Monday, 9 March 2009

Moon Law

This morning the moon woke me at 4am and kept me awake for over an hour. I was not a happy bunny - more like a disgruntled human. So far this year, the moon and I have lived pretty happily together. Of course there have been arguments; what relationship can honestly say it exists without? But last night the moon took me close to frustration. It all started because the sky was so clear...but my moonwalk wasn't for two days.



(No, this isn't a clip from Nosferatu, whatever the quality and scratchy sound may suggest, but instead my attempt at a timelapse video of moonset, from last night: 15 minutes condensed into 50 seconds. Not the most exciting of videos ever, and probably not one that YouTube will bother themselves with, but a video of the almost full-moon setting nonetheless)

Just before dawn this morning I identifed a phenomenom and coined a new scientific term. It's like Murphy's Law - "anything that can go wrong will go wrong" - but more disruptive. May I introduce Moon Law (no no no, not that Moon Law). Moon Law (the new theory, not Joey Cheung's enigmatic friend) dictates that the build-up to a full-moon, although speckled with the pot holes of possible upset, is generally smooth: busy, yes; bubbling and boiling over with the scalding possibility of failure, yes (more meaningless metaphors this way). But, nevertheless, enjoyable and tinged with the right sort of stress. The problem arises in the last couple of days pre-moonwalk. That's when Moon Law kicks in.

The ideal moonwalk takes place under starry starry sky - you know, the sort that never appears the three days around full-moon. As far as I know, there's very little meteorological connection between lunar phases and adverse weather activity. Although Ken Ring, a Kiwi weather predictor, asserts the exact opposite of what I'm claiming. "You nearly always get a clear night on FM night because the moon actually clears the sky," Ken tells us. Hmm. Perhaps, when we're asleep, somebody attaches a giant electric fan to the moon's surface and that blows all the clouds away. Perhaps it's Moon Law!

Even Sir Patrick says there's no "valid connection between the Moon and weather".

Admittedly, I didn't get through Ken's whole article. I fell away near his response to the question of whether the moon's effect on weather is proven. "They do know that weather balloons float higher on FM and NM nights, meaning that there are king tides in the air at the same time as at the coast". To me, his response was a little 'king vague so I returned to writing my 'king book.

Anyway, the point of this post is to highlight the pain of having a beautifully clear night two days prior to full-moon, a misty but atmospheric 98%-full waxing gibbous the day before, and then seeing the weather forecast for the night of the moonwalk. Cloudy. Very cloudy. Bad for moonwalking.

But they can get it wrong. After all, I'm going by the BBC forecast. And it can't be any worse than the Snow Moon!

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