Author Topic: The Eclipse in Retrospect  (Read 276 times)

Offline SGOS (OP)

The Eclipse in Retrospect
« on: August 23, 2017, 04:36:57 PM »
I confess, it did a number on me, and for all the crowds, booked up motels, and exasperating freeway traffic, there were still a lot of people that stayed home.  And why not?  Partiality could be viewed from any state in the lower 48, and there's this once in a lifetime event going on, and well, what are you going to do?  Don't tell me you won't go outside for a few minutes and take a look.  I don't believe you.  No wonder the glasses got sold out.  And of course some people simply weren't interested in the eclipse, and I can grasp that. 

But there is one thing I don't get, and I thought about it while all the falderal was going on.  Is there anyone that didn't know it was going to happen?  Of course, there had to be someone, somewhere, but how many people were like that?  Friends of mine who drove to totality encountered that guy on the way home.  Seems there was an odd discussion taking place outside the men's restroom at a gas station, where my friend gathered some guy didn't know an eclipse had taken place, so he asked him just to make sure he understood, and the guy said, "Well no, I didn't know anything about it.  I was in the house, and it seemed like it got really cloudy outside for a couple of minutes." 

And this was in the path of totality!

With all the people staying home, it's common to hear someone say they had 70% or 90% totality at their house.  This is helpful in communicating a bit about what they saw.  Sometimes it's presented as, "We had 92% totality where we were, so that's pretty good, right?"

Actually, it's neither good or bad.  But this might suggest that 92% is better than 74?%, but not as good as 96%.  I know this is going to sound fucking elitist on my part, but after experiencing totality, and watching the event through the stages of the partial eclipse, in addition to sounding elitist, this is going to seem absurdly obvious to the extent that I might sound daft for even bringing it up.  But here's the thing; A partial eclipse is not a total eclipse.  Furthermore 99% is no different than 30%, at least when looking at the sun. Sure it gets darker outside and maybe quieter.  The temperature will drop a bit, and the wind may change.  But when looking at the sun, which after all, is the main event, how do you compare a partial eclipse with a total eclipse?  It's like driving along in a late model used Ford going 70 miles per hour,....  and all of a sudden finding yourself petting a rabbit, in a field of poppies no less.  You can't compare the two.  They are two different things.

And it is not a slow transition from one thing to the other.  Totality occurs in a second, maybe two tops, and everything changes:  Now it's one thing.  Now it's something else.  Off come the glasses because you can't see the corona with them, and there up in the sky is this fascinating black disk backlit with a cold white light that looks like it comes from an LED bulb.  It's beautiful, magical, and will be gone in a couple of minutes, and will be years before it comes back.  And no, pictures aren't the same thing.  Seeing it on television is a digital image, but it's not the same.  At least it wasn't for me.

At the end of totality, for just an instant, a small diamond of intense light occurs, the diamond ring effect as I've heard it called.  You only see it for a second at most, because it instantly becomes too intense to look at, and you have to put your glasses back on to watch the rest of the event.  That flash at the end before the eclipse flips back to a partial, punctuates the end of totality as everything changes back and seems almost like an anti-climax.  Totality is over.  Nothing to see here, folks.  Best get in the car and beat the crowds home, "Gentlemen, start your engines!"  And indeed, in a crowd of stargazers, the end of the eclipse does sort of sound like the start of the French Le Mans.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2017, 04:39:38 PM by SGOS »

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2017, 04:59:27 PM »
But there is one thing I don't get, and I thought about it while all the falderal was going on.  Is there anyone that didn't know it was going to happen?  Of course, there had to be someone, somewhere, but how many people were like that?  Friends of mine who drove to totality encountered that guy on the way home.  Seems there was an odd discussion taking place outside the men's restroom at a gas station, where my friend gathered some guy didn't know an eclipse had taken place, so he asked him just to make sure he understood, and the guy said, "Well no, I didn't know anything about it.  I was in the house, and it seemed like it got really cloudy outside for a couple of minutes." 

And this was in the path of totality!




I was wondering the same thing, and I did expect there to be at least some people who had no idea it was happening. Some people just don't keep up with current events.




God Not Found
"Never criticize someone unless you've walked a mile in his shoes. Then when you criticize him at least you'll be a mile away - and you'll have his shoes."
Ray Magliozzi
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted at all."

