Saturday, October 10, 2009

Enhancing the Stars

I know this seems like old news after all the excitement yesterday, but I still want to tell you about it. Wednesday night marked one of my favorite nights of the year here at the Big White:  annual Star Gazing Astronomy Night. tele

My niece,Celia



Each year we have the girl scouts in for our annual astronomy night.  The Girl Scouts organization has always encouraged girls’ interest in science and technology(which is more than I can say for Larry Summers over at Treasury), so the hookup with NASA is a natural. I’ve served as the unofficial mistress of ceremonies for the past 4 administrations, but this year my little niece Celia participated for the first time as one of the official NASA telescopes. I was so proud.


Not only did we get to gaze at celestial bodies through some of the finest optical lenses ever created, but Lady M was named the Honorary National President of the Girl Scouts.  At first she thought she might be too busy to assume these additional honorary duties, but I advised her that, like so many things around here, there aren’t really any duties. And she gets an unlimited supply of girl scout cookies. Done deal.

After the inside ceremonies, we got to go outside to actually use some of the  NASA optics to look at constellations and check for incoming missiles.

Here’s a shot of MO and Bo greeting the little girls. There was a mo star gazingmoment of confusion. They both saw the event listed in their Blackberries as “star gazing at the white house” and naturally assumed it was a dinner for them to meet with some of their biggest donors. Imagine how surprised they were to see all the little munchkins dressed in brown uniforms.

The night was supposed to wrap up with s’mores on the south lawn, but some a-hole in Environmental Affairs said we couldn’t build a campfire. We had to settle for peanut butter and marshmallow Fluff canap├ęs which were really hard to eat, and got all over the lenses of the telescopes. Other than that, they were really tasty. Mmm, Mmm, Mmm!