Touch a moon rock in Tucson


Illustration Ryn Gargulinski

Tucson is getting spacey this weekend when a moon rock drops down to visit.

This glorious chunk of moon is not expected to fall from the sky, although that would be kind of neat unless it hit your house, but will instead be on display at the Pima Air and Space Museum.

The rock is part of NASA’s Driven to Explore traveling exhibit and will be in town Saturday, Jan. 9 through Monday, Jan. 11, according to a news release from Tucson’s Paragon Space Development Corporation.

This particular piece of moon was brought to Earth by the Apollo 17 astronauts in 1972, the last time Americans were on the moon.

It’s estimated to be nearly 4 billion years old and one of seven moon rocks that people can touch. It’s gotta be full of fingerprints.

While the release neither discloses the rock’s size nor composition, we are betting it’s not made of green cheese.

We also want to clear up that the man on the moon is not a giant face on the front of the moon but is a small creature that lives in a lunar cave.

Just to make things clear, the new moon occurs when the moon is between the Earth and the sun, shrouding the moon in shadow for Earthling viewers. The moon then takes two weeks to blossom into a full moon, and then another two weeks to wane back to black.

The thing takes about 29 days to orbit, with the cycle repeating itself again and again like a slow hamster on a wheel.

The moon has long been a point of fascination, superstition and myths, some of which can be found at the site

We lucked out this year by not having a full moon on Christmas day, as that brings a slate of bad luck.

But we did have two full moons in December, on Dec. 2 and 31, which means January is supposed to have some really crappy weather.

The full moon has the power to make a gal pregnant if she happens to sleep under its light. Full moons are also bad for construction, as it’s unlucky to drive a nail through a board at such a time. Warts don’t like the full moon, either, and they will disappear if you blow on them nine times during one.

Grave digging should be scheduled carefully, as it’s unlucky to bury the dead during a full moon or a new moon. Better book your funerals now so the ideal days are not sold out.

The next new moon is Jan. 15, so mark your calendars as the new moon of the new year should be honored with a curtsy. We’re not sure if you should don petticoats, but the man on the moon would probably appreciate that detail.

Chickens, too, are swayed by the moon and lay the most eggs during the moon’s last quarter.

Bad luck comes to folks who point at the moon or look at it through a pane of glass. Cover those windows and keep your arms at your side.

It’s also not a good idea to sleep under the moon’s rays as they can make you insane.

At least we now have an explanation for a good portion of our population.


The museum is at 6000 E. Valencia Road and open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more info call 574-0462 or visit The site says the museum is pet friendly, which means Sawyer and Phoebe may be sniffing some moon rock soon.


wb-logolilWhat do you think?

What other moon superstitions do you know?

Have any come true?

Have you ever touched a moon rock or other space object?

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever touched?

About Rynski

Writer, artist, performer who specializes in the weird, wacky and sometimes creepy. Learn more at
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22 Responses to Touch a moon rock in Tucson

  1. radmax says:

    Mornin’ Rynski…geez Louise, sure are a lot of superstitions about the moon. I hear it even affects tides and our magnetic field-even gravitation! What a load of hooey! 😉 Moon madness obviously affects a significant portion of the population, as you pointed out. It is much easier to blame your dog, the moon or mom burning your cookies as a child than facing up to the fact that you could just be a schmuck.
    PS-the man on the moon is that odd face on the moon…not some creepy little dude in a cave eating green cheese and wreaking havoc here on earth, everybody knows that… 😉

    • Rynski says:

      hahahh hey radmax –
      i love moon superstitions. in fact, i love all superstitions and try to keep abreast of them. do you know that some folks actually have the GALL to put new shoes on a table without realizing the horrific consequences in store?
      the moon def. has all types of power, from gravitation pull (i.e. tides), to lunacy. i will agree that some folks are just schmuckles because they are schmuckles but i never discredit the power of the moon.
      p.s. there is NO WAY the man on the moon is that big butter face. that would mean his arms would reach all the way to saturn and block the rain.

      • radmax says:

        Shoes on the table! eeek! I bet these are the same clueless fools who leave the toilet seat up-not realizing horrific Pandora’s box of consequences they unleash due to their actions…

      • Rynski says:

        whew, yes the toilet seat up. that is just BEGGING for trouble. screws up a whole NEIGHBORHOOD’S feng shui…

      • radmax says:

        Haha! I foolishly did this a couple of times and my gal went apoplectic on me. Poor girl was rolling on the floor moaning…Whew is right, I shan’t do that again!(I hope) 🙂

      • Rynski says:

        oh no! you could have KILLED the poor dear with something like that. i do hope, for your sake, her sake and the neighborhood’s sake, you are more careful going forward. my head hurts just thinking of the consequences.

