Friday, August 25, 2017

TOTALITY

https://www.universetoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/2016-Total-Solar-Eclipse-700x432.jpg 

I traveled to Wyoming to view the total eclipse of the sun.  Rhonda had been camping for several days and was not up for another road trip!  I drove up to Laramie the evening before - got in touch with nephew David for a beer, and he suggested a place for viewing that would likely be less crowded.  I had planned on taking the back road to Casper, but the route I took was the back way to Douglas.  It was a dirt road called Fetterman that headed north shortly beyond Rock River.  David thought that it would be about 45 minutes to the area of totality, but it turned out to be about twice that. However, it was worth it.  

There were dozens of cars along Fetterman Road, and as the terrain turned from plains to canyons, there were numerous pull-off sites where people were gathering.  I saw one open area where about a half dozen cars had gathered, and decided to stop.  Got wonderfully lucky!!  A fellow from Texas had brought his 12 inch telescope and some modified binoculars for the viewing.  The 20 or so folks at the site were treated to some wonderful images along with the views through our glasses and the transition from day time to darkness.

I watched through my glasses and saw the progression shown above.  As totality approached, the air started to cool, and I went from comfortable in short sleeves to needing my hooded sweat shirt!  The bright blue sky began to lose its color, and transformed to a dusky gray.  All of the colors took on an other-worldly hue - not unlike when the sun is being partially blocked by smoke from forest fires, but still different from anything I had ever seen.  At totality, I had my binoculars ready to go, and the view was just as shown above.  However, I immediately noted a star adjacent to the sun/moon, and from the map below, it was Regulus, one of the stars in Orion's Belt.  Solar flares were also plain to see.  Venus appeared early on and was easily identified, and various other planets and stars came into view.  The two and a half minutes of totality passed way too quickly, but to use an overworked word - Awesome!!  As the total eclipse ended, the crowd broke out into spontaneous applause, and folks began to gather up for the trek home, knowing that traffic would be a zoo.  Fortunately I took the 'back' way home to Colorado and avoided the traffic-jam-from-hell along Interstate 25.


 http://pop.h-cdn.co/assets/17/33/1503277129-regulus-planets-sun-8-21-2017-eddie-e1477595696172.jpg

The next total eclipse in the US is in seven years, and the path is shown below - I highly recommend making the effort to take it in - I don't think that you will be disappointed.

http://eclipse.siu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/2017-2024.jpg

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

TWENTY FIFTH AMENDMENT

 http://www.k-zap.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/trump-crazy-nuts-.jpeg

I believe that it is time for Pence and the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States:
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Section 1. In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President.

Section 2. Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress.

Section 3. Whenever the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President.

Section 4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

Monday, August 14, 2017

GENTLE ON OUR MINDS

Glen Campbell - 1936-2017.  Obituaries here and here. I was volunteering at the Colorado Roots Music Camp at RMMC when we got the news of Campbell's death.  It seemed as though everyone there from the professional musician-instructors to the the music campers had a Glen story [mine was published in a previous post here].  Although Campbell had many famous hits, I am posting below one of his less-mentioned hits - this is prompted by the tribute to Glen given by the Music Camp organizer Charlie Hall.  Charlie and another master musician Louis Mock gave a goose-bump inducing rendition of Gentle on My Mind.  The video shows his masterful guitar playing, and the audience is an impressive group as well!





It's knowin' that your door is always open
And your path is free to walk
That makes me tend to leave my sleepin' bag
Rolled up and stashed behind your couch
And it's knowin' I'm not shackled
By forgotten words and bonds
And the ink stains that have dried upon some line
That keeps you in the back roads
By the rivers of my memory
That keeps you ever gentle on my mind

It's not clingin' to the rocks and ivy
Planted on their columns now that bind me
Or something that somebody said because
They thought we fit together walkin'
It's just knowing that the world
Will not be cursing or forgiving
When I walk along some railroad track and find
That you're movin' on the back roads
By the rivers of my memory
And for hours you're just gentle on my mind

Though the wheat fields and the clothes lines
And the junkyards and the highways come between us
And some other woman's cryin' to her mother
'Cause she turned and I was gone
I still might run in silence
Tears of joy might stain my face
And the summer sun might burn me till I'm blind
But not to where I cannot see
You walkin' on the back roads
By the rivers flowin' gentle on my mind

I dip my cup of soup back from a gurglin' cracklin' cauldron
In some train yard
My beard a rustlin' coal pile
And a dirty hat pulled low across my face
Through cupped hands 'round a tin can
I pretend to hold you to my breast and find
That you're waitin' from the back roads
By the rivers of my memory
Ever smilin', ever gentle on my mind



Songwriter - John Hartford