Saturday, January 13, 2024

Still Life with Robin: 4 .2 .24 & Other Fun Dates to Come in 2024

by Peggy Robin

Although January is just about halfway over, it's not too late for a look at what the calendar holds for the next eleven and a half months. I'm talking about important stuff -- like the palindrome datesFridays the 13th (or maybe its Friday the 13ths?); the astronomical events, and important anniversaries.
 
Let's start with the palindrome dates (which read the same forwards and backwards). There are 11 of them in April, all of them the "short-form," that is, using a 2-digit year:
 
4.2.24
4.20.24
4.21.24
4.22.24
4.23.24
4.24.24
4.25.24
4.26.24
4.27.24
4.28.24
4.29.24
 
There are NO palindrome dates using the 4-digit year 2024. In fact, there are just a dozen of them in the entire 21st century! If you're curious to know all of them, go to: https://www.farmersalmanac.com/its-palindrome-day-14486
 
Wanna see something really cool about 2024? Take a look at this calculation:

If you have paraskevidekatriaphobia, you might want to stay in bed all day on these two days in 2024: 
Friday, September 13, 2024... and then, exactly two months later, Friday, December 13, 2024
Look to the Skies in 2024.

The Baltimore TV station WBAL has the best roundup of the astronomical highlights for our area:
 
The Really Big Thing is the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. Sorry, we're not in the path of totality. See the map at  https://science.nasa.gov/eclipses/future-eclipses/eclipse-2024/where-when/ -- but it's probably too late to book hotel rooms anywhere along the path in the US, as the eclipsophiles have already snapped up all the hotel rooms or so we were warned by CNN in mid-2023:  https://www.cnn.com/travel/solar-eclipse-2024-trip-planning-scn/index.html
 
Blue Moons
 
There's just one "blue moon" in 2024 -- on August 19th -- and it's a "seasonal blue moon," that is defined as the third of four full mons in a season. The other type of "blue moon" is the "calendrical blue moon," the second full moon in the same calendar month -- and we won't be seeing another one of those for two and a half years. May 31, 2026, is the next one, and it does seem to give credence to the phrase "once in a blue moon"!
 
Supermoons
 
A "supermoon" is a full moon at a point closer to the earth than is usual -- but how close is close enough to call it a supermoon? I'm going with the definition by astronomer Fred Espenak, which I found through a link at EarthSky.org: https://earthsky.org/astronomy-essentials/what-is-a-supermoon/ - copy reproduced in the 5 paragraphs below);
 
Fred Espenak’s full supermoon table gives us these values – dates and moon distances – for full supermoons in 2024. Contrast these moon distances to the average moon distance of 238,900 miles (384,472 km).
 
Note: Fred’s dates are based on UTC time, so some supermoons may fall on the previous date your local time.  

Aug 19: 224,917 miles (361,969 kilometers)
Sep 18: 222,131 miles (357,485 kilometers)
Oct 17: 222,055 miles (357,363 kilometers)
Nov 15: 224,853 miles (361,866 kilometers)
 
And the full supermoon of September 18, 2024, will be a Super Harvest Moon plus have a partial lunar eclipse.
Then the full supermoon of October 17, 2024, will be a Super Hunter’s Moon and the closest full supermoon for 2024.
 
Now for some historic anniversaries: 
 
January 25: It's the 100th anniversary of the Winter Olympics - January 25, 1924 
February 1: It's the 140th anniversary of the Oxford English Dictionary, debuting on February 1, 1884 
February 7: It's the 60th anniversary of the Beatles arriving in New York City - February 7, 1964 
April 17: It's the 500th anniversary of the Verrazzano expedition's entry into New York Bay, making the first European sighting of the island of Manhattan - April 17, 1524
June 6: It's the 80th anniversary of D-Day - June 6, 1944
July 20: It's the 55th anniversary of the first man walking on the moon - July 20, 1969 
August 1: It's the 100th anniversary of the First World War, beginning on August 1, 1914
November 9: It's 35 Years since the fall of the Berlin Wall - November 9, 1989
Unknown date in 1024: It's 1,000 years since the world's first paper-printed money was introduced by the Song Dynasty in the Sichuan province of China.
 
Let me end with the year's most significant anniversary of all (at least to me!): On November 30, 1999 -- a date which will live in Listory! -- the Cleveland Park Listserv was founded. That's a quarter-century of the CP Listserv. (And no, we haven't been debating bike lanes all that time.) You can't read our very first message as it was just a test of the system, and so we deleted it. The first real message in the CP Listserv archives is here: 11/30/1999   #2   ...and yes, the platform was then on "E-Groups," which no longer exists. 
 
With the help of our 12,600+ members, hoping to make 2024 the best CP Listserv year of all!
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Still Life with Robin is posted on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Saturdays.

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