Many have said it about me, so on the 60th anniversary of his becoming the first American to orbit Earth here’s to John Glenn and other space cadets.
And a nod, of course, to NASA HQ in Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
And our friends, a visiting spaceman among them, who shared their world with us.
Including witnessing multiple sunsets.
The bould John, 95 years young, last went into space when he was 77.
Now that space tourism is a thing and is no barrier to age as Captain Kirk, William Shatner, 90, proved let’s look to the stars.
Through the Rainy Days and Songdays songs that have inspired us the Space Race generation.
A Mars a day
Life on Mars, David Bowie: And no, not Bowie’s first space song, nor his last.
Think Space Oddity, The Man Who Fell To Earth and Ashes to Ashes.
But Life On Mars from the album Hunky Dory is certainly his best.
And to bring it back to earth Bowie name checks Ibiza and the Norfolk Broads … both stop-offs for this space cadets.
Rocket Man, Elton John: Elt was spaced all right when he put the score to his pal Bernie Taupin’s lyrics.
So we can’t place him anywhere though we imagine that the-then coked-up Mr John would have been seeing a lot of The Troubadour in West Hollywood then.
Swing among the stars
Fly Me To The Moon, Frank Sinatra: We don’t know if they’ve got old blue eyes out in space but Frank’s voice is out of this world.
Obvs we want to name check Hoboken, New Jersey and the other cities that he bigs up, New York, Chicago and LA.
But the closest we got was Las Vegas and this inscription to the Rat Pack in Neon City.
Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft, The Carpenters: Now this one is a new one on us but this was actually originally written by the Canadian band Klaatu (no us too but they were named after an ambassador from the extraterrestrial confederation in the film The Day The Earth Stood Still).
But it was in the hands of Richard and Karen Carpenter that the song really took off.
And it naturally has that Californian twang with the unique lead-in of Mike Ledgerwood on All Hit Radio.
This song will be heard once again
A Spaceman Came Travelling, Chris De Burgh: Only Chris De Burgh could come up with anything quite as overblown as a space hook to the Nativity Story.
But the Irishman did after reading Chariots of the Gods by Erich von Daniken, with a sprinkle of WB Yeats and his belief that every 2,000 years something cataclysmic happens.
Never mind that the Nativity Story is only mentioned in two out of the four gospels.
And the Monty Python boys went this way too when they had a spaceship land in Bethlehem in the Holy Land in Life of Brian.
A Galaxy far, far away
Which brings us neatly to Eric Idle’s pithy reflection on the human condition in Galaxy in The Meaning of Life.
So it applies to us all, John Glenn and other space cadets.