Tuesday, November 17, 2009

In the meteor shower with Denise

I decided to spend a few rare precious moments looking at blogs this morning but never got beyond the first one.  Denise was talking about the Leonid Meteor shower that we are now in the midst of.

BUTLER: "Up until recently it was not good form to end a sentence with a preposition but it is now all right except for very formal writing."

BAGMAN:  "You are in the midst of a shower with Denise?"

Everyone on Earth is in the shower, Bags.

BAGMAN:  "Suddenly I'm glad I woke up!"

Anyway, reading her blog suddenly gave birth to an idea for a short blog.

BAGMAN: "You're conceiving with Denise in the shower?"

BUTLER: "This won't be a very short blog if Bagman keeps sticking his smutty ideas in.  And please note that even I can end a sentence with a preposition."


So I was remembering that I always was disappointed as a kid because I expected meteor showers to look like fireworks displays but never saw anything more than a little streak.

But two years ago, I decided to go outside and lie down for an hour or so in the grass and just look, without expectations, to see what this Leonid Meteor shower was all about. 

BAGMAN: "Boy, you must have been bored!"

Anyhow, after I adjusted to the light, or lack of it, I noticed a couple of little streaks in the periphery of my vision.  They were small but I counted them.  One, two...

BAGMAN:  "Did you count them with a vampirish accent like the Count on Sesame Street?"

(Long pause and deep breath while I concentrate on ignoring Bagman.)  So I kept looking and counting and, sure enough, the meteorites kept coming.  Some were tiny, a couple were longer.  One even split in two as it streaked overhead.  Nothing that would excite a kid but I began to realize how many there were.  Fifteen...sixteen...

At first I wondered why the vast majority appeared in my peripheral vision instead of where I was looking.  Then I realized that it was because the vast majority of my vision is peripheral.  My focus is only a small area of what I am seeing at any given time.  So instead of trying to look around and guess at where they might be, I just relaxed. 

No, it wasn't spectacular like the Northern Lights, but I was up to 173 meteorites before I heard Karen calling me from the house -- "Mark!  What on earth are you doing out there?!!!"  

"It's the Leonid Meteor Shower!  Come and see!  One hundred and seventy-four!" 

She walked out and looked up.  "Where?  I don't see anything."

"Just wait.  There!  There's one!"
"There!  One seventy-five!  And one seventy-six!  And there!"

"You mean that little thing near the tree?"

"Yes!  One seventy-seven!"

"Okay.  I guess I saw it.  Are you coming back to bed?"

And I did, deciding that my record for seeing meteorites would stay at one seventy-seven. 

BAGMAN:  "And this blog was what you conceived with Denise in the shower?"


BAGMAN:  "Did you offer her a cigarette?"


  1. LOL - you are too funny. great post. Hope you see them this time around.

  2. I will be heading out in the boat tonight...supposed to be peak viewing and while freezing my arse off, hope to see at least a little of what you saw! (I don't think I will blog about it because I cannot top this post.)

  3. I used to wake my kids up in the middle of the night and take them outside, walking barefoot through the wet grass to spread blankets on the lawn so we could lie there and watch the meteors streak across the sky. I doubt they remember that or eclipses of the moon that I insisted they watch. I was always more impressed than they were.

  4. lately, I had had not time to look up. Nice post, though. Glad Bagman is alive and well.

  5. Wonderful post and a great reminder to take the time to enjoy the simple things in life. Love the humour - and that last line - tooo funny!

  6. Your post got me thinking about a night I wandered off into the dark to watch a meteor shower. Then I remembered it was the night of November 17, 1998. The night my granddaughter Jami was born and it's her birthday today. They say this year there will be a dramatic show. It was great eleven years ago, too.

  7. Linda and I have spent evenings watching the Leonid Meteor shower without coming anywhere near your count.

    But then you were out in the shower with both Denise and Karen!

    You must have been exhausted.

  8. "Did you offer her a cigarette".....priceless!

    I adore your humour Mark.

    Big hugs
    Peggy xxxx

  9. LOL - fireworks and cigarettes to discuss a meteor shower, hunh?

    Guess I need to get out there and start counting!

  10. Just clouds here East of the Bay. Always enjoy looking for meteors even if none appear.

    And never dangle your prepositions. Or your participles. Especially when you are showering with Denise

  11. I meant I had not had time to look up. See? I don't even have time to type.

    Hope you have a great weekend.