Today, well, yesterday really, because even though I’m writing this at 2:30 in the morning, it’s still today to me. It’s not tomorrow until the sun rises. I know a new day begins at midnight, but no, not really, it begins when I wake up, and although, lol, I’m awake now, I didn’t really sleep, so it doesn’t count. So. Today. The Ides. The middle of the month. The most famous, of course, is March, but every month has an ides. This is the ides of July.
I kind of like that idea that we acknowledge the middle of a month. Not the beginning when there is a rush to start things, get an agenda, a list, a set of goals. And, not the end of the month where we need to rush to finish off that agenda, cross things off the list and pat ourselves on the back for finishing the goals.
Like much of the ancient reckoning, calendar terms had to do with the celestial events––like the phases of the moon, or the placement of the sun. I remember from my college astronomy class that there were [are] eighteen nodes to the moon. Eighteen different places the moon hangs in the sky depending on the rotation of the earth, whether it is at apogee or perigee, the furthest or closest on the plane of the earth’s orbit from earth.
The Romans had very specific terminology for the parts of the month. Kalends is when there is a new moon which in essence is no moon at all. Nones is the first quarter or what in class we called a waxing crescent. Then, when the moon is full, you have Ides. We use the term waning crescent to describe the phase of the moon before it disappears, before Kalends happens, again.
The moon holds such a fascination for us, we desperately want there to be life out there, to not be alone, to have other races, even if they are murderous and strangely alien like in Falling Skies or more human looking [well most of them] like in Defiance. Sometimes I wonder if we are giving more human traits to all these aliens, like the search for more power, the willingness to destroy a planet for it’s minerals, or even, the willingness to partner with another race to find common ground and make a life. Or are those traits universal, not just human. Because, in some ways that would be nice to think that these are universal truths [do we even have those anymore?] that people, whether human, or not, like us or not, do all of the same smart, stupid, kind, mean, generous, cheap, good and evil things. It would be grand to know we haven’t cornered the market on all the attributes of living a life.