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Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

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Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration
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froggyc19User avatarPosts: 22Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2009 7:27 pm

Post Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

So I went into the book store today and asked for the astronomy section (wanted to pick up Pale Blue Dot... also ended up getting Cosmos at the same time hehe). First guy sent me to the New Age section. Second person tried to redirect me to the new age again until I said, "No... Astronomy, not astrology..."
"Aren't they the same thing?" she asked.
"No... Astronomy... the science one..." "Oh!" she replied, fortunately knowing what science was, "Third floor."
The person on the third floor was just as depressing (and he works in the damn section!). After being told for a third time that I should be going to the New Age section, I found my way on my own.
Sometimes to get something done right, you just have to do it yourself... or change bookstores.

Anyone experience a similar issue? Do you feel that the mainstream public is more aware of astrology then astronomy? If so, do you feel astrology casts a large shadow and thereby belittling astronomy in the public eye?

(>'.')> Christine <('.'<)
~Love thy neighbour... just don't get caught!~
Sun Jul 19, 2009 5:42 am
IBSpifyUser avatarPosts: 463Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:06 am Gender: Pinecone

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

you didn't dumb it down enough for them, with some of these mouth breathers that work at these stores you really do need to say things like"No, Science books, about space and stuff"
Contrary to popular belief, full-immersion holographic sex will not destroy society.

Full-immersion holographic sex achievement points will destroy society
Sun Jul 19, 2009 8:26 am
e2iPiUser avatarPosts: 648Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 12:40 amLocation: Deltax Deltap>~h/(4 pi) Gender: Cake

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Never underestimate the power of willful ignorance.Thinking is hard and most people would rather not do too much of it. I, sadly, find a fairly lackadaisical attitude toward science in general until some engineers come up with a new form of technological opiate, and even then people are not very interested in why is works as long as it does. I blame the education system, very little emphasis is placed on critical thinking while regurgitating the correct answer from a textbook is encouraged. It's not until college that most of us are actually challenged to actually think. Most of the people we interact with daily, in the service and retail industries for example, may not even be high school graduates much less college graduates.

I'm not saying that these people are stupid, just that they have not been taught how to think for themselves and many of them simply don't want to.

-1
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
-George Bernard Shaw
Sun Jul 19, 2009 9:01 pm
PulsarUser avatarPosts: 872Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 5:52 pmLocation: Belgium

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

If people confuse the terms, I always reply with the memory aid: "remember, astroLogy contains the L of Lies". Very useful. Luckily, in Dutch there's also a synonym for astronomy, sterrenkunde, which leaves no room for doubt.

Yes, the simpletons that work in bookstores are useless. But what bothers me more is the horrible neglect of science books. Usually they're hidden on a few dark shelves at the bottom, while the 'esoteric' books take up half a wall in plain sight...
I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. - Robert McCloskey

Science doesn’t know everything … religion doesn’t know ANYTHING.
Mon Jul 20, 2009 4:31 pm
JosanUser avatarPosts: 426Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 10:56 pm

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

I just came back from a 3-week long stay in South Africa. We were traveling a lot, and as I like to read a lot on my holidays I pretty much entered every book store we came across when I had time. I was quite shocked to see their selection. The first few bookstores I wanted to pick up some Sam Harris, realising that I was being very optimistic I decided I would settle with any good science/sceptic book.... good luck. I only found any good science books in one store, and that was an international bookstore from britain and the books cost about 20 ,£ for a pocket. The rest of the stores had entire sections devoted to lots of alternative healing and other super-natural shit, and TONS of christian stuff (South Africa is a very christian nation). I walked around in Summerset Mall (a sizy mall in Summerset, 30 min from Cape Town) for about an hour, I came across 9 bookstores. 3 of them were purely christian bookstores only selling what they called "Faith inspired books". 1 of them was the international shop.
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Mon Jul 20, 2009 8:39 pm
SchrodingersFinchLeague LegendUser avatarPosts: 275Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 10:25 pmLocation: Finland Gender: Male

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Pulsar wrote:If people confuse the terms, I always reply with the memory aid: "remember, astroLogy contains the L of Lies". Very useful. Luckily, in Dutch there's also a synonym for astronomy, sterrenkunde, which leaves no room for doubt.

In Finnish there's also a synonym for astronomy, tähtitiede, which literally means "star science". I think it's even more common than astronomy, at least among laypeople.
"Religion is a culture of faith; science is a culture of doubt."
- Richard P. Feynman
Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:57 am
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AndromedasWakeLeague LegendUser avatarPosts: 598Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2009 11:38 pmLocation: Captain's Chair, League HQ Gender: Cake

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

That's a tale of woe, to be sure.

Most bookshops in the UK don't have an astronomy section, but have a 'popular science' section. That's where you'll find books such as Pale Blue Dot. For an actual astronomy reference guide, you're better off going to a telescope/camera shop or an obsevatory/planetarium.

Failing that, there's always the wonderful world of online book shopping!

When someone can't distinguish astronomy from astrology though... Galileo is spinning in his grave. :facepalm:
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(( "We are 'star-stuff'. We are a way for the cosmos to know itself." - Carl Sagan | Music! | Twitter - [ AndromedasWake | SiriusStargazer ] ))
Wed Jul 22, 2009 2:35 pm
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NetheralianUser avatarPosts: 357Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 3:13 pmLocation: Underwater world Gender: Cake

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Appologies in advance for the poor attempt at humour that follows...

