This video is a bit off the beaten track for a paintball website – until you consider the overlooked fact that paintball would not be possible if it hadn’t been for the space program.
I grew up with NASA. I was born just a few short weeks after the first man made object orbited the Earth (Sputnik). I cried with joy along with Walter Kronkite as we watched Neal Armstrong exit the LEM and take the first step on the surface of the Moon.
I lived through it all and for a short while during my public school career actually entertained the idea of trying out for the space program. (Good thing I didn’t – not too many jobs there anymore).
A piece of me died with the shuttle disasters and an even larger piece when our government announced the end of our manned space program.
And yet here I sit, editing a website devoted to paintball – a sport that owes its very existence to NASA, JPL and a whole host of aerospace companies and steely-eyed rocket scientists. There even used to be a joke in the early days of paintball: it’s a good thing for paintball that NASA has a drug-testing policy. (Think about it, you’ll get it.)
I’ve often thought that the United States was an exceptional country, filled with exceptional people, because it was here in the United States that we dreamt big and never stopped with just the dreams. We went out and made it happen. We dreamed that men could rule themselves and turned it into reality with our revolution; we dreamed that hard work and inventiveness could make life better and easier for all and turned it into reality with the industrial revolution; we dreamed that free men should run the world and gave that dream a chance to thrive by defeating Nazism in WWII and Soviet Socialism in the 80s; we dreamed that we could conquer the very heavens and turned that into reality with the space program.
What do we dream today?
The producers of this video are right. Watch it and see if you don’t agree that now is the time to dream again