Bizarre Lights over Norway
December 9, 2009 12:48 PM   Subscribe


 
...the leading theory is a malfunctioning rocket spraying fuel.

Or...y'know...a gigantic time portal opening into our plane of existence. One of those two, for sure.
posted by Thorzdad at 12:57 PM on December 9, 2009 [7 favorites]


Hey, all my Christian coworkers have left their desks, leaving behind piles of clothes on their chairs, and in one case, a little heap of piercings (Mrs. Devereax, I never would've guessed). I wonder if that's related.
posted by Kattullus at 12:57 PM on December 9, 2009 [48 favorites]


The charm of looking at shots of this mesmerizing, magical light show was definitely degraded by reading it was likely caused by a missile launch (guess the Norwegians really can see Russia from their houses) . . . but I still really enjoyed the Norwegian web site visit.
posted by bearwife at 1:00 PM on December 9, 2009


Somebody's not happy about Copenhagen.
posted by Pollomacho at 1:00 PM on December 9, 2009


Actually, this video really supports the "rocket spraying fuel" theory.
posted by Kattullus at 1:00 PM on December 9, 2009


I'm 100% positive that's a rocket launch.
posted by smoothvirus at 1:00 PM on December 9, 2009


Any video?
posted by gottabefunky at 1:01 PM on December 9, 2009


Ah
posted by gottabefunky at 1:01 PM on December 9, 2009


*goes off in search of an HEV suit and crowbar*
posted by lekvar at 1:01 PM on December 9, 2009 [15 favorites]


First link is Norwegian, second is English. Really neat photos though.
posted by neewom at 1:07 PM on December 9, 2009


Actually, this is just what happens whenever I play TransEuropa and go apoplectic about getting Oslo again. Sorry, Norway!
posted by gurple at 1:09 PM on December 9, 2009


Russiske militærkilder TV2 har snakket med sier det dreier seg om en mislykket oppskytning av en Bulava-missil fra en ubåt.

Rough translation: "Russian military sources TV2 have spoken to claim this was the result of a failed launch of a Bulava missile from a submarine."

Man, I'm sad I didn't get up earlier this morning. Apparently it was very visible from where I live.
posted by Dumsnill at 1:14 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't know what it is but I want to lick it.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:19 PM on December 9, 2009 [5 favorites]


I don't speak Norwegian but it's a laser projection, right?

You can see the beam emanating from the source. The projection surface is simply the closest edge of a cloud/mist/cloaked spaceship.

...but, damn, it got me for a few bewildering seconds.
posted by popcassady at 1:21 PM on December 9, 2009


I like that the Norwegians are getting with the US in shortening that difficult word, but I think they can go one better and call it lysfenom, rather than the redundant lysfenomen, or heaven forfend, the more british-sounding lysfenomenon.

Cue Muppets..."be-dooo-be-doobee"
posted by Nick Verstayne at 1:33 PM on December 9, 2009


Brannigan!
posted by shakespeherian at 1:35 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Wow, it really does look like a cheesy sci-fi wormhole.
posted by theora55 at 1:43 PM on December 9, 2009


Obvious Bat-Signal.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:44 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


That was the Metafilter signal right? Somewhere, something needs bean-plating!
posted by fontophilic at 1:47 PM on December 9, 2009 [5 favorites]


I will be sad if this turns out to be a rocket. I hope it remains mysterious, enthralling generations to come as they browse through "Earth Mysteries" in Wikipedia.
posted by specialagentwebb at 1:49 PM on December 9, 2009


I'm 100% positive that's a rocket launch.

NavTex data from that time pretty much backs that up. Although I find it interesting the Russians are denying the launch.
posted by samsara at 1:51 PM on December 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


So that's the drill that will pierce the heavens. Cool.
posted by wanderingmind at 1:51 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Rocket eh? Wow.
posted by popcassady at 1:56 PM on December 9, 2009


Looks eerily like the old paperback cover to "A Wrinkle in Time," which I ordered through Scholastic Book Club in 1973.
posted by VicNebulous at 2:12 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


I don't know what it is but I want to lick it.

Licking Hydrazine is definitely not a good idea.
posted by smoothvirus at 2:16 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Hey, all my Christian coworkers have left their desks, leaving behind piles of clothes on their chairs, and in one case, a little heap of piercings (Mrs. Devereax, I never would've guessed). I wonder if that's related.

Genius.

I know it would make the fundies too happy to ever even try this as a joke, but I would love to read the metafilter discussion that would follow a posting after "the rapture" did happen. Terribly interesting wouldn't it be?
posted by jefficator at 2:24 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm actually glad this happened over Norway instead of oh, say, Kansas.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 2:28 PM on December 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


jefficator: I would love to read the metafilter discussion that would follow a posting after "the rapture" did happen.

