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Friday, November 18, 2005

About Moon Dog

There was a guy I knew in New York. Some of you may remember him. His name was Moon Dog. He used to stand outside the Sperry Rand building on 6th Avenue (or near there) dressed in garb that resembled clothes the Vikings wore, at least that's how I picture him now.

Moon Dog was an impressive figure, standing over six-something. Most people wrote him off as another street urchin crazy. My friends and I knew him differently. As an impressionable young man in my teens, Moon Dog's insights and philosophical ramblings inspired me to look at life from new angles.

Perspective is everything.

There are indeed such things as moon dogs. They're the colorful light effects the moon casts in clouds of ice. Moon dogs are akin to sun dogs.

There are also moon stones, sea dogs, moon-tides, even blue dogs.

Here in Maine, people will use moon-tide and blue dog, sometimes in the same sentence. As in: "We saw plenty of tuna but couldn't get the bait down past the blue dogs. Must be a lot of blue dogs 'cause of the moon tide."

A moon-tide is really a misnomer for a spring tide, the extreme tide that forms on the new and/or full moon. A blue dog is what some fishermen will call the blue shark, the streamlined and very iridescence shark that shows up here when the water temperature in the Gulf of Maine reaches about 53 degrees Fahrenheit.


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