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January 6, 2003 10:58 AM   Subscribe

Seems like a bit of a freak, obsessed with a US Astronaut's life and the threat of light pollution on stargazing.
posted by mathowie at 11:00 AM on January 6, 2003

Not to mention that whole "threatening to crash a plane into a building" thing...
posted by rushmc at 11:06 AM on January 6, 2003

For amateur astronomers, light pollution is in fact a Big Deal.
posted by mcwetboy at 11:09 AM on January 6, 2003

Light pollution sucks. When I moved to the big city I had to get rid of my telescope, there's just no point in having it here, on an average night I can see only the very brightest of stars.

Lots of people are concerned about this, and the effect it can have on wildlife. Not enough to fly a plane into a building, mind.
posted by ciderwoman at 11:27 AM on January 6, 2003

I completely agree that something must be done about light pollution. Not this. But something.
posted by Songdog at 12:07 PM on January 6, 2003

There's an International Dark-Sky Association, of course. It isn't just the light pollution, and it isn't just the wildlife; there's also a tremendous amount of energy wasted lighting up ... nothing. Some communities have found ways to mitigate the problem, although there seems to be a tremendous public perception that more light equals greater safety. In recent years people leave porch lights or business signs or even every light in a restaurant on all night long, which is at least confusing to those of us who grew up in an era when the lights were an indicator of welcome.

The article does note that Resnik's father works for the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, a foundation created by the astronauts' families, which to date has opened nearly 50 learning centers around the world with state-of-the-art equipment and master teachers. And it does seem strange that this fellow focused on Resnik: after all, she was only one of seven.
posted by dhartung at 12:13 PM on January 6, 2003

I was indeed a little depressed after moving from a small town in WA, where you could drive 10 minutes from your house and see the aurora borealis unaided (in the continental US!) at least a few times a year, to a city where you can rarely see any constellations at all. I'm not an amateur astronomer, but I do enjoy actually being able to see the sky from time to time.

... However, this guy's a loon. Of all the things to go crazy over! Jodie Foster, I could understand. Catcher In The Rye, sure, why not. But Judith Resnik?
posted by Hildago at 12:46 PM on January 6, 2003

"Of all the things to go crazy over! Jodie Foster, I could understand. Catcher In The Rye, sure, why not. But Judith Resnik?"

I think it's a mistranslation. He's actually infatuated with Johnny Rzeznik, which is understandable.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 12:52 PM on January 6, 2003

"Johnny Rzeznik"
Ah, I remember the good ol' days at The Continental....
yeah, I know, off topic...
posted by Blake at 1:09 PM on January 6, 2003

Struck me as odd, too, but if crazy people always made common sense decisions about whom to be infatuated with, well, we'd all be a little bit disappointed.
posted by tss at 2:00 PM on January 6, 2003

This poor guy. He was flying a glider for heaven's sake.
posted by hama7 at 3:41 PM on January 6, 2003

Here's a movie a guy sent me that he shot of the guy flying around.
posted by mathowie at 4:46 PM on January 6, 2003

Were people evacuating the buildings en masse? After watching a guy fly figure eights around the skyline for an hour or so in a glider, I think I would just go back to my desk and take my chances. Wait...Johnny Rzeznik's dead? NOOOOO!!! Oh..umm...never mind.
posted by samuelad at 11:21 PM on January 6, 2003

Glider? GLIDER? Why are we still talking about this then?

In fact, on Sunday, while watching the live coverage - they already new it was a small single motyor plane. I was thinking "wasn't there a guy who crashed a cessna into a building in Florida after 9-11 and NOTHING HAPPENNED?"

Slow news day, I guess ...
posted by magullo at 9:11 AM on January 7, 2003

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