Friday, August 31, 2007

a red moon

As the Tasmanian winter draws to an end, my craving for citrus fruits has started to abate. I've eaten just about every sort I can get my hands on - oranges, mandarins, tangellos, kiwi fruit.... only grapefruit is off-limits, because it interferes with one of my medications.

I've still been drinking a lot of coffee though, and apparently I'm not alone. A survey released this week reveals that a lot of Australians are drinking more and more coffee. I can sympathise with that, though the guy who drinks seven cups a day every weekend is probably over-doing it.

The big event of the week was the lunar eclipse. The visibility was good from my back yard. It started a bit after 7:30pm (Eastern Australian Time) and soon the moon shadowed over. By about 8 o'clock it looked like Mars - pale orange with a bright white area visible at the top.
I was worried about clouds blocking our view, but it was windy and the clouds moved away to give us a good view from suburban Hobart.
About 9:30 I went out again and there was a brighter rim at the bottom, with a sort of smudge across the face of the moon.
It worked out better than I expected. I wouldn't have been surprised if the weather had closed in just at the vital moment.

Florida, so I read, leads the US in legislation about pirate radio. They have laws that empower authorities at the county level to investigate complaints about unauthorized broadcasters and shut them down. It literally takes years for the FCC to act (not its fault: it’s stuck with cumbersome procedures). The Palm Beach Post says a pirate operating from a tower owned by a plumbing company was interfering with a licensed Low Power FM owned by a nearby church. That led to a Wednesday morning raid and an arrest.

Speaking of radio, I usually listen to the Friday afternoon show on 92FM which features an hour of Theatre Organ music. If you've ever heard a Wurlitzer in full flight, this is the show for you. Go here -

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