Author Topic: Retiring under Scorpius  (Read 146 times)

Mike Meckler

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 119
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2018, 12:36:21 AM »
Congratulations Marty and thanks for the story! I've been retired since 2005 and frankly, I don't know how I every had time for work. One of these days, I'm going to have to "retire" again too, but for now, I'm having way too much fun. Your story of Scorpio reminded me that in my life it has always been Orion that reminds me of the stages of my life. For me, the sight of Orion often brings back a flood of memories of one thing or another. Anyway, enjoy owning your own time as you enter retirement.

John

James Schaefer

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 118
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2018, 03:44:20 AM »
Thanks everyone, for all the congratulations, kind words, and good wishes!
 To answer a few questions... I won't be traveling much to dark sites, (although I'd like to hit the Nebraska Star Party someday,) since I have a severely autistic son still living at home. Overnight trips don't work. But... we all got stuff we gotta deal with. I'm lucky enough to have a good "blue zone road" 7 miles south of town. A 10 minute drive to a good sky.
 My eclipse plans are to check the weather maps and then drive that morning for a few hours to find a clear spot in Missouri or Nebraska. I figure near some DINKY town so I won't have to deal with a massive crowd.
 OH... And I've gotta finish replacing my sidewalk, which I busted out last year, and the garage needs a new roof, and I want to rebuild some of my storm windows, and there's an open stairway railing I built 30 plus years ago that I've never gotten around to staining and finishing, and the dishwasher passed away a few days ago...
 I'm attaching my retirement portrait from the pizza delivery business. I never dressed any better as a dentist, which won me the "best dressed award" when I graduated from dental school. My patients seemed to be comfortable with that though, and if somebody didn't like it there were other dentists around.
                                                                         MartyAttached Thumbnails




Chris Young

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 117
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #17 on: January 18, 2018, 06:43:31 AM »
Quote
Congratulations Marty and thanks for the story! I've been retired since 2005 and frankly, I don't know how I every had time for work. One of these days, I'm going to have to "retire" again too, but for now, I'm having way too much fun. Your story of Scorpio reminded me that in my life it has always been Orion that reminds me of the stages of my life. For me, the sight of Orion often brings back a flood of memories of one thing or another. Anyway, enjoy owning your own time as you enter retirement.

John

Orion is "one of those" constellations for me too. When I was a kid, I'd go out LATE at night during the summer, and when Orion and Canis Major were up, so that Orion's belt and sword looked like a kite with a long tail curving down to Sirius, that meant the school year was about to start. This was before DST, but it shows how late I was out walking around.
 Marty

Mike Khan

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 111
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2018, 07:28:45 PM »
Quote
Just a personal ramble. I guess I "officially retired" today. I'm 67, and for the last 42 years, I've worked as a solo dentist in a small (pop. 1500) town... Something of a dinosaur. I didn't bring my job up much in here, or in the old sci.astro.amateur, because stargazing was an escape for me. Dealing very closely with people, sometimes under stressful conditions, often made the job stressful for ME, and I tended to find relaxation and perspective alone under the night sky, as I have all my life.
 Last night was clear and pretty, and a very pleasant 57 degrees F, and I stepped out with my 2x54 constellation binoculars. Enjoying my casual ramble, I found myself repeatedly being drawn back to Scorpius, rising in the southeast. The delights in his curving tail hadn't risen yet, but the distinctive little pentangle of stars above Antares, and the barely visible M4 were very pleasing. And the head of Scorpius is a wonderful sight in any binoculars. Just a nice grouping of bright stars, set off with such things as the little pair of omegas.
 Walking back to my house, the thought struck me that Scorpius had graced my previous "retirement..." the last college job I'd had was delivering pizzas. It was a good job for me, with hours from four pm to one am, and I got to be the proverbial "fly on the wall" in a number of situations. Late in May, close to the end of my college days, I was driving around Lincoln, Nebraska, delivering pizzas while enjoying a total Lunar eclipse in Scorpius. As much as I enjoyed the eclipse, the fun was complemented by the sight of the late night bar patrons wandering out and standing in the street marveling at the reddened Moon.
 After I got back in the house, I checked my 1975 Sky & Telescopes to see if my memories were accurate. Yup. The August Sky & Telescope (maybe things moved a bit slower in '75,) had a picture on the cover of the eclipse in Scorpius, and it had occurred on the night of May 24 - 25.
 I suspect from here on out, I'll always associate Scorpius with retirements. Funny how this stuff works out sometimes. 
 Marty

Great post and congratulations on having earned your freedom from the daily grind.

