It feels like because of our dense, light-drenched urban environment, New York City often misses out on seeing certain natural phenomena. But not so this morning: NYC got a front-row view of a stunning "ring of fire" solar eclipse...not that you or I bothered waking up to see it.
NASA explains that the event, which is known as an annular solar eclipse, happens when the moon is at its farthest point from the Earth, so it passes in front of the sun but doesn't block out the entire sun, leaving a "ring of fire" halo on the edges. As Jackie Faherty, an astrophysicist at the American Museum of Natural History, told Space.com, it is like "the 'Death Star' is in front of the sun as it's rising."
According to the Great American Eclipse, what we saw here was actually a partial solar eclipse: because the various celestial spheres were not perfectly lined up, the moon blocked most of the left side of the sun as they rose together. It was apparently only visible for just a few minutes in the city, which you would already know if you had woken up early enough today, but no, you skipped this rare and wondrous solar event because you just had to "catch a few more z's" or whatever.
At around 5:30 a.m. this morning, some observers who were far more on top of their shit than me caught the partial eclipse in Midtown. “You could hear the entire audience react at the first viewing of the sun,” Jean-Yves Ghazi, president of the Empire State Building Observatory, told the Times. “Everybody was gasping and it was absolutely magical.”
Check out some photos up above and gaze in awe at the poetry of the celestial bodies, and then take a long hard look at yourself and your choices.