Thursday: Hili dialogue

July 12, 2018 • 6:30 am

It’s Thursday, July 12, 2018: two days until Bastille Day in France. It’s National Pecan Pie Day, celebrating one of America’s finest indigenous desserts, and in São Tomé and Príncipe, a country where I once did field work on flies, it’s Independence Day.

On July 12, 1543, Henry VIII of England married his sixth and last wife, Catherine Parr, who was to outlive him.  On the same day in 1776, Captain James Cook began his third voyage. It was to be his last, with Cook meeting a violent death in what is now Hawaii in February, 1779.  On this day in 1804, Alexander Hamilton died one day after being shot in a duel with Aaron Burr.  On July 12, 1962, the Rolling Stones gave their first public concert, at London’s Marquee Club. And on this day in 1971, the Australian Aboriginal Flag was flown for the first time; here’s how it looks:

On this day in 1975, São Tomé and Príncipe declared independence from Portugal (see above), and exactly four years later, the island nation of Kiribati became independent of the UK.

Those born on this day include Josiah Wedgwood (1730), Henry David Thoreau (1817), William Osler (1849), George Eastman (1854), Buckminster Fuller and Oscar Hammerstein II (both 1895), Bill Cosby (1937), Christine McVie (1943), Kristi Yamaguchi (1971) and Malala Yousafzai (1997).

Notables who died on July 12 include Alexander Hamilton (1804; see above), D. T. Suzuki (1966) and Minnie Riperton (1979). Riperton, who died at only 31 of cancer, had the rare vocal ability to sing in the “whistle range.” Although she died before she could have many hits, here’s her big one, “Lovin’ You”. Listen to those high notes in this live performance, and especially the one at the very end:

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili pronounces on physics and Malgorzata explains:

Hili was thinking about the theory of relativity because we posted the translation of Steven Novella’s post here (the English original is here).

Some tweets from Matthew; the first two are paired:

Warthog skull. Have a butcher’s at those teeth!

New discoveries of ancient sites are still made in densely populated areas; here’s one in Ireland:

A truly remarkable case of mimicry. Ask yourself, “Why would it be advantageous for a beetle to look like a gecko?”

Put them back and let them hatch!

I didn’t know that the pattern of a deer’s antlers stays constant throughout his life:

Really? Is a goal worth $10,000 worth of beer? Remember, the World Cup final is this Sunday (10 a.m. Chicago time), pitting Croatia against France. I’ll check with contest boss George, but I don’t think anyone picked this match, which would render our World Cup contest moot.

Here are the highlights of Croatia’s upset victory over England, 2-1:

A kitten tweet from Grania:


38 thoughts on “Thursday: Hili dialogue

  1. Shock for me to realise 1962 is Fifty Six years ago! Brian Jones’ The Rolling Stones’ first gig set list is HERE

    Brian Jones (guitar)
    Mick Jagger (vocals)
    Keith Richards (guitar)
    Ian Stewart (piano)
    Dick Taylor (bass)
    Tony Chapman (drums)

      1. Looking over the set list, you can see why the Stones were so excited the first time they came to Chicago and met Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. Slight brag – I saw both of them live – on numerous occasions. From that visit – and a stop at Chess Records – came 2120 South Michigan Avenue.

        And also a Minnie Riperton connection. In 1968, Muddy Waters put out the album Electric Mud. On that album, he was not backed by his usual (great) band but by Rotary Connection. With Minnie Riperton. From Electric Mud, Let’s Spend the Night Together

      2. Strictly an old, black guys covers band then. They didn’t start writing their own material until around two years later as an attempt [it is said] to match up their music to their tweenie girlie fan base. Their early writing, lyrically, is horrid, stuff. e.g. from ’65: “Mother’s Little Helper”, “Stupid Girl”, “Lady Jane”, “Under My Thumb”, “Doncha Bother Me” – make my toes curl.

        For me Their Satanic Majesties Request, late 1967 studio album is when they started to get interesting – such as John Paul Jones’ [yes the Led Zep guy] string arrangements on She’s A Rainbow ~ they had a good two years after that with a further two great albums [Beggers Banquet & Let It Bleed]. End of Jones & end of the darkness that made them interesting [no connection].

        1. The Stones are essentially an R&B band. Satanic Majesties, their lone foray into psychedelia, was a mistake, you ask me. Gimme the gut-bucket, back-to-their-roots rhythm and blues of Exile on Main St. any old day of the week.

        2. You are selling the Stones short vy two years. Sticky Fingers and Exile on Main Street are great albums.

    1. Doesn’t really seem like the Stones without the Wyman-Watts rhythm section — which was intact by the time they moved to the Crawdaddy Club.

  2. Minnie Riperton was a remarkable artist who unfortunately had her life cut short by breast cancer. She was the mother of actress Maya Rudolph. She hailed from the same Chicago neighborhood (Bronzeville) that gave us people like Sam Cooke. Lou Rawls, Mahalia Jackson, the Staple Singers, and more. To me, she was the lead singer of the Rotary Connection.

    It was described as a psychedelic soul group. Here is their version of Ruby Tuesday.

