Wednesday: Hili dialogue

Good morning on Wednesday, June 3, 2020: National Egg Day. (Which reminds me of a joke: A young man of salacious intent was having dinner with a woman in his flat. “How do you like your eggs in the morning?”, he asked slyly. “Unfertilized,” she responded.  I’ll be here all year, folks.

I didn’t sleep well last night, which seems to be a common response to the pandemic and unrest, so I’m now drinking a homemade latte with four shots of espresso.

It’s also National Chocolate Macaroon Day, Love Conquers All Day, Global Running Day, and World Bicycle Day

News of the Day: Things just keep getting worse and worse; can this be the Apocalypse? Demonstrations and riots continue, and people on both sides are getting killed (see this Guardian article with its misleading subheadline). In Chicago, demonstrations continue, shutting down major roads like Lake Shore drive, but our Mayor, Lori Lightfoot, gave a good speech last night, promising to fast-track police reform but also asking young people to “stand for peace.”

On the non-leadership front, “President” Trump has said he will not accept the Republican nomination in Charlotte, North Carolina, where the GOP convention was scheduled. The reason? The state has a Democratic governor and is requesting a scaled-down convention with social distancing so that the convention doesn’t create a coronavirus outbreak. Trump wants the full on virus incubator with a packed hall. This is all about his narcissism, of course.

Today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 106,195, an increase of about a thousand from yesterday. The world toll now stands at 379,983.

Stuff that happened on June 3 includes:

The Duke (King Edward VII) gave up his throne for love, which sounds romantic, but the marriage reportedly wasn’t a happy one. It still amazes me that this is because the Church of England forbade marriage after divorce, and Simpson was twice divorced. (The Duke would have made a lousy king, anyway.) Here’s a short newsreel clip about it (the sound starts 12 seconds in).

Here are the summit photographs. Both climbers had foot and hand issues on the descent, and both had to have their fingers and toes amputated. You can read the story in Herzog’s great mountaineering book Annapurna.

  • 1965 – The launch of Gemini 4, the first multi-day space mission by a NASA crew. Ed White, a crew member, performs the first American spacewalk.
  • 1989 – The government of China sends troops to force protesters out of Tiananmen Square after seven weeks of occupation.
  • 2012 – The pageant for the Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II takes place on the River Thames.
  • 2013 – The trial of United States Army private Chelsea Manning for leaking classified material to WikiLeaks begins in Fort Meade, Maryland.
  • 2017 – London Bridge attack: Eight people are murdered and dozens of civilians are wounded by Islamist terrorists. Three of the attackers are shot dead by the police.

Notables born on this day include:

  • 1726 – James Hutton, Scottish geologist and physician (d. 1797)
  • 1879 – Alla Nazimova, Ukrainian-American actress, producer, and screenwriter (d. 1945)
  • 1906 – Josephine Baker, French actress, singer, and dancer; French Resistance operative (d. 1975)

Baker, who lived a quite interesting life, also had a pet cheetah named Chiquita that traveled the world with her, and even slept in her bed. Voilà:


  • 1924 – Torsten Wiesel, Swedish neurophysiologist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate
  • 1930 – Joe Coulombe, founder of Trader Joe’s (d. 2020)

I didn’t know until I read the article on Coulombe that Trader Joe’s is owned by the same conglomerate that owns the Aldi supermarket chain.

McMurtry, born in Archer City, Texas, wrote the novel The Last Picture Show, later made into the best American movie of all time, and it was filmed in Archer City (I visited the place simply because I loved the movie.

And. . . .

  • 1986 – Rafael Nadal, Spanish tennis player

Those who found eternal rest on June 3 include:

  • 1899 – Johann Strauss II, Austrian composer and educator (b. 1825)
  • 1924 – Franz Kafka, Czech-Austrian lawyer and author (b. 1883)
  • 1975 – Ozzie Nelson, American actor and bandleader (b. 1906)
  • 1977 – Roberto Rossellini, Italian director and screenwriter (b. 1906)
  • 2001 – Anthony Quinn, Mexican-American actor and producer (b. 1915)

Here’s Quinn playing Auda in Lawrence of Arabia. I saw this with my best friend Kenny (now deceased), and for the rest of his life, we’d occasionally say to each other, “But I am poor. Why? BECAUSE I AM A RIVER TO MY PEOPLE!”

  • 2009 – David Carradine, American actor (b. 1936)
  • 2016 – Muhammad Ali, American boxer (b. 1942)

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili has all of a sudden gone to the radical Left:

Hili: I’m occupying the garden.
A: I don’t understand.
Hili: Wall Street is far away; you have to occupy whatever’s available.
(Photo: Paulina R.)
In Polish:
Hili: Okupuję ogród.
Ja: Nie rozumiem.
Hili: Wall Street daleko, trzeba okupować co się da.
(Foto: Paulina R.)

From Jesus of the Day:

From reader Pliny the in Between’s Far Corner Cafe, “for the Monty Python fans in the crowd”:

A pandemic meme from Bruce Thiel:

Uh oh, Titania may be in Twitter jail, though you can still see her tweets by clicking on the “view profile” button.

From reader Ken, who notes,” Those hard-ass never-Trumpers in the Lincoln Project have put out another tough teevee ad, this one about Trump supporters and their infatuation with Confederate flag.”

And another from Ken, who notes this as “Gang of dangerous street thugs, looking to take an MS-13 style machete to the US constitution.”