Probably not all that different, is my best guess.
posted by Greg_Ace at 2:38 PM on December 9, 2009 [11 favorites]


The spiraling shape will make you go insane.
posted by anazgnos at 2:45 PM on December 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


Nothing special, really. Just the usual lysfenomen.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 2:51 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


POLESHIFT!!!!!!!
posted by i_cola at 2:51 PM on December 9, 2009


Just link to Bad Astronomy already. Whenever something weird happens in the sky, BA has the answer. Look at the simulation video, looks just like the picture. Someone in the comments links to a video of something similar happening in China in April.

The YT comments on that video are half about what kind of angels caused it.
posted by dirty lies at 2:52 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


I don't know what it is but I want to lick it.

Triple Dog Dare. Just make sure it's not a flag pole!
posted by ericb at 2:57 PM on December 9, 2009


Just link to Bad Astronomy already.

In fairness, the OP does link to that BA post.
posted by Dumsnill at 3:02 PM on December 9, 2009


Can we come up with some excuse to do this more often? Seeding rain clouds maybe. Because I want to see that myself.
posted by lucidium at 3:05 PM on December 9, 2009


Close, Ironmouth, but I think Commissioner Gordon is summoning Stephen Hawking, not Batman.
posted by mosk at 3:08 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


I would love to read the metafilter discussion that would follow a posting after "the rapture" did happen.

Probably wouldn't be too different from what we'd say during nuclear armageddon.
posted by Guy Smiley at 3:14 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


I'm 100% positive that's a rocket launch.

At least until further photos surface showing John Locke riding a polar bear in the sky.
posted by mannequito at 3:14 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


҉
posted by dhartung at 3:32 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


but it's a laser projection, right? You can see the beam emanating from the source.

What you see is actually two separate things -- a spiral of ejecta, and the spiraling rocket trail, the same thing you would see in a regular rocket launch except spinning. Look at the simulation in the Bad Astronomy post.

The Russkies are apparently having some problems with this Bulava missile system^. Interestingly, "The missiles are usually fired from underwater in northwestern Russia towards the Kura testing site on the Kamchatka peninsula in the Pacific." I'm wondering what the missile track shows -- did it actually go west? Was this one fired from the north Atlantic? Was it seen in Sweden or anywhere else?
posted by dhartung at 3:42 PM on December 9, 2009


That was the Metafilter signal right? Somewhere, something needs bean-plating!

Would need to stay on 24/7 then.
posted by never used baby shoes at 3:49 PM on December 9, 2009


I know it would make the fundies too happy to ever even try this as a joke, but I would love to read the metafilter discussion that would follow a posting after "the rapture" did happen.

Couldn't happen soon enough!
posted by five fresh fish at 4:15 PM on December 9, 2009


Youtube videos of similar events in Russia, 2007 and China, April 2009

You can clearly see the staging of the rocket in the Russian video -- it's quite beautiful.
posted by nonspecialist at 4:20 PM on December 9, 2009 [6 favorites]


Yeah, gotta say that if there were a benevolent God, taking his crazier followers away for respite care somewhere safe for them would be a lovely thing to do for the rest of us.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 4:22 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Once in a blue moon, folks here in Los Angeles are treated to very similar a lightshow when the clouds and light are just right, and a rocket takes off from Vandenburg AFB, about 150 miles NW.

It's hard to describe just how remarkable these displays can look. They are often very beautiful. I'm always surprised that more people don't freak out when it happens.
posted by 2N2222 at 4:30 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Oh, it's just Russia launching a missile from a submarine. Well, that's a relief.
posted by chrillsicka at 4:37 PM on December 9, 2009 [9 favorites]


Ok, clearly, this is the work of Krang. Next time, we won't be so lucky — the entire Technodrome'll come popping out from Dimension X.
posted by junebug at 4:55 PM on December 9, 2009 [3 favorites]


Dunno, could be a rocket, but doesn't this look exactly like a warp zone? People in Norway are jumping straight to level 8, I'm tellin ya.
posted by krakedhalo at 5:05 PM on December 9, 2009


Could be a Scandinavian thing. Over the Finnish skies a month ago, there was lightning called "red elves and sprites".
posted by myopicman at 5:13 PM on December 9, 2009


Guess Ragnarok is coming early this year.
posted by qvantamon at 5:40 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


UZUMAKI
http://www.onemanga.com/Uzumaki/2/01/
posted by martinrebas at 5:44 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Rudolph found the schnapps!
posted by Partial Panel at 5:59 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


Latebreaking news snippet: Tusenvis stirret oppover i forvirring og ærbødige ærefrykt på bildet av Sterke Dusj Hull på himmelen. Noen troende hevdet det var tegn på et sekund kommer. "Vi vil alle bli sugd," ropte de fromme.

Translated:Thousands gazed upward in bewilderment and worshipful awe at the image of the Mighty Tubdrain in the sky. Some devout claimed it was sign of a second coming. "We will all get sucked," chanted the devout.
posted by moonbird at 6:16 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Although I find it interesting the Russians are denying the launch.

Old habits die hard.

