BAN #29: Astronomy chopped, global weirding

July 23, 2018 Issue #29

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Q & BA

You asked. I answered. 

Due to the imposing presence of San Diego Comic Con in my life over the weekend, I didn’t have time (or energy or enough sleep) to make a video answering a comment for this issue. My apologies. Next week!


Follow o’ the Letter

Someone you should follow on social media

As you know, the Earth is getting hotter. This is changing our climate. You could even say that global warming is creating climate change.

I say that. So does Katharine Hayhoe.

 She’s a climate scientist, and an outspoken one. That’s tough enough in today’s climate (so to speak), but being a woman makes it far harder. Because some men are jerks. To put it very, very mildly. 

I think she’s terrific. She’s doing a huge amount of work advocating for climate science and climate action, educating people on the situation and what we can do about it. She has a great series of short videos on YouTube called “Global Weirding”, and I highly recommend them.

And here’s an interesting note: She’s an evangelical Christian. 

A lot of her approach is to talk about the Bible supporting the idea that we should take care of the Earth. If you’re of that persuasion, she makes a strong argument for it.

It won’t shock you to know I’m not of that persuasion. However, I still strongly support Katharine and her work. For one thing, she can automatically get the ear of an audience that would be very difficult for me; it’s unlikely I will be invited to a Texas church, say, to talk about climate change. For another, a huge part of climate change denial is tribalism, and I am not the right tribe. She is, and has one fewer roadblock to face when talking about this topic. And for a third, this is precisely the audience we need most to hear the message.

Also? I like her. She’s cool, and friendly, and is doing a fantastic job trying to save humanity from its own short-sightedness.

You can follow her on Twitter, and on Facebook. Watch her videos, too, and spread the word.


Astro Tidbit

A brief synopsis of some interesting astronomy/science news that may be too short for the blog, too long for Twitter, but just right (and cool enough to talk about) for here.

I like astronomy-themed stuff. I mean, duh. So when I saw that the company Chef’s Vision has a set of what they call their “Cosmos Series” of knives, I was intrigued. They look really cool; they have Hubble images of various astronomical objects on the blades.

[Credit: Chef’s Vision]

Nice! I noticed that in a photo of the box they have very brief descriptions of the objects, too, which is a welcome bonus. If I had to whinge, even a tiny bit, I’d say I wish they gave the names of the objects, too, so people can find more info if they’re interested.

From smallest to largest, the objects are WR 124, a small part of the Veil Nebula, N90, Pismis 24, the Crab Nebula, and Sharpless 2-106 (one of my all-time Hubble favorites). Those links will give you tons of info on the objects.

I see a lot of this sort of thing now, and I love it. Astronomical images are very popular on tights, clothing in general, and lots of other things. The only problem is when I see them I try to figure out what the observations show, and that can be hard. Sometimes the manufacturer overlaps different images, for example. And sometimes I just don’t recognize the observations, which is rare but happens. I’ve spent a lot of time reading about various objects, so I can usually ID the image if not the observatory used, too.

And hey! If you have a company that does this, contact me! I’d be happy to write a short blurb describing your merchandise’s lovely cosmic apparition. My rates are reasonable.

Also, if you want to get the knives, they’re available on Amazon (affiliate link). I may have to get myself a set!


Et alia 

You can email me at thebadastronomer@gmail.com (though replies can take a while), and all my social media outlets are gathered together at about.me. Also, if you don’t already, please subscribe to this newsletter! And feel free to tell a friend or nine, too. Thanks!