My observing report

As I drove up the winding road to the Peak, I idly mused upon the subtle meaning of television as I contemplated the past week of rain. When I arrived at the parking lot, it was filled with friends eager for a night's observing. I counted at least 35 telescopes set up.

I started my night's observing with one of my favorite objects, M 110. It appeared in the eyepiece like a faint puff of nothingness, with a suspected, but not confirmed, central star. Next, I tried IC 3610. It was as bright as desert sand. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I hunted for IC 231 in a group of stars that looked like an armadillo. It was better than the last six objects I'd seen. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I added to my logbook M 101. It shimmered, as if it were cotton candy. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I tried NGC 6991. It appeared as Krylon Ultra-Flat Black. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I checked out Abell 73. It was better than the last six objects I'd seen. After I'd spent a few minutes looking at that, I tried B 225. It looked like one of Martha Stewart's doilies. After that, I helped a beginner find M 54. It shimmered, as if it were dandruff on black satin pajamas. Then, for a real challenge, I hunted for NGC 3412 in Canes Venatici. It was as bright as the exhaust from a diesel Suburban. With that checked off my list, I studied B 71. It seemed fainter than its Hubble photograph. Then, I had a chance to see Abell 15. It was not quite as bright as Krylon Ultra-Flat Black. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I checked out NGC 2685 in Sculptor. It somewhat resembled a hamburger. (Hmm, it had been a while since dinner). Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I studied B 306 in the western sky. It reminded me of diamonds on black velvet. After I'd spent a few minutes looking at that, I glimpsed Abell 87. It compared favorably with Miss Piggy. After that, I star-hopped to M 2. It looked a bit like a smoke ring. Then, I tried for Abell 38. It looked uncannily like whispy tendrils of nebulosity.

After a short break to warm up in the car, I located B 316 in Canes Venatici. It appeared to be a cantilever bra. Then, for a real challenge, I checked out NGC 5273 in Ursa Major. It reminded me of a waterfall. With that checked off my list, I located Abell 38. It was better than a nebula. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I slewed to NGC 1027. It glowed, rather like the face of God. Next, I glimpsed Abell 41. It appeared as one of Martha Stewart's doilies. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I went for M 105. It looked uncannily like its Hubble photograph.

Finally, it was time to pack up and leave. As I drove home, I contemplated the events of the night, and realized that any night out under the sky with good friends is better than a night out under the stars with people you hate.


    ...Akkana (with help from David North, Jane Houston Jones, and Bill Arnett) .

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