-
posted by General Tonic at 6:17 PM on December 9, 2009


poor Roger, but Lord Asriel just wouldn't leave well enough alone and the next thing you know the Spectres were everywhere.
posted by nathancaswell at 6:20 PM on December 9, 2009 [7 favorites]


Zalg-O҉
posted by DU at 6:40 PM on December 9, 2009


Thorzdad Or...y'know...a gigantic time portal opening into our plane of existence. One of those two, for sure.

Holy crap. You're right. I haven't been able to find a screenshot, but that looks for all the world like the portals in the Black Morass instance run! :D
posted by aeschenkarnos at 6:42 PM on December 9, 2009


This doesn't look all that different from Northern light pix I've seen though--and isn't it the right time of year for them? What makes the difference?
posted by Maias at 6:47 PM on December 9, 2009


Epic thread
posted by TWinbrook8 at 7:13 PM on December 9, 2009


Gaia dropped acid
posted by five fresh fish at 7:39 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Gozer the Traveler. He will come in one of the pre-chosen forms. During the rectification of the Vuldrini, the traveler came as a large and moving Torg! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the McKetrick supplicants, they chose a new form for him: that of a giant Slor! Many Shuvs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Slor that day, I can tell you!
posted by arruns at 7:57 PM on December 9, 2009 [4 favorites]


curious, isn't it?
posted by pyramid termite at 8:33 PM on December 9, 2009


It must the LHC interfering with earth's magnetosphere and causing small black holes!
posted by Soupisgoodfood at 9:10 PM on December 9, 2009 [1 favorite]


This doesn't look all that different from Northern light pix I've seen though--and isn't it the right time of year for them? What makes the difference?

I'd say that thing looks nothing like the aurora borealis. I've watched the aurora hundreds of times, if not thousands, growing up in the far north, and I've never seen anything like that.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:12 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


hey, what about that white phenomenon that happened in moscow a few weeks ago?
posted by 3mendo at 9:13 PM on December 9, 2009


I want to find a really good picture so I can make it my desktop.
posted by TooFewShoes at 9:21 PM on December 9, 2009


It's a sign of the times, I suppose, that I'm nowhere near as bothered by the whole "Russian Missile Test" thing as by Facebook spontaneously offering to switch my profile language to Norwegian after I (unsuccessfully) searched for "Norway rocket" on Youtube...in a different browser...on a different machine.
posted by Lazlo at 10:50 PM on December 9, 2009 [2 favorites]


Moonbird: love the reverse translation.

Latebreaking news snippet: Tusenvis stirret oppover i forvirring og ærbødige ærefrykt på bildet av Sterke Dusj Hull på himmelen. Noen troende hevdet det var tegn på et sekund kommer. "Vi vil alle bli sugd," ropte de fromme.

Actually reads:

With feelings of confusion and humbled awe, thousands stared upward at the image of the Strong Shower Hole in the sky. Some believers claimed it was a sign of a second (1/60 minute) [actively] coming. "We'll all get blow jobs," cried the meek.

Which a tone that is both oddly understated and very, very strange.
posted by flippant at 12:04 AM on December 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Huh. I must be alone in actually being relieved that it was a missile launch - my very first thought on seeing the news story was "bet it's viral marketing".

Unless it was viral marketing, of course, and the Riddler's new apprentice Spiral Skywriter is going to be making an appearance shortly...
posted by ZsigE at 6:18 AM on December 10, 2009


I never get to see anything awesome in the sky. I lived in Iceland for a year and even spent an additional 6 weeks of winter there, not to mention the Christmas visits, and I only saw the Northern Lights two or three times. Never anything amazing either - not like the time one of the Icelanders I know claimed to see a "giant vagina in the sky."

And now this? NORWAY, STOP MOCKING ME.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:38 AM on December 10, 2009


Yes. A rocket launch. That is exactly what it is.

*hides device under table*

Just a perfectly mundane easily answered phenomena. Nothing to worry about.

There is no reason to do any additional investigation into what this is. And if you find a number of crows, ravens and magpies that are now ranging in colors from red to a sort of glowing emerald, it has absolutely nothing to do with this.

Because this is a rocket.

Though if you do happen to encounter any of these birds, I would strongly suggest that you protect your face while you get to some kind of vehicle and leave the area as soon as possible. Do not speak with them. They will probably tell you all sorts of lies.

Yes. This is what happened. Rocket.
posted by quin at 9:30 AM on December 10, 2009


Did anybody see any tentacles up in this joint? Because if they did, I'm out of here.
posted by steambadger at 11:26 AM on December 10, 2009


hey, what about that white phenomenon that happened in moscow a few weeks ago?

's hell of a Caucasian, Jackie...
posted by fuq at 11:37 AM on December 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


" This doesn't look all that different from Northern light pix I've seen though--and isn't it the right time of year for them? What makes the difference?"

The two foremost differences is Northern lights don't form symmetric patterns and they don't tend to form in a tiny patch of sky.
posted by Mitheral at 12:15 PM on December 10, 2009


We did it!
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 2:48 PM on December 11, 2009


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