#383 The Moon

Everyone loves the sun.

Plants, light, tanlines, we get it, we get it. But, you know what? Today’s the day to give props to that other big guy floating up in the sky. Yes, we say the Moon’s worth respecting for a few big reasons:

1. Lights up the night. Sure, the moon isn’t as bright as the sun but he’s still a friendly flashlight on dark nights. If you’ve ever been lost on a boyscout trip in the forest, driven down a pitch black country road, or taken a midnight pee at the campsite, you know what we’re talking about. Smile as those flickery white shadows glimmer off twigs and branches to help you avoid tumbling down the rocky cliffside.

2. Turn the tides. The moon’s constant gravitational yanking gives us choppy ocean tides all day long. Tides allow some species to lay eggs, others to ride the waves, and, most importantly, add important time pressures to sand castle competitions. Without them our oceans — and indeed, our lives — would be flat and dreary.

3. Get out of late free card. There’s something beautiful about seeing the moon hanging around a clear blue morning sky. It’s kind of like that coffee shop employee who chills behind the counter after her shift, pouring a few more drinks in her winter jacket before heading home. “Yeah, yeah, I know the sun’s here,” she seems to say. “Just want to make sure everything’s cool before I take off.” Also, as everyone knows, it’s impossible to be late for work when the moon’s still out because it’s not officially daytime yet. Be sure to check your Rules of Life pocketbook if you need clarification on this important matter.

4. Toss the Timex. The moon’s waxing and waning keep our dates in check, thank you very much. According to our egghead pals at Wikipedia the moon even formed the basis of the world’s first calendars with 13,000 year old eagle-bone relics dug up in Le Placard, France. That’s why our current months are estimates of the lunar cycle and why moon and month are from the same root. Word to your dictionary.

5. Let’s get nuts. Both lunacy and loony are derived from Luna, the Latin name for the Moon. Ancient googly-eyed nerds Aristotle and Pliny the Elder thought full moons made people nuts because our brains are mostly water and therefore we get the same Earth-Moon tidal forces in our heads. Well, the jury’s still out on that one, but there’s nothing wrong with a bit of spice in life, so when that full moon comes around feel free to bulge your eyeballs, act like a caveman, or wear your wacky purple tie to the office meeting.

Sometimes our home planet can seem like a lonely base, spinning in place, floating through space. But when you stare out your bedroom window, up into the distant forever reaches of infinite darkness, remember we’ve got a friend riding with us everywhere we go. Yes, the Moon’s our lunchtime pal in the giant universal cafeteria and our seatmate at the back of the big bang bus. So when it seems like the big blackness is lonely, when it seems like we’re far from home, well just remember that the Moon’s always beside us… as we ride into the deep unknown.


Photos from: here, here, here, and here

62 thoughts on “#383 The Moon

  1. “Be sure to check your Rules of Life pocketbook if you need clarification on this important matter.” :D
    That was great.
    “Our seatmate in the back of the Big Bang Bus.”
    Another gem.
    Loved this post a lot.

  2. The moon IS totally awesome! You always think of such wonderful things that I would have completely neglected.

    #5 is real, y’all. Ask any teacher. Kids go totally loony when there’s a full moon. It’s not proven, but … it’s real. ;)

    “Be sure to check your Rules of Life pocketbook if you need clarification on this important matter.” — LOVE!!

  3. I loved this post, and I loveee orange moons!! I always thought they were so pretty (and much more common than a blue one)

  4. I’m pretty sure I will die in a car wreck someday because there is a full moon and I’m trying to watch it through my moon(sun)roof. But you know what? I’ll be happy when I die, so I figure it’s an awesome way to go. :)

  5. When I was a little one, if I was crying, my mum would take me outside. As soon as I saw the moon I would stop, and stare in awe and wonder.
    So I agree that the moon is definitely awesome : )
    This post made me oh so happy to know I am not alone in my moon affair

    1. Aw, that’s so cute and sweet! I have a moon-baby story, too! One time when I was only a few months old, my Aunt and Uncle were watching me at their farm for a couple of days. At night, they heard strange noises coming from my bedroom. They lept up, afraid I was sick or choking or something. But I was happy as a clam, lying there cooing up at the full moon.

