I am a native in this world And think in it as a native thinks

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Astronomy Tuesday

This is for some reason known as the Ant nebula, though I think it looks more spidery.

Image Credit: R. Sahai (JPL) et al., Hubble Heritage Team, ESA, NASA

Monday, June 29, 2015

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sunday bird blogging

A peaceable kingdom -- you can't tell in this picture but the pile of black fur the pigeon is perching on is actually a sleeping cat.

This menagerie in a box shows up on Eighth Avenue from time to time looking for donations to keep the critters fed.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Intoxicated and utterly unmotivated

Slate has created a Scalia insult generator, so you too can be the object of his scorn, even if you're not planning to gay-marry anyone and you already have health insurance.

It's been a bad week for apoplectics.

Saturday reflections

Equitable Tower, reflected in cars on West 51st Street.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Urban poetry

This is as urban as you get -- the slow crawl of rush hour traffic in Manhattan, brake lights as far as you can see.

I started carrying my camera to work last week, hoping for some inspiration to start taking pictures again after several weeks off. And what I have ended up with is -- a lot more pictures of cars. The curves, the reflections, the headlights, mostly the headlights and taillights. I find them so strange and so beautiful.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Astronomy Tuesday

This is M45, the star cluster also known as the Pleiades, or the Seven Sisters.

It's easily visible with the naked eye, though whether you can actually see seven of the stars depends on how clear and dark the sky is. I knew the name long before I learned to recognize it in the night sky, because there's a wonderful episode in Mary Poppins (the original book, not the movie) where one of the stars comes down to London to buy Christmas presents for her sisters. So I always think of it as the Seven Sisters, no matter how many of them show up on any particular night.

Image Credit & Copyright: Marco Lorenzi (Glittering Lights)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Detritus of the modern brain

I had a very long, detailed dream about my phone: I had a voicemail and I was trying to figure out which data plan I needed to switch to in order to access it.

This is definitely on my top ten list of most boring dreams ever, but given the horrible events of the past week, I'm a little grateful for boring.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Urban poetry

Yes, apparently that is an actual thing. 

Of course I did know that Turkish baths exist, but the sign -- in English -- amused me anyway, since this did not, at least from the outside, appear to be a building I would want to bathe in.

I have been blogged out since overdosing on my Iranian adventures, so posting may remain sporadic for the time being. I have a few more trips scheduled this year, and I'd hate to make writing about them feel like a chore.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sunday bird blogging

Hello, down there!

A tufted titmouse investigates the racket some rowdy sparrows were making on the ground.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Saturday reflections

The New Mosque in Istanbul, reflected in a car window.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Astronomy Tuesday

That green glow in the center left of this picture is Comet Lovejoy -- or rather, the latest Comet Lovejoy, as Terry Lovejoy has discovered four previous bearers of the name. (You know you've been watching too much Game of Thrones when you want to introduce an astronomical object as “Comet Lovejoy, the fifth of its name.”)

The bright star on the right is Polaris, the North Star. It's not especially bright seen from Earth, but because it's close to the celestial pole, the place in the sky where our planet's axis points, it's the pivot around which the northern skies appear to revolve. So some of us may think the universe revolves around us, but Polaris can actually make a very strong case for it.

Image Credit & Copyright: Rogelio Bernal Andreo

Monday, June 8, 2015

Welcome to the working week

Boys scavenging in an empty lot in Mahan, Iran.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sunday bird blogging

That yellow eye should be the giveaway, but it wasn't until she turned and the sun caught the patch of iridescence on her throat that I was sure this was a female grackle. As usual, not nearly as showy as the males, but tastefully subdued.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Saturday reflections

Headlights, reflecting bits of New York. Of home.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Hump day

The working week slipped right past me -- it's been an unusually busy one -- and now we're over the hump and sliding into the weekend. Yay.

Further proof, if any was needed, that a bored clerk in a shoe store is pretty much the same everywhere. This particular store was in the bazaar in Kerman.

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