augury doggerel

Friday, March 11, 2005

How I Won a Bill Bryson Book

I wrote a faux-crank (well, I'm a real crank, but not this particular kind of crank) question for the Guardian to pose to Bill Bryson in an interview:
Pluto was discovered only because it caused a "slight perturbation" in the orbits of the planets then known. It perturbs me to this day, and not merely slightly. Is Pluto a planet or is it just a little ball of uninteresting and perhaps smelly ice very far away from us? Or is it both? What's the difference between a planet and a dirty little stain of cosmic debris? Should we trim the list of planets in our solar system to eight? Or, if we are going to keep Pluto on the list, what about adding others? I've heard that there are more filthy balls of slush lurking out past Pluto ...

Note the ellipsis. They cut off the bit where I claimed to be the head of a group that is against including Pluto as one of our planets. Supposedly, they'll contact me for my address. Shall I have it mailed to Malcolm Davidson, President, The Anti-Pluto Society?

Happy birthday to me. I'm 44 and grumpy because Mister Cat (if he had a twin, he'd make a fine left slipper) started the morning by pissing on my pack. He missed my passport and bus pass, but he soaked the book I was reading (piss passport bus pass mumble), so I hope the Bryson book comes soon.


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