By Dennis Hartley
(Originally posted on Digby’s Hullabaloo on August 19, 2017)
Depending on your worldview, Monday’s super-hyped solar eclipse may be interpreted as: a). A sign of the impending apocalypse, b). A sign that once in a blue moon, the moon blows in and obscures the sun, giving humanity the impression (for a few heart stopping moments) that the apocalypse has, in fact, arrived, or c). A dollar sign for event promoters, hoteliers, tow truck drivers, and people who sell cheap cardboard sunglasses.
I know. I’m a cynical bastard.
If the “Eclipse of the Century” forces people to tear themselves away from their 5 inch iPhone screen to gaze up at The Big Sky, and ponder the awesomeness and vastness of the cosmos (and most importantly, humankind’s relative insignificance in the grand scheme of things)…then I’m for it (I Googled “can you view the eclipse with a…” and right after “mirror”, “sunglasses” and “welding mask”, there it was- goddamn “iPhone”).
Do me a favor. If you’re lucky enough to make it through the horrendous traffic and wriggle through the madding crowd to snag a perfect observation point in one of the areas that will experience totality…don’t view it through a 5-inch screen…LOOK at it! Wear eye protection, of course, but experience the ACTUAL PHENOMENON! Thanks.
After all, as Carl Sagan observed:
“We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology.”
BTW, here’s evolutionary perspective on why we sophisticated, technically-advanced humanoids still get the tiniest little lizard brain-fueled twitch when Big Light Go Away:
With that in mind, please enjoy this special mixtape that I have assembled to accompany the solar system’s ultimate laserium show (don’t worry-I didn’t forget the Floyd, man!).
The Rolling Stones- “2000 Light Years from Home”
Paul Weller- “Andromeda”
The Orb- “Backside of the Moon”
Kate Bush- “The Big Sky”
Soundgarden- “Black Hole Sun”
Husker Du- “Books about UFOs”
Pink Floyd- “Brain Damage/Eclipse”
Crosby, Stills, & Nash- “Dark Star”
The Ian Gillian Band- “Five Moons”
Moxy- “Moon Rider”
King Crimson- “Moonchild”
Nick Drake- “Pink Moon”
Elton John- “Rocket Man”
David Bowie- “Space Oddity”
Liz Phair- “Stars and Planets”
Yes- “Starship Trooper”
Bonnie Hayes- “Total Eclipse of the Heart”
The Church- “Under the Milky Way”
Paul McCartney & Wings- “Venus + Mars”