  2. Carolyn Classen says:

    I don’t usually sleep well during full moon nights (too bright or something).  Not sure why.  Also, the strangest thing I’ve touched unintentionally was a fairly large sleeping lizard in our yard.  I woke up last summer early and went out to get the newspaper, and it was still a bit dark and thought I saw a stick to clear away lying on a planter.  I reached over, touched it (and it was soft) and felt repelled as I figured it was something dead.  Yuk. Later I went back to check, and it had disappeared so I knew it had been alive.  Very creepy feeling.

    • Rynski says:

      hiya carolyn,
      the full moon is amazing – never had trouble sleeping during it but DEFINITELY noted lots of loons out on the street during its reign. my strangest full moon experience was in nyc when i got on a subway train and  it looked either a) like halloween or b) someone let an asylum loose. everyone had strange grey faces and several were wrapped in blankets rocking back and forth to the train’s motion.
      EEK! on your strangest touch. it’s very freaky when we go to touch something and it ends up not like it seems. disturbing, for sure.
      i couldn’t think of any really good strange thing i’ve touched – except for the vegetable lasagna that grew hair in the fridge (hence the fuzzy lasagna option). i hope i remember a better one than that as it was more disgusting than strange.

  3. leftfield says:

    Wow, the opportunity to actually touch a piece of the moon.  This takes me full circle back to the day in July 1969 when man first walked on the moon.  It is one of those events of which I can remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I first heard the news.

    I will be there!

    • Rynski says:

      yaaay! i think i need to check this one out, too.
      and it’s PET FRIENDLY so bring your chickens! hey, lefty, did you note the chicken egg laying moon myth? is it true?
      “Chickens, too, are swayed by the moon and lay the most eggs during the moon’s last quarter.”
      so where were you when man first walked on the moon?

      • leftfield says:

        You know, I’ve never heard that one and I can’t say I know if chickens lay more in the last quarter.  It is well known that their laying cycles are primarily influenced by the changing sunrise/sunset cycle, so I can see how this might have influence.  I will observe closely this year and see if I can shed some more light on the behavior of man’s best friend.

        When the first images of man on the moon came back to earth, I was in the basement of the Student Union at Mich. State University.  The Union was the gathering place for freaks and lefties; the place to go to catch up with friends and find out what was going on in the community.  On my way out I passed by the TV room and noticed a crowd watching in absolute silence.  It was some time, I remember, before Armstrong actually came down the ladder, after which I walked home; stopping several times to look up at the moon.  It was almost inconceivable at the time to believe that people were really up there walking around.  Even in those times, it was impossible to be cynical about what had happened.  It was one of the few events of the age that was non-divisive.  And, it made one think about the human condition in general. One the one hand, here we were engaged in wholesale slaughter in Vietnam; on the other, “We came in peace for all mankind”.

      • Rynski says:

        thanks for observing the chickens to get to the bottom of the last-quarter-moon-egg mystery.
        also thanks for sharing your moment of awe. i am most impressed with this tidbit: “Even in those times, it was impossible to be cynical about what had happened.”
        how glorious.
        i almost went to mich state – had been accepted – but took off for nyc instead. ahh, choices.

  4. radmax says:

    😉 …then how do you explain the fact that he throws meteors at our planet???!!! Another given in solar system physics…Stephen Hawking explained this quite well in his paper on quantum lunar lunacy…

    • radmax says:

      oops, meant to reply to Rynski’s obvious lack of understanding of the way our galaxy really works… 🙂

      • Rynski says:

        that’s ok – we instead see you have an obvious lack of understanding of the way the REPLY button works. hahahahah.
        and it’s NOT the moon that throws meteors about – it’s that damn dude on pluto. he’s still mad because he doesn’t get to be a planet.

      • radmax says:

        That whole Pluto thing sounds pretty Mickey Mouse to me…

  5. leftfield says:

    The strangest thing I ever touched was probably Mary Ann Muldaur.  She was one strange bird.  In contrast to other pivotal events in my life, about this one my memory has been repressed.

    • Rynski says:

      the name sounds like it would be a strange thing to touch. if you want to repress the memory even further, i hear there’s some new fangled shock treatment for such issues…hahaha.

  6. andrew says:

    Impossible, The Moon is a hole to Heaven, by which Allah pulls you through when you die.

    crisis muses

    • Rynski says:

      dear crisis muses,
      so THAT’s where that two-headed dog guards the river. thank you for clearing that up!
      p.s. does the man on the moon care that dead people go tramping through his landscape?

  7. azmouse says:

    Nobody can out moon walk me!!

    Oh….moon rock…..
    KIDDING, cuz I have nothing important to add to the rock conversation, really.

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