Is there anything to that fireball, or “earthgrazer,” that made a pass at earth earlier this month, making the news?
If you’re talking apocalypse, no.
If you’re talking about past events (and an apparition), then perhaps yes.
The space bolide zoomed over Georgia and Alabama, offering witnesses a glimpse of something rare, NASA says; one also streaked over St. Louis [above].
“‘Earthgrazers’ are fireball meteors with a trajectory so shallow that they skim long distances across the upper atmosphere,” reported Phys Org. “The fireball appeared Tuesday, Nov. 9, around 6:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, officials say, and was ‘detected by three NASA meteor cameras in the region.’ NASA says an uptick in meteor sightings is expected annually between September and November as the planet ‘passes through a broad stream of debris left by Comet Encke‘” [our italics].
It’s known as the Tauris meteor show.
And it would all be pedestrian but for a little footnote: Some believe the greatest wildfire in U.S. history, which occurred in Wisconsin and Michigan (perhaps even Chicago, for the famous fire there erupted at the very same time, in October of 1871), was presaged by an apparition warning of chastisement at Champion, near Green Bay and was due to the same comet Encke. The theory is that earth passed through gases bridging two broken chunks of it as it split apart (a “prolongation”).
No one knows with any certainty if that really could have been the cause. It seems suspicious, as we have pointed out before, that both the greatest wildfire and greatest urban fire erupted on the same day. And that it was the time of year during which the orbit of earth crisscrosses the debris trail of the comet.
A harbinger for another such circumstance in the future — or simply a display, this month, of customary firefall?
What we do know is that the shrine commemorating the apparition was like an oasis of green amid the miles of ash.
The wildfire roared to the shrine’s wood fence — scorching it — but never crossed.
[resources: Fear of Fire]