Saturday, February 18, 2012

From where I am seeing

(Diagram copied from the novel)
"Some people think the Milky Way is a long line of stars, but it isn't. Our galaxy is a huge disk of stars millions of light-years across, and the solar system is somewhere near the outside edge of the disk.
"When you look in direction A, at 90° to the disk, you don't see many stars. But when you look in direction B, you see lots more stars because you are looking into the main body of the galaxy, and because the galaxy is a disk you see a stripe of stars."
-  Christopher Boone in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

Just the night before I read this excerpt from the novel (it's one of the two books we have to read for creative writing this semester), Tricia and I crossed each other's path as we were both walking under the dark sky absorbing the remnants of starlight, and she mentioned that she didn't realize until that night that the stars were clearer at certain angles. Or that there were more stars if you look from the right place. I told her it was the fact that she was away from the lamppost that made the stars more striking.

I don't know if she had already read this excerpt by then, which has a point I never thought about until I myself have read it. Maybe the reason I still don't get to see the Milky Way from wherever I live now is not entirely because I live in too much light. I may well have always been looking at the night sky 90° to the disk.

Perception makes up everything that I see.


  1. nice!! But i tried seeing it at a 90 degree angle and actually saw! maybe the lights may influence this theory? haha...but can I pls reblog this post!! wanted to post about this part of the book too, but since you done it I just 'tayangkan' yours lah! can?!? hehe..

  2. Really? Great minds think alike then! Haha! I thought about what you said right away when reading that part. Yes, go ahead if you want to reblog, as long as you credit me. =P Did you try to see, like, right above you? If you see less, that's because he said at 90 degree angles you actually see less, not more. =D But even then, we really can't tell which angle is which unless we do some crazy calculation of the earth, moon and star alignment or something. Lol