There’s going to be a lunar eclipse tonight and according to the folks on the radio, it should be visible from the DC area.
Therefore, based on the past 10 years worth of evidence that it’s impossible to have interesting astronomical phenomenon visible from the DC area without accompanying heavy cloud cover, I hereby predict that heavy cloud cover will roll in about 15 minutes before the eclipse starts and won’t dissipate until at least 15 minutes after the show ends.
Of course, the fact that this prediction has been made means that the moon will be visible after all. But because there’s an interesting astronomical phenomenon taking place, it can’t be visible and the heavy clouds will roll in anyhow.
Therefore, tonight’s stargazing will feature a spectacular meteor show as the moon, torn asunder by these conflicting forces, spontaneously explodes! This once-in-a-planetary-lifetime event will be viewed by millions of people across the Americas, causing feelings of awe at the wonders of creation, eventually leading to a great spiritual awakening and worldwide peace and well-being.
It’s a pity we won’t be able to see it because of the clouds.
Updated at 8:50pm: As predicted, the night sky has been obscured by clouds. No word on whether the moon has exploded yet.
Updated at 10:30pm: Wylie and I just returned from our evening walk. No sign of the moon exploding yet, but the clouds have disappeared and the moon is visible. When we got back in a few minutes ago, the moon had turned a reddish-brown. I don’t know whether we’ll get any closer to it disappearing into shadow, but I’ll be going out to take a look now and then.
As for the cloudy part of my forecast… well hey, if Doug Hill can get a few wrong, so can I.
Updated at 11:05pm: Wow! That’s really neat to see! The moon is nearly invisible against the sky except for a small crescent of white.