Friday, February 22, 2008


The night before last I stood out in the parking lot of our apartment building and marveled at the moon: a total lunar eclipse. The temperatures were in the single digits, and dh Eddie went inside before it got to the totality stage, but I hung around until the eclipse was complete. It was beautiful!

I saw a total eclipse of the sun once, in Mexico City in 1991. It was so gorgeous it actually made me gasp. This lunar eclipse was much less flashy, but equally lovely in a low key, heartwarming sort of way. It made me reflect on how our ancestors must have felt about the heavenly bodies. They had no way of knowing, like we do today, that the moon is basically a big, floating rock. How mysterious and awe-inspiring it must have been to see round objects in the sky

I noticed that the moon looks quite two-dimensional to my naked eye, but seen through binoculars it is much more spherical -- and more real. How much closer can a pair of cheap binoculars actually get you to the moon? Not much -- and yet, even that small amount makes a big difference in perception. That was something I wasn't expecting at all

And the eclipse, like many natural events, made me think once again about the endlessness of God's imagination. Ladybugs and lilies, DNA and diamonds, chlorophyll and caverns and cats' whiskers ... and satellites that turn blood red when eclipsed by the earth; and to think we haven't even scratched the surface of what exists in the universe.


God, you seriously rock!

[The following are some good photos of the eclipse I found on the web.]

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Vote Early, Vote Often

I'm afraid I didn't. Vote early, I mean, or often. Which I guess makes me a breaker of Chicagoland tradition. I am a disgrace to Cook County, Illinois! LOL

I did vote, though -- just once, and at about 3:3o p.m My assigned polling place, a building currently used as a church for the deaf, is only about 50 yards away from home. One other man was there voting at the time. I was offered a choice between a paper ballot and voting by touchscreen; I chose the computer. It was all very easy and over in less than 5 minutes.

Click to enlarge photo.

Dh Eddie went with me to take the photos. Hey, this is only the second time I have voted and the first time that I've done it in person, so it was a big deal! The only other time I had exercised this civic duty was in the 2004 presidential election, where I participated by a mail-in absentee ballot, as I lived in Mexico at the time.

The object I am holding in my hand in the picture below is a sticker that says "I voted!" I have my head covered because it was raining, lightly, at the time.
Click to enlarge photo.

So who did I vote for in this 2008 Primary? I chose to participate using the Republican ballot-- a fact, I understand, which is a matter of public record. More specific than that, I'm not tellin'!