years ago today my wonderful wife and I moved into this house. That is the longest we’ve ever lived in the same dwelling. The odds we make it to ten years? Of course, they’re not 100% (life is finite), but I suspect those odds are far less than 100%. For the cryptographers out there: ukhfh ymbfe flwdfh