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More early microgravity: Dr Dolittle on the Moon

30 May 2011, 11:31 UTC
More early microgravity:  Dr Dolittle on the Moon
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

I've always loved the Dr Dolittle books, so charmingly illustrated by their author Hugh Lofting. (Of course, the ghastly Eddie Murphy films of later years bear little resemblance to the originals). Last week I pulled Dr Dolittle in the Moon, published in 1929, off the shelf for some light bed time reading. Here is how Lofting imagines the experience of lunar gravity, as told by the Doctor's assistant Tommy Stubbins:The gravity too was very confusing. It required hardly any effort to rise from a sitting position to a standing one. Walking was no effort at all - for the muscles - but for the lungs it was another question. The most extraordinary sensation was jumping. The least little spring from the ankles sent you flying into the air in the most fantastic fashion. If it had not been for this problem of breathing properly (which the Doctor seemed to think we should approach with great caution on account of its possible effect on the heart), we would all have given ourselves up to this most light-hearted feeling which took possession of us. I remember, myself, singing songs - the melody was most indistinct on account of a large mouthful of ...

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