Across the Universe

This afternoon I was driving through a snowstorm listening to a science radio show on the CBC talking about the launch of the new James Webb space telescope.

The James Webb Space Telescope is a space telescope being jointly developed by NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency. It is planned to succeed the Hubble Space Telescope as NASA’s flagship astrophysics mission.

– Wikipedia

That programme got me thinking about how a couple weeks back I looked out across the evening sky while I was out for a walk and noted that three bright “stars” were lined up right there above me. I opened my astronomy app on my phone and oriented the navigation tool to point towards them above the horizon and realized that I wasn’t looking at stars, but instead very likely and as best as I could deduce, three planets neatly aligned just over the roofs of some neighbourhood houses.

Looking at the sky makes me feel pretty small in the vast scheme of things, peering out into the universe and realizing that even our one little solar system in the backwater of our one little galaxy barely registers as anything but points of light in the vast inky blackness of the multiverse.

Describe your 2021 in politics, culture, and the universe?

I point this insignificance out because I think there are those of us who feel the reality of our smallness and rareness in the vast universe and embrace it. I also think there are others who lash out against it in ways that are indecipherable to the rest of us.

Both perspectives emerge from that mist of confusion in many different forms representing many different things.

For me, it emerges as rambling blog posts, art, occasionally music, and adventures through my little corner of this tiny planet.

For others, it seems to emerge in less constructive ways. Politics, online rage, cruelty, crime, and willfully working against the general goodness that is possible in this universe.

In the upcoming year I hope you find a way to lean into even just a little more constructiveness — for yourself, for me, for all of us — as you whirl through the incomprehensible vastness of the universe, and that you continue to enjoy my attempts at the same right here as I continue to write about cooking, travel, adventure, and filling my face with delicious foods.

Thirty one topics. Thirty one posts. Not exactly a list… but close. In December I like to look back on the year that was. My daily posts in December-ish are themed-ish and may contain spoilers set against the backdrop of some year-end-ish personal exposition.