(IAAC) Self Introductions

From Todd Gross:

Here is a little bit of an introduction.

I began my interest in Astronomy at approximately age 4. I started teaching
"astro-lessons" at age 5 to my
4 year old friends, as I memorized the number of moons around each planet.
I knew more then about that
than I do today!

I received a Spitz moonscope shortly thereafter at approximately age 7.
This was followed by an excellent Monolux refractor around age 10. I viewed
mostly the moon and planets at that time, living in NYC.

I built an 8" f/8 reflector in High School, started to get into deep sky,
and then got distracted by other interests for quite some time, although I
started chasing solar eclipses, starting in 1970. My only successful total
was in 1979 in Winnepeg, although I have viewed an annular-total, and
annular successfully. I have been clouded out of totality two times... and
in 1970 I was smart enough to go for total, and stuck with 96% (young and

I went nuts in 1994 and started buying every binocular and scope I could
lay my hands on .. since then I've owned or tested (and re-sold) about 4
dozen scopes and 2 dozen binoculars. I realized it would be a waist if I
didn't start writing about my experiences, and established the equipment
reviews on my web page at http://www.weatherman.com. I have kept only a
refractor, SCT , and Dob. 

I have been working meanwhile at my other passion, weather, as a
Meteorologist on Ch. 7 in Boston since 1984, after working in NYS, and Ct.
on television prior. I became quite interested in weather about a year
after astronomy, when I was 5.

I am a typical garden variety observer in that I like all objects. However,
due to my inability to get to the darkest skies, I am most awed by the
brighter globular clusters which show up very well in larger apeture in
suburban skies. 

I generally pick off objects from the sky map sold by Orion Telescope and
Binocular center, and am depending on Digital Setting circles about 60% of
the time, which come in handy in light polluted evironments. Since I can
get to beyond mag. 5 however near the zenith, I enjoy star hopping using my

I went crazy on Jupiter observation, my favorite planet, in 1997, when I
realized how much detail can be picked out at larger aperture when skies
were even half-decent. I joined ALPO at that time, and tried to make a
color drawing of Jupiter, also residing on my web page. 

I really appreciate this group, and like the new search engine, as I can
punch up an object I have observed, and see how other
conditions/apertures/observers describe the same object.

- Todd
Weather/Astronomy Home Page: http://www.weatherman.com
Administrator, NE Weather Watcher Mail List, wxobs-sne@shore.net
Originator of the NE.WEATHER newsgroup
Email: toddg@weatherman.com    Work Phone# (617)725-0777

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