Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Why Venus Lost Her Arms

I am a huge astronomy buff. I read astronomy stuff every day and stargaze in my back yard whenever I can. But if I hear another thing about Venus transiting the sun I'm going to scream! Who cares? It's not going to affect anyone's lives. The only ones with a legitimate interest are esoteric planetary scientists and astronomers. It'd be one thing if this was on just astronomy websites, but this crap is all over CNN, Reuters, and MSNBC! And these are just the news sources I bothered to research! (MSNBC, in their eternal quest for inaccuracy, declared it the "Sight of the Century," when there will, in fact, be yet another transit of Venus a little later this century, in 2012.)

I mean, you can't even look at the sun, Venus or not, without doing damage to your eyes! And who wants to be bothered buying or constructing a "sun-safe" thingamajiggy to look? Here's an idea of what it looks like: blindingly bright ball of nuclear fusion. Now put a pinpint dot on it. Wow. Tell your grandchildren. They'll think you've gone senile.

And so what if it's a once in a lifetime event? A dot in front of the sun? Big freakin' deal! Aren't there other more exciting once in a lifetime events to go ga-ga over? Besides if you ask me, once in a lifetime events are overrated.