Monday: Hili dialogue

Good morning on Monday, July 6, 2020, a back-to-work day and National Fried Chicken Day. I love fried chicken; please give me some now! But it’s a mess to make at home, what with oil sputtering everywhere, and I haven’t been to Harold’s, our local pullet emporium, for about six months. It’s also International Kissing Day, but only if the person you’re kissing is Covid-19 negative.

Here’s the best fried chicken in the land, at Stroud’s in Fairway, Kansas:

News of the day: Going over to the New York Times this morning to see the latest news, I was greatly put off by the even-woker-than-usual content of the paper—especially the op-eds. Here’s a sample of the madness. The Cancel Culture is in full swing. And of course the Washington Monument should go down, too, along with re-naming everything containing “Washington” and “Jefferson.”

I truly don’t know how much longer I can stand reading the Times (the Washington Post, to which I recently subscribed, is also obnoxiously woke), but what’s the alternative?

Moving on, the Washington Post reports that, for the 27th day in a row, “The rolling seven-day average for daily new cases in the United States reached a high for the 27th day in a row, climbing past 48,000 on Sunday.” And the news is even grimmer, with one expert saying that it looks like we’ve made little progress in stamping out the virus:

“We’re right back where we were at the peak of the epidemic during the New York outbreak,” former Food and Drug Administration commissioner Scott Gottlieb said on “Face the Nation” on CBS. “The difference now is that we really had one epicenter of spread when New York was going through its hardship, now we really have four major epicenters of spread: Los Angeles, cities in Texas, cities in Florida, and Arizona. And Florida looks to be in the worst shape.”

Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 129,938, an increase of about 250 deaths over yesterday’s report.  The world death toll now stands at 534,096, an increase of about 4200 from yesterday.

I’m famous! Nothing like a retweet by Steve Pinker to bump up the traffic on WEIT. More important, Pinker truly deserved a hearty defense against the Woke. (I’m allowed a bit of braggadocio now and then.)

Stuff that happened on July 6 includes:

  • 1348 – Pope Clement VI issues a papal bull protecting the Jews accused of having caused the Black Death.
  • 1535 – Sir Thomas More is executed for treason against King Henry VIII of England.
  • 1854 – In Jackson, Michigan, the first convention of the United States Republican Party is held.
  • 1892 – Three thousand eight hundred striking steelworkers engage in a day-long battle with Pinkerton agents during the Homestead Strike, leaving ten dead and dozens wounded.
  • 1917 – World War IArabian troops led by T. E. Lawrence (“Lawrence of Arabia”) and Auda ibu Tayi capture Aqaba from the Ottoman Empire during the Arab Revolt.

Auda! He is a river to his people! Played by Anthony Quinn in the movie, here’s the brave Auda for real:

I’ve visited this annex (it’s hard now, with tickets in huge demand), but if you’re in Amsterdam, plan and order tickets well in advance to see the house and annex. Here’s a 4.5-minute video tour of the hiding place:

This was long before Rosa Parks. Although Robinson was acquitted, it was pretty much the end of his Army career, and he wasn’t allowed to see action overseas (which was good for baseball).

  • 1957 – Althea Gibson wins the Wimbledon championships, becoming the first black athlete to do so.
  • 1957 – John Lennon and Paul McCartney meet for the first time, as teenagers at Woolton Fete, three years before forming the Beatles. 

Lennon was in the Quarry Men “skiffle group” and was introduced to Paul that evening, who sang a few songs with the group. The rest is history.

  • 2003 – The 70-metre Yevpatoria Planetary Radar sends a METI message (Cosmic Call 2) to five stars: Hip 4872, HD 245409, 55 Cancri (HD 75732), HD 10307 and 47 Ursae Majoris (HD 95128). The messages will arrive to these stars in 2036, 2040, 2044, and 2049, respectively.

Notables born on this day include:

  • 1747 – John Paul Jones, Scottish-American captain (d. 1792)
  • 1887 – Marc Chagall, Belarusian-French painter and poet (d. 1985)

Here’s Chagall’s “A Cat Transformed Into a Woman“, ca. 1928-1931:

The Cat Transformed into a Woman c.1928-31-1947 Marc Chagall 1887-1985 Presented by Lady Clerk 1947 http://www.tate.org.uk/art/work/N05759

  • 1907 – Frida Kahlo, Mexican painter and educator (d. 1954)

Kahlo’s “Self Portrait” from 1940:

  • 1912 – Heinrich Harrer, Austrian geographer and mountaineer (d. 2006)

Do read Harrer’s great book Seven Years in Tibet. 

