This is the semi-autobiographical wit and wisdom of Buzz Aldrin, the second man to set foot on the moon. He shares his experiences, challenges, successes, and failures — and the lessons he has learned along the way. As the most irascible and perhaps controversial figure in human space exploration, Buzz has had an incredible variety of life experiences, and is satisfyingly expressive in conveying them. He was not called “Dr. Rendezvous” for nothing, and with a doctoral degree he writes eloquently but at the same time in a very down-to-Earth style. This is a highly readable and enjoyable book.
Dr. Aldrin also includes a chapter in which he makes a not-unreasonable argument for why he should have been the first man to step on the Moon. This is his book, so I figure he’s entitled to that! However, he has also made peace with his role as “Second Man”, and talks about how that unique position has shaped his life (and allowed him to shape the lives of others) in “Second comes right after first”.
Ironically, I had just noticed a new crop of gray hairs the same week I began reading the chapter “Keep a young mindset at every age”, and found his insights here to be most poignant. This is the chapter that I will be coming back to most in years ahead, and I hope that as more gray hairs come I will remain active and positive and “Be like Buzz!”
You can look higher for a source of wisdom, but for wisdom from the Earth (or the Moon) you would be hard-pressed to do better than this enjoyable and thought-provoking read by Buzz Aldrin. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.