When the launches didn't end after 2 minutes

lion-mclionheadlion mclionhead wrote 02/10/2018 at 09:28 • 2 min read • Like

For all our lives, we turned off the video after the 1st 2 minutes of liftoff.  The boosters separated & then it was back to late night talkshows, football, or taking a piss, for all but the hardest spacefans.

Nowadays, we all keep watching until the landing.  It's still a surreal sight to see everyone around the world, no matter how fascinated by space, still glued to the screen or the sky minutes after the liftoff, waiting for the landing burns to start & the triple sonic booms.  For every historic leap in spaceflight, we all hear the same voices of John Insprucker & friends taking us there.  

Lions didn't expect it to lift off or keep going.  Neither did mission control as they make calls, struggling to keep up with the unexpected events, expecting it to blow up at any moment.  Clearing the tower, max Q, booster separation are all preceded by expectations of failure yet proceed exactly as they were envisioned or always did on previous launches.  

Then 2 different announcers take turns announcing the side core & center core landing events.  The familiar computer graphic of rocket trajectories comes on, but now so does Davie Bowie & not 1 but 3 boosters returning to Earth.  Then, the car is revealed, exactly as planned but never expected.  Mission control erupts into cheering. As the dust settles & the grid fins deploy, the lion announcer finally regains composure & says "wow.  Did you guys see that.".

Musk himself said it was the most exciting thing he ever saw.