Thursday, August 24, 2006

Puto: Yer OUT!

The IAU has made its decision today, August 24, 2006, and demoted Pluto from planetary status to a dwarf planet. Officially, the solar system has eight planets according to the new definition of a planet. The new definition claims that a planet is "a celestial body that is in orbit around the sun, has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a ... nearly round shape, and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit." Pluto is excluded because of its oblong orbit that brings it within the orbit of Neptune. No longer under consideration are Xena, Charon or a host of other smaller objects. They will become either dwarf planets or Kuiper Belt Objects or the even more general Small Solar System Objects.

The anagram that school children have used for years "My Very Excited Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas," to remember the planets will have to be changed. I propose "My Very Excited Mother Just Served Us NOTHING!"

Walt Disney is turning in his grave knowing that his beloved cartoon dog has become named for a dwarf object not a planet.

More information can be found here and all over the Internet. In a bizarre twist of fate, Pluto has been demoted on my birthday, which will surely overshadow this historic event.

L.S.C.

2 comments:

The Phoenix said...

Happy Birthday.

How about "My Very Excited Mother Just Served Us Narcotics."

ObilonKenobi said...

I like it. If anyone out there is lurking? Send me ideas and I will post the best ones!!