  • 1921 – Nancy Reagan, American actress and activist, 42nd First Lady of the United States (d. 2016)
  • 1925 – Bill Haley, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (Bill Haley & His Comets) (d. 1981)
  • 1946 – George W. Bush, American businessman and politician, 43rd President of the United States
  • 1946 – Peter Singer, Australian philosopher and academic
  • 1946 – Sylvester Stallone, American actor, director, and screenwriter

Those who arrived at their terminus on July 6 include:

  • 1415 – Jan Hus, Czech priest, philosopher, and reformer (b. 1369)
  • 1916 – Odilon Redon, French painter and illustrator (b. 1840)

and here is “Bazon, the Artist’s Cat” by Redon:

 

  • 1959 – George Grosz, German painter and illustrator (b. 1893)
  • 1971 – Louis Armstrong, American singer and trumpet player (b. 1901)
  • 1998 – Roy Rogers, American cowboy, actor, and singer (b. 1911)
  • 2009 – Robert McNamara, American businessman and politician, 8th United States Secretary of Defense (b. 1916)
  • 2019 – João Gilberto, Brazilian singer-songwriter and guitarist, pioneer of bossa nova music style (b. 1931)

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili’s shirking her editorial duties (or perhaps Andrzej wanted to give her a tummy rub).

A: Do you have a moment?
Hili: No, I’m very busy now.
In Polish:
Ja: Masz chwilę czasu?
Hili: Nie, jestem teraz bardzo zajęta.

And in nearby Wloclawek, Leon and Mietek snuggle up. A basket o’ tabbies!

But Mietek wins!

From Charles, a Mike Lukovich cartoon:

. . . and a New Yorker cartoon from Merilee: the simple joys of quarantine:

From Jesus of the Day:

Reader Barry sent a tweet from Matthew, which is technically correct though “living fossils” are generally taken to mean “a living species which looks almost exactly like an ancient species”. Anyway, it’s a crinoid—an echinoderm.

A tweet from Gethyn. What is this thing? Where can I get one?

From Julian; wouldn’t it be lovely to see this front page?

From Simon, a most excellent sand sculpture:

Tweets from Matthew. First, one of his beloved optical illusions:

Bible power (not!):

A biological tweet referring to a Dean Martin song:

I don’t know what this dad is on about, but he really wants his daughter to wear pants!

61 Comments

  1. enl
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 6:47 am | Permalink

    “What is this thing? Where can I get one?”

    Homopolar motor. you make one using a AA cell, rare earth magnet, and a few paper clips.

    Lots of videos and guides on line, such as (first hit, no endorsement) https://www.instructables.com/id/Easy-DIY-Homopolar-Motor/

  2. Randall Schenck
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    Learn something everyday at WEIT. I did not know the best fried chicken was right here is Kansas. Just about 200 mile east but I will try to get there one of these days.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      Crikey, Kansas probably has the top four or five fried chicken places in the entire U.S.!
      You’ve missed out!

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:11 am | Permalink

        Maybe so. Don’t tell me one of them is in Wichita? I actually lived closer to Kansas City when I lived in Iowa but it was still 130 miles away. The closer city then was Omaha.

        • Randall Schenck
          Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

          So I am the stupid one, there is one in Wichita. However it is closed right now as one of their employees was in contact with someone and they are testing everyone. I looked at the comments and some are very good and some not so good. When the place opens again maybe I’ll get a take-out.

      • Randy Bessinger
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:14 am | Permalink

        Very true!

  3. C.
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    For anyone here who is offended by the behavior of past US presidents that fails to meet modern CRT ideology, I will happily take your pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, as well as paper money $1’s, $5’s, $10’s, $20’s, $50’s, $100’s, oh, and I’ll take the $2 bills and half dollar coins your grandparents always gave you and I will destroy these racist images by putting them into my bank account and converting them into anti-racist binary currency to be spent via my debit card.

    • C.
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:15 am | Permalink

      I just realized that binary digits are probably transphobic so I guess we will have to give up all forms of currency unless we want to be as evil as JK Rowling. Well, we can always barter… unless digital currency can be stored as hexadecimal? That’s above my pay grade and beyond my computer knowledge…

    • EdwardM
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      Nit pick. The $10 and $100 bills don’t have presidents on them.

