Big Shiny Moon

Last night’s full moon was bigger and brighter than most because the moon was actually closer to the Earth than it usually is, thanks to that wacky elliptical orbit it travels in. Last night it was socked in by clouds, but this morning it popped out long enough for me to grab a photo. And then it went behind the clouds again. And then it slid under the curve of the Earth. And now I’m alone. So very alone. But it was pretty while it lasted.

By John Scalzi

I enjoy pie.

43 replies on “Big Shiny Moon”

I enjoyed it on my drive home. I’ve lived in Florida for almost 3 years now – but I still can’t help thinking “People went from here to there.” every time I look at it. I’m in Orlando – but close enough to think of the space center as nearby.

I tried to catch the moon where I was, especially around midnight when it was supposed to be at its brightest. I glided into the rainy night and was greeted by clouds, dreary and sad. I, too, felt bereaved, alone, unwanted. The moon–so close, yet so far. Sadly, I crept back to bed and dream of coffee.

You sure it wasn’t looking bigger for the usual reason, that it was close to the horizon when you saw it. You know how that goes, it looks bigger but it really isn’t.

That is, sure it’s really closer but is it close enough for the human eye to *really* tell the difference.

you caught the moon in the *morning*? Oh gods, how early were you up? or is it ‘how late’?

It’s a pretty picture though. Eerily I wouldn’t have been able to tell which time of night it’s showing judging from the light. Maybe because it’s so bright. It looks kind of disconnected from time… not space though, I guess, otherwise photographing it might have been a lot more difficult.

@mcC: I had a pretty good view of the moon as I was heading for the train station around 6am CST. It was maybe a bit higher than in the photo, so I’m guessing 6:30ish. (Although, John is further west in the eastern time zone than I am in the central, so it may have been even later than that…)

Gorgeous photo. In Los Angeles, we never have such a beautiful skyline to take such pictures against. And in the San Fernando Valley, we don’t even have nifty high-rises to use as part of the composition of our photos.

I’m envious.

The moon rose through a haze of orange eastern sky as I was driving one of my several children to something-or-other. Eventually it climbed into a band of thin clouds and I didn’t have 1. my camera or 2. a tripod, so I was forced to merely enjoy the beauty while avoiding other cars.

You’re never alone, John. Just 27,000 light years away, there’s something lurking in the galactic center with the mass of four million solar masses.

And it wants you.

They even have movies of the stars near it orbiting The Dark Thing Which Must Not Be Named.

Tear your heart out emotionally? Hell, this thing’ll rip you apart from tidal forces from vast distances.

Have a great day!

Dr. Phil

And if you like looking into the night sky you should keep an eye out for the Geminid meteor shower over the next night or two. Usually a good show.
Unfortunately the full moon won’t help your night vision.

Lovely photo. And, it doesn’t look like you’re very much alone — 26 comments would make me all warm and fuzzy. Want a moon-shooting hint? Expose for daylight. If you have a point-and-shoot, you may ignore me. But, then, who knows if I’ll ever get around to reading that Scalzi book on the pile . . .

Would it be possible for you to provide links to larger versions of this and any other sunrise/sunset/skyline photos that you post? They make beautiful desktop backgrounds but get blurry when displayed on a largish monitor.

I caught the moon rise last night while we were admiring the neighborhood holiday lights, and the setting this morning when it shone right in my bedroom window and woke me up before dropping behind the trees. Darn eliptical thingo, changing the angle and confusing me! Not used to seeing it in that part of the sky.


The people who claim that the full moon doesn’t cause huge spikes in crime and craziness and whatnot probably do not work in ICUs. They are far too busy analyzing real data and ignoring anecdotal evidence.

Steve @ 27 – thanks for clearing that up. As we frequently lurk on the same sites, thought I should know if I needed silver or garlic as an accessory.

Tonight’s moon in Atlanta is spectacular. Nice and clear and BIG.

And thanks to whoever mentioned the meteor shower, I’ll be a little bit away from some of the city lights tomorrow night and may get to see a bit of it.

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