Daily Archives: December 8, 2013

24 Days Till Hogmanay (New Year’s): An Explanation Of The Tradition & The ‘Dark Stranger’ (ME) First Footing (Kissing) Tradition.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

Anura Guruge

Related posts:
>> ‘Auld Lang Syne’: Proper Way

>>Dec. 31, 2012.
>> Hogmanay — Dec. 29, 2012.
Search ‘Auld’ for other posts in THIS series >>>>
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From ‘Scotland.org’. Definite must read. Click to access.

So, this is the part where I came in.

There was a need, in the early 1980s, for DARK strangers in Glasgow to fulfil the ‘tall, dark, handsome …’ part.

Well, tall and handsome I am not, though at 5′ 9.5″(+) I was above average for Brits in that time. So, my only qualification and saving grace was that nobody could deny that I was ‘dark‘.

This ‘tall, dark, handsome …’ requirement, as you can see from the 3rd image below morphed into ‘chimney sweeps‘. They were also scarce in the early 1980s.

So the poor Scots had to do with average height, funny looking wogs like me.

I wasn’t complaining. It was a night of great revelry (and I can’t remember who paid … not that it mattered in those days … before I had kids … plus I had very generous expense accounts to cater for my entertainment costs since my job, as a Customer Support Manager, was to entertain).



Where the chimney sweep tradition came in. Click to access.

Remnants Of Comet ISON: Latest December 2013 Videos From NASA’s STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory)

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.
Anura Guruge

Related posts:
>> ISON’s ghostly goodbye
— Dec. 5, 2013.
>> Latest on ISON, post demise
>>Dec. 2, 2013.
**** Scroll down or do search, MULTIPLE ISON posts a day November 28 & November 29 ****


Click for YouTube video.


Click for YouTube …

Basically it is a tightly packed dust cloud right now.

This dust cloud will cross Earth’s orbital path January 3 – 4.

We could still get some fireworks.

A spectacular meteor shower
… and another later.

So we haven’t seen the end of ISON.

We probably won’t for years to come.

Every year, as we orbit the Sun, we will CONTINUE to cut across
the dust trail being left behind by ISON.

Winter Solstice And Shortest Day In New Hampshire For 2013 Still 13 Days Away, But Earliest Sunsets Right Now …

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.
Anura Guruge

Related posts:
>> Winter Solstice — Dec. 20, 2012.
>> Summer Solstice — June 20, 2013.
++++ Search ‘solstice’ for other related posts >>>>

The shortest day of the year, the Winter Solstice, MY favorite day of the year (since it heralds the coming of Summer), is on December 21, 2013.

But, the rate at which sunrise and sunset varies, from day to day, going towards the Solstice and coming out of it isn’t symmetrical.

So, right now we are in THE period of the EARLIEST sunsets. That doesn’t mean that these are the SHORTEST days because sunrise happens ‘earlier’.

So in terms of daylight hours we still have 13 days to go before we see the shortest day.

But, for those that don’t see sunrise (in the winter) these are the shortest days because the sunset is earlier.

I know, this is kind of obtuse. Not immediately obvious. Though I understand it, each year around this time, I still have to stop and think about it to make sure it is clear in my mind.

The following tables will explain. Study them.
The top two are from our U.S. Naval Observatory.
Third is from ‘Time & Date‘ an excellent resource.

In the mid-1990s before I went on my own I worked for a couple of years, as the ‘Lead Consultant‘ at Bolt, Beranek and Newman (BBN) — THE place where some of  ‘the Internet‘ was invented, and NO, Al Gore never worked at BBN. Amazing place. I have never seen, not even at Cisco, IBM, Northern Telecom, just a inescapable concentration of raw, vivid intelligence. I used to be in awe. I always felt that I was the ‘Token Dummy‘ they had hired — and I had this exalted title! But, I repaid them in my own little way. In my first year there I got about 20 articles, with the BBN tagline, printed in trade journals. They loved that. Plus I was sure that I was the only uncircumcised person (thank God) on the whole campus — separated by the railway tracks leading to North Station in Boston. So, I also felt that I was the ‘Token Gentile‘ — and I wasn’t even a Gentile! There was a genius there who tracked sunset and sunrise for Boston and sent us e-mails reminding us of the various flavors of ‘shortest days’. I still get these e-mails from him … which is what reminded me to go check the times for New Hampshire. BBN was a great place.

Click to ENLARGE.

Hours of Day in December in Concord, New Hampshire.

Sunrise & Sunset Times in December for Concord, New Hampshire.


This weeks Sunrise and Sunset times for Concord, New Hampshire in detail just to understand the variations.


And to end, lets all ENJOY ‘Sunrise Sunset’ from ‘Fiddler on the Roof‘ … one of my favorite musicals.


Click to access the YouTube video … ENJOY.