News & Politics

What Is The Sun? An Explainer for DC Locals

"The Sun"

According to the Capital Weather Gang, the gaseous lid that encapsulates our planet may be about to change colors from The Gray we have experienced since approximately the dawn of our species, to a cornflower blue only seen in the Facebook logo.

Elders claim that in the days before The Gray there was an object floating in the far reaches of space called The Sun: it allegedly sent warmth to our orbiting rock and even occasionally produced burns all over our bodies from its rays. (N.B. These were called “sunburns.”) But is this hot ball of flames a mere myth? What will happen if it emerges? Should we fear the sun or embrace it as our new idol? Below, the answers to 9 questions about the sun that you’re too embarrassed to ask.

What is The Sun?

The Sun is a floating ball of molten plasma, allegedly located approximately 92.96 millions miles away from Earth. It’s been called the center of our solar system, and it’s actually a Star, an incandescent point of light held together by its own gravity. The elders also claim that thousands of these “Stars” were once visible in the evening; they lit it up the night sky and sparkled like diamonds. Ah, to behold such a sight.

When was the last time The Sun appeared in the sky?

Technically, 17 days. Emotionally, an eternity.

What is Warmth?

Warmth is a feeling brought about by The Sun and its magical rays. It starts on the skin’s surface and eventually melts into your bones, provoking you to take off your wooly cardigan and lift your face towards the sky. Important: DO NOT lift your face toward the sky if the rain continues. You will get wet again and you are out of dry towels.

How are we certain The Sun exists?

Scientists continue to insist, despite all visible evidence to the contrary, that The Sun is indeed real, and that, as the spider song suggests, The Sun will come out and dry up all the rain, so that itsy bitsy spider can climb up his aluminum spout again. We’ll see.

Where have I heard about this Sun before?

Before The Gray, our artists and musicians often referred to The Sun in their work. You may recall the band Weezer singing about an island in The Sun. This is because islands were once tropical, joyful places where people vacationed and engaged in pleasure activities, even “bathing” in The Sun. The Beatles also sang about The Sun, in a song that indicated that The Sun was about to come out called “Here Comes the Sun.” As far as we can tell, The Sun never actually comes out at the end of the song. If you see a painting of The Sun, guard your eyes with protective gear, as The Sun is shiny (See our other explainer: “What is Shiny?”).

Can The Sun hurt me?

One thing it’s imperative we realize is that The Sun (if it not another mythical concept designed by our leftwing government to enslave big business) can cause severe burns, dehydration, and joy.

What is Joy?

Joy is a feeling you can only encounter when The Sun returns. It is indescribable.

Is this the end of the world?

Oh, my friends. I do wish we could answer that for you. We do recognize that the onslaught of the 2016 presidential election, the cancellation of ABC’s Nashville, and the potential for The Sun to emerge has coalesced into an event that can only be described as indicative of the appearance of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. American intellectualism may be crumbling at your feet and the political party system may resemble a corpse left to rot, but we beg of you, do not fear.

What are some activities I should perform if The Sun is real and does appear?

We’re glad you asked! Here is a list of places to eat and drink outdoors in the event The Gray fades away. This is a neighborhood you might enjoy more if The Sun does make a return. These are places you might like to walk (sans an umbrella!) if this does not portend the end of our species as we know it. 

Design & Style Editor

Hillary writes about interiors, real estate, arts, and culture. She is the former digital media editor of The New Republic, and her work has also been published in Glamour, The New York Times Book Review, and The Washington Post, among others. You can follow her on Instagram @hillarylouisekelly or on Pinterest @hlkelly.