Tektite Party March '03
By Michael Blood

Saturday, March 23, 2003 was highlighted by
the semi-bi-annual Tektite Party put on by Jim Tobin
and Paul Harris of The Meteorite Exchange and ever
so graciously hostessed by Paul's loverly wife, Janice.

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Swami Shipbaugh conjured up a splendid gathering which
included Bob and Beth Verish, Rick Kujawa, Bill & NinaWhiddon
and her mother, Rob Matson, and myself. All this just by
gazing intently into a spherical Bilitonite Tektite (don't take my
word for it, see above photo). However, no matter how
hard he concentrated he was unable to materialize Laura Croft.

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Unfortunately, Alan and Cindy Gayda couldn't
make this gathering.However, a new attendee did come, that being

Rob Matson,a very successful California meteorite hunter, who brought
half a table of proof of his outstanding success in gathering

extraterrestrial rocks from space that happen to have fallen
onto the planet Earth right here in the state of California.

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One of the highlights of the evening was when everyone
raced outside at a VERY SPECIFIC time (7:32PM, or some such
thing – these astronomy types know these things, don't you
know?) to watch the Iridium Slayer satilite passing over Los Angeles at that
very moment, and, just for a second or two, it catches the
rays of the sun and lights up brilliantly. I have to admit, even
without the astronomical sophistication of my esteemed company
I was impressed. In fact, that sucker lit up a second time, though
I never did get what I considered to be a "reasonable explanation"
for that phenomenon. However, the mutterings of these
astronomical sophisticates indicated more than a few of them
were well aware of the laws of physics governing such occurrences…
either that, or they were convincing in faking such understanding.

This is a fun thing, and those interested in future events should visit
and check it out, as these things are aparently going on regularly.

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Of course eating was one of the evening's high points as well,
given that Janice Harris puts on one heck of a feed – stakes and
lamb and smoked turkey, meat balls, and on and on – and that
doesn't even count deserts which included, get this, hand made
bon-bons filled with raspberries.

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Jim and Paul did have a few goodies out for purchase and I
picked up yet another Sikhote-Aline "breeder." Calvin, The Swami,
Shipbaugh scored a MAGNIFICENT box of Australites that included
a perfect flanged button.

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Good times were certainly had by all and I was given the treat
of the clearest image of Jupiter and Saturn I have personally ever
seen – through Paul's telescope.

Good friends, good food, celestial viewing, meteorites and
tektites. An evening hard to beat, indeed.