Eclipse Ennui

August 23rd, 2017

Guilford landscape

Me to my brother: “This eclipse furor is kind of freaking me out.” 

Elia: “I mean what’s the worst that could happen? Trump is already president.” 

Me: “I don’t know but just in case, I’m eating all the burrata.”

Normally I get really into natural phenomena like eclipses. Before having kids, I used to organize a monthly nighttime hiking expedition during the full moon. I’d send out a detailed email about exactly what kind of full moon the participants should expect, based mostly on reading the Farmers Almanac descriptions. “This one’s called the Full Harvest Moon, guys. It’s the closest one to the Autumn Equinox and you’re supposed to work late that night to harvest your corn.” My non-farmer friends in suburban California really appreciated this kind of information.

But things are so crazy right now that I wasn’t really paying attention to the eclipse thing until my mom showed up with makeshift eclipse glasses made out of shoeboxes — which looked suspiciously like camera obscuras — and my social media feed got depressing with mentions of Bonnie Tyler. I have always hated that song.

Thanks to my overabundance of woo-woo friends on Facebook, I started to get a little weirded out, so just in case, I said to my husband “Hey please make sure the girls aren’t outside when the eclipse happens. I don’t want them looking at the sun.” Like he usually does when I act overbearingly motherly, he rolled his eyes a little bit and said “I’m sure looking at the sun once in a while won’t hurt anyone.” Wah! Dads, am I right?

Luckily for me—and my daughters’ beautiful green eyes—Jon decided to take eclipse blindness seriously, and at any rate, was at work when the eclipse finally rolled through. I myself was sitting at my desk writing about glamping. I took a little break and tried to view the sun through the camera obscura, but the tiny pinprick of light wasn’t all that exciting, to be honest with you. I also tried to watch NASA’s “livestream” on Facebook, which was essentially a bunch of fat white guys in Ray Bans bullshitting about astronomy. No thank you.

My mom says the next eclipse is in seven years and joked that I should put it into iCal now. I know she was kidding but I did. I mean, iCal has the functionality, so why not make my life easier?

Anyway, as I was panicking about eclipse blindness in toddlers, and wondering why everyone thinks Virgos are so nerdy and controlling, it occurred to me that I haven’t worried about nuclear annihilation in a few weeks. So that’s good news.

PS Turns out that eating all the burrata does not make your stomach feel so hot later on.

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