Indeed, that is the name of his rocket – well, the temporary name anyway: the BFR, short for Big Freaking / Frakking / Fucking Rocket. I’m not really a fan of companies, things or people named from acronyms – but if people get to Mars on a thing called the Big Fucking Rocket, then, wow. It’s kinda like an interstellar blaspheme. A huge, historical, neo-mythical event reduced to the same amount of letters as a famed fried chicken outlet.
I like it. Douglas Adams himself might not have even conjured this one up, not even for a ride to the restaurant at the end of the universe.
Who really would have thought that we would reach a stage where the Americanization of history would reach such comically cosmic proportions?
Or that a car would be hurled out into space by the same entrepreneur, circling around the earth with a dummy aboard listening to David Bowie? For millions of years this strange, revved-up artifact will float through space announcing to whoever might be watching that we, at least, have a sense of humour. And interesting taste in music. Hilarious, poignant, epic and ridiculous. That’s the world we live in and perhaps the universe at large is equally as absurd, as Camus would have proferred.
One thing we can be assured of though, is that when the BFR lands us on the red planet to start our colonization tasks, it will just be a matter of time before the first KFC martian chickens will be sacrificed to the gods of progress. Then, not only a car, but crumby red and white buckets will also gently orbit the sun, along with other artifacts of our disposal. Or maybe not. But ‘as above, so below’, as they say, so islands of sea-rubbish here could surely translate into planets of space-junk. There are already roughly half a million junk-items in space caused from collisions and dead tech – and we have only just begun!
But back to the nomenclature. BFR is apparently only a temporary code name. SpaceX’s chairman has stated that the official name is Big Falcon Rocket – which just sounds stupid and out of place, like something a restaurant chain might invent for its latest sub or the name of a B-grade martial arts film. Elon Musk, however, drew the inspiration for the name via the game Doom’s BFG (or, Big Frakking Gun), which makes a whole lot more sense. Perhaps it was another hot-tub discussion with his brother where they joked if they ever make a big freaking rocket, that they would call it a Big Fucking Rocket!
And not even Jesus, Moses, Muhammad or Nostradamus would have predicted that man will fly through space to inhabit Mars on a thing called a Big Fucking Rocket. I mean, how do you even put that into a parable? Ezekiel’s “wheels”? Muhammad’s “winged horse-like-thing”? Whatever the case, the name is great for its unpredictable, unceremonious, Pythonesque matter-of-factness which, I hope anyway, will keep that brand of humour alive well into interstellar habitation.