Saturday, July 01, 2006

The Cloudspotter's Guide


The Cloudspotter’s Guide: The Science, History, and Culture of Clouds

By Gavin Pretor-Pinney

This guide, written by the founder of the Cloud Appreciation Society, lures the reader with anecdotes, art, poetry, and interesting cloud lore while subtly imparting the science behind the clouds. Mr. Pretor-Pinney introduces the amateur cloud spotter to the Linnaean system (Genus, species, and variety) of cloud classification introduced by Luke Howard. Borrowing the system used for the classification of plants and animals is no accident as a cloud has a life cycle of its own from birth to death. The Cloudspotter’s Guide explains the forces behind cloud formation including the reason some cumulonimbus clouds develop the characteristic anvil top

Each cloud species is examined in turn with the basis for the classification and variations carefully explained. The reader will get to meet people that have experience with clouds, to include Lt. Col Rankin who after ejecting from his fighter plane at 43,000 feet above huge a storm got to witness the inner workings of a cumulonimbus from the inside, and lived to tell the tale.

After reading this enjoyable book one will never look at clouds the same way again and will not see clouds on their horizon as a foreboding omen. In fact it will add to the growing number of cloud watchers worldwide.

8 Comments:

At 11:28 PM, Blogger Sugarfoot said...

Clouds hold almost as much mystery and adoration as angels.

Most of my life I've made a feeble attempt at 'reading' them only to be twarted again and again.

I'm going to look for this book tomorrow. Thanks for the tip, Phos.

 
At 6:11 AM, Blogger fairscape said...

PK

I guess you'll be looking at clouds from both sides now...

Ducking,
fairsCaPe

 
At 10:52 AM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

SF: Hope you enjoy the book!!

FS: That's great - Was that Joanie Mitchell? I think it is the only songe she did that didn't suck, too bad...

 
At 2:27 PM, Blogger fairscape said...

PK

What about Big Yellow Taxi?

Don't it always seem to go
that you don't know what you've got
til it's gone ?
They paved Paradise
and put up a parking lot!

What about The Circle Game?

And the seasons they go round and round and the painted ponies go up and down we're captive on the carousel of time
we can't return we can only look
behind from where we came
and go round and round and round in the circle game

Btw Joanie Mitchell wrote "clouds"(Both Sides Now) but it was also performed by Judy Collins.

Please don't say anything bad about Judy Collins or I'll cry.

 
At 7:27 PM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

FS: You are going to cry because they suck so bad or what? Wasn't there a "Send in the Clowns" in there somewehre?

 
At 7:46 AM, Blogger fairscape said...

sniff

 
At 11:32 PM, Blogger The Phosgene Kid said...

FS: Ok, sorry to dis your musical icons. Take a breath, go put some Tracey Chapman on (Fast Car), and then you can take some shots at Tom Waits to get even with me.

 
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