Saturday, November 16, 2019

a cold evening and the smell of skunk permeates outside. he might be mad that i cleared out his little territory under a deck that i was going to build. i took out most of the lumber from under there, and spread it out a little ways from the place, thus leaving that little place kind of exposed. i couldn't quite finish - there were long pieces under there that it was beginning to get to me to go after. so i gave myself a break. i spent much of the day moving lumber around.

in the evening i went to the volunteer fire thanksgiving. they had a big bird, and stuffing, and gravy, the whole works. it was good - as turkey is always good, to me anyway - and afterward there was apple pie and some kind of chocolate pecan. it was about as good as it gets.

the guy i sat next to was one of the two people who discovered the hale-bopp comet. apparently this happened in the house next to me. it's a big house, and his ex-wife still lives in it, and it has a kind of skylight facing south where i figure, he could have seen about anything if he wanted. this is apparently where he saw it - right next door.

but apparently there was a tragedy associated with it, because it was a big media event, and some cult in san diego, 39 people, all decided to die so that the comet would take them with it as it came close to earth. i only barely remember this, although it was in like 1995 or something, I guess maybe i was going through a nasty divorce and wasn't much following the news. but in any case, with 39 people dead, that kind of marred the joy of his discovery.

he's a prominent astronomer, and a neighbor - he still lives just on the other side of us from his ex-wife, more or less, and he's about to spring an astronomy educational program on the web. he's always been kind of international, web-oriented, into educating about astronomy, and very knowledgeable about the universe.

one of the things he was telling me tonight was that saturn has this moon, titan, that is actually very interesting. it has an atmosphere, and has water, though it's all in ice form, because it's way out there. basically i was asking him about the expulsion of pluto from the family of planets, and he said, it doesn't really matter where you draw the line. you could call titan a planet, and that would be very cool, because it's so much like earh, and so interesting, and has that possibility of life, if it has water, that none of the others have. another one like that is europa, which is apparently a moon of mercury or something. much closer to earth in temperature, but its water is hidden beneath the rocks, so we don't pay much attention to it. to him if you study this stuff you want to know more about the ones where life is actually possible - the ones we should study more. Labeling certain useless ones as "planets" doesn't help at all.

My two kids enjoyed the turkey and stuff, but dreaded the adult meeting afterward, so they walked home. it was about a mile and a half, along a paved road, in total darkness. they said they saw one deer, but my guess is, there were a few more out there. once it's dark, out they come, and they don't care if it's hunting season or not, or maybe i should take that back. they care a lot, but, i'm not sure if they'll more likely be jumping around out there in the dark, in hunting season, as any other time. i've always had a theory that they went to town during hunting season, or that they somehow knew it was hunting season, but i have no proof that they know. just like i have no proof about the wave.

so this is my story about the wave. this astronomer has family in australia, maybe a son, though he's in adelaide, nowhere near where the place is burning up. but i told him, a few years ago, there was a big sporting event in sydney, and the claim was made that in australia, people do the wave counterclockwise. now i thought that was a pretty wild idea, but of course i have no way of proving it, short of going there and going to a sporting event. so i asked this astronomer, and he said, he thought it was a pretty slim chance that that could be true, but he had no real idea, not being into sports, or having even thought about it before.

the thing about the wave is, it's a social phenomenon, it just happens, but people have to do it in communication with each other, so, they have to go either one way or the other. and it could be, they go this way most of the time, but that wasy sometimes, and it's kind of random, but the idea that some kind of primal earth-based force on them could have something to do with it, was interesting, and i couldn't discount the theory altogether.

and to top it off, baby lynette is going there, as we speak. her mother is my daughters' dance teacher, and she is a cutie-pie, but i'm sure she has no idea what the wave is, and, chances are pretty good her parents will be too busy watching her to go to a sporting event. that's what you have to do, i think, take some time out of your day, and just go to a rugby match or something.

wrote this without glasses, and it's late, so, i'm going to bed. sorry about typos.


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