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  1. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 07:06
    Neil Armstrong missed out an "a" and did not say "one small step for a man" when he set foot on the Moon in 1969, a linguistic analysis has confirmed.

    The researchers show for the first time that he intended to say "a man" and that the "a" may have been lost because he was under pressure.

    They say that although the phrase was not strictly correct, it was poetic.


    Rest of the article here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/low/science/nature/8081817.stm

    I have known about this unfortunate slip of the tongue since I was a kid. This seems like slow news day news!

    Regardless of the "research", anybody and everybody can simply hear it for themselves, and have been able to hear it for 30 years.

    The article says: "It may well have been that spontaneity that led to Armstrong's slight mistake. But according to Mr Olsson - Armstrong may have subconsciously drawn from his poetic instincts to utter a phrase that, far from being incorrect - was perfect for the moment. When you look at the whole expression there's a symmetry about this. If you put the word 'a' in, it would totally alter the poetic balance of the expression," he explained."

    In other words, One small step for man. One giant leap for mankind.", according to the article is 'fortuitously' more poetic than One small step for a man. One giant leap for mankind."

    Surely this is nonsense?

    Does anyone agree with the article's 'poetic' analyis?
  2. Standard member spruce112358
    Democracy Advocate
    04 Jun '09 07:57 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by FMF
    Neil Armstrong missed out an "a" and did not say "one small step for a man" when he set foot on the Moon in 1969, a linguistic analysis has confirmed.

    The researchers show for the first time that he intended to say "a man" and that the "a" may have been lost because he was under pressure.

    They say that although the phrase was not strictly correct, it wa s is nonsense?

    Does anyone agree with the article's 'poetic' analyis?
    I would say poetry isn't about sense but about evoking feeling.
  3. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 08:03
    Originally posted by spruce112358
    I would say poetry isn't about sense but about evoking feeling.
    Indeed. But I am saying "One small step for man. One giant leap for mankind"is not more poetic than "One small step for a man. One giant leap for mankind," contrary to the claim made by someone quoted in the article. Stuff about symmetry etc. I don't buy it.
  4. Standard member Bosse de Nage
    Zellulärer Automat
    04 Jun '09 08:16
    Originally posted by FMF
    Indeed. But I am saying "One small step for man. One giant leap for mankind"is not more poetic than "One small step for a man. One giant leap for mankind," contrary to the claim made by someone quoted in the article. Stuff about symmetry etc. I don't buy it.
    The real scandal has been covered up -- Armstrong's first words on walking into the studio were 'does my ass look big in this?'
  5. Standard member spruce112358
    Democracy Advocate
    04 Jun '09 08:29
    Originally posted by FMF
    Indeed. But I am saying "One small step for man. One giant leap for mankind"is not more poetic than "One small step for a man. One giant leap for mankind," contrary to the claim made by someone quoted in the article. Stuff about symmetry etc. I don't buy it.
    It was about modesty. Saying 'a man' draws attention to the fact that it is "me, Neil Armstrong, I am THE MAN now taking this step..."

    "One small step for man" subtly emphasizes the debt owed to all the other people involved in making that single event happen.
  6. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 08:57
    Originally posted by spruce112358
    It was about modesty. Saying 'a man' draws attention to the fact that it is "me, Neil Armstrong, I am THE MAN now taking this step..."

    "One small step for man" subtly emphasizes the debt owed to all the other people involved in making that single event happen.
    ??? Er... it has been established that he got it wrong. He has admitted it.

    It was about modesty? Subtly emphasizes the debt owed to all the other people?
  7. Standard member Palynka
    Upward Spiral
    04 Jun '09 09:13 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by FMF
    [b]Neil Armstrong missed out an "a" and did not say "one small step for a man" when he set foot on the Moon in 1969, a linguistic analysis has confirmed.

    The researchers show for the first time that he intended to say "a man" and that the "a" may have been lost because he was under pressure.

    They say that although the phrase was not strictly correct, it wa s is nonsense?

    Does anyone agree with the article's 'poetic' analyis?
    [/b][/b]
    Aesthetically it's much more pleasing to me without the "a" because of the repetition of "for man" within "for mankind"
  8. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 09:20
    Originally posted by Palynka
    Aesthetically it's much more pleasing to me without the "a" because of the repetition of "for man" within "for mankind"
    Yes. I am baffled by this: "When you look at the whole expression there's a symmetry about this. If you put the word 'a' in, it would totally alter the poetic balance of the expression." This 'defence' of the error seems to me to be groundless.
  9. Standard member Palynka
    Upward Spiral
    04 Jun '09 09:24
    Originally posted by FMF
    Yes. I am baffled by this: "When you look at the whole expression there's a symmetry about this. If you put the word 'a' in, it would totally alter the poetic balance of the expression." This 'defence' of the error seems to me to be groundless.
    Maybe symmetry is not the correct word, but I understood that phrase to mean what I wrote above.
  10. Standard member Bosse de Nage
    Zellulärer Automat
    04 Jun '09 09:29
    Originally posted by FMF
    Yes. I am baffled by this: "When you look at the whole expression there's a symmetry about this. If you put the word 'a' in, it would totally alter the poetic balance of the expression." This 'defence' of the error seems to me to be groundless.
    The stress falls more emphatically on 'man' than it would on 'a man'. Try reading it out aloud.

    Good heavens, there must be something wrong with me: I actually find this topic interesting and could write a page or two on it. But I think I will not.
  11. Standard member Palynka
    Upward Spiral
    04 Jun '09 09:47
    Shouldn't this be in culture?
  12. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 09:56
    Originally posted by Palynka
    Shouldn't this be in culture?
    Culture is moribund.
  13. Subscriber kmax87
    You've got Kevin
    04 Jun '09 12:13
    Originally posted by FMF
    Culture is moribund.
    you would be high falutin types.......
  14. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    04 Jun '09 12:29
    Originally posted by kmax87
    you would be high falutin types.......
    High Falutin is underrated.
  15. Standard member Lundos
    Back to basics
    04 Jun '09 12:31
    Originally posted by FMF
    High Falutin is underrated.
    I thought it was one word : highfalutin.