Date: 9/5/17 1:41 am From: Jeff Gibson <gibsondesign...> Subject: [Tweeters] Ol' Crater-Face, etc.
Tonight in Port Townsend the Moon appears to be like a super-sized Mars - orange as can be, undoubtably due due forest fire smoke.
Usually, of course, the moon appears brilliant white with reflected sunlight, showing off it's crater-pocked face.
One day, not too long ago, when I discovered "Earthshine" (the reflection of the sunlit earth on the moon) I began wondering about all those moon craters. It seemed to me that the earth, being much larger than the moon, would be a bigger target to be hit by crashing space objects, and it turns out to be true, accentuated by the earths gravitational pull.
You see, way out somewhere in our galaxy there is a driving range occasionally attended by chaotic golfers - they just smack whatever comes by and then forget about it because they can't see what their not even aiming at. But occasionally they get a "hole in one" - actually hit something. As their smacked objects fly through the universe some break up into little bits, meteors of various sizes, but some stay pretty big- we call those asteroids. One of them did in the Dinosaurs here on earth, eventually making room for new troublemakers.
But, why is Earth so unmarked like "Ol Scarface" the moon?
Well, that's because while the moon is mostly dead, the earth however, as Dr. Frankenstein noted, (Ok,so that wasn't about earth, but applies) "Its Alive!". Whilst the moon has just about no active geology, and no weather (no atmosphere )
nothing much changes - even the footprint of the first American golfers on the moon are still there decades later. And millions of years later, so are the craters.
But the earth is alive, even the rocks. We got continental drift, active volcanoes , glaciers, weather ,erosion and all sort of
activity that tends to erase our craters,and vegetation and oceans to camouflage them. There are a few easy to see - there is a nice big meteor crater down by Winslow Arizona for example - but most require some real scientific sleuthing to find evidence of.
One day, maybe soon, or in millions of years, we're liable to get slapped upside the head by the next asteroid, which will solve our political problems (if we live that long) and create new opportunities for growth, which will take some patience.