Overheard: astronomy instructor belief in astrology

Astronomy 210, fall semester 2011
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA

(Overheard at the start of the second week of class in introductory astronomy, going over student comments and questions submitted online.)
Instructor: (Reading student question.) "'Do you believe in astrology?'"


Instructor: (Picking up a Mattel™ Magic 8 Ball®, speaks into it.) "Do... I... believe... in... astrology?" (Places Magic 8 Ball®, window up, under video overhead projector, such that reply is visible to the rest of class, which will be one of 20 possible responses:
  • It is certain
  • It is decidedly so
  • Without a doubt
  • Yes – definitely
  • You may rely on it
  • As I see it, yes
  • Most likely
  • Outlook good
  • Signs point to yes
  • Yes
  • Reply hazy, try again
  • Ask again later
  • Better not tell you now
  • Cannot predict now
  • Concentrate and ask again
  • Don't count on it
  • My reply is no
  • My sources say no
  • Outlook not so good
  • Very doubtful)
Students: (Murmuring, snickering.)

Instructor: "Well, there you have it. The Magic 8 Ball® cannot lie."
(This is the lead-in to discussing student-submitted opinions on astrology.)

Waifer X

Photo by Cuesta College Physical Sciences Division instructor Dr. Patrick M. Len.

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