(IAAC) OFF TOPIC: The Ten [Or So] Commandments of Amateur Astronomy
[This fine work by "anonymous" is reposted, with additions, from a
forward to the New Hampshire Astronomical Society list. -Lew Gramer]
The Ten Commandments for Amateur Astronomers:
1. Thou shalt have no white light before thee, behind thee,
or to the side of thee whilst sharing the night sky with thy
2. Thou shalt not love thy telescope more than thy spouse or
thy children; as much as, maybe, but not more.
3. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's telescope, unless it
exceeds in aperture or electronics twice that of thy wildest dreams.
4. Thou shalt not read "Astronomy" or "Sky & Telescope" on
company time, for thine employer makes it possible to continue thine
5. Thou shalt have at least two telescopes so as to keep thy
spouse interested when the same accompanies thee under the night sky
or on eclipse expeditions to strange lands where exotic wild animals
doth roam freely.
6. Thou shalt not allow either thy sons or thy daughters to
get married during the Holy Days of Starfest.
7. Thou shalt not reveal to thy spouse the true cost of thy
telescope collection; only the individual components and that shall
be done with great infrequency.
8. Thou shalt not buy thy spouse any lenses, filters, dew
shields, maps, charts, or any other necessities for Christmas,
anniversaries, or birthdays unless thy spouse needs them for their
9. Thou shalt not deceive thy spouse into thinking that ye
are taking them for a romantic Saturday night drive when indeed thou
art heading for a dark sky site.
10. Thou shalt not store thy telescope in thy living room,
dining room, or bedroom, lest thou be sleeping with it full time.
11. Verily, observe not through thy neighbor's AP or Tak, lest thee
be utterly consumed by the lust of apo-fever, and thy brain and thy
bank account shall shrivel and wither like branches in a flame...
12. Verily, observe not through thy neighbor's Dob of Goliath, lest
thee be lain bare to the fires of aperture-fever, and thy sanity, thy
sacroiliac and thy life savings be crushed as ye grapes of wrath...
13. Thou shalt not partake of the fruits of the eyepiece, when it is
written in the Holy Book [IMO Meteor Calendar] that thou shouldst be
observing a minor meteor shower of meager ZHR, even unto ye lawnchair
of righteousness. [Oh, the deep-sky guilt!]
14. Thou shalt neither read from nor post to, nor vouchsafe thyself to
be posted from, thy astronomy club's email list at thy labors, lest a
righteous vengeance be poured out on thee by ye corporate email police.
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