Tweets from Matthew. In the first one, an ant steals a diamond. But WHY?

You have to admit the likeness is amazing. But maybe it’s a PhotoShop job. . . .

About the title of this tweet Matthew says, “Me, neither.” And I’ll second that! Tamanduas are a genus of arboreal anteater found in Central and South America. Check out that tongue.


An Anolis lizard flashing its stripey dewlap:



  1. Historian
    Posted June 3, 2020 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    The Lincoln Project uses the figure of 620,000 Civil War deaths. This figure has been used for many decades. But, now, due to the research of a demographic historian, the figure is significantly higher – anywhere from 650,000 to 850,000. We will never have a precise figure, but now we know that the Civil War was even more horrific than we previously thought.

  2. Ken Kukec
    Posted June 3, 2020 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    1965 – The launch of Gemini 4, the first multi-day space mission by a NASA crew.

    Well, between this and your rhetorical question in News of the Day “can this be the Apocalypse?”, there’s just one tune juste — the one from 1965 with the line, “you may leave here for four days in space, but when you return it’s the same old place”:

    • Jim batterson
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

      Wow. I had forgotten those lyrics. Thanks ken.

  3. Posted June 3, 2020 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    Ever since the change-over with WordPress, Safari still makes me fill in my credentials for commenting. Although Firefox automatically loads my WordPress credentials like before. Does any one know how to ‘encourage’ Safari to do the same? It used to.

    • GBJames
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 8:58 am | Permalink

      Go to Safari Preferences/Privacy and uncheck the “Prevent cross-site tracking” box.

      This will solve your problem although it allows a form of web tracking that you may not like.

  4. Posted June 3, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    The Duke (King Edward VII)

    Edward VIII actually.

    Whether he would have been a lousy king or not I don’t know. It’s a long time since any British monarch was required to do anything except be a figurehead.

    I think he was a bit too sympathetic to the Nazi regime in Germany, but whether that would have made a difference if he had been King in the late 30’s is just speculation.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      The Brit monarch can still be a force of suasion, no? As when Bertie bucked up the lower classes during the Blitz? (BTW, I thought it was an inspired bit of casting when Ben Mendelsohn, the Aussie actor best known for his roles as reprobates, played George VI in Darkest Hour.)

      • Posted June 3, 2020 at 10:42 am | Permalink

        Yes, but I think they are limited to general morale boosting. It would be unimaginable for the monarch now to express favour for a particular foreign country. It probably was back then too.

  5. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted June 3, 2020 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    Rick Wilson was immediately deluged with death threats after the latest Lincoln Project ad. He laughs it off in his Daily Beast podcast but he has real guts, and the humility to concede that he made fundamental mistakes in his previous life as a Republican hatchet man.

    He’s also really fucking funny. There are a lot of improvised insults on the podcast, it’s one of his specialties, trolling the Trumpites, but one about famously dim Steve Mnuchin forever being ‘the kid who spent his time staring at dust motes as they floated down from the classroom ceiling’ made me laugh out loud.

    The Lincoln Project is ruddy brilliant. They specifically created an ad aimed at getting Trump’s campaign man Brad Parscale fired and within a week he’d been…’reassigned’. Rick is unbound by the limp rules of engagement that we liberals seem to have collectively signed up to(which frustrates the hell out of me) and is therefore an absolutely ferocious opponent for Trump.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      The way the Lincoln Project has gone absolutely balls-to-the-wall — including against the Stars & Bars in the ad above — suggests to me there will be no easy post-Trump reconciliation between the warring factions of the Republican Party.

      Think the Resistance vs. the Collaborationists in 1945 France. 🙂

      • GBJames
        Posted June 3, 2020 at 9:18 am | Permalink

        Agreed. And this one of the few good things in life these days.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted June 3, 2020 at 10:07 am | Permalink

          Should be interesting to see what arises, phoenix-like, from the GOP’s ashes. So long as this nation remains a two-party state, we need a center-right party — you know, old-school, small “c” conservatism: limited government, low taxes, free trade, market-based solution, strong national defense, personal responsibility, yada yada, the whole works.

          Plus, who else are guys like us gonna have to bitch and scream … er, I mean, debate and remonstrate with? 🙂

    • uommibatto
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      I can recommend Rick Wilson’s very funny book “Everything Trump Touches Dies” from a few years ago. Maybe it will already sound out of date, but nothing has happened recently to make the book’s title inaccurate, either.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted June 3, 2020 at 11:28 am | Permalink

        Wilson’s also recently written something of a sequel, Running Against the Devil.

      • Saul Sorrell-Till
        Posted June 3, 2020 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

        Yes, it’s a good book, although I think his metier is the spoken word and the well-timed TV-ad-stiletto-to-the-guts.

  6. Posted June 3, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

    I’m pretty sure the Tamandua was mentioned in Ze Frank’s True Facts video, “Pangolin Posse.” There was certainly a very similar critter in there.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

      Robert, I’m pretty sure that (resemblance Tamandua and Pangolin) is a nice example of convergence.

  7. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted June 3, 2020 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Pliny,Is that sword brandisher a St John’s knight Hospitaller? (I’m not sure since can’t identify any kind of crosses. The knights Hospitaller mostly wore a white Maltese cross on a black background, but I suspect that was not the original one).

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted June 3, 2020 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

      Sorry, I was searching way too far: I missed the Monthy Python connection, shame on me!

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