Monday: Hili dialogue

March 11, 2019 • 6:30 am

Sadly, it’s Monday again: March 11, 2019, and National “Eat Your Noodles” Day. But why the scare quotes? Are they only fooling about this demand, or are we supposed to do something else with the noodles? It’s also Johnny Appleseed Day, which is weird because he was born on September 26 (1774) and died on March 18, 1845. Wikipedia suggests that the planter is celebrated today because March 11 is in the apple-planting season, but so is March 18. Who knows? Plus I heard on the news, and it seems to be true, that it’s National Napping Day, always celebrated the day after Daylight Savings Time returns.

On this day in 1702, the first national daily newspaper in England, the Daily Courant, was first published.  Here’s the first page of the first issue:

This day in 1851 saw the first performance of Verdi’s Rigoletto, which took place in Venice. On March 11, 1888, the “Great Blizzard of 1888” hit the east coast of the U.S., lasting three days and dropping up to five feet of snow in some places. More than 400 people died, and there are some pictures of the snowfall on Wikipedia.

On March 11, 1946, after hiding out for a year, Rudolf Höss, Auschwitz’s first commandant and the man who introduced Zyklon-B gassing, was captured. After being tried, he was hanged; here’s a picture of Höss at the gallows:

On this day in 1990, Lithuania declared itself an independent country. Exactly three years later, Janet Reno was confirmed by the Senate as America’s first woman Attorney General. Finally, it was on March 11, 2004, that a series of terrorist attacks on trains in Madrid killed 193 people and injured 2,000. Although Spain declared that al-Qaeda was responsible, it’s still not clear.

Notables born on this day include Malcolm Campbell (1885), Shemp Howard (1895, real name Schmeul Horwitz), Dorothy Gish (1898), Lawrence Welk (1903), Harold Wilson (1916), Sam Donaldson (1934), Douglas Adams (1952), and Alex Kingston (1963). You can buy on Amazon a two-DVD set honoring the work of Shemp, though Curly was better.

Those who expired on March 11 include Benjamin West (1820), Alexander Fleming and Oscar Mayer (both 1955, former Nobel Laureate and later hot dog magnate), Richard E. Byrd (1957), and Erle Stanley Gardner (1970).

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is parsing words:

A: Are you hunting?
Hili: No, I’m just looking to see whether there is anything to hunt.
In Polish:
Ja: Polujesz?
Hili: Nie, tylko patrzę, czy jest na co polować.

Here are two cat-related memes I found on Facebook


A tweet from reader Nilou. Click on the link to see The Onion‘s splenetic take on the 7 worst bird species of last year. You know it’s ridiculous because DUCKS are one of them!

Reader Barry says that he wants to be a professional horse scratcher like this woman:

Tweets from Heather Hastie. This one, via Ann German, shows the meaning of “out of the frying pan, into the fire”:

Here’s a clever beast: the Alex Honnold of catdom:

Tweets from Grania. First, a lovely Himalayan (isn’t it?):

A Trumpy tweet:

Okay, this is almost above my pay grade but it’s still cool:

Tweets from Matthew. First a time lapse of a honking HUGE d*g!

Read this story of a brave woman!

This is a fricking amazing video of a moth mimicking an ant. It even improves the resemblance by WALKING BACKWARDS! You tell me that nature isn’t surprising!


26 thoughts on “Monday: Hili dialogue

  1. I love the epicycles video – never thought a Fourier series could be drawn with one but there you go.

    1. Well a Fourier series is just a whole lot of sine waves* superimposed on each other.

      And that’s what the epicycles are generating.

      (*And cosine waves, which are exactly the same, just 90 deg out of phase)


    2. Come to think of it that way, a Fourier series decomposition is a tool that is not so often made fun of. It can tell us important details. s

      Such as – ironically here – exoplanet periods in radial star position data.

  2. National “Eat Your Noodles” Day – they’re not ‘scare quotes’, they’re ordinary quotes. It is, presumably, something mothers frequently say to their offspring.


  3. That epicycles thing was almost the downfall of Galileo. Because the Ptolemaic (earth-centred) system could reproduce the planetary motions to a high degree of accuracy using epicycles.

    Copernicus’s idea of a heliocentric solar system with circular orbits was no better – he had to use epicycles to make it fit the observations. So it was no simpler than the Ptolemaic system.

    It wasn’t until elliptical orbits were proposed by Kepler (and IIRC he was uncomfortable doing it because it destroyed the ‘perfection’ of circular orbits) that the heliocentric theory could actually fit the observations.


    1. Is *that* what it is?

      I thought maybe horsey got his hairpiece from the same establishment as the Orange One.

      It looks highly unconvincing, anyway.


  4. Shemp or Curly, Curly or Shemp. Curly added that little bit more of insanity. Looks like a gloomy rainy week. Could go to Washington DC and assist the republican Senate searching for a spine which could lead to a brain stem. Not likely. Probably should stay away from Boeing stock today.

  5. Shemp or Curly, Curly or Shemp. Curly added that little bit more of insanity. Looks like a gloomy rainy week. Could go to Washington DC and assist the republican Senate searching for a spine which could lead to a brain stem. Not likely. Probably should stay away from Boeing stock today.

  6. What a coincidence about the first newspaper in England. Watching the movie Pride and Prejudice last night I noted one of the characters reading a newspaper with the same title——Daily Courant——and I had wondered what the paper was. Now I know and it shows that the people making the movie paid close attention to detail!

  7. If the cosmet moth walks backward to better resemble an ant, how, I wonder, can it see where it’s going? I bet the eyes project out far enough on the side of it’s head so it can take in nearly 360 degrees.

  8. The Madrid train bombing was notable for what developed during the investigation. Fingerprints were found on a bag of detonators and a lawyer in Oregon was arrested after several fingerprint analysts identified him from the prints. Things were looking very bad for the lawyer until Spanish police identified the prints as belonging to an Algerian national. Like many of the bag of tricks in the CSI world, fingerprint analysis is not as perfect as the media have led us to believe.

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