So since we're in orbit around the sun, we are basically in free-fall. From what I understand, this means that we don't feel the gravity of the Sun like we do the Earth. Just like astronauts on the space station don't feel the gravity of the earth.
This got me wondering, how much would the Sun's gravity affect us if we weren't in free-fall. As if the Earth was being held by an invisible hand, and if that hand let go, we would fall straight into the Sun. Or if we had supports reaching to the Sun holding us in place, like a really really tall water tower.
Would the people on the side of the Earth facing the sun be lighter than the people on the opposing side? Would the difference be noticeable? Would people be pulled into the Sun, or would the distance make it's gravity be too weak compared to the Earth? This has been bugging me for a while.