The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture Chapter 28 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Randy first knew that pretty much anything was possible when he was eight years old and men first walked on the moon. Randy was at camp, and all the kids were brought to the main farmhouse where a TV was set up to watch the landing. The astronauts took a long time to get organized, and, though Randy was happy to wait, the organizers of the camp felt it was taking too long and forced the kids to go back to bed. Even as an eight-year-old, Randy was mad at the camp directors; considering that his species made it off the planet, Randy thought caring about bedtime was kind of dumb.
Even as a kid, Randy knew that his camp directors should have had a more open attitude about the campers’ bedtimes—they would never have another chance to watch the first man landing on the moon. If Randy were in charge, all of these kids would have witnessed a historic, dream-enabling moment.
Themes
Dreams in Reality Theme Icon
Attitude and Positive Behavior Theme Icon
However, when Randy got home a few weeks later, he found that his dad had taken a photo of their TV set the moment Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. His dad had preserved the moment, knowing it could “help trigger big dreams.” Randy says he understands the money for the space program could be used to fight poverty, but, as a scientist, he sees “inspiration as the ultimate tool for doing good.” So, he tells the reader to give themselves permission to dream, and fuel their kids’ dreams, too, even if that means staying up past bed time every once in a while.
Randy’s dad had the right idea about the moon landing: he knew it was important to document so that it could enable Randy and Tammy’s dreams and make them aware that anything is possible. Randy believes that inspiration is the ultimate tool for enabling others’ dreams, and he believes that rules should sometimes be bent in order to share inspiration.
Themes
Dreams in Reality Theme Icon
Attitude and Positive Behavior Theme Icon