Good morning on Thursday, October 17, 2019—National Pasta Day. It’s also Wear Something Gaudy Day (probably too late for you, as you may be at work) and World Trauma Day and International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
Stuff that happened on October 17 includes:
- 1604 – Kepler’s Supernova is observed in the constellation of Ophiuchus.
This was the last supernova in our galaxy observed with the naked eye. Here’s a false-color composite photo:
The end of conflict in the Revolutionary War:
- 1777 – American Revolutionary War: British General John Burgoyne surrenders his army at Saratoga, New York.
- 1781 – American Revolutionary War: British General Charles, Earl Cornwallis surrenders at the Siege of Yorktown.
- 1814 – Eight people die in the London Beer Flood.
Wikipedia describes how this happened. Imagine being drowned by porter!
It took place when one of the 22-foot-tall (6.7 m) wooden vats of fermenting porter burst. The pressure destroyed another vessel, and between 128,000 and 323,000 imperial gallons (580,000–1,470,000 l; 154,000–388,000 US gal) of beer were released.
The resulting wave of porter destroyed the back wall of the brewery and swept into an area of slum-dwellings known as the St Giles rookery. Eight people were killed, five of them attendees at the wake being held by an Irish family for a two-year-old boy.
- 1888 – Thomas Edison files a patent for the Optical Phonograph (the first movie).
- 1931 – Al Capone is convicted of income tax evasion.
Here’s Al Capone’s mugshot:
- 1933 – Albert Einstein flees Nazi Germany and moves to the United States.
- 1956 – The first commercial nuclear power station is officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II in Sellafield, England.
- 1956 – Bobby Fischer defeats Donald Byrne in the chess Game of the Century.
- 1969 – The Caravaggio painting Nativity with St. Francis and St. Lawrence was stolen from the Oratory of Saint Lawrence in Palermo.
The painting is still missing and now a replica hangs in its place. Here’s the original, whose loss I mourn since I consider Caravaggio as one of the greatest painters of all time:
- 1992 – Having gone to the wrong house, Japanese student Yoshihiro Hattori is killed by the homeowner in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
- 1994 – Russian journalist Dmitry Kholodov is assassinated while investigating corruption in the armed forces.
- 2018 – The recreational use of cannabis is legalized in Canada.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1903 – Nathanael West, American author and screenwriter (d. 1940)
- 1915 – Arthur Miller, American playwright and screenwriter (d. 2005)
- 1918 – Rita Hayworth, American actress, singer and dancer (d. 1987)
- 1920 – Montgomery Clift, American actor (d. 1966)
- 1933 – The Singing Nun, Belgian singer-songwriter, guitarist, and nun (d. 1985)
- 1938 – Evel Knievel, American motorcycle rider and stuntman (d. 2007)
- 1968 – Ziggy Marley, Jamaican singer-songwriter, guitarist, and voice actor
- 1969 – Wyclef Jean, Haitian-American rapper, producer, and actor
- 1972 – Eminem, American rapper, producer, and actor
- 1974 – Ariel Levy, American journalist and author
Who remembers The Singing Nun? Here’s her big hit, “Dominique“, from 1963, which reached the top of the charts. You can find the translation at the link.
Those who took the Big Nap on this day include:
- 1849 – Frédéric Chopin, Polish pianist and composer (b. 1810)
- 1910 – Julia Ward Howe, American poet and songwriter (b. 1819)
- 1979 – S. J. Perelman, American humorist and screenwriter (b. 1904)
- 1991 – Tennessee Ernie Ford, American singer and actor (b. 1919)
- 2008 – Levi Stubbs, American singer (b. 1936)
Stubbs, lead singer of The Four Tops, was one of the greatest singers of the Motown era. Here’s a live rendition (Paris, 1967) that I consider one of the best live performances of any soul song. And look at that man sweat!
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, editor Hili is getting in the way:
A: Could you go and meditate somewhere else?Hili: But I’m not disturbing you at all.
Ja: Czy mogłabyś medytować gdzie indziej?
Hili: Przecież ja ci w niczym nie przeszkadzam.
From Amazing Cats:
A reminder that the oppression of women in Iran continues, and they continue to resist.
This despite the risk of jail if caught.
This is how Iranian girls resist compulsory hijab in the streets: they go #WalkingUnveiled and dancing by feeling the breeze in their hair.
— Amir Baloch (@IMAmirKA) June 26, 2019
Ducks in ancient art! Look at that bag o’ quackers!
Inexplicably, ducks are often neglected in the history of art, so to partly redress the balance, here’s Mary Cassatt feeding the ducks in Summertime ■ Joseph Crawhall’s White Drake ■ and ancient 'Ducks in a Bag' (Saqqara, Egypt) pic.twitter.com/CJArAOXyXB
— Journal of Art in Society (@artinsociety) September 7, 2019
Two tweets from Heather Hastie. First, a bipedal gorilla:
Me trying not to run when they announce that the buffet is open.
📹: Imgur user DVHofficial pic.twitter.com/jXayddKzzA
— Paul Bronks (@SlenderSherbet) October 5, 2019
Can you imagine what this cat is thinking?
Me trying to get to the weekend.
— Paul Bronks (@SlenderSherbet) October 3, 2019
Tweets from Dr. Cobb. The first one is apparently an authentic letter from Trump to Erdogan. (Katie Rogers is a White House correspondent for the New York Times.) OY! But we don’t need more proof that Trump is a bull-goose loon.
A nice illusion of straight squares and then skewed ones:
See the cafe wall illusion come and go pic.twitter.com/5sePMG1AEo
— Gavin Buckingham (@DrGBuckingham) October 16, 2019
Spot the katydid! (This one isn’t too hard.)
— ヒデ@バッタラボ (@hide00888) October 15, 2019
This has got to be the Nature Video of the Week:
Stunning drone & underwater video of Humpbacks bubble-net feeding. This is a cooperative hunting method where the whales swim in a closing spiral, releasing columns of bubbles through their blowholes at carefully timed intervals, which corrals their prey into a tightening trap. pic.twitter.com/MPo4lGtG9x
— Quad Finn (@Quad_Finn) October 14, 2019