    1. I hear Theramin. Never heard of them or this cover before – it’s like a bunch of nuns high on coke. Great stuff. Thanks.

  3. I saw Minnie Riperton in a small concert hall in Cleveland in 1975. Gal hit some notes that night I swear only the neighborhood canines could hear. Her union with “Lovin’ You” co-writer Richard Rudolph gave the world the lovely and talented Maya Rudolph.

    1. Heard the last note in the tune PCC(E) posted, and my response is “Holy C***!” Not only is that note so incredibly high, but it is sustained incredibly well.


  4. Croatia beating England doesn’t really qualify as an upset, despite the disparity in the respective countries’ populations.

    Croatia have the more experienced players by some distance, and boast Luka Modric of Real Madrid, who have won the Champions League for the last three years, and Ivan Rakitic of Barcelona. England has no players good enough to be coveted by those two illustrious teams. The other Croatians are drawn from other top teams in Europe, such as Atletico Madrid, Juventus and Liverpool. England’s average caps was 19.5 (Croatia 40), and average age of the starting eleven was 25.8 (Croatia 29). I think England’s run to the semi-final, although admirable, was somewhat down to the luck of the draw.

    Given how successful Croatian players are in the top European leagues one might expect their national team to have had more success than they have had until now, but this may be their year.

      1. I pretty much agree; the only caveat is that, despite their great talent, France play a pretty defensive game. Croatia have proven to be pretty resilient, and if they score first they may have a chance.

      2. I can very well see Croatia beating France, I’d give it a 50/50. The French defense is very good, including the outstanding keeper Lloris, but they are not impenetrable.

    1. I think the England team got as far as they did, with such little depth of international experience, because of their set pieces. A compilation of England’s free kicks, corners & throw ins would be a good watch.

      The success is all down to their attacking coach Allan Russell’s tactical ideas – heavily borrowing from American NFL & NBA. Perhaps a ‘young’ team was necessary to ensure these ideas could be absorbed by the players. Good article here

    2. Yes, I expected Croatia to beat England. Won 10 rand on that (about 0.8 USD).
      The bigger upset was France beating Belgium, which I did not expect. The teams were quite evenly poised, so luck played a role too, as it always does. But all kudos to France, they stuck well to their game plan. They are the first team in 25 Belgian matches that did not lose, or stronger, left the ‘Red Devils’ goalless. Quite a feat.
      I would have loved the Belgians to have been in, and winning, the finals: they play very attractive, attacking football and scored more goals than any other team.
      I reviewed all France’s and Belgium’s matches in this world cup, I think Belgium is the better team, albeit by a small margin.
      I doubt whether Croatia has no chance against France. Both are young teams, and outstanding teams, but if France play ageing Giraud they have no chance (according to Thierry Henri, the great former French player, now Belgian coach).

    3. If France plays a conservative, defensive game after scoring their first goal like England, I predict Croatia will beat them too. Of course, France’s players watched yesterday’s game so there’s a good chance they won’t repeat England’s mistake.

    4. “England has no players good enough to be coveted by those two illustrious teams.”

      Could argue that Harry Kane might be an exception here, but overall you are correct. Yet, given their youth and the potential that these England players demonstrated, we may see this changing in the near future.

      I had sworn off England after the 2014 World Cup, thinking that their entire national football scheme was directionless and completely subservient to the big clubs, and would be so for the indefinite future. 2018 may well have been another calamity if “Big Sam” had stayed on as manager.

      But England have found themselves what seems to be a man with a plan in Gareth Southgate, and they have legitimate reason for optimism for the upcoming Euros and the next World Cup. Hopefully they won’t screw it up!

      1. “I had sworn off England after the 2014 World Cup, thinking that their entire national football scheme was directionless and completely subservient to the big clubs, and would be so for the indefinite future. 2018 may well have been another calamity if “Big Sam” had stayed on as manager.”

        This was true, and my hope for the future, a vision Southgate seems to be following, is that an England ‘style’ will be carried forward from the (very successful) junior age groups to the senior team (England are the current U17 and U20 World Champions, U19 European Champions and winner of the last three U21 Toulon international tournaments). As you say, it is vital that the club-first ethos of English footballers is replaced by an English collective while playing for the national team. My advice to those in power is to develop a squad of players, regardless of the team they play for, to compete against the best footballing countries.

        While Southgate has shown vision in this aspect of his management, his tactics were exposed in the game against Croatia, and that may well limit his ambitions at national team manager level.

  5. “New discoveries of ancient sites are still made in Britain:…” The Newgrange site is in the Republic of Ireland – 25 km north of Dublin. Worth a visit to see something older than the pyramids & with decent beer nearby! The Wiki [not on the beer]

  6. By my read of WEIT’s World Cup contest,
    Dr Coyne is correct: no one selected
    as its y2018 finalists … … Croatia and France.

    The Final, too, to be matched one day after
    … … Bastille Day y2018 ! W h o o o o a !


  7. Hmm, seems that it was without any basis that I thought the number of points on deer antlers increased with age.

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