Wednesday: Hili dialogue

July 25, 2018 • 6:45 am

It’s Hump Day: July 25, 2018, and National Hot Fudge Sundae Day. The best version in Chicago, which sadly I’ll not have today, is at Margie’s Candies, a real old-fashioned ice cream parlor downtown. It’s been in business since 1921. It’s also Guanacaste Day in Costa Rica, the province where I got the botfly in my head. The day celebrates the annexation of the province from Nicaragua.

News of the day: Donald Trump still hasn’t heard of TTIP:

On this day in 1788, Mozart finished his Symphony No. 40 in G minor (“K550”). Exactly 9 years later, Admiral Nelson lost many men (and his right arm) during a failed attempt to conquer Tenerife in Spain.  On July 25, 1866, the U.S. Congress created the rank of “General of the Army” (i.e. Boss Hog General), and Lieutenant Ulysses S. Grant became the first to be promoted to the rank.  On this day in 1898, the U.S. seized Puerto Rico from Spain.

On July 25, 1909, Louis Blériot became the first person to cross the English Channel in an airplane. It took him 37 minutes to fly from Calais to Dover.  In 1934, the Nazis assassinated Engelbert Dollfuss, Chancellor of Austria, in a failed attempt to take over the country. Austria’s independence lasted four more years until Germany annexed it.  On this day in 1956, off Nantucket Island, the Italian ocean liner Andrea Doria collided with the Swedish liner MS Stockholm, and sank the next day, killing 51. It was big news at the time; here’s a news video of the sinking:

If you’re of a certain age, you’ll remember that Bob Dylan “went electric” at the Newport Folk Festival; it was on July 25, 1965. Roundly booed by purist fans, Dylan showed up his detractors later. Here’s his rendition of “Maggie’s Farm” on that occasion; you can hear loud booing at the end.

On this day in 1976, Viking 1 took the famous photo “Face on Mars”. Here it is, an optical illusion that depends completely on angle and lighting:

On July 25, 1978, the first human created by in vitro fertilization, Louise Joy Brown, was born. Finally, on this day eight years ago, WikiLeaks released classified documents about the U.S. war in Afghanistan, the Pentagon Papers of our day.

Notables born on this day include Thomas Eakins (1844), Maxfield Parrish (1870), Jim Corbett (1875), Walter Brennan (1894), Rosalind Franklin (1920), mountaineer Lionel Terray (1921), Steve Goodman (1984, age 36), and Walter Payton (1954). Deaths were thin on the ground on this day; they include Ben Hogan (1997) and Randy Pausch (2008).

Here’s Eakins’s great painting “The Agnew Clinic” (1898), showing a partial mastectomy:

And here’s a magazine cover by Maxfield Parrish published on January 31, 1924. Title: “A Good Mixer”). Do note the black kitty.

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili has been thinking about quantum mechanics:

Hili: I’m not playing dice with God anymore.
A: Why?
Hili: I caught him cheating.
In Polish:
Hili: Nie gram więcej z Panem Bogiem w kości!
Ja: Dlaczgo?
Hili: On oszukuje


Tweets from Matthew. The first refers to yesterday’s tweet, which I put below the first one:

Matthew says that water voles have been hit hard by predation by mink escaping from mink farms:

Here we have Goliath again, the giant tadpole, with a link to a blog post:

An important scientific result. Had they played Sixties rock, I bet the lady beetles would have nommed all the aphids!

Shhhh! Owl sleeping!

Be sure to watch the GIF here:

I haven’t yet read this paper, but Matthew thinks it’s important.

At first I didn’t see the illusion, but a second glance will show you:

And a spiffy bridge in Vietnam.

For some reason I find this hilarious. Now we are six.

Tweets from Grania: “That’ll do mule; that’ll do.”

“OMG!” is the only proper response to this video:

In case you hadn’t heard, Trevor Noah became Witch of the Week with the resurfacing of some dubious humor he purveyed. What will the Control Left do now? Will they have no heroes left, at long last?


34 thoughts on “Wednesday: Hili dialogue

  1. Hili knows who is cheating and sources know, if you cheat you will also lie.

    That Trump is a trade expert. 12 billion to the farmers for his actions – great move and very popular.

  2. Nice one, mule.

    On a UK quiz show someone was asked what you call a cross between a horse and a donkey, and the contestant replied, after a pause: a honkey?

    I presume the pause was to weigh up the most likely, ‘honkey’ or ‘dorse’.

    1. * ‘mule’ derives from the generic term for any mix, as in ‘mulatto’;

      * The issue of a male donkey (‘jack’) and a horse mare is commonly known as a ‘mule’, whereas the term ‘hinny’ is reserved for the rarer horse stallion & donkey female (‘jenny’) mixes;

      * In case it hasn’t been mentioned, horses & donkeys have different number of chromosomes, but everyone here surely figured that out;

      * Mules’ reputation for stubbornness comes from two attributes:
      – 1) whereas horses evolved on wide open plains, asses evolved in more broken terrain. Flight response works best in the former, Freeze response in the latter;
      – 2) Studies and experience show that mules are more intelligent than either horses or donkeys. Crude but too common training methods that just barely work with most horses, will fail miserably with a mule (It’s never ever the horse’s fault, and that goes for mules, too);

      * Stay away from Zorses (horse-zebra crosses). Better yet, don’t breed them in the first place. They are nasty tempered.

