Today, February 18th, marks the 79th anniversary of Pluto's discovery by American astronomer Clyde Tombaugh. Strange, when I wrote that, I almost typed “the planet Pluto.” But as you may know, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) decided Pluto is a dwarf planet — to be precise, a type of dwarf planet called a plutoid.
Recently we received a letter from Robert F. Brown of Orleans, Massachusetts, suggesting that today, Pluto supporters the world over “stop what they are doing for a moment and observe a moment of silence in honor of the planet Pluto.”
Well, I really don’t have a dog in this fight, but it seemed like fun to try and think of ways to mark Pluto’s birth while expressing dismay at its demotion from planet status. I polled the staff and narrowed it down to a “top 10.” We magazine types just LOVE top 10s, you know.
Leave comments below with your suggestions of how to mark Pluto Day 2010.
1. Petition Walt Disney to reclassify Mickey Mouse’s canine buddy Pluto as a “dogoid.”
2. Refer to all members of the IAU less than average height as “dwarf humans.”
3. Anonymously enter Pluto into the next Biggest Loser television show.
4. Recite “my very elegant mother just sat upon nine porcupines” nine times. Ummmm … I mean eight times.
5. Assemble mob with pitchforks at IAU headquarters in Paris; burn IAU in effigy.
6. Wear a shirt that says, “Earth to IAU: Plutoid THIS, baby!”
7. Sponsor Michael Brown/Alan Stern cage fighting match.
8. Charon your feelings with a Pluto support group.
9. Nix any thought of renewing membership in the IAU.
10. Don’t just think about celebrating Pluto Day; planet.