Wednesday: Hili dialogue

July 31, 2019 • 6:30 am

It’s the last day of July: Wednesday, the 31st, to be exact. It’s National Cotton Candy Day, a comestible to avoid (I believe the Brits call it “candy floss”).  It’s also National Avocado Day as well as Shredded Wheat Day (I doubt that Weetabix is included).

Stuff that happened on July 31 include:

  • 1201 – Attempted usurpation by John Komnenos the Fat for the throne of Alexios III Angelos.
  • 1492 – The Jews are expelled from Spain when the Alhambra Decree takes effect.
  • 1658 – Aurangzeb is proclaimed Mughal emperor of India.
  • 1790 – The first U.S. patent is issued, to inventor Samuel Hopkins for a potash process.
  • 1917 – World War I: The Battle of Passchendaele begins near Ypres in West Flanders, Belgium.
  • 1941 – The Holocaust: Under instructions from Adolf Hitler, Nazi official Hermann Göring, orders SS General Reinhard Heydrich to “submit to me as soon as possible a general plan of the administrative material and financial measures necessary for carrying out the desired Final Solution of the Jewish question.”
  • 1970 – Black Tot Day: The last day of the officially sanctioned rum ration in the Royal Navy.

And here’s a short video giving details of The Very Last Tot, which had been a feature of the British Navy since 1655.

  • 2006 – Fidel Castro hands over power to his brother, Raúl.
  • 2012 – Michael Phelps breaks the record set in 1964 by Larisa Latynina for the most medals won at the Olympics.

Phelps still holds the record with 28 medals, including 23 gold, 3 silver, and 2 bronze. I bet you can’t name the second-place person with most medals or, for that matter, any of the top ten (go here for the answer).  Here’s Phelps winning his last medal, a gold, in the men’s swimming 4 X 100 m medley relay. Sadly, Wikipedia notes that “In January 2018, Phelps revealed that he has struggled both with ADHD and depression, having contemplated suicide after the 2012 Olympics.” This shows that even acclaim and achievement doesn’t alleviate depression.

Notables born on this day include:

Here’s Villon’s “Monsieur Duchamp”:

Others born on this day include:

  • 1892 – Herbert W. Armstrong, American evangelist and publisher, founded Worldwide Church of God (d. 1986)
  • 1912 – Irv Kupcinet, American football player and journalist (d. 2003)
  • 1919 – Primo Levi, Italian chemist and author (d. 1987) [It’s his 100th birthday]/
  • 1932 – John Searle, American philosopher and academic
  • 1965 – J. K. Rowling, English author and film producer; created Harry Potter

Those who expired on July 31 include:

  • 1556 – Ignatius of Loyola, Spanish priest and theologian, founded the Society of Jesus (b. 1491)
  • 1875 – Andrew Johnson, American general and politician, 17th President of the United States (b. 1808)
  • 1964 – Jim Reeves, American singer-songwriter (b. 1923)
  • 1966 – Bud Powell, American pianist (b. 1924)
  • 2012 – Gore Vidal, American novelist, screenwriter, and critic (b. 1925)
  • 2017 – Jeanne Moreau, French actress (b. 1928)

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili once again evinces her solipsism:

Hili: Am I, sitting here, giving you an aesthetic experience?
A: Yes, a tremendous one.
In Polish:
Hili: Czy siedząc tu dostarczam ci wrażeń estetycznych?
Ja: Ogromnych.

From the great Facebook page, “I am not a grammar cop. I am an English-language enthusiast“. I’ve seen these misspelled so many times, especially the artist’s palette:


Grania sent this “high five kitty” on November 29 of last year:

Two tweets from Nilou. The first shows an extremely important historical relic:

And the second shows a lovely tardigrade, also one of Grania’s favorite animals:

Heather Hastie sent this tweet, noting that “This is a reference to the Game of Thrones, which Grania loved.”

And another cat tweet from Heather:

The original tweet below was sent by Matthew; I replied to Anderson telling to keep his botfly. All good biologists would!

Two more tweets from Matthew. These were the good old days when there were no helicopter parents. Look at these toys!

Another Turkish ice cream performer. He almost gets the guy in the balls!

14 thoughts on “Wednesday: Hili dialogue

  1. 1201 – Attempted usurpation by John Komnenos the Fat for the throne of Alexios III Angelos.

    Maybe if it wasn’t for the early 13th century body-shaming, John K wouldn’t’ve been so keen to usurp.

  2. If you think Tardigrades are cool, check out the YouTube channel “Journey to the Microcosmos”. Spectacular micro-videography. (The video on Stentors is pretty awesome too!)

  3. 1970 – Black Tot Day: The last day of the officially sanctioned rum ration in the Royal Navy.

    Leaving the poor sea-faring lads with no traditions save sodomy and the lash.

  4. I replied to Anderson telling to keep his botfly. All good biologists would!

    Is he gonna take his to Fenway Park to see a Sox game?

  5. Aurora Plastics Corporation: The early 60s monsters series of 13 figures [called by collectors “The Aurora 13”] was a brilliant concept & highly successful – the young customers were used to the B&W film representations of Frankenstein’s monster etc & now they were presented with their nightmares in full garish box art colour. The box fronts are the best part of the kits.

    I remember seeing these monster/horror kits in the UK [don’t think it was Aurora] with glow-in-the-dark paints included in the kits around 1963-4 when I was 8 or 9 yo & I was absolutely entranced, but no money for such stuff in our house. The Mummy & Dracula was particularly gloriously terrifying!

    The tweet above is about the later stuff from ’71 which was a marketing [& taste] disaster – “Monster Scenes” with four figures Dr. Deadly, Frankenstein [yes I know], Vampirella & the Victim combined with four scenes: The Pain Parlor, The Hanging Cage, The Pendulum & Gruesome Goodies & the boxes carried the slogan, “Mix ’em and Match ’em. Rated X…for Excitement”

    Aurora’s factory was picketed & Aurora’s new owner Nabisco Foods rightly IMO axed Monster Scenes & the Aurora execs. The way Vampirella is modelled & clothed, the idea of having a female figure called “The Victim” & having torture equipment is so tone deaf it’s stunning to me. [Don’t get me started on Grand Theft Auto I through to V!!]

      1. And this was for the kiddiez?

        I’ve seen less revealing pictures on porn sites. (And more revealing pics too, of course).

        Or I’m sure I would have done if I ever visited such sites. Not that I have. What, me?


  6. Good grief! Reviewing John Searle’s biography, I came across this. Accusations of sexual misconduct. The guy is 84 years old! You’d think he’d be winding down by now.

    “A new lawsuit alleges that university officials failed to properly respond to complaints that John Searle, an 84-year-old renowned philosophy professor, sexually assaulted his 24-year-old research associate last July and cut her pay when she rejected his advances.”[14][15] The case brought to light several earlier complaints against Searle, on which Berkeley allegedly had failed to act.”

  7. “This shows that even acclaim and achievement doesn’t alleviate depression.”

    Indeed – there are countless examples of high performing individuals in all spheres of human activity who have suffered (or continue to suffer) from depression. Mental illness is something from which we are all at risk but sadly it is often treated as something to be ashamed of in a way that physical illness is not.

Leave a Reply