Sunday, May 26, 2013

Lunar Walk and Asteroidal Talk -OR- A Good Hometown Holidays Memorial Day Weekend

The Regal Theatre "quoting" in post-modernist way an Art Deco style and set amid the "New Urbanism" in practice of Rockville town center, Rockville, Md., 2:59PM May 26, 2013.

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This Sunday was a good day. Actually, this weekend overall was a good one (and there is one more day to it since tomorrow is the Memorial Day Federal holiday and I have off). I've already written about my Saturday walk about.

Quill wearing a fancy chapeau (is that the correct term?), Rockville town center, Rockville, Md., 5:15PM May 26, 2013.

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For starters, my quasi-date last night with the fellow Frank went well -- both the dinner at Old Ebbitt Grill seated in the back Oyster Bar and later at Nellie's. I realize going with a (quasi-)date to a bar on a weekend night is problematic, but it turned out well.

I talked his ear off on pretty much any and every subject I could think of from tidal locking of the Moon* to Earth and its formation and likely role in facilitating the evolution of life on Earth to American politics and the need for structural reforms such as expanding the size of the House of Representatives to about 800 and/or increasing the number of U.S. States to about 75** to the "T" being out in the Ananda Corporation sign visible from Nellie's.

*We were walking to Nellie's up Vermont Avenue and crossing Logan Circle at that point, and the slightly-past-full Moon was stunning in the sky, silhouetted at one point on Major General Logan's heat.

**Yes, both of these are Michael Lind ideas.


He also walked me back home, and I showed him my dumpy, dusty little apartment. He is from Yorktown, Va., and I explained to him in tedious detail about the Chesapeake Bay  impact crater formed 35 million years ago when a roughly 2 mile wide asteroid (bolide) slammed into what is now the .southern tip of the Delmarva / Tidewater area. It was the event that ultimately led to the subsequent formation of the Chesapeake Bay as a river valley that "drowns" during interglacial periods.

The event itself was nothing less than cataclysmic though not nearly the magnitude of the Chicxulub event 30 million years prior to it. A Chesapeake Bay bolide-sized event today would be enough to severely disrupt human civilization globally. By contrast, a Chicxulub-sized bolide (6 miles wide) would result in an "extinction level event."

It was a very different world 35 million years ago with the Atlantic shoreline around Richmond and D.C. with tropical forests (our part of North America was located about 1,000 miles to the east/southeast well into the tropics courtesy continental drift). Without this event, the Eastern Shore would not exist -- D.C. (if it existed) would be on the ocean. I would have preferred that.

"You talk like this on dates ..." -- Sophia to Dorothy on The Golden Girls.

Oh, yes, he also got to meet Flippo, the goodest little plush hippo.

A crowd of people at the Hometown Holidays event, Rockville, Md., 3:52PM May 26, 2013.

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As for today, I got up, got ready, and made it on the Metro to Twinbrook by 235PM (only 1 hour later than the original time). Quill had just gotten there and we rode the shuttle to Rockville Metro (the Red Line is closed this weekend above Twinbrook to Shady Grove).

We went over to Rockville to the sprawling Hometown Holidays event. The first thing we did was get lunch at Tara Thai. Thereafter, we walked over to the town square by the library where we met DD and his family. A few minutes later, Larry P and his friend Pete showed up. No, it wasn't a coincidence -- I had been arranging it by text.

LP and DD chatting on the astroturf placed at the library plaza of Rockville town square, Rockville, Md., 4:11PM May 26, 2013.

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We sat on the AstroTurf in the dazzling Sun for a little while before going into the shade by a small fountain. Rockville's town center is actually quite nice.

I had a few text exchanges with Sandie -- my long ago Rockville land lady from the summer of 1992 -- but it didn't work out meeting up with her. Instead, Quill, Larry, Pete, and I left together in Larry's car. He dropped Pete off at his car at Grosvenor Park and then the three of us went to Bethesda where we had dinner at the somewhat pricey but overall pleasant Trattoria Sorrento. I would / will at some point go back there.

Trattoria Sorrento, Bethesda, Md., 6:23PM May 26, 2013.

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Thereafter, Larry drove Quill back to Twinbrook to catch a bus she needed. I went with her and rode the Metro back to Dupont Circle.

While in the car going up Rockville Pike, I spotted and pointed out the stunning celestial triangular configuration of Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury low in the western sky at cobalt blue dusk. Larry had never actually definitively seen Mercury before, at least that he was aware of.

Schematic representation of the triple triangular conjunction of Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury in the night sky of May 26, 2013, source here.

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I also had some text exchanges with my mom. She unexpectedly texted me.

The remaining pictures in this entry were sent to me by Chris T. on his random weekend treks about Alabama, where he presently lives.

Street view in Tuskegee, Alabama with the Macon County Courthouse tower visible, May 26, 2013.

Yikes.

I did not go to Larry's Lounge or Nellie's or any other place but instead I just went straight away home as neither Gary nor Kristof were around tonight.

I'm home in my dusty little lamp-lit apartment watching my comfort TV -- reruns of The Golden Girls, Frasier, The King of Queens. The window a/c is humming / whirling away.

Another street view in Tuskegee, Alabama with some sort of transmission tower in the distance, May 26, 2013.

It would appear that the New Urbanism hasn't yet quite reached Tuskegee.

Tomorrow (or at this point, later today, Monday), I will try to make the group brunch with Kristof at 1230PM at Trios.

Of note, Wendy may also join us. Today (May 27th) is her birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WENDY!

Speaking of birthdays, this Sunday, May 26th was my "half birthday" since it is exactly six months from / to my birthday on November 26th.

Here was Chris T's destination: This unincorporated no-where place called Smuteye or Smut Eye, Alabama on May 26, 2013.

I'll try to go to the gym (it closes early tomorrow). I may also see Frank again tomorrow night.

OK, I think that's all for now. I may try to update the blog tomorrow night.

--Regulus

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