AndromedasWake wrote:Galileo is spinning in his grave. :facepalm:

I didn't think Galileo supported a ceme(tary)-centric universe? :lol:
Wed Jul 22, 2009 2:56 pm
froggyc19User avatarPosts: 22Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2009 7:27 pm

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

I'm fortunate that I live in Montreal (it's a very diverse city :P ... they actually had four whole shelfs for astronomy). I'm going to visit the planetarium on Friday night for one of their IYA shows/viewings. I also have my own (cheap) telescope which I attempt to use on clear nights. I -think- I saw a red star just a few days ago, but it might have been a reflection from the store across the street :( )

(>'.')> Christine <('.'<)
~Love thy neighbour... just don't get caught!~
Wed Jul 22, 2009 2:57 pm
ToasTeRPosts: 4Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:10 pm

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

That doesn't sound very fun, of course I won't have to deal with that problem seeing as I don't like reading books very much.
Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:51 pm
CVBrassilUser avatarPosts: 84Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:32 am

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

From what I have seen I am willing to bet a good portion of people don't know the difference between astrology and astronomy. Sure, they know the difference in the topics, but the similar names can be confusing to the general public. It's sad.
Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:24 am
Kattarina98Posts: 22Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2009 9:45 pm

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Astrology - my pet peeve.

Living in Munich, luckilly there are all sorts of bookshops. Of course, around the two universities no bookshop offers astrology books.

It's different in the shopping centers. Rule of thumb: The larger the bookshop, the smaller the science section, and the larger the esoteric section. In the biggest one, a four-storey-building, I once asked for books about paleontology. Three clerks sent me to not even remotely related sections, the fourth one told me to go to children's books, there might be something about dinosaurs.

My neighbourhood bookstore owner refuses to stock esoteric stuff, you can order this crap, and it arrives withing 24 hours.

Sadly, to my knowledge, even university trained persons fiercely believe in astrology, and accordingly they raise their children: "Oh, you throw a temper tantrum, that's typical for Capricorn." - "You can't make up your mind, a typical Gemini". I cover my head and weep.
Sat Jul 25, 2009 2:11 pm
JacobEvansUser avatarPosts: 626Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:01 am

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

I am about to go complain to my local bookstore for the hilariously symbolic encroachment of the ever growing religion section on both legitimate Philosophy and the Biology sections. :facepalm:

I think I might just put every Sagan/Dawkins/Darwin/Evolutioningeneral book I can find in the Religion/Spirituality section and put the religious books in the fiction sections where they rightfully belong.

Probably won't, but it would be great if I did. :lol:
Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:55 pm
e2iPiUser avatarPosts: 648Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 12:40 amLocation: Deltax Deltap>~h/(4 pi) Gender: Cake

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Kattarina98 wrote:It's different in the shopping centers. Rule of thumb: The larger the bookshop, the smaller the science section, and the larger the esoteric section. In the biggest one, a four-storey-building, I once asked for books about paleontology. Three clerks sent me to not even remotely related sections, the fourth one told me to go to children's books, there might be something about dinosaurs.

This reminds me of an incident that happened to me several years ago. I went into a very large bookstore in Center City Philadelphia, about 6 blocks from the University of Pennsylvania, in search of a copy of Candide for a friend of mine. Since this particular bookstore took up three rather large floors, I thought it best to ask for directions. There was a particularly attractive young lady working at the customer service counter so I went over and asked where I could find this classic novella. She smiled at me and asked, "Is that a new release?"
:facepalm:
My follow on question about her schedule and the possibility of coffee later died right then. I didn't say a word and just walked away, but I wanted to scream, "You work in a bookstore for Christ's sake!"
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it."
-George Bernard Shaw
Sat Jul 25, 2009 8:17 pm
PiscineMaelstromUser avatarPosts: 13Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 11:03 pmLocation: NW England

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

There's a large Borders about forty minutes away from where I live, and when I say large, I mean colossal. Well, it's pretty big. Anyway. Dedicated to Science and Philosophy we have a total of four book cases. Dedicated to 'Mind, Body, Spirit' and other woo - at least six. And one of those is 'Tarot'. Yes, there is actually a book case dedicated to a card game-cum-bullshit fortune telling.

Ugh.

Oh, and people who confuse astrology and astronomy need to be slapped. People who do it to be 'funny' need to have unspeakable things done to them with a telescope.
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Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:48 pm
shovelbum26User avatarPosts: 10Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 11:08 pmLocation: A Hole in the Ground

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

I don't really buy astronomy books as they're not my main love, but I've not really had this problem. I usually just ask for the science department and leave it at that. Seems to keep me from killing people.
Deny Shampoo! Demand real poo!
Tue Aug 11, 2009 12:34 am
BreakyerselfPosts: 18Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 7:52 am

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

I found "What the bleep" in book version at the half priced book store in my town and it was in the science section. I was so pissed. I took it to the counter and said: "This book was in the science section, but it isn't a book about science! This is propaganda for a religious cult who's leader claims to channel an inter-dimensional 10,000 year old warrior named Ramtha. They use scientific terms and ideas to pretend to have credibility, but it really has nothing at all to do with science." The bitch said: "ok sorry", but the look on her face told me she thought I was some kind of loser. She probably put if back in the science section just to spite me. I've run into similar NewAge crap in the science section at other book stores and it always makes my blood boil.
Mon Aug 17, 2009 11:29 pm
JacobEvansUser avatarPosts: 626Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:01 am

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Breakyerself wrote:10,000 year old warrior named Ramtha.


Uhmm... that's 35,000 years. :geek:
Mon Aug 17, 2009 11:41 pm
JacobEvansUser avatarPosts: 626Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:01 am

Post Re: Astrology vs. Astronomy - Bookstore Frustration

Maybe it's better that all that new age crap is in the science section anyway.
The only people that go to the science sections are generally smart enough to spot bullshit.
Mon Aug 17, 2009 11:43 pm
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