      • C.
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        Fair point but I’m sure they’re still offensive and I’m only trying to help. 😬.

        I’ll also accept stimulus checks since they have tRump’s signature on them.

        Actually, although I’m being a smart ass (or dumb ass) I am willing to bet redesigning our money will be a demand, if it isn’t already. Not that I would be against it so long as Washington and Lincoln aren’t replaced by AOC and Linda Sarsour.

  4. flexilis
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    Heinrich Harrer also wrote one of the classics of mountaineering literature, The White Spider, about the first ascent of the Eiger north face, the “Death Wall”.

  5. peter alexander
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:21 am | Permalink

    You deserve the traffic, Jerry.

    I’m not blowin’ smoke where the sun don’t shine, just acknowledging what readers of this site know: the irrepressible reach for truth (sure, it’s becoming a quaint notion) is flat-out astonishing.

    The quality is never dimmed by the quantity. I don’t know how you do it.

    • EdwardM
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Seconded.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

      Related to Pinker – I watched the Netflix short series on Jeffrey Epstein, a truly despicable person. There were short clips of Epstein schmoozing with top scientists with Pinker being among them. However, there was no mention of any scientists names.

  6. Historian
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Cancel culture swings both ways. For almost their entire presence in the land that became or currently is the United States of America, African-Americans were “canceled” out of their history. First as slaves, then as people living under Jim Crow and segregation, they were viewed by the white majority as capable of nothing more than working the fields or being housekeepers or ditch diggers. Their culture and the chance to enrich it was invisible or denied by the majority. For example, Woodrow Wilson supported the segregation of the previously integrated federal civil service.

    This effort to cancel African-American culture was largely successful for decades. It dwarfed by many times the effort to dishonor the people who caused this. So, I sympathize with Lucian K. Truscott IV’s call for the removal of the Jefferson memorial. By the way, in addition to being a direct descendant of Jefferson, he is a West Point graduate. His grandfather was an important U.S. general in World War II. He is far from the typical young member of a mob tearing down statues. He joins other descendants of slaveholders calling for the removal of their monuments.

    I think that Truscott has done a mental calculus and determined that Jefferson’s life as a slaveholder outweighed significantly the good things that he did. Other people will reach different conclusions. Regarding Jefferson specifically, I think he is vastly overrated as an American hero. As many other slaveholding founders, he spoke and wrote often about liberty and freedom and the evils of slavery, but he was almost all talk and very little action in ending human bondage.

    In the unlikely event that a consensus should emerge to dishonor the slaveholding founders by removing their memorials, practical factors would make this task virtually impossible because of the thousands of cities, towns, other government entities, streets, buildings, and other structures that would have to be renamed. But, certainly, it is not impossible to educate students with a history of the nation that demythologizes the fairy tale history taught for centuries. This would be the exact opposite of erasing history. Atheists strive to demythologize the fairy tales of the Bible. The same should be done for American history.

    For Wilson and the civil service, see this article:

    https://newrepublic.com/article/158356/woodrow-wilson-racism-princeton-university

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      I am sure that rubbing out history to satisfy your own cultural morality is a never ending struggle. I would prefer that people actually read about the real Thomas Jefferson or Washington and any other presidents of the past. Ripping down the monuments does not teach anything and does not raise the intelligence one bit.

      • boudiccadylis
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 8:53 am | Permalink

        I am in discussion with my neighbor regarding this very issue. I agree with you completely. And some of that statuary has artistic significance as well as political, if it is political. It appears to me to equate to the Chinese going to Tibet and destroying all those buddas. That was an artistic crime regardless of the religious conotation.
        Supposedly we humans have the “what” to be able to recognize the difference.
        Now don’t go on about the idiots, we all really know about them.
        This is presented via the RABBIT.

        • Randall Schenck
          Posted July 6, 2020 at 9:20 am | Permalink

          Please don’t get the idea I am of the same opinion concerning the confederate statues. I would not care a bit if they removed all of them.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      Yeah, I read the NYT piece by Truscott, who’s an interesting character in his own right. While at West Point, he was part of the movement to end mandatory chapel services. As a cadet he began sending right-wing letters to the editor of the Village Voice, which decided to publish them and eventually made him a correspondent. He wrote pieces about hippie Christmas parties and the Stonewall Uprising.

      He got in hot water with the Army, while stationed at Fort Carson, for writing about heroin addiction among GIs returning from Vietnam. This led to his resigning his commission and being cashiered out of the Army.

