Thursday, August 24, 2006

Oh Pluto, What Have They Done?

This morning I work up to nine planets and tonight there are eight. In what seems to me to be an all too silly exercise in subjectivity, the International Astronomical Union voted Pluto off the island. Instantly textbooks all over the world are rendered obsolete. Was this actually a grand conspiracy by text book publishers to puff up sales?

Suddenly, memorizing all the planets in grade school has become an exercise in frivolity and I wonder what other acts associated with "so called" learning will I discover were a waste of time?

If all this is sounding cynical, I have succeeded. There is a part of me that wants to strike back at these stiff collared nerds for dissing the mysticism Pluto provided to my own childhood and likely countless others of my generation who grew up one the threshold of possibilities of space exploration.

I know the chilled little sphere called Pluto is really still in the fringes of an ever expanding universe. It hasn’t gone anywhere. And in some lame attempt to appease, it has been given the status of dwarf planet. This of course raises a whole series of new questions. How many dwarf planets are there? What are their names? Which number is Pluto?

Who are these people who too it upon themselves to disorder my universe? They call themselves astronomers but they are merely dwarf astronomers.

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