I’m not very good at being topical (watch out for a hot take on the word dotard some time before the end of the week!) This is largely due to the fact that I write my posts the day before I publish them. You see, I used to publish them as soon as I wrote them, but some days I was tired, or it was a little difficult to write exactly what I wanted to, and I felt pressured and annoyed and just wanted to get it done.

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Winter Solstice

Today is the Winter Solstice, or Midwinter, here in the Northern Hemisphere; the shortest day (or, if you prefer, the longest night) of the year.

The word solstice comes from the Latin solstitium, meaning point at which the sun seems to stand still. This meaning was probably inspired more by the Summer Solstice, in which the sun seems to hang around all day, especially up here on the 53rd parallel where it gets dark at about 11.30pm. But at the Winter Solstice, the sun probably seemed to move across the sky far too quickly. Continue reading