Spot On!

When Arielle W. offered to send postcards from NASA to interested members of the Love Notes community, I responded “no thanks” because I live in “space central.” Boy, am I glad she ignored me! Why? Just look and see!

Detail of a Sunspot. Big Bear Solar Observatory, New Jersey Institute of Technology

This “space” postcard looks so much like a sunflower that at first glance I thought it was a sunflower. Maybe, this was because I was wearing multifocal contacts–which are amazing in bright light, but a little weird in dim light–but I think many people would have had to take a second look before realizing the image isn’t a sunflower.

The back of the postcard reads:

This detailed image taken in 2010 by the New Jersey Institute of Technology’s New Solar Telescope at the Big Bear Solar Observatory–a project partially funded by NASA–features an enormous sunspot on the photosphere of the Sun that is slightly larger than the Earth.

Arielle sent this to me (anyway) because she “thought of me and my love of sunflowers…the card looks almost like a sunflower.” She couldn’t have chosen a better “space” card for me!

Even though this amazing card did not need any help, she also wrote a popular Shakespeare “misquote” on the back:

It is not in the stars to hold our destiny, but in ourselves.

In case you’re interested, the actual lines are from Julius Caesar:

Men at some time are masters of their fates:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings. –Cassius to Brutus, Act I, scene ii

There’s some irony in the quote masquerading as Shakespeare appearing on postcard of a sunspot–which I mistook for a sunflower.

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6 Comments

  1. A true sun flower then – a flower produced by sun itself.

    Reply
  2. I thought it was a sunflower 🙂 It’s a beautiful misinterpretation by all.

    Reply
  3. Awesome card and post! WOW! Bigger than the earth!! At first glance I saw sun flower too. Thanks for including the correct lines, saved me from looking them up, LOL. Scrolling up for another look 😉

    Reply
    • Haha…always must include the correct lines, especially when it’s Shakespeare. And I agree. This is a pretty awesome postcard. I’m not the most “sciencey” person, but I am intrigued by the sun, moon, stars, and all things “space.” The fact that this sunspot is the bigger than the planet we inhabit places a lot of things in perspective.

      Reply

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