  3. Say what you will about Dylan (and I say he’s a great American), ya gotta grant the cat’s got chutzpah.

  4. I just watched the Coen Brothers’ ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ last night after missing it the first time around, and the young Dylan turns up in a spooky little cameo towards the end(or the beginning, depending on how you view the film).

    I always thought he was just about the coolest looking guy that ever existed at that point.

    1. Great picture, right down to the Ouroboros structure. The Coens have yet to make a bad movie, you ask me, and I don’t give a good goddamn how much the critics may have panned The Ladykillers. 🙂

        1. I’ll take Tom Hanks’s performance in Ladykillers over Philadelphia or Forrest Gump, or pretty much anything else he’s done. I think it, and the movie, are as-yet unappreciated classics.

          Haven’t seen Suburbicon yet, but I’m gonna. I didn’t think Hail Caesar was their greatest, either, but it was still well worth seeing.

          1. Hail Caesar was my least favourite although Adrian Ehrenreich as the singing cowboy was great.

            I loved Inside Llewyn Davis – even though it was pretty depressing – and the structure is very reminiscent of one of my favourite ever books. Which I can’t really name, as that would be a spoiler in and of itself I suppose…

            I think Llewyn Davis might be my favourite Coen Bros film at the moment, although it changes.

            1. Hail Caesar’s coming to us soon from our library. Loved O Brother where art Thou, but not sure Fargo can ever be beaten,

              1. I reckon Fargo will end up being their best film, because it’s so perfectly formed. It’s funny, it’s got such vivid characters, it exists in a complete universe of its own(which is presumably why Noah Hawley wanted to adapt it), it’s run through with Coen DNA and it ends on a note of compassion and hope, which is pretty rare with them.

                Having said that, there are others of theirs that are slightly more flawed but are more ambitious than Fargo, Inside Llewyn Davis being one. It’s really stuck with me, in the way that spookier, more metaphysical and open-ended films tend to.

              2. At the top of the heap of the Coens’ oeuvre I’d put Fargo and No Country and Miller’s Crossing — and, of course, Lebowski. There are, however, many other close contenders.

              3. Can’t forget Lebowski, and the rug that brought the room together – and Jesus the bowler😂

        2. I may be the only person who did not like No Country, movie or book, though I generally love the Coens and Cormack McCarthy.

  5. Speaking of the Andrea Doria, I’m looking at a color photo of her listing severely to port on my wall. Water has just reached the deck.
    My father was on the transport ship returning from Italy that took part in the rescue.

  6. The Crustacean Bustacean has triggered an earworm from Disney’s animated 101 Dalmatians, “We’ll have a Crustacean Bustacean, a Crustacean Bustacean, I say.”

  7. “I’m not playing dice with God anymore.”

    “This is based on a very figurative interpretation of Einstein’s quote. In the original German, what he said was:

    Raffiniert ist der Herr Gott, aber bösehaft ist er nicht.”

    A more proper translation is

    God is clever but he is not perverse.”

    Note: there are several possible translations for bösehaft; the most common one is “evil”, but I prefer to use “perverse”. The original German quote is inscribed on the mantelpiece of what used to be the faculty lounge of the physics department at Princeton University.

    1. The quotations are distinct, if I recall. He also (supposedly – I haven’t checked) said “God does not play dice” in the standard translation, but “Gott würfelt nicht” might also less specific, from what I undertand – god does not gamble.

  8. Mozart’s symphonies 40 & 41 are favorites of mine. The degree of poignancy they evoke is one of the more impressive examples I know of how music can cause emotional responses in people.

    I acknowledge Dylan’s artistic mastery and his influence, but I prefer Rage Against The Machine’s cover of Maggie’s Farm.

    I’m surprised that water voles exist. How in the heck can such tiny mammals maintain body temperature in water?

  9. Maggie’s Farm was the first of a set of 5 songs Dylan played at Newport in 1965.

    In today’s parlance “Nevertheless, he persisted.”

    1. ..with the young Mike Bloomfield on lead guitar. Pity the lime light didn’t land on him a bit.

  10. “ (“K550”) “

    I’m almost certain the way to notate this is without quotation marks. So :

    Symphony No. 40 (K. 550)

    Some symphonies get a name, e.g. “Haffner”, and are notated with quotation marks like that.

    … the “K.” is an abbreviation for Köchel (I didn’t check the spelling). Because that’s the catalog created by Köchel.

    …. ahhh, my work is done for the day.

  11. I saw the sleeping baby owl picture yesterday on Twitter and read the comments. Some are claiming that the owl is in fact dead and others insist that this is how baby owls of this species sleep. As usual with Twitter, it is hard for a non-owl-expert like me to tell which is the truth. Anyone here know?

  12. What’s the difference between a dilapidated Greyhound stop and a lobster wearing a bra?

    One is a crusty bus station and the other is a busty crustacean

  13. Dylan was an early victim of authoritarian lefties–to them going electric was not just selling out, it was abandoning songs about social justice. But Dylan, who changed styles and reinvented himself multiple times, exemplifies the argument that art is more than politics.

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