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Links for a New World [02]

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  • Padma on Ellen – I love Ellen, but I love Padma Lakshmi even more.  Top Chef Boston kicked off this week (did you read my recap?!) and in prep for that, Ellen had Padma on to cook, laugh, and be absolutely wonderful.  Plus, I think I could make tortilla chips now, which is great news.
  • Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce – I’ve been so excited for Bravo’s first scripted show for so long for the simple reason that it combines two of my favorite shows.  We’ve got Marti Noxon of my dearest Buffy the Vampire SlayerHouse alum and another lady crush of mine, Lisa Edelstein!  The first official trailer promises raunch, so what’s not to like?
  • The Moon – The Moon (pictured above!) by design firm Nosigner is a topographically-accurate LED light created based on data retrieved from the Japanese lunar orbiter spacecraft Kaguya.
  • Friends is coming to Netflix! – January 1, 2015!  I’m sorry to be controversial, but this is even better news than the arrival of Gilmore Girls.
  • Pictionary with Gillian Anderson – The gorgeous Gillian Anderson (aka Scully from the X-Files, Stella of The Fall) wrote a book!  In celebration, she’s all over the internet doing fun things like this.
  • T Map of Boston Eats – This handle map of Boston’s public transportation is marked with restaurants instead of stop names.  I’m thinking about riding my way through this one.  My friend Julia sent me this one along with the best burger per neighborhood, which is also very important.

 

Have a brilliant weekend, everybody!

Kill the Moon

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You need look no further than yesterday’s post to know that I find the moon romantic and beautiful.  Space is full of beauty and mystery, and perhaps that’s why both Sailor Moon and Doctor Who appeal to me.  This weekend’s episode of Doctor Who, Kill the Moon, posed the moon as a gigantic egg in the sky; from it hatched a unique winged creature that ignited humankind’s desire to explore space.  I loved the concept for this episode.  Here are a few of my favorite things from this episode:

 

“In fact, I’m not entirely sure if I won’t keep on regenerating forever.”

The Doctor says while illustrating the futility of shooting him.  This line piqued my interest, as I think it’s something that many Whovians wonder about.  Are there a finite number of regenerations?  We’re not sure.  It seems the Doctor’s not quite sure himself.  It’s nice to leave this open ended for show purposes, huh?

 

Maria on the moon

Maria are large, basaltic plains that are the “seas” of the moon.  I learned this when I googled a bunch of things the Doctor said.  The Doctor mentions the Sea of Tranquility, Sea of Nectar, and the Sea of Crises, which are all real things!  I feel like I learned something thanks to this episode… which, is the actual original purpose of Doctor Who.  Look at that!  Wiki the list of Maria on the moon yourself– it’s super interesting!

 

British-isms

Watching Doctor Who can be a little cultural lesson.  I love British accents and I love regional differences in vernacular.  One thing that caught me off guard was torch v. flashlight.  I just wasn’t expecting this one.  Something I found funny, that I’m wondering whether it’s a British-ism, is that Clara said the “President of America.”  I don’t think this is something an American would ever say.  We say President of the United States [of America] exclusively.

 

Fixed points v. gray bits

We’ve heard the Doctor talk about “fixed points in time,” which have to unravel the way they do– he cannot affect these moments.  (Although, he usually does.)  In Kill the Moon, the Doctor talks about the opposite, the eloquently named “gray bits” that he can’t quite discern the outcome.  I like this explanation of sort of junctions in time.  It says a lot for the gravity of the situation.

 

“My granny used to put things on tumblr!”

The astronaut in 2048 says this with a hearty laugh, and I get a real kick out of it.  It’s a great illustration of technology in action, isn’t it?  I actually love this gag in general, that we have Courtney snapping iPhone photos on the moon 35 years in the future and posting them on tumblr from the Tardis.

I do find it slightly odd that Clara’s like, uh no I don’t have Courtney’s number, but she obviously knows her tumblr username.  Like, which is actually weirder?

 

Navigational DVDs

The Doctor tells Courtney there are several DVDs onboard the Tardis which will take it (and if holding on correctly, her) to him.  Is this a little call-back to Blink?!  Clearly the Doctor has learned that he needs to keep a few of these on hand!

 

 

What did you guys think of Kill the Moon?

Summer Stargazing at Frosty Drew

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Frosty Drew at night

Last weekend I got to check an item off of my summer bucket list. I paid a visit to Charlestown, Rhode Island’s Frosty Drew Astronomical Observatory for some stargazing! I was fortunate enough that the night I visited happened to be the clearest view of Saturn of the season!

Every Friday night in the summer, Frosty Drew opens up for free public stargazing through their powerful telescope. The observatory opens at 6 PM to the public. A young volunteer provided some sky info and answer any questions while we waited in line. Inside the observatory, an astronomer was stationed by the telescope to point things out and answer additional questions.

We pulled up after 8:30 PM and the line was already long. The observatory itself is tiny—there were only 6 or so people inside at any given time. The sky darkened as we waited in line, and volunteers pointed out Mars and Spica in the sky. A bunch of telescopes were set up on the lawn around the observatory so there were other things to look at while we waited. We got a very up-close look at the super moon from a tabletop telescope. A man who literally just came as a hobby set up a large telescope and focused it on Mars, which through his telescope looked like a glow-y ring of fire.

It was 10 PM by the time my group got to the telescope, but man was it worth the wait! I had to gasp when I saw Saturn, small and white-ish, right in view! It was tipped on its side, its rings vertical. It looked lonely, in a way, but you could distinctly make out four other objects— at least two moons: Titan and Rhea. You could make out at least one division in the rings signifying that there is more than one. I was blown away! Saturn has always been my favorite planet, and the Frosty Drew frequent-ers all agreed it’s the most exciting to see.

76075_174151932597164_168448_nThey were showing Saturn last week, but weather conditions and the sky vary. I’d love to make another visit before the summer is over!

Frosty Drew Observatory is located in Ninigret Park in Charlestown, Rhode Island. Visit their website for directions: frostydrew.org!

 

photos via FrostyDrew.org & their social media sites