2 min read

Friday, May 12, 2023

Good morning. I write to you from Detroit, Michigan, not far from the Star Theater (RIP). Speaking of stars, here's one that swallowed a gas giant like a milk dud:

An artist’s impression shows a doomed planet skimming the surface of its star.
It's probably going to be fine. (K. Miller/R. Hurt (Caltech/IPAC))

Kasha Patel at the Washington Post writes about a study from Nature about how some researchers back in 2020 caught a very naughty sun eating a planet. Some deep thinkers believe is this is probably what's going to happen right here on (or, perhaps more accurately, to) the planet Earth - but others consider it an open question. In any case, these scientists' observations should help detect other such Galactus Events elsewhere in the galaxy.

I recommend that you click through to read the whole story but I must caution you that the study's lead author is quoted as saying that our beloved Sun will, in 5 billion years or so, "become puffy". Not a phrase I was expecting, nor a phrase I enjoyed, but we must follow science where it takes us. Another scientist exclaimed "Wow!", which I think is an appropriate and much less disturbing thing to say about this whole thing.

Item 2: a list

Three Musketeers, Snickers, Twix, and Butterfingers, ranked

  1. Three Musketeers
  2. Snickers
  3. Twix
  4. Butterfingers

Item 3: a media recommendation

Sunstroke Project & Olia Tira - Run Away (Moldova) Live 2010 (the 10 hour sax solo is perfect background music for focused work)

Item 4: word of the week


The odious billionaire dissimulates his hard-right views behind a laughably inconstant obsession with "free speech".

Item 5: a photograph

An artistic image inspired by a black hole-neutron star merger event. Credit: Carl Knox, OzGrav/Swinburne

A black hole eating a neutron star. Not to be confused with a star eating a planet.

See ya!

See you next week. I'll let you know when I have some Bluesky invites.