      The NYT editorial board may have published Truscott’s piece about replacing the memorial for his ancestor Thomas Jefferson because it aligned with its own increasingly woke agenda. But Truscott himself does appear to be so much a woke warrior as an old-fashioned gadfly contrarian.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      I go with Douthat’s Dictum: a memorial should stay up if WHAT IT COMMEMORATES is admirable, not whether a calculus of someone’s whole life is “good” versus “bad”, which is far harder to judge.

      I presume you agree that the Washington Monument should come down, and that Washington D.C. should be renamed.

      • Historian
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:11 am | Permalink

        “I presume you agree that the Washington Monument should come down, and that Washington D.C. should be renamed.”

        My view of the Founders is not just based on the fact that many were slaveholders, but also on the nature of the American Revolution. There is one interpretation of the Revolution that holds a band of noble patriots, lovers of liberty, initiated it out of a disinterested sense that British tyranny had to be resisted. Another interpretation is that an oligarchic colonial elite saw that their political power, wealth and social status were being undermined by the British crown in the aftermath of the French and Indian War. This was intolerable to the elite, and, thus, they initiated the Revolution. I tend to support the latter view.

        For these reasons, in theory, I would support the name changes. I do not hero worship the Founders. Even those who were not slaveholders, most could legitimately be called aristocrats, hardly democrats in the sense we use the term today. But, practically speaking, this will not happen and it is foolish to push an effort that would end in futility. I would be content if all Confederate memorials would be extricated.

        • EdwardM
          Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:52 am | Permalink

          So, correct me if I’m wrong, to you the rubric used to determine monument worthiness isn’t “what they did” but “why they did it”?

          You didn’t say if you would support tearing down the Washington monument, even if it would be foolish to try.

          • Historian
            Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

            Due to the nature of its construction, the Washington Monument could be renamed.

            By the way, the question of whether or not to get rid of memorials to slaveholding Founders really boils down to one question: just how bad do you think slavery was? My impression (perhaps I’m wrong) is that the vast majority of white people have little understanding how bad it really was. With a little more education, perhaps minds would be changed.

            • EdwardM
              Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

              I disagree (and so do you, if you read back at your earlier comments). The question to honor Founders doesn’t boil down to “was slavery bad” but “did what* they do outweigh their support for slavery”.

              *Or, in your case, “why they did it”. If your thesis be correct (and I do think it is, though I’m no student of the times) that would mean maybe we should erase many of them from our statuary. No heroes, and all that.

              • Historian
                Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

                I’ll be clearer. My position is that their slaveholding outweighed any of the combined good things they did by a large degree because of the nature of the way the institution operated in America. Again, you may think differently.

            • Saul Sorrell-Till
              Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

              At their most interesting the places we live in are palimpsests. I can wander through London and see the earliest buildings peeking out from underneath subsequent additions, I can set off from the centre and watch history unfurl as I get closer and closer to the modern outskirts. There’s nothing like the feel of a city that’s grown like that, that’s kept its history intact by literally building on it.
              Some cities are just mausoleums – they’re beautiful, but they’re dead. You might as well be wandering around a museum. I’m not talking about that kind of place, where history is fetishised and nothing can be built within a hundred yards of anything from the 19th century. I’m talking about the seething, overspilling, improvisational sprawl of great cities, where history is added to and improved without demolishing it.

              So why not commission modern artists to juxtapose or even supplement the existing statues with their own designs? Give modern artists with modern sensibilities the chance to contextualise them.

              Imagine a confederate statue…with the addition of a white flag in its hands. Or a slave owner’s statue…but re-positioned on a throne of bones. I admit these ideas aren’t subtle, but commission someone with wit and imagination and nuance and there’s a lot that could be done. There’s a way to keep statues, contextualise them and send even more of an effective message than just destroying them.

        • Randall Schenck
          Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

          I find that belief and the reasoning to be somewhat odd. However, best be left for another time. If you were looking for democrats (in today’s sense) you would never have found it in colonial America. The term democracy was not even used back then and would have been a dirty word to most. In the truest sense it is still a dirty word, that is why we have a Republic.

        • Paul
          Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

          I prefer to see statues as historical ‘waypoints’ on the way to where we are now.

          They represent significant people/events and can teach us about the past and those who shaped it.

          I wonder if one day people will consider us monsters for eating animals!

          • EdwardM
            Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

            There are some today see it that way. They’re idiots.

