August 5 2005


As some of you may have heard, it appears a 10th planet has been discovered in our solar system. From the NASA website ” It is currently about 97 times farther from the sun than Earth, or 97 Astronomical Units (AU). For comparison, Pluto is 40 AU from the sun.” It also has the lovely name, for now, of 2003UB313. It was discovered on Oct. 21, 2003, and confirmed on Jan. 8, 2005 and it take 560 Earth years to complete one orbit of the Sun.

Now, all that out of the way, let’s get to the inevitable stupidity. Thankfully, this is already being questioned, but it appears the lead scientist of the group who found 2003UB313 want to name it ‘Xena’. Yes, you read that right….Xena. As in the 90’s cult TV show.

Folks, I have nothing against the TV show, but as a planet name? How does this fit in with the theme of naming them for the Roman gods? This handy list shows us all the Roman gods and provides us clues to which names that could have used. How about Proserpine, The Goddess of the Underworld? Makes sense being next to Pluto, The God of Death, and he was also Proserpine’s husband.

Come on folks, really, do you want your kid coming home someday and saying “Hey, did you know we now have a planet named Xena?” and they let out her famous battle cry. Scientists…they’re a wacky lot.

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