By Terry Miller
The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched into space from California’s Vandenberg Air Force Base north of Los Angeles at 5:27 p.m. PST (8:27 p.m. EST/0127 GMT) — just 30 minutes after sunset — carrying 10 Iridium Next communications satellites into orbit. The mission was a success, with all 10 satellites reaching their intended orbits. But it was the jaw-dropping views of the Falcon 9 streaking into space that stole the show, leaving an ethereal glowing plume that resembled a blimp/fish/or giant sperm depending on who one spoke with.
Motorists were caught off guard and had no idea what was happening at first …people were pulling off the side of the freeway, grabbing their trusty iPhone; slowing down and generally in awe of what someone initially thought was a North Korean missile.
Sadly, authorities did not alert the public to what was about to happen in the friendly skies and subsequently a few fender-benders were attributed to those literally stunned by what they were seeing driving home Friday night. Next time, Elon…please give us a little notice so we can break out the video HD cams and popcorn.