Thursday, December 31, 2009
Blue Moon Tonight, New Years Eve 2009
I have always loved the Moon, I have watched it at night and daytime. Look up to the sky and there it is; Moonbeams sent down to us on earth. I have even named my blog after the moon (ByLightOfMoon). Actually it started out being the name I used on my Jimmy Buffett boards I used to go to for inspiration. His songs help me so much when in pain and even before when we were sailing. Remembering all the good times we had and even the stories he tells of his travels. I can be there in my dreams!
actually a bit extraordinary—a blue moon.
These blue moons occur about every two and a half years. The last time this happened was in June 2007 and the next time will be in August 2012. In 1999 there were two full Moons in January, and again in March, but no full Moon in February
What is a Blue Moon?
There are in fact two definitions for a blue moon. According to the more recent definition, a blue moon is the second full moon in a calendar month. For a blue moon to occur, the first of the full moons must appear at or near the beginning of the month so that the second will fall within the same month (the average span between two moons is 29.5 days) same month. Given that full moons occur once every 29.5 days, this is quite an accomplishment!
How Often Does a Blue Moon Occur?
Over the next 20 years there will be about 15 blue moons, with an almost equal number of both types of blue moons occurring. No blue moon of any kind will occur in the years 2011, 2014, and 2017.
The more recent phenomenon, where the blue moon is considered to be the second full moon in a calendar month, last occurred on May 31, 2007. Two full moons in one month may occur in any month out of the year except for February, which is shorter than the lunar cycle.
The other, older blue moon event, which happens when there are four full moons in a season, last occured in August 2005. Since this type of blue moon is reckoned according to the seasons, it can only occur in February, May, August, or November, about a month before the equinox or the solstice.
Twice in a Blue Moon
The rare phenomenon of two blue moons (using the more recent definitition) occurring in the same year happens approximately once every 19 years. 1999 was the last time a blue moon appeared twice, in January and March.
The months of the double blue moons are almost always January and March. That is because the short month that falls in between them, February, is a key ingredient in this once-every-19-year phenomenon. For January and March to each have two full moons, it's necessary for February to have none at all. Since February is usually 28 days long, and the average span between full moons is 29.5 days, if a full moon occurs at the end of January, it's possible for the next full moon to skip February entirely and fall in the beginning of March.
Once in a Blue Moon
"Blue moon" appears to have been a colloquial expression long before it developed its calendrical senses. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the first reference to a blue moon comes from a proverb recorded in 1528:
If they say the moon is blue,
We must believe that it is true.
Saying the moon was blue was equivalent to saying the moon was made of green (or cream) cheese; it indicated an obvious absurdity. In the 19th century, the phrase until a blue moon developed, meaning "never." The phrase, once in a blue moon today has come to mean "every now and then" or "rarely"—whether it gained that meaning through association with the lunar event remains uncertain.
I wsih everyone a blissfull New Years Eve 2009, I would love to be riding this London eye wheel as I adore ferris wheels also, but I will be home and maybe even alsleep, butI will try and celecrate with the rest of the world as 2010 arrives as I hope it is a WoNdErFuL NeW YeAr for all of us!