Online aitm

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2017, 09:09:32 PM »
a guy on the job site walked around with a welders helmet letting guys take a look. He knocked on the office so I obliged him. It was pretty much like one would expect...I thanked him and went back to calculating floor penetrations. Big whoop.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2017, 06:50:05 AM »
a guy on the job site walked around with a welders helmet letting guys take a look. He knocked on the office so I obliged him. It was pretty much like one would expect...I thanked him and went back to calculating floor penetrations. Big whoop.
/blase
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Offline SGOS (OP)

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2017, 07:38:40 AM »
a guy on the job site walked around with a welders helmet letting guys take a look. He knocked on the office so I obliged him. It was pretty much like one would expect...I thanked him and went back to calculating floor penetrations. Big whoop.
Outside the sun goes out, and you are doing floor penetrations.  You must be a lot of fun at a party.

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2017, 02:15:11 PM »
"floor penetration"...sounds...kinky...


 :signeew:
God Not Found
"Never criticize someone unless you've walked a mile in his shoes. Then when you criticize him at least you'll be a mile away - and you'll have his shoes."
Ray Magliozzi
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted at all."

Offline Hakurei Reimu

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2017, 05:55:37 PM »
I still say it's worth it to see the real thing at least once. No partial eclipse, because 99% is not "good enough" - it's garbage compared to the full event. Of course, I'm an astronomy freak, so I may be biased.
Warning: Don't Tease The Miko!
(she bites!)
Spinny Miko Avatar shamelessly ripped off from Iosys' Neko Miko Reimu

Offline PickelledEggs

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2017, 06:09:00 PM »
"Tell Pilate to release the files!!!" - Bill Hicks
"I have an open mind, but not so open that my brains will fall out" -James Randi
"One who truly hates himself cannot love, he cannot place his trust in another." - NGE

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2017, 05:41:03 PM »
Well, not everyone was able to get the special glasses for the eclipse - but not to worry, sunblock will keep the sun out of your eyes!

 :rrotflmao:

Report: Some patients treated for putting sunblock in their eyes during eclipse


Quote
Those experiencing blurred or impaired vision after watching the solar eclipse may want to see an eye doctor.

Nurse Practioner Trish Patterson told our sister station KRCR it usually takes 24 hours before people start noticing symptoms, including visual defects or blurriness.


Pain is not expected because there aren't pain receptors in the retina.

Patterson said they treat looking directly into the sun the same as a welder's flash.

So far, she said they haven't had any patients with damage from looking at the eclipse, but they've had a few customers experience pain after they put sunscreen in their eye Monday since they did not have protective glasses.

"One of my colleagues at moonlight here stated yesterday that they had patients presenting at their clinic that put sunscreen on their eyeball, and presented that they were having pain and they were referred to an ophthalmologist," Patterson said.

She said it only takes a few seconds of staring directly at the sun for retina damage.

Other signs to look out for dark spots in the center of vision and cloudiness.

People experiencing those symptoms should get checked right away with a thorough eye exam using a slit lamp, and visit an ophthalmologist.

Well, how clever and resourceful some people can be...

God Not Found
"Never criticize someone unless you've walked a mile in his shoes. Then when you criticize him at least you'll be a mile away - and you'll have his shoes."
Ray Magliozzi
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted at all."

Offline SGOS (OP)

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2017, 05:54:50 PM »
That could have been an article for the Onion.  How do people come up with this stuff?

Offline Cavebear

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2017, 05:22:08 AM »
"Evolution In Action"  The dumbest will eliminate themselves from the gene pool...

Sadly, not fast enough...
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2017, 12:33:13 AM »
I know this is going to sound fucking elitist on my part, but after experiencing totality, and watching the event through the stages of the partial eclipse, in addition to sounding elitist, this is going to seem absurdly obvious to the extent that I might sound daft for even bringing it up.  But here's the thing; A partial eclipse is not a total eclipse.  Furthermore 99% is no different than 30%, at least when looking at the sun.

And it is not a slow transition from one thing to the other.  Totality occurs in a second, maybe two tops, and everything changes:  Now it's one thing.  Now it's something else.  Off come the glasses because you can't see the corona with them, and there up in the sky is this fascinating black disk backlit with a cold white light that looks like it comes from an LED bulb.  It's beautiful, magical, and will be gone in a couple of minutes, and will be years before it comes back.  And no, pictures aren't the same thing. ...

