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A super version of the full moon

July 17, 2014
Joyce Schenk , Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

Last Saturday, July 12, Mother Nature treated us to a special show when she hung the "Super" moon in the night sky.

I hope you had the chance to see it.

According to the folks at NASA, the moon was at the closest point in its orbit around the earth. That proximity made our familiar neighbor appear larger and brighter than usual. Thus, it has been called a "Super Moon."

The phenomenon has been given a number of different names across the ages.

Native Americans called this larger-than-usual full moon the Buck Moon, since the male deer population begins to grow new antlers at this time. They also knew it as the Thunder Moon, in recognition of the increased thunderstorms during the period.

But, whatever you call the moon at this point in its path, I'm convinced when that big orb shines its full face on us earthlings, strange things happen. There's an obvious connection between "lunar" and "lunacy."

During the years I worked in hospitals, the staff always dreaded the coming of the full moon. It seemed to bring with it an offbeat collection of medical and mental problems unmatched at any other time.

Strange "how could this happen" emergencies came up under the light of the full moon. I remember examples like the guy who came in with his hand stuck in a bowling ball and the lady brought in by the fire department with the bathtub faucet firmly attached to her big toe.

Then there was something about that full moon that made folks fancy themselves celebrities. Our ER hosted such "luminaries" as Moses and Elizabeth Taylor.

Of course, the maternity department became even more chaotic than usual. It routinely saw more pregnancy problems and delivered more babies when the full moon was in place.

I've been fascinated by the effects of the full moon for years and have discovered many stories attributed to its visits.

For instance, police departments routinely see more accidents, family disputes and crimes during these periods.

And animals, from horses to cats, seem to be more nervous. In fact, an article I read quoted one shoe repair shop owner who reported doing an increased business in replacing heels on women's shoes during the full phase of the moon. Seems family dogs take out their moon-related frustrations on the nearest female footwear.

We've all heard of gardeners and farmers timing their plantings to coincide with the full moon.

And, records show the stock market often responds negatively to the full moon's appearance.

Now that the brilliance of last Saturday's Super Moon has faded, things should get back to normal here on space ship Earth.

But you can be sure the full moon will return when the orbit is right, and once again, things will get a bit strange.

Be sure to keep those high-heeled shoes out of Fido's reach.



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