In the world of marketing, few things are more valuable than a truly satisfied customer, and that's exactly what Jeff Bezos and Blue Origin appear to have in William Shatneron Wednesday.
As James T. Kirk on Star Trek, Shatner could often be contemplative and even profound at times. Of course, those lines were scripted by Gene Roddenberry and a host of writers over the years. But Shatner's own words during his few minutes of weightlessness and upon return to Earth are among some of the most poignant delivered by a human visitor to space, made all the more wondrous when delivered in his trademark halting cadence.
"Weightlessness, oh Jesus!" Shatner is heard exclaiming in the above video as the New Shepard crew capsule crosses the Karman Line, the conventional divider between Earth's atmosphere and space.
"No description can equal this, weightlessness... oh my god. Oh wow. Oh, I'm telling you. Oh my goodness me, oh wow, I can't believe this."
Not exactly poetry, but the earnest reaction of a man totally dumbfounded by a life-changing experience after nine decades of life is a wonderful thing to witness. While his crew mates float and flip around the capsule with a kind of giddy delight, Shatner appears to spend most of the flight totally awestruck and admiring the view.
Once back on solid ground, after the champagne was sprayed on the desert floor, Shatner was able to begin gathering his words in conversation with Blue Origin and Amazon founder Bezos. You can watch the exchange at the 2:56 mark in the video below.
"What you have built, everyone in the world needs to do this," Shatner tells Bezos. "Everybody in the world needs to see..." he trails off as he gets choked up.
"The covering of blue, the sheet, this blanket, this comforter of blue that we have around us, we think, oh that's blue sky, and then suddenly you shoot through it all of a sudden as if you were to whip a sheet off of you when you're asleep and you're looking at the blackness... into black ugliness. And you look down and there's the blue down there and the black up there and it's just ... there (below) is mother Earth and comfort and there (up, in space) is... is there death? I don't know, is that how death is? Whoop! and it's gone? Jesus."
Shatner then rubs his eyes as he tears up again.
"It was so moving to me. This experience, it's something unbelievable."
You don't get a much better testimonial than that. Can't wait to hear theabout his flight.