Scorpius is near and dear to my heart, too. As a kid growing up in suburban northern California in the late 60s and early 70s, at the dawn of Silicon Valley, many of my buddies had parents like mine who were employed in the nascent high tech industry. We were an enclave of nerds and geeks living in new tract housing built where orchards previously stood. I had a couple of buddies in particular who shared my love of space and astronomy, Tim Johnson and Dennis Michaels. Tim borrowed his computer scientists father's Bushnell 60mm "zoom" telescope on spindly tripod (later upgraded to an Edmund Astroscan in the 70s). Dennis piloted a 40mm extremely long focus (f/20 maybe) Japanese achromat on a reasonably sturdy alt-az mount, and I skippered a Jason 60mm f/12 achromat on a somewhat shaky alt-az mount. We also shared my dad's 7x50 Tasco binoculars.

Usually my house was the observing spot since we had a lot with good southern horizons and the two-story house blocked the small amount of local light pollution to the east. We'd spent months observing bright planets, the moon and bright naked eye DSOs like M45, but those mysterious "M" objects listed on the Peterson Field Guide's seasonal star charts eluded us. Mainly because we really didn't grasp the correlation between magnification and field of view, and really had no mental context for what a "real" DSO ought to look like in such instruments.

It was a warm, dark, June night. School had only just ended for the summer and Dennis and I were doing an astronomy camp-out in the back yard. We were probably ten or maybe eleven, and our mutual goal for this summer was to see some of those hard to pinpoint "M objects" in our scopes. Dennis' scope was a tough customer. It had a very tiny native TFOV and the finder was junk. Mine was a little more generous, but not by much. Both were frustrating for planets and stars, much less things you couldn't see naked eye.

The tail of the scorpion had just emerged above the distant foothills to the south. As the sting cleared some of the slop, I noticed something. We were familiar with the averted vision paradox (more a trick than technique for us), but generally employed it to see M42 grow in apparent size when viewed indirectly. I kind of accidentally used it naked eye in the area of the sting, and I noticed something. With averted vision I saw little "clouds" that weren't summer haze. They vanished with direct vision, and reappeared with indirect vision. The Peterson Field Guide plotted an M6 and M7 roughly in the location we were viewing. The hunt for our first "real Messiers" was on!

It was like floodgates opening. With bright, easy M6 and M7 under our belts, and in high spirits, we had some context as to what more challenging DSOs would look like in our instruments. M13 succumbed next, just past zenith. Not naked eye, but visible as a puff ball bookended by stars forming an obtuse triangle, in my finder scope. From then on our sessions were much more productive.

So for me, just as Scorpius marked the end of your working days, it marked the beginning of of my love of deep sky visual observing. Enjoy your very extended summer break, Marty!

Chuck Klem

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 124
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2018, 10:58:19 PM »
What a wonderful post, Jim!
 I mentioned "the delights in the curving tail" of Scorpius... Garrett Serviss gets credit for pointing those out to me in his 1888 book, "Astronomy With An Opera-Glass." (I really love old observing books.  )
 MartyAttached Thumbnails




trodnenwisen

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 123
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2018, 08:33:15 AM »
Quote
OH... And I've gotta finish replacing my sidewalk, which I busted out last year, and the garage needs a new roof, and I want to rebuild some of my storm windows, and there's an open stairway railing I built 30 plus years ago that I've never gotten around to staining and finishing, and the dishwasher passed away a few days ago....
                                                                         Marty

My late Aunt Betty always used to say, "If it isn't one thing, it's five others."

Michael Consumers

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 126
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #21 on: January 22, 2018, 07:42:38 PM »
Hearty congratulations Marty. I enjoy reading your posts and now there may be an opportunity to read more of them, if you want to write them, that is...

