STAR YEAR: It has been just a few days since many people looked to their yearly star charts to see what's ahead for 2012 (a year that boasted more than its share of wide-ranging astronomical predictions even before it arrived) and it is just a few hours before the arrival of the Quadrantids, which some are saying should provide us the most spectacular meteor shower of the entire year. (Side note: Don't you love it when the year's predicted "most spectacular things" arrive three days in?) We're not sniffing at the Quadrantids; on the contrary, some "80 to 100" meteors are expected every hour during the shower's peak. Impressive. And we love the name. If you get into stuff like this, too -- and we expect you do -- we're betting that a week-ending night under a velvet-bright desert sky is just your cup of tea. Or star dust, rather. And there's one just ahead, at Borrego Springs Resort & Spa.
ON THE PLATE: Astronomer Dennis Mammana once again leads (and sets up a big telescope, allowing guests to take a deep peep into the sky). A search for our common "cosmic roots" is on tap (the night's name is "Dust to Dust," after all). And Borrego Springs Resort once again has a few hotel packages going in conjunction with the telescope to-do. Tempted to read your own future, or, ahem, long-ago past in the universe? It's all happening on Friday, Jan. 27.