      1. LOL! I’ve also been waiting for someone to comment about the coffee shop employee pouring a few drinks in her jacket, but so far no grammar geeks have taken note.

        Grammar Geeks! Where ARE you??

        1. Oh.. was that a mistake? I just thought that was a new goofy technique Canadians were using to keep warm these days..

          “hmm.. before I head outside, I better pour a steaming hot cup of joe inside my jacket.. yeah.. that’ll keep me warm..”

          Maybe the grammar geeks were making the same mistake?

            1. Blisters and a cold wet spot? You just described Neil’s average Saturday night.. ZING!

              (uhh… Too far?)

  6. So beautiful :) I will never forget the night we visited a friends when i was five and we went outside and the moon literally was as wide as the road and very much golden… In science we are studying the Earth and beyond, but i would just be happy to stare at pictures of the moon and read awesome posts like this one ^^^^^ all during class.

  7. “Word to your dictionary.” You crack me up.

    I have always been fascinated by space-the moon, the stars…all of it. I’ve been reading a lot about it all lately….so intriguing. I do feel a little sad for Pluto, though.

  8. Number 5 is real. I work at a nursing home and everyone with Alzheimer’s goes crazy during a full moon. It never fails.

    And the moon is totally awesome! :P

  9. Here’s my favorite thing about point #1 (Lights up the Night)? When you go outside where there isn’t any artificial light (say, camping in the woods), on a full moon.. you let your eyes adjust (give ’em a fully 20 minutes), and it is AMAZING how well you can see. You don’t need flashlights or head lamps or anything..

    Now, stop and think about the fact that all of that light you see lighting up your campsite is actually little photons coming all the way from the sun, flying past the earth, hitting this giant hunk of rock, and reflecting back to us.. RIDICULOUS!

    To me, it seems almost impossible.. I mean, it’s not a mirror.. it’s a rock! Have you ever shined a light at a rock? Did it seem very reflective..

    Just shows you how bright and powerful the sun actually is, and how awesome the moon is for serving as our big “light mirror” in the sky..

    Plus, Mooning is a great prank you can do out of the back window of your car on road trips!

  10. One of my favs to date…Love, love, love this post! You have such unique vision, such creative prose! I’m a moon fanatic who never misses a chance to stare in wonder, searching for the man amidst the green cheese. The moon is highly underrated, if you ask me. The sun gets so much attention, but the moon, well the Moon is full of poetry, music, mystery.

    1. But think about the embarrassement of riches experienced by those multi-moon planets!

      They probably don’t even realize how awesome it is to have a moon, and they take them for granted.

      I mean, Jupiter and Saturn have 63 and 62 moons respectively.. stupid show-offs..

      We, on the other hand, are the only planet to have our single, perfect moon.. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: “GO EARTH!!”

      1. Our moon is so big relative to us, that some astronomers refer to the Earth/Moon as the “Twin Planets”. How cool are we?

  11. This post made me think of my favorite Sesame Street song, from out good old friend Ernie:
    “I’d like to visit the moon
    in a rocketship high in the air.
    Yes I’d like to visit the moon
    but I don’t think I’d like to live there.”


  12. we like the moon… ’cause it is close to us…

    (but not as much as a spoon, ’cause that’s more use for eating soup… and a fork is not very useful for that, unless it has got many vegetables)

  13. By a happy coincidence, the moon as seen from Earth is about the same size as the Sun as seen from Earth. Therefore, every once in a while, we get to experience a total eclipse of the Sun. No other planet in our solar system gets this experience, and it’s all due to our good friend, the Moon.

    That’s a biggie.
    An Awesome biggie.

  14. “It’s kind of like that coffee shop employee who chills behind the counter after her shift, pouring a few more drinks in her winter jacket before heading home.”

    ^You’ve pinpointed that feeling I get in my heart when I see the moon hanging around in the daytime! :)

    And the last one was beautiful.

