The annual Quadrantid meteor shower is underway, bringing its lovely blips of light streaking across the sky. This shower takes place over several days but has a strong peak the morning of January 3rd. As is the case with all meteor showers, you want to be in a dark location (or if you live in a city, in an unlit location such as a backyard or park or beach), and you need to give yourself 5-10 minutes for your eyes to adapt. You'll want to dress extra-warm and use a sleeping bag so you can relax on your back and enjoy the view skyward. There is no particular direction you need to look; the best view of any meteor shower is directly overhead. Universe Today and EarthSky have helpful articles for further information.
In 2005 I began writing a column for the San Francisco Waldorf School newsletter called "The Urban Astronomer." I started this blog in 2007 as a place to archive my articles and to offer additional insights on the night sky - even if you live in a big city. In 2008 I became an occasional guest on the KFOG Morning Show, and more recently on KALW and KGO. Archived shows are posted on the blog.