Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos is looking so fit these days that he may be prepping to go to space. That was one of the observations from veteran journalist Brad Stone, author of the “The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon.”
Stone spoke Tuesday night at Seattle’s Town Hall, covering everything from Amazon.com’s hard-charging culture to the story of how he discovered Bezos’ biological father at a bike shop in Arizona to the challenges the company faces in battling the likes of Apple and Google in the device market.
But one of the most interesting exchanges occurred when moderator Nick Wingfield of The New York Times asked Stone if he thought Bezos would travel to space.
“I definitely think he’s going to space. I think he wants to,” said Stone. “One sort of interesting physical transformation is that as Amazon has grown, Jeff is in pretty good shape now. He looked a little pasty and rumbled after the 90s, and now he’s clearly working out everyday. And the reason I bring that up is that I think he’s in astronaut training.”
Stone noted that Bezos — who is 49 — is part of the Star Trek generation. Stone asked Bezos’ mom about the possibility of a space adventure and whether she was worried about it. HIs mom answered: “Talk to me the day it happens.”
Interestingly, Stone’s colleague at BloombergBusinessweek Ashlee Vance just this week published a story about Bezos’ space company Blue Origin and its plans to begin making suborbital flights.
In fact, during a recent interview Bezos was asked about whether he’d want to go into suborbital flight and whether he’d take a Kindle Fire along for the ride.
“Absolutely. I definitely want to go, and now that you’ve suggested it, it seems like a terrific idea to take a Kindle Fire with me,” said Bezos.
He was then asked when he would use the Kindle Fire, and if re-entry is the boring part of the journey.
“There’s no boring part of going into suborbital space, I have a feeling,” he said.
Here are more of my notes from Stone’s talk last night and you can listen to our interview with the author on the GeekWire podcast here.
Editor’s note: The chat by Brad Stone was part of Seattle Startup Week, presented by GeekWire.