That’s right — Pluto could be demoted today. As I’ve mentioned before, this would at the very least be humiliating to the poor satellite. I have an additional concern, however, which is not unlike President Bush’s opposition to the International Criminal Court — once you submit yourself to the jurisdiction of a governing body that is still mired in an early developmental stage characterized by an experimentation with fundamental standards, well, you’d better hope you don’t end up in the dock yourself.

If I were Pluto, I would take President Bush’s approach with the ICC and simply exclude myself from the jurisdiction of the International Astronomical Union. That way, sticks and stones may break my bones (if you can fire ’em that far, punks!), but definitions will never hurt me. Go take your aggressions on some other rock and call it an “icy dwarf,” if you must.

UPDATE: Pluto is out. Turns out somebody’s wires got crossed — it wasn’t Earth’s apocalypse happening at the hands of Iranian lunatics on August 22 — it was Pluto’s apocalypse happening at the hands of the IAU on August 24. Still, you can see how someone might get that confused.

Poor Pluto. All that’s left now is for someone to throw a shroud over it and plan a decent wake. May I suggest an appropriate cocktail? The “Sunrise on Pluto” is probably better referred to as the “Sunset on Pluto” now that the IAU has done its dirty deed:


  • 30 ml. Tequila
  • 30 ml. Vodka
  • 15 ml. Curacao
  • dash Grenadine
  • Lemonade

Pour vodka, tequila and blue curacao into a highball glass. Fill almost to top with lemonade. Then add a dash of grenadine into glass. The grenadine sinks to the bottom and creates a bluish, eerie, atmospheric effect.