            • Saul Sorrell-Till
              Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

              Are they?

              I’m meat-eater but I definitely think future generations will look back at the way we treat animals and their jaws will drop. I think it’s the single, most obvious moral blindspot we have.

              In the future I’d imagine they’ll be able to cheaply synthesise perfectly tasty meat without harming animals(we can already lab-grow steaks and patties from microscopic amounts of cow, it’s just absurdly expensive), and they’ll look back in horror at the lies we told ourselves to justify slaughtering millions upon millions of appallingly treated creatures simply because we didn’t like the thought of vegetarianism.

              • EdwardM
                Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

                Monsters, Saul? Eating animals, which we evolved to do, makes us “monsters”? My little five year old niece enjoying a chicken sammy is no monster, though at times my sister might thinks she is.

                For sure we should be better stewards of the planet and that means reducing meat consumption, but we are not monsters for eating them.

                People do think that today. They are idiots.

              • Saul Sorrell-Till
                Posted July 6, 2020 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

                @Edward – for some reason my reply went to the bottom of the thread.

      • Posted July 6, 2020 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

        I can imagine the conversation at the headquarters of a certain American football team:

        “There’s good news and there’s bad news”

        “What’s the good news?”

        “Nobody’s complaining about the word ‘Redskins’ anymore.”

        “What’s the bad news?”

        “well….”

    • revelator60
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      “This effort to cancel African-American culture was largely successful for decades…So, I sympathize with Lucian K. Truscott IV’s call for the removal of the Jefferson memorial.”

      So two wrongs make a right?

      It is shameful that Jefferson did not extricate himself from the slave-owning way of life he was born into. But his achievements as a public figure did more to undermine slavery than his sins as a slaveholder did to promote it. Jefferson was a hypocrite, but the morally consistent position for someone in his shoes would have been the propagation of slavery. So thank goodness for the hypocrisy of the man who write the Declaration of Independence.

      As for your interpretation of the Revolution, it just seems like the flip-side of the old view of the Founders as wise demigods—now they’re nothing but greedy hypocrites who lacked the grace to let the British run America as they pleased. I hope the truth about them is them is more between mindless adulation and cynical denunciation.

      • Historian
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

        “But his achievements as a public figure did more to undermine slavery than his sins as a slaveholder did to promote it.”

        Would you care to explain this?

        It is interesting that few people point out that the colonists were traitors to the British Crown. If they had lost the war that’s all they would be remembered for. Luckily for them, they won.

  7. busterggi
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    Skiffle is underappreciated though I lean more towards the Hoosier Hot Shots.

  8. rickflick
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    The feather star is something you’d think was designed on the back of an envelope at lunch time. Something like it may inhabit the oceans of Europa.

    • boudiccadylis
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

      Or Atlantis.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      Yeah, it would take something like a feather star fish or a Keith Richards to survive down below all that ice.

      • Michael Coon
        Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

        Ah HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

  9. DrBrydon
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    I miss Harold’s! I had a flash back just the other day after my wife had something with hot sauce on it. I walked in, and for just a second or two, it smelled like Harold’s hot sauce. Made me homesick. I had a birthday in college where we got a tray of wings from Harold’s, which came with a gallon(!) of hot sauce.

  10. Posted July 6, 2020 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    That circles illusion is amazing!

  11. Dee
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    A little off topic, but after using it for a bit, I really like the new phone format. Thanks for the remodel.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:40 am | Permalink

      Don’t thank me; thank the anonymous tech expert who offered his/her help in tweaking the website. And there are more improvements to come.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      I did note one thing – if the comments are nested to the max, the latter ones come out as one or two character sentences. This is rectified if I turn my phone 90 degrees.

  12. Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    “2003 – The 70-metre Yevpatoria Planetary Radar sends a METI message (Cosmic Call 2) to five stars: Hip 4872, HD 245409, 55 Cancri (HD 75732), HD 10307 and 47 Ursae Majoris (HD 95128). The messages will arrive to these stars in 2036, 2040, 2044, and 2049, respectively.”

    So the aliens will start arriving after 2036, assuming they have warp drive or can make use of wormholes or equivalent. If they can only go warp 1.0 (lightspeed), then it’s 2069 at the earliest. I suspect most WEIT readers will be gone by then so we’ll miss the event.

