Astronaut laughs it up for ‘Colbert Report’

Image: Garrett Reisman
American astronaut Garrett Reisman smiles while describing space living with comedian Stephen Colbert during a taping of the ‘Colbert Report’ from aboard the international space station.NASA TV
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NASA astronaut Garrett Reisman squeezed in some laughs amid his busy day aboard the international space station Thursday during an orbital call from comedian Stephen Colbert.

Riesman, a flight engineer for the station's Expedition 17 mission, spoke with Colbert about life in space and his three-month mission for Thursday's episode of the faux-conservative show "The Colbert Report" on Comedy Central.

"I can't believe my voice is being broadcast to space right now. I should say something really profound," Colbert said during the interview broadcast on NASA TV. "Eat it, Jon Stewart, I'm talking to space!"

Describing himself as a "glorified janitor," Reisman explained his duties as Flight Engineer 2 — to perform science experiments and clean the space station. He arrived at the orbiting lab in March and is slated to return to Earth next month aboard the space shuttle Discovery.

Reisman proudly displayed his Colbert-supporting Wrist Strong bracelet — to raise wrist injury awareness — since wrists come in handy when astronauts wield the station's robotic arm, land a space shuttle or fire their laser cannons, he said.

"I do have to admit though that we don't really have laser cannons, but sometimes I like to pretend," Reisman said.

Colbert and Reisman discussed a litany of topics ranging from the station's Russian crewmates and ice cream to the mechanics of the orbiting laboratory's space potty and, oddly enough, his former commander's affinity for non-alcoholic, margarita-flavored Jell-O.

Reisman, who is making his first spaceflight during the long-duration Expedition 17 mission, has also served on a NASA trek to the Aquarius undersea laboratory on the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

"What do you have against the rest of humanity that you have to flee from us?" Colbert asked.

"I think it's more what the rest of humanity has against me," Reisman shot back with a grin. "I keep getting sent to these far off places."