I enjoyed a pint of Ninkasi Total Domination and a slice of P3 across the table from Captain gorram Mal Reynolds this weekend.
On August 12 he crashed our servers when he tweeted to the world (or at least the 600,000 of them that follow him on Twitter) about our vehicle. Just a week later, Actor Nathan Fillion and Castle co-star Jon Huertas flew up to our little city of Eugene early Saturday to kick the tires and take our latest prototype out on the road.
Fillion is perhaps best known as the aforementioned Captain of the (criminally) single-season cult hit TV show Firefly and movie Serenity, though he also starred as Captain Hammer in the Whedon online phenomenon Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog and is currently playing the titular character in ABC's Castle. Huertas plays Detective Esposito on Castle and starred as Sergeant Espera in the HBO series Generation Kill.
Happily, they both seemed just as excited to be visiting Eugene and driving our vehicle as we were to have them here. After a tweet disclosed that they were hanging out at the Saturday Market, we dropped by to pick them up in Proto4, which we have recently taken to calling the shark (for reasons which will soon become evident). A crowd had formed by the time we got back to the shop, made of up Arcimoto employees, local media, and twitter-savvy fans. Both stars were very unassuming and genial, with photo ops and scrawled autographs peppering their thoughtful discussion with Mark Frohnmayer about Arcimoto and the Pulse. Additionally, they engaged with reporters from KEZI, The Register-Guard, Eugene Weekly, and the New York Times throughout the day.
After a quick tour of the shop, it was time to get them behind the wheel and out on the road. We loaded up a jeep with photographers and led them on a merry chase around the streets of Eugene, over to campus, up to Amazon Parkway, and out Dillard Road. Fillion and Huertas switched off between driving and riding passenger (and by that I mean tweeting), deriding Prius owners for their quaint gas guzzlers along the way, and eventually leading to our favorite comment of the weekend from Huertas: "I feel like I’m driving a shark!"
I'm pretty sure that means the handling feels good.
After the ride we adjourned to the Pizza Research Institute next door for brews 'n pies. Fillion held an impromptu Arcimoto and Pulse Q&A on Twitter, answering 30+ questions from curious followers as we discussed electric vehicles, favorite moments from Firefly, and other "nerdvana" fare.
Since Fillion had previously referred to the Pulse as reminiscent of a Tron Light Cycle in one of his tweets, we decided to trick out the shark with LEDs and EL-wire before meeting them for dinner, leading to another tweet burst to end the night and the visit.
Be sure to check out all the photos from the day on our Facebook album. Many thanks to Fillion and Huertas for taking the time to come up and see us and our project, and just for being so darned enthusiastic!
If you fellas would just keep on doin' what you're doin', we'd take that as a kindness, Cap'n.