My observing report

As I drove up the winding road to Pacheco, I idly mused upon the morality of AP Refractors 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 30 telescopes set up.

I started my night's observing with one of my favorite objects, M 13. It gave the appearance of a far-away cloud. Then, I stumbled upon M 58 in the western sky. It somewhat resembled a Black Rider hunting for Frodo. After I'd spent a few minutes looking at that, I looked at NGC 3524. It appeared in the eyepiece like an edge-on barred spiral with a sharp dust lane. With that checked off my list, I had a chance to see B 322 in Sculptor. It was even more difficult than Miss Piggy. With that checked off my list, I had a chance to see IC 821. It was like the eye of God.

After a short break to drink a slurpie, I checked off NGC 5476. It looked a bit like Smokey the Bear. Next, I went for NGC 882 in Gemini. It reminded me of the exhaust from a diesel Suburban. Then, I located IC 279 in Septans. It looked a bit like the pillars of creation. Next, I tracked down M 61 in the western sky. It would be easy to confuse with the face of God. Then, I glimpsed NGC 5356 in Ursa Major. It was like Krylon Ultra-Flat Black. Then, I glimpsed NGC 2156. It seemed most like the clouds I'd seen earlier. With that checked off my list, I studied IC 3634. It appeared to be Demi Moore. Next, I nudged my telescope to Abell 23. It appeared to be an inflamed monkey butt. Next, attacking my personal nemesis, I checked out M 22 in Lepus. It looked a bit like Smokey the Bear. After that, I sought IC 704. It glowed, rather like a UFO. With that checked off my list, I studied Abell 53. It sparkled like R2-D2. Then, for a real challenge, I found by accident IC 3953 in Canis Major. It was a blurry likeness of a far-away cloud. Next, I slewed to IC 1708. It looked uncannily like one of Martha Stewart's doilies. Next, I hunted IC 3767 in Serpens. It somewhat resembled all the other smudges I've ever looked at. Next, I found by accident NGC 5767. It shimmered, as if it were an inflamed monkey butt.

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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