Not sure where you're located, but I have had the pleasure of visiting Iowa a few times, and I like leaving the interstates and taking to the secondary roads, like Route 6 or Route 175. The latter highway took me across the Missouri River (awe-inspiring) into the sleepy village of Decatur NE. That river is as big as those prairie skies. Boy, what a river. When I read the title of your post, I thought you were moving to the southern hemisphere. But what you wrote was much better. I can see why you are happy to call your part of the world - home!

ithoclirans

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 123
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #22 on: January 22, 2018, 08:28:38 PM »
Quote
Thanks everyone, for all the congratulations, kind words, and good wishes! To answer a few questions... I won't be traveling much to dark sites, (although I'd like to hit the Nebraska Star Party someday,) since I have a severely autistic son still living at home. Overnight trips don't work. But... we all got stuff we gotta deal with. I'm lucky enough to have a good "blue zone road" 7 miles south of town. A 10 minute drive to a good sky.  My eclipse plans are to check the weather maps and then drive that morning for a few hours to find a clear spot in Missouri or Nebraska. I figure near some DINKY town so I won't have to deal with a massive crowd. OH... And I've gotta finish replacing my sidewalk, which I busted out last year, and the garage needs a new roof, and I want to rebuild some of my storm windows, and there's an open stairway railing I built 30 plus years ago that I've never gotten around to staining and finishing, and the dishwasher passed away a few days ago... I'm attaching my retirement portrait from the pizza delivery business. I never dressed any better as a dentist, which won me the "best dressed award" when I graduated from dental school. My patients seemed to be comfortable with that though, and if somebody didn't like it there were other dentists around.                                                                         Marty
Hi Marty, I too have an autistic son, Chris, who is 36. Back it 2004 we wanted for Chris to have a full range of life activities that my wife and I simply could not provide, and on top of that taking care of him and his needs was getting too much for us. So we filled out the state paperwork and we got on a waiting list for the Kansas program to get him placed state sponcered program for living at a Family Teaching Model program of Johnson Co. Developmental System JCDS program. We go him placed in a local Family Teaching Model FTM home with several other autistic men and lead by live-in professional caregivers. It has worked out very well especially for Chris for the last 13 years and we have him over for regular visits.I know that some parents of autistic and downs children always want them at home--and I understand that. It was a hard and an adjustment at first not having him at home starting in the fall of 2004 as well as an adjustment for him. But he adapted to it and I think he would not have it any other way. They keep him so busy with so many fun and meaningful activities, and I feel that he has a fuller life than if we chose to keep him at home. And of course, my wife and I are still his legal guardians. I'm sure the state of Iowa has a similar program usually aided by SSI or social security. I don't know if you have ever looked into any programs like I mentioned in Iowa. If you are interested you would probably have to be on a waiting list until they could place him in a group home.I know it's up to you, but I just wanted to make sure you are aware of it.An interesting story of my son: Years ago I took him one clear night to a dark sky site to let him look through my telescope. As you probably know, autistic people don't like change; they like things the same if you know what i mean. Anyway when he got out of the car he freaked out. He was so overwhelmed by all the stars and Milky Way that he hid under the open tailgate of the car and I think he was afraid the aliens might be coming for him also. And when I told him everything is ok and there's noting to be scared of, it didn't do any good. He then just sat in the front seat of the car and wouldn't come out. Later, he got used to it and looked a the creasent Moon low in the west through my 10" Dob. He liked it so much he kept taking second and third looks. Later, we got up on the hood of the car and just laid there looking up at all the stars. I think he enjoyed that more that looking through the scope.Does you son ever like to go observing with you to your dark sky site?Clear skies,Phil

bardeperdi

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 116
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2018, 02:31:16 PM »
Life is pretty good, isn't it, Marty?
Congratulations on retirement. Enjoy!

neukascome

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 119
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #24 on: January 31, 2018, 12:31:21 AM »
I know that you will enjoy retirement. I retired fully at age 60. That was 14 years ago. I should have worked two more and taken social security since I had a daughter in college. However, I could not stand the stress of the job any longer. I recommend you develop a plan to cover your viewing opportunities as you continue to age. Have a telescope in an observatory so you can have the telescope set up and ready to go? Is your back yard a good place to view, or do you have to drive a ways to view? However, I am happy for you on your retirement.

