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0° 0°

0-0.jpgI was eating breakfast and staring at a globe that I keep in my dining room when it struck me that the place where the equator and the prime meridian meet is just open water off the coast of Africa. No great city or discernable landmark. No great wonder of the world at 0° and 0° created by human hands. No island nation or theme park where they can sell trinkets or souvenirs.

If you think of it the point itself is fairly arbitrary, but not without significance. It is where the line defined by the continual motion of our planet which brings about dawn and dusk every day as it has for eons before humans climbed down from the trees meets a line defined by a bunch of white men drunk with their own power deciding the prime meridian of the earth should pass through an observatory in Greenwich, England.

At 0° 0° meets human hubris and nature's endless cycles. Here humanity says, "I judge this point to be the nexus of the earth! From this point will all other points be judged and understood!" And nature shrugs and continues its inexorable journey. We map. We define. We name. But the map is not the territory. And I would bet that the fish and other denizens of the earth's prime address do not sell t-shirts or care that we difgnify their abode with our designations. They continue their merry dance ignorant of our pretentions. And just as well.

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