Category Archives: Astronomical

Walking with Brontosauruses, or, The How and Why of What We Know

This is the text of an address I gave this morning to the Cum Laude Society at St. Andrew’s-Sewanee School, in Sewanee, Tennessee this morning, January 6, 2014. It was a privilege to be asked to speak, and am grateful … Continue reading

Posted in Animals, Astronomical, Boston, Classics, Education, England, Family, Language & Etymology, Poetry, Sewanee, Sports & Games | Leave a comment

Hunters, 5 a.m.

For no good reason, I’m up before dawn and go into the living room to look out the window. Through the clouds the stars can be made out here and there. My dogs stir but I don’t let them out. … Continue reading

Posted in Animals, Astronomical, Dogs, Mythology, Sewanee, Sports & Games, Tennessee, Trees & Flowers | Leave a comment

Introduction for Christopher Hitchens, “The Moral Necessity of Atheism” (Sewanee, Feb. 2004)

Introduction for Christopher Hitchens, “The Moral Necessity of Atheism” Tuesday, Feb 23, 2004 Convocation Hall The “How, Then, Shall We Live?” Series   I knew that, when we invited Christopher Hitchens to speak, we would draw a large crowd, and … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomical, Bible, England, Mythology, Sewanee | 3 Comments

Skyhook

This coming month, a number of fine astronomical events are in store–a lunar eclipse on the 15th, an annular solar eclipse on the 29th, and a meteor shower in between–but earlier in April, the moon will seem to hover above … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomical, Boston, Classics, Language & Etymology, Mythology, Sports & Games | 1 Comment

Plumbing the Depths

A recent news item about lead from a Roman shipwreck has struck a deep chord in academia, and perhaps beyond.  The matter at hand pits archaeologists, seeking to preserve a critical artefact of ancient society, against physicists, who are hoping … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomical, Bible, Classics, Emblems, Language & Etymology, Nautical, Time | 1 Comment

Last Night’s Fireball

I was outside talking to my friend Elizabeth yesterday evening, about 6:45 Central, when, all of a sudden, an enormous fireball appeared in the sky behind her.  “Whoa! Is that a comet?!” I asked. “I hope it’s not a burning … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomical, Tennessee | Leave a comment

Invisibles Lines, Local Realities

On a lovely day last month, I was driving home from Chattanooga and decided to take a detour off I-24, to satisfy a simple, geeky desire to stand at the precise point that divides Tennessee from Alabama and Georgia, as … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomical, Bible, Language & Etymology, Nautical, Poetry, Tennessee, The South, Trees & Flowers | 7 Comments