Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Sun Dogs, Kermit, and the Rainbow Connection

One of my favorite characters as a young lad (and I must admit, even today), was Kermit-The-Frog.

Good ol' Kermit sings one of my favorite songs: "The Rainbow Connection." I know you all know what I'm talking about. What a great song. Anyways, this post will have nothing to do with Kermit (unfortunately), but is related to rainbows. We'll save Kermit for another day...

On my way to work today I saw a Sun Dog. For those of you who don't know, a Sun Dog is one of two spots that appear parallel to the sun, and look like little rainbows:

Photo by Clay S. Turner. Used by permission.

Technically, the Sun Dogs, or "Parhelions," are part of what is called a 22° halo that encircles the sun. Anyways, I used to just call them little chunks of rainbows.

I think it was a good Canadian friend of mine who first introduced me to the term "Sun Dog." "Eh, check oooot that Sun Dawg, eh." Since then I have refrained from using the term "little chunks of rainbow," and graduated to the more generally used, "Sun Dawg."

So anyways, I saw a Sun Dawg on my way to work this morning, and man, those things are so beautiful. I started thinking about why I like them so much, and really couldn't find an answer. I've always liked rainbows, although these days you have to be careful when you say that. Why did those in the gay community have to adopt the rainbow as a sign of homosexuality? I feel like Homer J.S. when he said, "They stole all our good names, like Bruce and Karl and Stephen Trent." So now a guy can't like rainbows, Elton John, or Steve Trent without their sexual orientation coming into question. Life's just not fair. Or maybe I just need to (grow up) be more comfortable in my masculinity.

So anyways, I've always liked rainbows, and it seems that rainbows are one of those things that everyone likes to see. I've never heard anyone say, "Dang. There goes another one of those rainbows. Man, I can't stand those things. All colorful and stuff. I wish they'd all just go away." One is more likely to be awestruck by a rainbow, and like most beautiful things, feel the need to share the moment with others.

Another reason I like Sun Dawgs (the first being that they are similar to rainbows, if you missed that connection) is that they frequently (but not always) appear along with a sunrise or sunset. And just like rainbows, sunrises and sunsets are beauties of nature that everyone loves to see. There is seriously something about sunsets (and sunrises, but I just see them less frequently) that I just love. So the combination of sunrise and rainbow was just too much for me, and I could've died happy right there. And just about did, because I was too busy watching the sunrise and almost hit a mattress that someone was kind enough to leave on the highway.

So I saw a Sun Dawg on the way to work this morning, and it got me thinking about a lot of things. From sunrises to sunsets, from rainbows to Kermit The Frog, and from Stephen Trent to .... Canadians. The reason I like them so much is because of the fond images and memories they bring up. That's the thing about sunrises, sunsets, rainbows, Sun Dogs, or anything that you find beautiful: you can always go back to that moment. Not only that, but the moment compounds upon itself to bring more images and more memories, until the emotion of all those moments is brought into one. So that in the end, each of those moments was the same moment. That moment never dies. This is the true Rainbow Connection, and why Kermit can obviously be seen as a transcendentalist-romantic follower of C.S. Lewis.

So the next time you see a Sun Dawg (or Steve Trent), stop (so you don't hit the mattress) and think about the things you love.

For more info on Sun Dogs click here:

22° Halo


J.T. said...

I've never got to see a Sun Dawg before. I never thought to look! I'm going to keep my eye out for it 'em now.

Akane said...

Ok... that was just hilarious! Your writing was really great to read! I've never seen a Sun Dog, but I'll keep my eye out for them.

Arthur said...

Wow, I can't believe people haven't seen sundogs before. You guys are definitely missing out- Keep your eyes open!

Sheryl said...

When I was living in New Zealand they sometimes had double rainbows. That was an amazing thing to see. Coming from Texas, I had always assumed that a full scale was an invention of Hollywood, and there I was not only seeing one that went all the way across, but two doing that. :) That was pretty nifty!

I liked the song on the B side to the Rainbow Connection single: "I Hope That Something Better Comes Along." What a funny song that one is!!!

Can You Hear The Violins? said...

If I told you my secrets you might not be so entertained....And if I wanted to entertain you, I can think of other things..But my point isn't to entertain you at all....
My secrets jus might make you cry...

Akane said...

Counting Crows poem? Do you mean this:
one for sorrow,
two for joy,
three for a girl,
four for a boy,
five for silver,
six for gold,
seven for a secret is never to be told.
I thought about putting in my blog, but I don't know where... It would be cool though. Thanks!

ShoeHound said...

They introduced the new Kermit US postage stamp today. You'll love it! :)