Saturday, November 13, 2021

Red-Shirted Fakenauts

Glen de Vries

On October 13, 2021, William Shatner (age 90), the actor who played Captain Kirk on the Original Star Trek series, boarded a Blue Origin sub-orbital capsule and successfully flew to space becoming the oldest person to fly to space. The flight was ten minutes long.

The vehicle was New Shepard 4, and reached 341,434 feet (106 km).

Shatner flew to space on Blue Origin's second sub-orbital human spaceflight, Blue Origin NS-18, on October 13, 2021. He was accompanied by Chris Boshuizen, Glen de Vries, and Audrey Powers aboard the RSS First Step, the New Shepard suborbital rocket capsule, from Blue Origin's Launch Site One in West Texas. Aged 90 years, 6 months and 22 days, Shatner became the oldest person to fly to space, surpassing Wally Funk, who flew on Blue Origin's first human spaceflight at the age of 82 in July 2021.

In a televised post-flight conversation with Blue Origin's founder Jeff Bezos, who had invited him to join the flight, Shatner articulated experiencing what is called the overview effect, a deep awareness of the fragility of planet Earth and its relatively thin-atmosphere.

Due to Shatner being on the flight, spoof sites and meme builders had "fun" with the crew. Fake photos of the flight members were shown with red shirts versus Shatner's senior official uniform. The not-too-subtle meaning being that on Star Trek the first individuals killed in encounters were those wearing red.

These jokes seemingly appeared to be prophetic. 

On November 11, 2021, Glen de Vries, 49, died in a small plane crash. De Vries is one of the most common Dutch surnames. It indicates a geographical origin: "Vriesland" is an old spelling of the Dutch province of Friesland (Frisia). Frisia, is a province of the Netherlands located in the northern part of the country. Hence, "de Vries" means "the Frisian". The name has been modified to "DeVries", "deVries", or "Devries" in other countries.

Since the late Middle Ages, Friesland has been renowned for the exceptional height of its inhabitants, who were deemed among the tallest groups of Indo-Europeans. Even early Renaissance poet Dante Alighieri refers to the height of Frisians in his Divine Comedy when, in the canticle about Hell, he talks about the magnitude of an infernal demon by stating that "not even three tall Frieslanders, were they set one upon the other, would have matched his height."

Where Glen de Vries was killed is a topic of social media conversation.

"On 1 December 1947, Crowley died at Netherwood of chronic bronchitis aggravated by pleurisy and myocardial degeneration, aged 72....Crowley's body was cremated, his ashes were sent to Karl Germer in the US, who buried them in his garden in Hampton, New Jersey." Source.

Also worthy of your reading time...

Chris Knowles on Astroworld, here and here.

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