Friday, October 20, 2006

Night of the Orionids

Our good friends at remind us that the Orionid meteor shower peaks this weekend:
One of the year's best displays of meteors will occur this weekend. Called the Orionids, the meteors are bits of rocky debris shed from Halley's Comet that burn up in Earth's atmosphere.

The display will be visible for both northern and southern hemisphere observers and should produce 20 meteors per hour at its peak. Friday night and Saturday night should be best, especially very early in the morning.
They further advise that the best meteor-watching strategy is to lie on your back in a large field, as far from city lights as possible. Wear an eyepatch over your dominant eye, so that if any bursts of hitherto unknown forms of cosmic radiation suddenly render you blind you can remove the eyepatch and use your remaining eye to find your way home. And as always, report any strange behavior by the local vegetation to both civilian law enforcement and military authorities as soon as conveniently possible, even though they won't believe you at first.