In light of the recent lunar eclipse that occurred last night, I have a story from a few years ago. Back around 1979. A total solar eclipse.
I’ve always been a little stubborn. I was in sixth grade at the time and during the days leading up to the eclipse, we were all instructed to NOT watch the eclipse; to NOT even look toward the sun. Our eyes would be permanently damaged, they said. Instead, we were told, we would make little shadow boxes so we could experience the eclipse safely. The idea was we would watch the effect of the eclipse as the shadow moved across our boxes. Everyone in my class was told we had to make a box.
Well first, I didn’t know of anyone who could look directly at the sun, it was too bright. I didn’t need anyone to tell me that. Most of us had tried long before this and discovered we involuntarily looked away. Second, and more to the point of me being stubborn, this eclipse was a rare event. There was no way I was going to miss it by watching a shadow displayed inside a box.
Since I didn’t plan on using a box, I saw no point in making one, so I didn’t. My teacher informed me that if I did not make a box I would get and “F.” But since the “F” was only for that assignment, I decided it was worth it. The day of the eclipse came and as I had so stubbornly informed everyone, I had not made a box.
But apparently, I wasn’t the only one who wanted to watch the real thing. Most all of the students in my class were excited and forgot about their little box. When the eclipse started, we all were watching the sun. Yet, not a single one of us went blind.
I think most people know how to shade their eyes with their hand, it’s another almost involuntary action. It allows you to see what’s going on without being blinded. We all practiced this technique that my teacher had evidently never heard of, and then the strangest thing happened, it got dark! Not completely dark but enough so we didn’t need to shade our eyes—because the sun was gone! Not really that dangerous after all!
I did get my “F.” But I also proved my point—that I didn’t need a box. My eyes were just fine afterwards! Although… Lately, I’m noticing things are getting harder to see. The print on virtually everything is so small these days! Maybe it’s just normal aging or… Maybe I should have made a box! ~
Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook and paperback on iTunes, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords, or at www.bruceabordersbooks.weebly.com. Amazon Profile – http://www.amazon.com/Bruce-A.-Borders/e/B006SOLWQS. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.
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