cleaning up so well (jones_casey) wrote,
cleaning up so well

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this happened, too

i recently responded to a post by theorizing that twain wouldn't have found noteworthy the coincidence of a man named paige inventing a page compositor, but then i stumbled upon an account of someone's observation of halley's comet in 1910, and was reminded that twain was born on november 30th, 1835, exactly two weeks after the comet's perihelion when it visited that year, and is well known for saying, in his autobiography published in 1909:

i came in with halley's comet in 1835. it is coming again next year, and i expect to go out with it. it will be the greatest disappointment of my life if i don't go out with halley's comet. the almighty has said, no doubt: 'now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.'

and, indeed, twain died on april 21st, 1910, the day following the comet's subsequent perihelion.

so i withdraw my prior theory.

those of us alive in early 1986 were gypped. halley's 1986 apparition was the least favorable on record, with the worst viewing circumstances for earth observers for the last 2,000 years. assuming we get past 2012, 2061 is supposed to be a nice view.


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