Sunday, 27 September 2020

My equinox confusion. Wider world craziness. A bit of musical history.

I woke up a little confused this morning, somehow convinced that we should have put the clocks back overnight and surprised to find that my various electronic time-telling devices were unchanged. The thing is  I recently heard someone on the radio going on about the autumnal equinox, which I correctly surmised had something to do with equal day and night.


Here’s some info I recently found:

Not Entirely Equal Day & Night

On the two equinoxes every year the Sun shines directly on the Equator and the length of day and night is nearly equal - but not exactly.

The September equinox marks the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator – from north to south and vice versa in March.

First Day of Fall?

In the Northern Hemisphere, the fall equinox marks the first day of fall (autumn) in what we call astronomical season.There's also another, more common definition of when the seasons start, namely meteorological definitions, which are based on average temperatures rather that astronomical events.”

And somehow I equated that with putting the clocks back - daylight saving time and so on. I even checked it when I heard the stuff on the radio. Clearly I did not check carefully enough or just misread the whole shebang because this morning I checked again and found OCTOBER 25th as the date we mess about with the clocks. Not SEPTEMBER at all. Doh!

But at least I now have another month before I need to worry about the nights drawing in too rapidly.


And today is another fine autumn day. 


The sun is shining nicely. 








And the ducks who live in the bend of the River Tame that goes through the industrial estate behind our house have been fed by kindly residents.

I just hope the sun manages to stay out a little,longer than it did yesterday. Running down the Donkey Line in the sunshine yesterday morning I came across numerous runners and a prodigious number of cyclists, so much so that we even joked about the “Tour de Saddleworth”. However, by the time Phil and I decided to stomp up Lark Hill, giving Phil’s new boots a good work out, the sky was uniformly dull and grey. We did not get rained on though! Small blessings!

The wider world continues its craziness. Anti-vaccination fools, conspiracy theorists, and people opposed to wearing face-coverings and other other coronavirus restrictions gathered in London yesterday. Some of them were arrested, some police officers were injured. Conspiracy theorist David Icke made an incendiary speech at the top of the steps leading to the National Gallery, calling on people to take off their masks and embrace freedom. He urged police forces and militaries around the world to take the side of the people, rather than “psychopathic” governments.

“We will not hand control of our lives and our children’s lives to people like the UK health secretary Matt Hancock; a man who if his brains were gunpowder would not blow his hat off,” he said.

Meanwhile some head teachers are talking about organising classes of 60 pupils, taking place in school halls, because so many teachers are having to self isolate that finding supply teachers is, as well as extremely difficult with so many needed, financially prohibitive. This is a consequence of the the slowness of getting and processing tests.

And dentists are throwing in their two penn’orth. They foresee great problems as so many children have missed regular check-ups during lockdown. They fear a sugar-rich lockdown diet will have led to post lockdown tooth decay! It goes on and on!

In the USA President Trump has nominated a rightwing, catholic, anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage, anti-almost every kind of freedom woman to be the High Court Justice replacement for Ruth Bader Ginsburg. 

Jeanne Mancini, president of March for Life, which organises annual anti-abortion marches, said this nomination “is welcome and exciting news for everyone who values the rule of law and our constitutional rights”.

She added: “We have confidence that she will fairly apply the law and constitution as written, which includes protecting the most vulnerable in our nation: our unborn children. She is a highly gifted jurist and a woman of great accomplishment – a role model for women and girls across the country – and she deserves a vote as expeditiously as possible.”

I suppose it depends what kind of role model you want for your country’s women and girls.

And finally, to cheer us up, here is something unusual Phil found on a chess website: the history of the Simon and Garfunkel song, Scarborough Fair:



Life goes on. Stay safe and well, everyone!

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