    • rickflick
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      “I suspect most WEIT readers will be gone by then so we’ll miss the event”
      Not if you subscribe to Kurzweil’s thesis. 🤣

  13. Posted July 6, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    So why not treat yourself to some takeout fried chicken? In fact, that sounds pretty good to me. I have a Japanese fried chicken place that I assume does takeout. Perhaps that will be my lunch destination.

  14. Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    I can’t believe the fake New York Times front page didn’t have an article about how Biden’s inauguration crowd was the biggest ever. Barring COVID-19 concerns, I plan to be there to help make it so. There are some very funny headlines below the fold. A good job.

  15. Posted July 6, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Those fried legs were looking amazing. I am seriously drooling right now. Well keeping it aside, I love reading your blogs, they are super amazing. Keep posting.

  16. Hempenstein
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    Sorry but I must inform you that my mother made the best fried chicken. And this is not a universal endorsement of everything she made. I never looked forward to her spaghetti, for instance, and the best part of her roast beef was the three sad little slices of onion on top.

    But the chicken was dredged in flour with poultry seasoning, seared, and then finished with some water in the pan so it wasn’t greasy in the least. The only time I ever had anything like it was at Duranti’s Restaurant in Oakland, nestled in the basement of a high-rise apt bldg between U Pittsburgh and Carnegie-Mellon, where it was called Maryland Fried Chicken.

  17. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    Yes, ‘Monsters’ is a bit much. If someone called me that because I eat meat I’d probably tell them to fuck off.

    Nevertheless, I do think they’ll say that about us w/r/t this issue in a hundred years’ time. It’s just the way things work: morality in the future will change in ways that are impossible for us to identify with at this time. The rational part of my brain can see that we’ll appear monumentally callous to future generations…but the emotional part of me can’t really feel it. Burgers are just too nice.

    We evolved to do plenty of things that ain’t cool btw, that’s not an argument in favour of meat-eating.

    • Posted July 6, 2020 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      Morality is often driven by practicality. Show me a good tasting artificial burger and I promise I’ll be nicer to farm animals. (Actually, I haven’t tried any of the latest wave of fake meat so I shouldn’t be talking.)

      • Saul Sorrell-Till
        Posted July 7, 2020 at 9:24 am | Permalink

        Absolutely. I think the largest cause of intolerance and discrimination and moral laxness isn’t really hatred of the other, it’s just human laziness.

  18. Posted July 6, 2020 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Wrt the Chagall, I just noticed that the table is a mouse. A big one. In a chokehold by Catwoman.

  19. revelator60
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

    Regarding Jefferson, here is a great quote from Annette Gordon-Reed:

    “There is an important difference between helping to create the United States and trying to destroy it. Both Washington and Jefferson were critical to the formation of the country and to the shaping of it in its early years. …The Confederate statues were put up when they were put up [not just after the war but largely during periods of Civil Rights tension in the 20th century], to send a message about white supremacy, and to sentimentalize people who had actively fought to preserve the system of slavery. No one puts a monument up to Washington or Jefferson to promote slavery. The monuments go up because, without Washington, there likely would not have been an American nation. They put up monuments to T.J. because of the Declaration of Independence, which every group has used to make their place in American society. Or they go up because of T.J.’s views on separation of church and state and other values that we hold dear. I think on these two, Washington and Jefferson, in particular, you take the bitter with sweet. The main duty is not to hide the bitter parts.”

    Source:
    https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2020/06/historian-puts-the-push-to-remove-confederate-statues-in-context/

    • busterggi
      Posted July 6, 2020 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Excellent quote!

  20. Gail
    Posted July 6, 2020 at 11:42 pm | Permalink

    Another black dog today? Please be well, Dr.Jerry!!
    Thank you for all the duck care, wildlife photos, food for thought, and the photo of you with Tom Stoppard the other day! (Theatre nerd envy from an alumna of a production of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern…)

    • Posted July 8, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

      Yes, I noticed the black dog too – stay well Jerry. Perhaps another visit to the pond will help.

  21. Posted July 7, 2020 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    Thank you for your spirited defense of Prof. Pinker. What an outrage!

    He says he only recognizes one signatory on his “charge sheet” which makes sense: the authors made it REALLY broad didn’t they?

    Was it “anybody who thinks they’re a linguist” – meaning, really: “We’re burning a witch…. come if you like burning witches! Bring kindling.”

    And to do this to Prof Pinker, of ALL people. Has the world gone UTTERLY mad?
    They’ll come for you – or me – next y’know.

    D.A., J.D., NYC


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