30 June 2015

Time Leap

Today we underwent a leap second, thus reminding us time is a human construct.
As the Earth continues to slow, leap seconds will grow more common. Eventually we will need one every year, and then even more. Scientists could have avoided these awkward skips by choosing instead to adjust the duration of the second itself. Who would notice? That is what they did, in fact, until 1955.
James Gleick
Rostock Marienkirche Astronomische Uhr, 2011-02-12, by Schiwago

11 June 2015

Rotate into Darkness

After watching a handful of feral horses grazing in prairie grasses, we climb to a high point. To the east are the stark and subtractive badlands exposing the head-scratching wonders of geologic time. To the west, are rolling hills of buffalo grass and wildflowers.

Following some carefree putzing along a ridge line photographing wildflowers, avoiding scat piles, and listening to a band of coyotes, the sun, in a predictable but improbable arrangement with it's satellite, bids farewell by painting the sky above the horizon.

We as willing and curious passengers, rotate into darkness.

Sunset Buck Hill. Theodore Roosevelt National Park.