Tommy Farley

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 125
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #25 on: February 02, 2018, 04:27:45 PM »
Quote
I know that you will enjoy retirement. I retired fully at age 60. That was 14 years ago. I should have worked two more and taken social security since I had a daughter in college. However, I could not stand the stress of the job any longer. I recommend you develop a plan to cover your viewing opportunities as you continue to age. Have a telescope in an observatory so you can have the telescope set up and ready to go? Is your back yard a good place to view, or do you have to drive a ways to view? However, I am happy for you on your retirement.

Hi Gene,
 The stress got to me a long time ago, but I figured I'd die with my foot on the pedal. Retirement started to seem like a "this could actually happen" thing sometime after I turned 65, and I sort of set my sights on quitting at 67. I ran over that by a couple of months, but now I'm there. After cleaning the rest of the stuff out of the office this morning, I walked out and shut the door at 9:38:30 am DST. Never goin' back.
 My house is in a yellow-green zone. It could be much worse, but building an observatory probably wouldn't pay off for me since I can get to a decent blue zone road in 10 minutes. I've been figuring out how to streamline and condense things to haul down if the night looks good. I figure too, that I can spend 15 minutes loading up during the day and be ready. When I'm done and come back, I can leave the stuff in the car if I feel like it and unload the next day. Stuff is pretty safe around here, especially on my little dead end street. Most people leave their keys in the car.
 I'm sure my plan will evolve a bit as time goes by.
 Marty

rennlispuring

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 114
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #26 on: February 03, 2018, 01:00:21 AM »
Quote
Just a personal ramble. I guess I "officially retired" today. I'm 67, and for the last 42 years, I've worked as a solo dentist in a small (pop. 1500) town... Something of a dinosaur. I didn't bring my job up much in here, or in the old sci.astro.amateur, because stargazing was an escape for me. Dealing very closely with people, sometimes under stressful conditions, often made the job stressful for ME, and I tended to find relaxation and perspective alone under the night sky, as I have all my life.
 Last night was clear and pretty, and a very pleasant 57 degrees F, and I stepped out with my 2x54 constellation binoculars. Enjoying my casual ramble, I found myself repeatedly being drawn back to Scorpius, rising in the southeast. The delights in his curving tail hadn't risen yet, but the distinctive little pentangle of stars above Antares, and the barely visible M4 were very pleasing. And the head of Scorpius is a wonderful sight in any binoculars. Just a nice grouping of bright stars, set off with such things as the little pair of omegas.
 Walking back to my house, the thought struck me that Scorpius had graced my previous "retirement..." the last college job I'd had was delivering pizzas. It was a good job for me, with hours from four pm to one am, and I got to be the proverbial "fly on the wall" in a number of situations. Late in May, close to the end of my college days, I was driving around Lincoln, Nebraska, delivering pizzas while enjoying a total Lunar eclipse in Scorpius. As much as I enjoyed the eclipse, the fun was complemented by the sight of the late night bar patrons wandering out and standing in the street marveling at the reddened Moon.
 After I got back in the house, I checked my 1975 Sky & Telescopes to see if my memories were accurate. Yup. The August Sky & Telescope (maybe things moved a bit slower in '75,) had a picture on the cover of the eclipse in Scorpius, and it had occurred on the night of May 24 - 25.
 I suspect from here on out, I'll always associate Scorpius with retirements. Funny how this stuff works out sometimes. 
 Marty

Marty, congrats on the start of your retirement. Your next eclipse is just a couple of months away.

Artavius Murphy

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 113
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #27 on: February 03, 2018, 01:36:40 PM »
A big congrats on your retirement, Marty. May you have many nights wondering down the "night sky highway." I always look forward to your wonderings, or musings, here in CN.

Best wishes,
Randy

calfkommomu

  • Active Astronomer
  • ***
  • Posts: 130
  • Activity:
    0%
  • Reputation: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: Retiring under Scorpius
« Reply #28 on: February 04, 2018, 11:47:02 AM »
Everyone retires sooner or later.
Or so I am told.
Often.
By my co-workers.

Will be nice to have more time for other things.

Oh yes, congratulations.

End of my ramble.