Quote of the Day
This picture and others of the same subject can be found here. TB takes great pleasure in staring up at the night sky. I touched on this back in June in “Things That Give Me a Charge (the lesser list). For the last week or so, Jupiter and Venus have made their presences strikingly clear around the moon. Even in the most light polluted locations, so long as the clouds don’t interfere, you can see them. If you haven’t noticed them yet, do yourself a favor and walk outside just after dark tonight and find the moon. You’ll see the bright planets nearby.
I don’t know much about the night sky. I can find the Big Dipper (or the little) and Orion in addition to the moon, and that’s about it. But learning the constellations is on my bucket list. I’d relish a long seagoing voyage on which to study. But being ignorant of what I’m looking at in no way diminishes the pleasure I derive from a clear view on a starry night.
A few of my best nights of stargazing stand out in memory. I saw the Perseid meteor shower in Yazoo County, Mississippi, a few years back on one my best ever dates. A few months later I woke up that same person to come out on a balcony in Hana, Hawaii to see the most gigantic full yellow moon I’ve ever seen light up the Pacific Ocean. After a dozen or so beers, I stumbled out of a Montana roadhouse with a couple of my good friends, looked up and flinched. The stars seemed so close you had to duck. Double vision only enhanced the experience I’m sure. The three of us waxed poetic for an hour or so, until somebody passed out, I guess. And one night driving across the Arizona desert in route to a deposition the next day I was so struck by the brilliance of the night sky a hundred miles from the nearest city lights that I had to pull the car over to the side of the road and get out to look. I can’t say I rank the current show up there with those other times, but still, it’s pretty cool.
They say this phenomenon of Jupiter, Venus and the Moon all being so vivid and so close together only happens once a generation or so. I assume we’ll have another few days to enjoy the show, though last night was the peak. Don’t miss it.