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Monday, August 14, 2006

Perseids and Sounds


It's that time of year, for midsummer viewing of the Perseids meteor showers (am I developing a meteor obsession?). While I can't quite get up two hours before dawn in the next business day or two, I will stay up tonight to see a few shooting stars. The most spectacular Perseid viewing I ever did was lying on a lawn on Kauai at about midnight. The trick, we decided, was to unfocus your eyes and then your peripheral vision widens to near infinity. In that state you can react faster when it picks up a zip of light.

And Stumble has again brought me to one of my all-time favorite Web sites -- though I can't quite figure out what category to bookmark it in. Sounds has a wealth of ... well, sounds. From birds chirping to cicadas to train whistles. I actually collected a number of train whistles -- vintage to contemporary -- for a theater production I was working on. I recommend their collection of saws -- from hand to hack to chain. Also the kissing sounds. You can assemble your own collection, maybe use them as a soundtrack to a slide show or video.