Good morning: it’s July 27, 2017, and also Thursday, which means I have to hie over to the hospital (5 min walk) to get physical therapy on my shoulder to help it heal. This will be a first for me, but I’m not getting any younger. I suppose it could be worse! It’s National Scotch Day, and although I’m not much of a Scotch drinker, I favor the smoky malts like Talisker and Ardbeg, though my absolute favorite is a Campbeltown brew: Springbank single malt. I once had the 21-year-old version at a Harvard Junior Fellows dinner when I was invited as a guest; it was liquid paradise! (At dinner I also sat next to the world-famous philosopher W.V. Quine, who must have been about ninety at the time, and I had no idea who he was. Quine was laconic, and may have been on the downhill slide, but, to be fair, I’m not a philosopher.)
Today’s political news, which Matthew posted yesterday: Trump is acting up again (or should I say “as usual”?). The sick thing is that he almost certainly doesn’t believe in God; he may be the first atheist President. He does, however, believe in Trump.
IN AMERICA WE DON'T WORSHIP GOVERNMENT – WE WORSHIP GOD!🎥https://t.co/jIejSgVnnA
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2017
And be sure to read Heather Hastie’s new takedown of Donald Trump’s extremely unwise ban of transgender soldiers in the American military. It was mean-spirited, reprehensible, and counterproductive.
On July 27, 1794, Maximilien Robespierre was arrested after having thousands of others arrested and killed during the “Reign of Terror”. Trying to shoot himself before arrest, he succeeded only in badly shattering his jaw, and bled throughout the night, only to be guillotined the next day. On this day in 1866, the first transatlantic telephone cable was completed, extending from Valentia Island in Ireland to Heart’s Content, Newfoundland. Imagine what a feat that was for the time! On July 1890, Vincent van Gogh shot himself, lingering two days and then dying. He was only 37, and I consider him one of the five best artists in the history of the world. What painting he would have made had he not been depressed and suicidal. On this day in 1940, the short cartoon A Wild Hare was released (full cartoon below), introducing the wily and snide character of Bugs Bunny. Bugs appears for the first time at 2:24, and it’s clear that he changed appearance over the years. Back then his head was narrower and his nose pointier. Like Mickey Mouse, he underwent artistic neoteny:
On this day in 1953, fighting ended in the Korean war as China, the U.S., and North Korea signed an armistice. South Korea didn’t sign, and as far as I know we’re still technically at war with the DPRK, though there’s a “truce.” Finally, on July 27, 1974, the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee voted to recommend an article of impeachment—for obstruction of justice—against Richard “I am not a crook” Nixon. He of course resigned before impeachment, and was pardoned in advance by Gerald Ford.
Notables born on this day include Charlotte Corday (who killed Marat, 1768), Alexandre Dumas (fils, 1824), photographer William Eggleston (1939), and Peggy Fleming (1948). Here’s one of Eggleston’s photos of America:
Those who died on this day included the highly overrated Gertrude Stein (1946; I never liked anything she wrote), James Mason (1984), and Bob Hope (2003). Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is contemplating the meager cherry harvest. But there will be enough for my pies! Who cares whether there’s enough for a cat who doesn’t like fruit?
Hili: Craziness!A: About what?Hili: About these cherries. No cat would put one into its mouth.
Ja: Z czym?
Hili: Z tymi wiśniami, żaden kot by tego do pyszczka nie wziął.
Here’s a cat tw**t sent by reader Barry; I understand neither the device nor why the cat likes it. If you’re familiar with this thing, weigh in below (be sure to watch the video):
— 🕊✨LORI LYONS©✨🕊 (@lalipopbubbles) July 22, 2017