Amazon founder and billionaire Jeff Bezos successfully rocketed up more than 65 miles on Tuesday, and declared that the event had made for his "Best day ever."
Bezos, his brother Mark, aeronautics legend Wally Funk and 18-year-old Oliver Daemen flew on a New Shepard rocket, landing safely in the West Texas desert after a trip of more than eight minutes.
It's just my guess, but I think Bezos may have been blasting Bo Burnham during the flight: "Come on, Jeffrey, you can do it / Pave the way, put your back into it / Tell us why, show us how / Look at where you came from, look at you now."
True, Bezos didn't actually "pave the way": he was the second billionaire businessman to head to space, with Virgin Galactic's Richard Branson beating him by 9 days, but his trip has inspired just as many memes and jokes. Here are some of the funniest ones
The post-flight briefing was shown a video of the occupants performing somersaults and tumbles during four minutes of weightlessness.
Stunning views of the Earth could be seen outside — the crew travelled in a capsule with the biggest windows flown in space, offering stunning views of the Earth.
Jeff Bezos was surprised by the sensation of microgravity: "It felt so normal," he said.
Funk added: "It was great, I loved it, I can hardly wait to go again." In the 1960s, she was one member of a group of women called the Mercury 13. They underwent the same screening tests as male astronauts, but never got to fly under the US national space program.
Eventually, Bezos also revealed what the astronauts spoke about as they were in the capsule ahead of the launch; he told his crewmates that the flight was not just about "adventure" but also the start of "something big."
"What we're doing is the first step of something big, and I know what that feels like, I did it three decades ago, nearly three decades ago, with Amazon," Bezos said. "Big things start small, but you can tell when you're onto something, and this is important."
"We're going to build a road to space so that our kids and their kids can build the future, and we need to do that, we need to do that to solve the problems here on Earth,” Bezos added. “This is not about escaping Earth."
The billionaire said Earth is "the only good planet" in our solar system, and "we've sent robotic probes to all of them."
"When you go to space and see how fragile it is, you want to take care of it even more, and that's what this is about," he explained.
Bezos estimated that Blue Origin has already approached some $100 million in private ticket sales.
While building space infrastructure will take decades, Bezos believes that "This is how it starts."
The memers, however, seem to disagree.
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