It was the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s historic Vostok mission last week and we read accounts of the remarkable Russian’s adventure with interest. Let’s be clear: we’d never attempt to compare our achievements with those of the first man ever to journey into Outer Space.
But still, reports detailing the courageous cosmonaut’s quest did strike a chord in our studio.
For just like the Soviet hero five decades ago, here in Rhode Island in 2011, we’re reaching for the stars.
Our respective missions couldn’t be more different, yet just like that groundbreaking voyage in April 1961, the one that we have undertaken is underpinned by ambition and hope, optimism and excitement.
Yuri Gagarin’s objective was clear.
Our aim – our trip into orbit – is to increase the world’s OM population to 100 million. For the less mathematical amongst us, that is eight zeroes!
Can it be done? In life there are always naysayers and no doubt, 50 years ago, the Soviet Space program seemed, to some, to be questing after an impossible mission.
So yes, we’ve set our sights high. But so did Yuri Gagarin and the more we’ve read about him in recent days, the more we’ve come to think that there is nothing that can’t be achieved, that no destination is beyond our reach.
Our favorite recollection of those exciting days in the Sixties Space Race came from the pen of a commentator who noted that, once Gagarin had made it into orbit, the Earth seemed a markedly smaller place.
That rang a bell here in Saunderstown, for we believe that the more OMs we send forth, and the further their migration, the more connected our population will become, the more compact our World.
Imagine, if you will, what 100,000,000 OMs would look like. Our initial hope was that all stacked up, they’d make it to the Moon. They wouldn’t, but still, according to our calculations at least, their reach would be huge.
Take an average three-inch OM. Put it next to 99,999,999 others, all laid down, head to toe. From our studio, how far do you think they’d stretch?
Head South, and our OM line would reach Argentina, head West and they’d get most of the way to Hawaii. North? Well, we didn’t quite work that one out, but it’d be sure to be cold and OMs prefer warmer climates.
Send them East and they’d stretch deep into Libya. It’s safe to say the people there could use some OMs and all that our little friends stand for in their lives right now.
We can’t pretend to know how Yuri Gagarin felt as he sat at the controls of his craft on that dramatic morning in the Soviet Union. But no challenge worthy of the name can be embarked upon without a certain degree of hope and fear, thrill and trepidation.
We have such feelings as we prepare for ignition on the next stage of our adventure.
The OMs are our Vostok, this is our mission. This is our flight into the unknown, our journey of discovery, our bid to change the world and realise our dreams. Here at Mission Control, our OMs are prepared, our project is on the launch pad and our seatbelts are fastened.
There is still room for you!
Please join us on our long and exciting expedition because connected, the sky is the limit.
Here comes the countdown.