Just a few days after I write about humans going to the asteroids, I read an item about asteroids coming uncomfortably close to us humans. One sentence at the bottom of a page in the February National Geographic reads: “On February 15th, the Asteroid 2012 DA14 is expected to pass within 27,000 miles of Earth’s surface, about one tenth as far as the moon.” Turns out that just before 2:30 today the asteroid, which is about the size of a small office building, will pass about ten thousand miles closer than that. If it hit us, the combined explosive force would be that of 180 Hiroshimas. What is another way of describing 180 simultaneous nuclear explosions? Nuclear war, followed by nuclear winter. I see that the Republican filibuster of Chuck Hegel is dominating the headlines and news channels today, so, as usual, we’ve got the wrong priorities. Anyway, it’s nice to be alive today. Think I’ll go for a walk after lunch just to savor it.
UPDATE! See here for some video of a meteorite crashing into a remote part of Russia (poor Russia, they just can’t win) last Friday. My source is the TIME Web site, which isn’t confirming that the footage is real. So it could just be a viral marketing campaign for a new J.J. Abrams movie. But still, it feels like we’re being attacked by near earth objects.