A Hundred Billion Trillion Stars: a child's garden of infinity
In A Hundred Billion Trillion Stars, Seth Fishman and illustrator Isabel Greenberg (previously) present a the astounding, nearly incomprehensible size of the universe in a picture book that even the very youngest readers will delight in; when I blurbed it, I wrote "Dazzling: the astounding, mind-boggling scale of the magnificent universe and our humbling and miraculous place in it, rendered in pictures and words that the youngest readers will understand."
Fishman and Greenberg move fluidly through different units -- the length of your body, the height of the Burj Khalifa, the number of rabbits on Earth -- and up and down different scales to kind of limber up the mind, get it thinking on an Eames-ish, Powers of Ten kind of way, until the scales start to expand in your consciousness, granting intuitive (if sometimes fleeting) glimpses of the astounding distances, eras, and quantities that make up the natural universe.
This is a delight of a science book, a marvel of a picture book.
A Hundred Billion Trillion Stars [Seth Fishman and Isabel Greenberg/Greenwillow Books]
Amsterdam's Bibliotheca Philosophica Hermetica (AKA "The Ritman Library) houses more ths 25,000 occult texts, covering "Hermetics, Rosicrucians, Theosophy, alchemy, mysticism, Gnosis and Western Esotericism, Sufism, Kabbalah, Anthroposophy, Catharism, Freemasonry, Manichaeism, Judaica, the Grail, Esotericism, and comparative religion."
The queue area at the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland features a row of changing portraits wherein paintings everyday scenes are revealed as sinister and haunted (originally the effect was done with crossfading slide-projectors; now it's done with an amazing, crisp electroluminiscent effect).
This is my last day at my desk until Labor Day: tomorrow, we're driving to Burning Man to get our annual dirtrave fix! If you're heading to the playa, here's three places and times you can find me:
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