Bowie needs no introduction in his ability to induce wonder, awe and beauty in anyone he touches. And now even after death, his legacy lives on in the form of a mannequin Star Man set to take a silence-filled orbit around our dark solar system and towards its final destination of Mars.
The poetry and beauty of this touch is masterful on the part of Elon Musk and the SpaceX team. The Falcon Heavy test flight had a cinematic quality as it launched a car containing the Space Man/ Bowie mannequin payload into the stratosphere. This has made me excited (for the first time in a very long time) for the future of humanity and for the sum and total of human culture’s influence and innovation.
The great man himself would most certainly approve of this particular narrative arc. I cried when I saw the launch, not because of the launch itself and the excitement it elicited from all the engineers, but rather for the spacey majesty of having Bowie’s Life on Mars as the soundtrack to such an epic achievement of humanity.
Often we don’t realise the significance of these moments until years later. For once a monumental historical moment has occurred that didn’t involve senseless violence or confusion, but rather passion, creativity, innovation and the powerful force of collective human accomplishment.