It’s Sunday, May 3, 2020, just one or two days from Duckling Day. It’s National Chocolate Custard Day, Lemonade Day, National Raspberry Popover Day (?), World Laughter Day, International Sun Day (celebrating solar power), and World Press Freedom Day, a UN holiday.
The ducklings should hatch and jump as early as today, and I’m keeping watch, though not constantly, which would require me to sit near the nest for several hours a day. Like Maru, I do my best. Today would be a good day as it will be warm (high 67° F, 16° C), but tomorrow will be chilly (high 46° F, 8° C) and I’m a bit worried. Here’s Honey with last year’s brood of ten:
I will be checking the nests frequently today, hoping to see the Big Leap, so posting may be light.
News of the Day: States are beginning to open up, so we’ll see what happens. Illinois has loosened only a few restrictions, so that now we can play GOLF if we want to. Big whoop! As of this morning the reported death toll from coronavirus has reached 67,067, and the world (reported) total is about 244,000. The hope for a life that most of us are used to seems impossibly distant, and I find the phrase “the new normal” grating and, in the end, unacceptable.
Stuff that happened on May 3 includes:
- 1715 – A total solar eclipse was visible across northern Europe, and northern Asia, as predicted by Edmond Halley to within 4 minutes accuracy.
- 1848 – The boar-crested Anglo-Saxon Benty Grange helmet is discovered in a barrow on the Benty Grange farm in Derbyshire.
Here’s the remnant of the 7th-century helmet and a replica.
The most striking feature of the helmet is the boar at its apex; this pagan symbol faces towards a Christian cross on the nasal in a display of syncretism. This is representative of 7th-century England when Christian missionaries were slowly converting Anglo-Saxons away from traditional Germanic mythology. The helmet seems to exhibit a stronger preference toward paganism, with a large boar and a small cross. The cross may have been added for talismanic effect, the help of any god being welcome on the battlefield. The boar atop the crest was likewise associated with protection and suggests a time when boar-crested helmets may have been common, as do the helmet from Wollaston and the Guilden Morden boar. The contemporary epic Beowulf mentions such helmets five times and speaks of the strength of men “when the hefted sword, its hammered edge and gleaming blade slathered in blood, razes the sturdy boar-ridge off a helmet”.
- 1913 – Raja Harishchandra the first full-length Indian feature film is released, marking the beginning of the Indian film industry.
- 1921 – West Virginia becomes the first state to legislate a broad sales tax, but does not implement it until a number of years later due to enforcement issues.
- 1948 – The U.S. Supreme Court rules in Shelley v. Kraemer that covenants prohibiting the sale of real estate to blacks and other minorities are legally unenforceable.
- 1952 – Lieutenant Colonels Joseph O. Fletcher and William P. Benedict of the United States land a plane at the North Pole.
Here’s the plane and the group of men who landed at the pole (story and photos at Historic Wings):
- 1960 – The Off-Broadway musical comedy The Fantasticks opens in New York City’s Greenwich Village, eventually becoming the longest-running musical of all time.
- 1973 – The 108-story Sears Tower in Chicago is topped out at 1,451 feet as the world’s tallest building.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1849 – Jacob Riis, Danish-American journalist and photographer (d. 1914)
- 1898 – Golda Meir, Ukrainian-Israeli educator and politician, 4th Prime Minister of Israel (d. 1978)
- 1903 – Bing Crosby, American singer and actor (d. 1977)
- 1919 – Pete Seeger, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and activist (d. 2014)
- 1933 – Steven Weinberg, American physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate
- 1950 – Mary Hopkin, Welsh singer-songwriter
Here’s Hopkin’s hit from 1969, “Goodbye”. It was written by Paul McCartney as a followup to Hopkin’s most famous song, “Those Were the Days.” I like this one much better, and Macca appears in the video below. You can hear McCartney’s own demonstration recording here.
Those who pegged out on May 3 include:
- 1779 – John Winthrop, American mathematician, physicist, and astronomer (b. 1714)
- 1989 – Christine Jorgensen, American trans woman (b. 1926)
- 1991 – Jerzy Kosiński, Polish-American novelist and screenwriter (b. 1933)
- 2007 – Wally Schirra, American captain, pilot, and astronaut (b. 1923)
- 2014 – Gary Becker, American economist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1930)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is a bit frightened among the blooming cherry trees (yes, there are eagles in Dobrzyn):
Hili: Eagles!A: Don’t be afraid, they will not harm you.
Ja: Nie bój się, nic ci nie zrobią.
From reader Norm. I like this one:
From Bad Cat Clothing:
Two memes from Jesus of the Day:
And a post-apocalyptic meme from Jesus of the Day.
The Art Institute lions have masks! Some miscreant stole one a few days ago, but it’s been replaced.
Our lions show their love for the city, encouraging Chicagoans to take the necessary steps to protect each other.
— Art Institute (@artinstitutechi) May 1, 2020
From Ziya Tong. As I said when I retweeted it, “Every zoo and natural history museum needs this exhibit.”
— Earthling (@ziyatong) May 2, 2020
From CNet. Not only was I unaware that this was possible, but I’m still unaware of why this beast does it!
This is soothing to my eyes. BRB. pic.twitter.com/nhVssWrLqk
— CNET (@CNET) May 1, 2020
Two from the Queen. Titania, being woke, of course holds a double standard—in fact, many of them:
This one comes pretty close to the truth for some Control-Lefties:
Heterosexuality is the most common form of homophobia.
— Titania McGrath (@TitaniaMcGrath) May 1, 2020
A tweet from Simon, who says, “Trump has managed to make Bush, Jr. sound like a President.” Hell, Trump makes me sound like a President!
— George W. Bush Presidential Center (@TheBushCenter) May 2, 2020
Tweets from Matthew. Re the first one, he says that Victoria is a “BBC journalist and a pal.”
— Victoria Gill 🎥🐧🐞🔬 (@Vic_Gill) May 2, 2020
Did I tweet this already? There must be elebenty gazillion ducklings here. I wish I had that many to tend!
— Victorthevole (@victorthevole) May 1, 2020