Here we are back at Monday, the second day of July, 2018, and we’re also into the latter half of the year. It’s National Anisette Day, celebrating a drink that nobody imbibes in the U.S., and also World UFO Day, in which we’re supposed to look for alien vehicles. If any reader provides me convincing proof that they’ve seen one, I’ll give them two autographed books and a crisp $20 bill.
Professor Ceiling Cat (Emeritus) is on the job again, at least until Friday afternoon, when I have a hiatus to hang out with visitors. Ms. Grania of Cork will be doing the Hili Honors during my four-day hiatus. In the meantime, the weather will cool a bit this week, with a high of only 78°F (26°C) today, and just a 1% chance of rain. The ducks are all splashy and hungry, and energized in the cool weather. To show how much they’ve grown, I’ll put up a picture taken on June 1 (yes, the tiny fluffballs in the foreground are the ducklings, and the noisome Frank was still around):
. . . and then one taken this morning, at the same spot one month later:
On July 2, 1698, Thomas Savery patented the first steam engine. And on this day in 1776. the Continental Congress adopted a resolution severing ties with Great Britain; this was formalized by the publication of the Declaration of Independence two days later (this Wednesday is our Independence Day Holiday). On this day in 1881, Charles J. Guiteau shot U.S. President James Garfield, who lingered on until September 19, probably dying of an infection caused by doctors who probed the wound with unsterile hands and instruments. Guiteau was executed on June 30 of the next year. This day in 1934 was The Night of the Long Knives, when the Nazis consolidated power by killing many of their own, including SA chief Ernst Röhm. On this day in 1937, Amelia Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan were last heard from in the Pacific in their attempt to fly around the world. We still don’t know what happened to them. On July 2, 1962, the first Wal-Mart store opened in Rogers, Arkansas, and exactly forty years later Steve Fossett became the first person fly fly solo around the world in a balloon, the Spirit of Freedom. Here’s that balloon:
Notables born on July 2 include Hermann Hesse (1877), Thurgood Marshall (1908), Medgar Evers (1925), Patrice Lumumba (1925, executed 1961), Imelda Marcos (1929, still alive, but with fewer shoes), Jerry Hall (1956), Jose Canseco (1964) and Michelle Branch (1983). Those who died on this day include Nostradamus (1566), Ernest Hemingway (1961, suicide, aged 62), Betty Grable (1973), Vladimir Nabokov (1977), James Stewart (1977), Beverly Sills (2007) and Elie Wiesel (2016).
I think the song performed by Branch and Santana, “The Game of Love,” which came out in 2002, is one of the best rock songs produced in this century. It has great vocals, wonderful and subtle accompaniment by Santana, and a smoking guitar solo starting at 2:17:
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Cyrus is clueless:
Cyrus: Hili stayed in the forest again.A: No, she is walking behind you.
Cyrus: Hili znowu została w lesie.
Ja: Nie, idzie za tobą.
A tweet from reader Barry showing a Most Chill cat (and not Woke):
From reader Gethyn. I wish I had one of these in my office for my brood:
Just some ducks enjoying their paddling pool…😍 pic.twitter.com/EHTU2FvM9O
— Sarah Wright (@Sarah__wright1) July 1, 2018
From Matthew: a homeowner makes a new friend:
Long and the short of it is, I heard a noise in my yard, went to investigate, his name is Maurice and we’re going to be very happy together. pic.twitter.com/5wVTmhHMYC
— Melissa Harrison (@M_Z_Harrison) July 1, 2018
Be sure to click on the tweet and take a virtual tour of the inside of Scott’s hut:
Emma Darwin finds out what proportion of her genome came from her great-great grandfather:
Some years back I found myself the subject of a discussion on a big genetics blog, as to what % of my genome I owed to CD. Apparently wd be c.2%, except he & Emma were 1st cousins, so it's c.3%, assuming she wasn't playing away when she conceived my great-grandfather, that is!
— Emma Darwin (@emma_darwin) July 1, 2018
Well if this don’t beat all! They’ve now found hybrids between Denisovans and Neanderthals!
— Fernando Racimo (@FerRacimo) June 27, 2018
In this brutal summer, we should learn how to help our heat-stressed insect friends:
— Hopeless Surfer (@HopelessSurfer) June 28, 2018
An arcane tweet from Matthew:
This, from Logothetis (2008) shows unbridgeable gulf between 'the brain lighting up' in an fMRI scan and any real knowledge of what is happening at the cellular level (NB many of those trillions of synapses will involve more than one neurotransmitter…). pic.twitter.com/XYJGzIb0HV
— Matthew Cobb (@matthewcobb) July 1, 2018
More stunning shots of June 25th waterspouts near Rimini, Italy. Report via Tornado in Italia pic.twitter.com/ve1GedKOVj
— severe-weather.EU (@severeweatherEU) June 29, 2018
What are these machines doing?
My robot vacuum is fighting with my smart scale. This is an IoT nightmare. pic.twitter.com/spon0CjFSG
— Megan Morrone (@meganmorrone) June 28, 2018
I don’t think they’re fighting… https://t.co/T2LbDodY9M
— Dr Julie Blommaert 👩🏼🔬 (@drjulie_b) June 28, 2018
The amazing balance of goats (be sure to watch the video):
For goats, being governed by the laws of physics was never an option. pic.twitter.com/R6iYcaWbLx
— Dick King-Smith HQ (@DickKingSmith) June 29, 2018
Matthew tweeted a poem the other day but it wasn’t original; it came from William Carlos Williams’ poem “This is just to say“, to wit:
I have eaten
the plums that were in
you were probably
they were delicious
and so cold.
Matthew wrote his own tweet after breakfast at the Holiday Inn in Lincoln:
I have not taken
that was on
the breakfast bar buffet
I could have
to eat cold on the train
For it would have been delicious
and so cold
— Matthew Cobb (@matthewcobb) June 28, 2018
And here’s a new response:
A great tweet from Persian Rose:
From reader Charleen: it turns out the oldest artistic representation of a bird that can be identified is a DUCK (I deny that it’s a diver or a cormorant)!
This small carving of a water bird was created c. 33,000 years ago. Thought to be a diver, cormorant, or duck. From beak to tail the figure is 4.7 cm long. The sculpted piece of mammoth ivory, found in the Hohle Fels cave in Germany, may be the earliest representation of a bird. pic.twitter.com/e9nOZOn8gH
— Ticia Verveer (@ticiaverveer) June 30, 2018
Tweets from Grania: Sad but true Department:
— Pádraig Belton (@PadraigBelton) June 29, 2018
The wife and daughter of imprisoned Saudi dissident Raif Badawi have just become Canadian citizens.
— Kim Vermette (@kimvermette) July 1, 2018
What is this adorable elephant doing?
Finally, a duckling is reuinted with its mom. Look how it jumps out of the box!
This rescued duckling is about to be reunited with his parents — they're SO happy to have him back 🐥❤️ pic.twitter.com/IfHE2y8GQm
— The Dodo (@dodo) July 1, 2018