Fermi National Laboratory

Volume 22  |  Friday, July 2, 1999  |  Number 13
In This Issue  |  FermiNews Main Page

Onward SDSS Soldiers…

Composed, annotated and read by Stephen Pordes at the June 10 symposium honoring Director John Peoples.

Peoples, John, our retiring Director
From HEP, he is now a defector;1
Champion of the Main Injector 2
He’s looking at another Sector.3

No more onion-peeling layer by layer, 4
No more of Fermilab site the Mayor,5
Of Astrophysics, he’s now a purveyor;6
Of the Universe, he’s a digital surveyor.7

No more talk of calorimeter or quark
No more cryo quenches or septa that spark.
t’s galaxies, mirrors, seconds of arc.
Happy he’ll be when it’s really dark8
And each little photon hits its little mark.9

With the SDSS, the knot he’s tied.
Perched high up on the mountain side10
A brand new telescope is his pride
Taking a survey two pi wide.11

On and on, I could go12
About this business of APO13.…
But now I hear the lunchtime bell.
Time to say: John, we wish you well.

1 There are high-energy interactions in space, but "accelerator-based HEP" wouldn’t fit the meter of the poem.

2 This is the first time I’m aware of that that title has had any use.

3 Economists used to talk about "sectors;" now the term is fashionable among physicists.

4 We used to say that high-energy physics peeled away the layers of matter.

5 See previous article.

6 A purveyor is a high-class word for a seller of something, like jam.

7 An oh-so-subtle reference to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey.

8 Originally, this line was "…when he’s really in the dark."

9 A reference to LOW energy—and to the holes drilled in the SDSS plates to match the galaxies.

10 It’s not quite on the top.

11 OK, OK …. It may not be two pi, but please…

12 [Note: At this point in the reading of the poem, Ruth Pordes, wife of the author, began ringing Fermilab’s famous cowbell, announcing the end of the morning session.]

13 Apache Point Observatory.

last modified 7/2/1999   email Fermilab