Tonight would be a good night to see Mercury. It's never easy
because the planet never gets too far from the Sun in the sky, but
with smartphone apps like Sky Map (on all Android phones by
default) it's certainly easier than it once was. Start by finding
Venus in the west, immediately after the Sun goes below the
horizon. (You can't miss Venus.) Mercury lies roughly on a line
between Venus and the Sun. There are no bright stars in that part
of the sky, so if you see a star near that line, it's not a star
but ol' Merc himself.
Betelgeuse continues to dim for unknown
reasons. It's fallen from 10th brightest star in the sky to
24th brightest. Orion is the first constellation I can clearly
recall seeing, and these days, it just looks...off. This may mean
it's about to go supernova...for large values of "about." (Hundreds
or more likely thousands of years. Stars are never in a
This is a little weird, but it's one more telltale that the
technical publishing industry I loved for so long is no longer with
us. I went searching for a book on installing, configuring, and
customizing the MediaWiki software, and found...nothing.
There's plenty online, but I'm talking about book-length
treatments. If you know of one let me know. My longstanding
heuristic is that if it's not on Amazon, it isn't available.
If politics bores you as much as it bores me, here's a solid
distraction from all the tiresome yelling and screaming: The economics of all-you-can-eat buffets. Eat
quick: My instincts tell me that as a category buffets are not long
for this world.