Southern Man

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Starry Starry Night

After a long day at work Southern Man had to head out to The Land (dropping by the Brushhog Guy's house to pay him for the weekend's mowing) and talk to some of the other lot-owners about getting our road re-graded and re-graveled and then (about three hundred and thirty dollars lighter) unloaded some boxes and did some inside chores. And when he came out he was greeted by a gentle cool breeze and a beautiful clear dark sky with the Winter Hexagon perched on the western horizon and Venus glittering under Taurus and Mars glaring balefully overhead and the Big Dipper perched over the workshop.

The bright stars of the Winter Hexagon includes portions the constellations Gemini, Orion, Canis Major, Canis Minor, Taurus, and Auriga. Accompanied by his two dogs, the mighty hunter Orion, sword at on his belt and shield in hand, faces the red-eyed bull as the Twins and the Charioteer observe the carnage.

The Big Dipper, as it is familiarly known, is an asterism that is part of the constellation Ursa Major. The end of the Dipper (left in this photo) draws a line to Polaris (the North Star); this time of year the Dipper is inverted and high in the northern sky. Are your eyes sharp enough to see the double stars in the handle? 'Way back in the day, if you could, you were trained as an archer. If you couldn't, you got handed a pike and stood in front of the archers.

The temptation to stay was overwhelming but, sadly, it is a work night so Southern Man watched the stars for a while and then climbed back into The Titan to head back into town.


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