    I think reading this blog is one of the things that is helping shape my new perspective on life this year. I also think i’ve forgotten how important it is to sometimes shake things up and look at them from a different angle. The world is just that much better because you decide to share these thoughts with other people, with anyone who wants or needs to see them.

    …here i am getting all mooshy over an entry about moons.
    You ARE a good writer!

    (PS – I agree with a few comments here. I also believe in the “full moon = crazy” theory.)

  15. I love everything about the moon, I am in Awe by it! It makes me feel amazing when I see it up there in the sky. We as beings on earth are such a small thing in this vast vast universe and we sometimes seem to forget how great and immense the universe really is and how special we truly are to be a part of it…even if it is just a small part of it.

  16. We like the moon
    coz it is close to us.
    We like the MOOOOOON!
    But not as much as a spoon
    coz that’s more use for eating soup
    and a fork isn’t very useful for that
    unless it has got many vegetables
    and then you might be better off with a chopstick.
    Unlike the moon
    It is up in the sky
    It’s up there very high
    but not as high as maybe dirigibles or zeppelins
    or lightbulbs
    and maybe clouds
    and puffins also I think maybe they go quite high too
    maybe not as high as the moon.
    Coz the moon is very high.
    We like tha moon
    Tha moon is very useful everyone.
    Everybody like the moon.
    Because it light up the sky as night and it lovely and it make the tide go
    and we like it
    but not as much as cheese.
    We really like cheese
    we like zeppelins
    We really like them
    and we like kelp
    and we like moose
    and we like deer
    and we like marmots
    and we like all the fluffy animals.
    We really like tha moon.

    1. Oh my gosh! I just now FINALLY remembered where this was from.
      It’s rather good to finally remember. ;)

  17. I like the Moon. Here are some fun facts

    The Moon is about 1 billion feet from us.

    In inches, it is 15 billion inches away

    It would take you about 9 years to walk to it.

    If you drive to it at 60 mph, it will take 5 months to reach it.

  18. Great post!

    When I look at the moon….

    I think that this object (other than the earth) is the only thing that every living creature that ever existed on earth has seen. Every dinosaur up to present day humans have looked at the moon. It is the only true item the earth owns that connects all living creatures on earth.

  19. Am home today due to food poisoning…and happened to read Sept. issue of Reader’s Digest and your interview…
    Last night’s full moon illuminated the entire lake for me to see the last bit of fog disappear over open water on the lake in front of my house…I have lived in Northern Saskatchewan for 18 years and have never once seen the lake freeze before my eyes….thanks to the full moon and me being at the window at 3:00 a.m. after a bout of ill health ( i won’t go into details here…), I

  20. one of the most awesome thing for me is seeing sun at the dawn…with the fresh air surrounding you….it’s just amazing..

  21. Seeing a photo of the watch you had about 7 years ago when you didn’t expect at all: Awesome!

  22. “Come a little bit closer, hear what I have to say~ just like children sleeping, we could dream this night away~ but there’s a full moon rising, let’s go dancing in the light~ we know where the music’s playing, lets go out and feel the night… because I’m still in love with you, I want to see you dance again~ because I’m still in love with you…on this harvest moon.
    When we were stranger’s, I watched you from afar,
    when we were lover’s, I loved you with all my heart, but now it’s getting late and the moon is climbing high, I want to celebrate, see it shining in your eyes… because I’m still in love with you, I want to see you dance again, because I’m still in love with you~~~ON THIS HARVEST MOON!”
    Thank you two my very favorite Neil’s in the whole MOON=D

  23. The Moon! Absolutely my favorite topic!
    It’s always makes me smile at the end of the day when I look up at the sky and see a beautiful and full moon.
    Unfortunately, in the city where I live has a lot of pollution and is not always possible to see The Moon…
    And, I don’t know if it’s only a Brazilian tradition, or a female tradition, but the moon phases influences the day I get my haircut, if you want volume, cut it in the full moon, if you want to grow fast, cut it in the crescent moon ;-)

  24. To be on the phone with a Loved one Far away and both be looking up to the same Beautiful Moon. This always brings forth a sense of closeness and a smile.

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