Friday, January 7, 2011

Happy Birthday Chuck, the ribs are on the grill and the beer is on ice

This is a re-post from August of last year, it concerns the future of  Kennedy Space Center and the end of the shuttle program down here in Central Florida and the pending economic meltdown to come over 1100 more job cuts.   On a good note Charles "Chuck" Hayes now has a laptop, a generous gift from Sausage Fingers who Chuck happily let marry his daughter many moons ago.

This is the re-post
Technology rules our lives, we can't escape the domination it has over us. Every day we use gadgets and gizmo's such as GPS, smart phones, Satellite television and so on, and men like Charles Clifton Hayes are responsible for their use.

Charles Clifton Hayes aka "Chuck" was a NASA technician for the better part of forty years, if you ever saw the film The Right Stuff, then you should have an idea of the type of man that Chuck is. Chuck was involved with the original 7 astronaut program and worked on the Delta rockets that launched the satellites that now help busy parents and tech savvy kids get through the day.

Chuck is now in his seventies and the technology that he helped launch has passed him by, he does not own a cell phone or laptop, he has the most basic of cable and he struggles to understand the electronic toys of his grandchildren.
Chuck and his lunchbox worked countless hours out at the old Kennedy Space Center, his stories include the time he was asked to hire a midget who could bench press 100lbs. The pint sized employee had to be small enough to fit inside the cargo payload of a compartment while lifting 100lbs. of stuff. And just how much duct tape was actually used on the launched rockets would keep you up at night.

Chuck is a throwback to a time when America was the world's leader in technology and innovation, he has long retired but his blood, sweat and tears will ever be displayed at the Cape on launch pad 5.
I was not born in this country but the one thing I will always associate with America is the space program, I am not one to be labeled as an elephant or donkey, but I do hope that politics will not cause the demise of this great program. Many years ago Americans were glued to their televisions as heroes were hurdled into space not really knowing the danger or eventual outcome, these men and women of this program helped forge the nation into the giant it is today.

I want to thank Chuck Hayes, the Georgia farm boy, for his hard work and dedication to not only the United States but the world for the trail he helped blaze. Thank you for going to work every day so people like me can check my e-mail on my phone while getting directions on the GPS while on my way to buy a new plasma TV, and so on and so on.

Thanks Chuck, enjoy your retirement you deserve it.

Click on the picture for more detail, this is an original document.

See what technology does for humanity, this was invented by the space program. Cheers.


  1. How cool is that to have a FIL who was part of the original space program!!! I was 4 years old when that happened.

    The auto beer thing, on the other hand, is just plain weird! Although it's fast, and if you're serving a whole roomful of beer guzzlers, I guess it saves time and makes money.

    Personally, I can't stand beer... ;-)

  2. Pon - Chuck is a very cool FIL, the stories he has about the early days of the space program are fascinating and scary at the same time.

  3. oh, wow - chuck sounds like someone to be on the "who i would love to sit down and have dinner with" lists! here's to CHUCK and all the other space cowboys and cowhands like him!!! ;)

  4. the reason i became a card carrying professional geek is because my dad woke me up on the night of July 20th, 1969, so i could watch a man walk on the moon. that seven year old snot nosed kid was NEVER confused about her future. she was gonna be an astronaut...

    those guys... the brilliant 'monster garage' engineering and magic they used to make it all work. they took unimaginable risk. failure? not an option.

    thanks Chuck! hope the laptop doesn't give you too many headaches!