Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Planet Party Crashers: Pluto's back with an entourage

I would like to think that our generation's vocal disapproval of the removal of Pluto from the Planets has something to with why our favorite little planet is back. Facebook groups and t-shirts reading "When I was your age, Pluto was a planet" were most definitely a driving force in the return of Pluto.

But news flash: Pluto is back with friends. Yes, Pluto is a "dwarf" planet and he's brought two other dwarfs with him, Ceres and Eris.


Are you kidding me?

There was even a contest to make up a new mnemonic device for remembering the new line-up. The winner: My Very Exciting Magic Carpet Just Sailed Under Nine Palace Elephants.

I will never remember this. Never. For the rest of my life, My Very Educated Mother will have just Served Us Nine Pizzas. There will be no magic carpets! No elephants! And absolutely no palaces! Just Pizzas! Nine of them! Served by My Mother! Who happens to be Very Educated!

In response to this growing outrage by all people who have already graduated the 5th grade, I will never consent to these new planets.

Ceres, Eris... You are dead to me.


Laurel Kornfeld said...

I would rather see Pluto, Eris, and Ceres included as planets (ice dwarfs could be a subcategory of the broader category planet) than have the current IAU definition which excludes Pluto and states that dwarf planets are not planets at all. The latter simply makes no sense.

A good, simple, broad definition of planet is "a non-self-luminous spheroidal object orbiting a star"--definition courtesy of my astronomy instructor Al Witzgall. If an object has achieved enough self gravity to have pulled itself into a round shape, it's a planet. That means Pluto, Eris, and Ceres are in.

Anonymous said...

Or rather, for a number of years when I was in school, Pizzas Nine.

(Anyone know how long it will be until the next time Pluto cuts inside Neptune again?)