Naissance (1911-1912). Marc Chagall.
Oil on canvas. Art Institute of Chicago.
Details of Yuri Gagarin’s Tragic Death Revealed
On the morning of April 12, 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin lifted off in his Vostok 1 spacecraft to become the first human in space, spending 108 minutes in orbit before landing in the Saratov region of the USSR. The soft-spoken and well-mannered Gagarin, just 27 years old at the time, became an instant hero, representing the success of the Soviet space program (Alan Shepard’s shorter, suborbital flight happened less than a month later) to the entire world. Gagarin later went on to become a director for the Cosmonaut Training Center and was preparing for a second space flight. Tragically, he was killed when a MiG-15 aircraft he was piloting crashed on March 27, 1968.
Antoine de Saint Exupéry avec sa femme Consuelo, vers 1931
Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria, Anastasia and Tsarevich Alexei of Russia
— June 23, 2013
Be sure to look out for the Moon these next few months as it approaches Perigee, because the full moons during these times will appear exceptionally large. The Moon will be at its Perigee, or closest approach, in June 23 and it will reach full moon only a few minutes after it passes this point in its orbit.
These ‘super moons’ not only appear larger because they are physically closer but, combined with a full moon, the mind can play tricks on you to think they are much larger. This phenomena is called the Moon Illusion. Try to catch these full moons as they rise/set because the illusion works when there is an object in the foreground, like a tree, building or mountains.
The largest full moon this year is coming up!
And to clear some things up. Yes, the top image is exaggerated and the moon won’t be a menacing object in the sky on the 23rd. No, it’s not going to come out of nowhere and dominate the sky and create destructive tides, though the tides will be affected but it’s nothing to worry about. The moon will appear large as it approaches full moon and even next months full moon will still appear large, however it will be a few percents smaller. The best time to see it will be between the afternoon of the 22nd and before sunrise on the 23rd (it reaches full moon on the morning of the 23rd technically).
Supersizers Eat… 02x01 - The Eighties.
Change extension to .abc to .avi
Medieval smiley face
This is a true feel-good doodle, drawn by a medieval reader and found in the lower margin of a 13th-century page. The surprisingly modern-looking smiley face is wearing glasses and seems to float towards the text in a balloon, quite content. This little scene made my day.
Pic: Conches, Bibliothèque municipale, MS 7 (main text 13th century, doodle 14th or 15th century).