We're back to practicing avoidance around here for a while as the stuff we've been grinding on is just too depressing to work at posting.
Besides, as we are in the midst of almost nightly arguments over just what exactly it is that's going on out there and just what exactly do it mean, we have no thinking worth posting right now anyway.
Besides again, I just took on a second project which is beating the crap out of my not nearly as spry as it used to be body, the result being that I've been coming home, pounding the Advil and sucking on a bottle of Merlo in front of the fire rather than sitting in my office and reading crap that makes me crabby.
I'm starting to think that this may well be a superior approach to life.
The first two vids were shot from the International Space Station, the third from the ground.
Earth can be a beautiful place when the idiots aren't busy screwing things up.
All kinds of disruption to GPS, satelite guidance systems, air travel, and communications have been the result.
That's the bad news.
The good news is that the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights as they are known in these parts have been going ape shit crazy.
In the interest of full disclosure; despite our profound interest in "The Sky", the Sun, Moon, the planets, stars, astronomy, astrology and the like, you can take the entirety of our acquired knowledge regarding these items, put it in a thimble and still have room for an average sized thumb.
We like the pretty pictures.
Anyway, and evidently, Sunspot activity is picking up again quite nicely, which of course results in the following as described at Spaceweather.com.
AURORA WATCH: A slow-moving coronal mass ejection (CME) launched from the sun on March 3rd should reach Earth later today, possibly sparking polar geomagnetic storms. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras.
SUNSET SKY SHOW: When the sun sets tonight, go outside and look west. Jupiter and the 5% crescent Moon will be side-by-side, shining together through the twilight. It's an exquisite conjunction. [sky map]
All the photo's below link up to the page where we found them, there are tons more ... enjoy.
On March 5th, Peter Rosén caught the Moon, pre-conjunction, smiling over the tree tops of Stockholm, Sweden:
"The Moon was only 20h40m past 'new' when I took the picture," says Rosén. "It should look even better on Sunday night when it glides past Jupiter."
When they tell you to be on the lookout for auroras in the northern latitudes, they're talking about this.
Finally, the little Wiffer was standing here while I was going through this post and announced that experiencing the "Northern Lights" was at or near the top of her bucket list.
About 30 seconds of research later, I found these guys.
Click the photo.
At least this time it'll be her fault we're freezing our asses off on vacation.
From the Christian Science Monitor.
The photo links to the story, the story links to some outstanding photography and easy science.
For folks along the northern rim of the US, a second chance to see the northern lights will come when another solar outburst hits Earth Wednesday or Thursday.
If you're still in the hunt for aurora borealis, the outbursts of hot, ionized gas the sun sent toward Earth on Sunday may just keep on giving.
Space-weather forecasters say that there's a 20 percent chance for a major geomagnetic storm tonight – an event stronger than last night's that would make any auroras visible farther south than last night's northern-light show reached.