 At least it wasn't for me.

At the end of totality, for just an instant, a small diamond of intense light occurs, the diamond ring effect as I've heard it called.  You only see it for a second at most, because it instantly becomes too intense to look at, and you have to put your glasses back on to watch the rest of the event.  That flash at the end before the eclipse flips back to a partial, punctuates the end of totality as everything changes back and seems almost like an anti-climax.  Totality is over. 

It was amazing!  And that isn't elitist, it is a fact.  :)

Just got home a few hours ago from my great adventure.  We had a place and found the weather was not going to be acceptable, so we packed up, drove almost all night thru fog along unfamiliar roads, arrived at new spot at 6am.  1:50+ seconds of totality.  A guy a few spots down was on his 8th total, all the way to our neighbor, who taped 1/2 pair of eclipse glasses to the i-phone and got pretty good shots; this girl had decided a few days before to return to her hometown to view it.  A park narc roamed around handing out glasses for anyone who didn't come prepared, they had plenty to spare! 

That teeny spotlight from the sun was incredible!  I describe it to people as the difference between seeing a pic of fireworks vs being at fireworks.  Our pictures are nice, but they do not capture the moment.

I am hoping to view the next US totality in 2024.  Learned alot from this one.

Offline SGOS (OP)

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2017, 08:24:06 AM »
It was amazing!  And that isn't elitist, it is a fact.  :)

Just got home a few hours ago from my great adventure.  We had a place and found the weather was not going to be acceptable, so we packed up, drove almost all night thru fog along unfamiliar roads, arrived at new spot at 6am.  1:50+ seconds of totality.  A guy a few spots down was on his 8th total, all the way to our neighbor, who taped 1/2 pair of eclipse glasses to the i-phone and got pretty good shots; this girl had decided a few days before to return to her hometown to view it.  A park narc roamed around handing out glasses for anyone who didn't come prepared, they had plenty to spare! 

That teeny spotlight from the sun was incredible!  I describe it to people as the difference between seeing a pic of fireworks vs being at fireworks.  Our pictures are nice, but they do not capture the moment.

I am hoping to view the next US totality in 2024.  Learned alot from this one.
I think it's important to realize that totality  needs to be understood as a different than looking at a partial eclipse with glasses, which is why I didn't want to be considered elitist.  You know, "You ain't seen nothing, until you seen what I seen."

I only have two other friends that traveled and fought traffic to see totality in my area.  It was a first for both them and myself.  They remarked when we got back together that thinking a partial eclipse is similar in some way to a total eclipse can be assumed true only by someone who has never seen totality.

Of course, for it to have the same impact that it does on you and I, you have to be interested in it.  For those who are not, I would encourage them to stay home.  The traffic can be a nightmare and it wouldn't be worth it.  But thinking that a partial eclipse is enough to get the idea of the experience of totality isn't correct.  The partial is an interesting sight in it's own right.  It's interesting to think about a huge body like the moon passing in front of the sun, and since it does it in an hour or so, it's neat to consider how fast it has to be moving to accomplish that.  Then consider the amount of energy that is tied up in the inertia of such a huge mass of solid rock.  And this sort of thing is happening all the time throughout the universe.  Of course, you don't need to see the partial eclipse to understand that.  So I can understand that the actual experience might not be as important as comprehending the mechanics for most people.  And for others, the mechanics aren't going to be important either.

If understanding the mechanics without actually attending the symphony is where it's at, I get that, but hearing the symphony is a different experience from understanding music theory.  On the other hand, I'm not quite at the point where I will be an eclipse junkie.  I understand traveling great distances at huge expense to experience skiing down hills.  I can understand throwing away a career to surf or play golf.  But I think another 3 or 4 eclipses would probably do it for me.  LOL


Online aitm

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #13 on: August 28, 2017, 09:02:03 AM »
How do people come up with this stuff?

we have warning labels on knives...
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Re: The Eclipse in Retrospect
« Reply #14 on: August 28, 2017, 09:22:25 AM »
we have warning labels on knives...
That's more due to a litigious society than user stupidity. "I wasn't warned knives are sharp! Give me a million dollars!"
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers