Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Star Charts & Moonbeams

Thought I'd go just a little bit abstract tonight. Well, not so much abstract as to just where my mind goes sometimes when I let it wander and don't really pay attention to where it ends up.

We watched the premier of "V" tonight on ABC. Bethany wasn't a fan, but she doesn't get into the sci-fi as much as I do, which is cool. Science fiction is usually either done really well and amazing, like Joss Whedon's "Firefly" or is done horribly and isn't worth the effort of picking the book up off the shelf, much like 90% of the science fiction that's out there.

I'm one of those people that look up at the stars and wonder what's out there. I get aggravated every time I hear someone complain about NASA's budget or ask why we should waste our time going back to the moon. We live on a planet that makes up an infinitesimally small fraction of the galaxy, much less the universe. How can you not look up and wonder what's waiting for us between the stars?

Just looking at the stars is akin to looking back in time anyway. Any number of those stars could have burned out years ago and the light from that explosion just hasn't reached us yet. There's no way of knowing for sure. And they're beautiful. The heavens are filled with comets and planets and nebulae and things of unimaginable wonder that we haven't even discovered yet.

I'll be the first to tell you that all the alien abduction stories I heard and read about as a kid scared me. Some of them are just a little too real, a little too detailed and have too many common details in cases that happen on different continents to make me just ignore them. Yes, I believe in aliens. I'll admit to it. Personally, I hope we meet them someday and they're more like the Vulcans from Star Trek than whatever those things were from Independence Day.

I look at the stars and think about the stories that can be told between them. Space is infinite in all directions and the stories that can be told among stars are numbered just as greatly. I sometimes wish I lived in that Star Trek universe where mankind travels the stars just to explore them. I hope one day we get there. Until we do, I'll have to content myself with telescopes, star charts and dreams.

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