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Spoon Magic

One sunny day in my kitchen after stirring something in my coffee, I set the long-stemmed teaspoon down on the top of the work island, and noticed something amazing.  Just above the bowl of the spoon a creature was fluttering all spidery and helicopter-like. I almost thought to capture it until I realized that it was the reflection of the ceiling fan creating a 3-d  or hologram-like mirage I had never noticed before.  The fan image seems to swim in space, not on the surface of the spoon's bowl, but noticeably above it, almost higher than the lip of the spoon. If you raise the spoon to eye-level the image appears higher than the lip, but disappears as it reaches the lip edge.

This effect does not work on purely solid objects above the spoon, like an orange held in your hand-- just the spinning fan performs this magic.  And after trying in on different days it seems most spectacular when the light level is especially bright on a sunny day.  The amount of concavity to the spoon makes all the difference too. The deeper the better.

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Cydonia photo: ESA

This is the journal of David Ross
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