Daily Archives: December 13, 2011

Muddy muddy muddy etcetera

You’ll be happy to know Old Sol’s finally getting things under control up there.

 
That line of misbehaving sunspots that were marching across above the equator so long finally got its comeuppance.  Today there are only three honest-to-goodness ones and the litter of little peckerwoods just coming around the horizon. 
 
Astrophysicists aren’t in agreement about what was getting out of hand up there, but many now assert it might be mud and all this rain that finally got it under control.  There’s been so much rain lately every stick of firewood here’s been soaked, and even though cooling down Old Sol with wet firewood would be a big job of work, eventually it was bound to happen.  Probably the reason for this cold snap, too.
 
But the other line of thinking among Hopi Elders, surviving Mayan track-of-time keepers, and the folks at BUREAU INTERNATIONAL DES POIDS ET MESURES, ORGANISATION INTERGOUVERNEMENTALE DE LA CONVENTION DU METRE, believe there’s a more novel reason that line of sunspots dwindled.  They couldn’t stay in step. 
 
Time, they assert, is so screwed up it’s impossible to keep anything going with any regularity and the sunspots finally just got too frustrated to keep trying.
 
There might be a lot to that.  I get the email reports from the Hawaii Konate folk, and the circular always starts off with the caveat:
 
“Coordinated Universal Time UTC and its local realizations UTC(k). Computed values of [UTC-UTC(k)]   and uncertainties valid for the period of this Circular. From 2009 January 1, 0h UTC, TAI-UTC = 34 s.”
 
Those uncertainties cover a lot of ground all over the planet and the people making a living trying to keep track of what time it is send out the Circular to advise interested parties of what time it wasn’t, mostly, any given day in cities of clockwatchers.  But even telling what time it wasn’t has a considerable uncertainty factor, which they aren’t ashamed to admit.
 
I don’t know why they even keep those people on the payroll if they can’t tell us what time it wasn’t.
 
I’m going to kick this around with the cats and chickens.  See if we can’t figure out a way to get a piece of the action on this timekeeping racket.
 
Old Jules
 

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