Welcome to a Hump Day: Wednesday, July 22, 2020: National Penuche Day. What is penuche, you ask? Wikipedia explains:
Penuche (Italian: panucci) is a fudge-like candy made from brown sugar, butter, and milk, using no flavorings except for vanilla. Penuche often has a tannish color, and is lighter than regular fudge. It is formed by the caramelization of brown sugar; thus, its flavor is said to be reminiscent of caramel.
Here’s some with nuts, the best kind, and it’s a pleasant change from its phylogenetic relative, fudge:
It’s also Mango Day, National Hot Dog Day, and Pi Approximation Day, since the date (written European style) is 22/7 (3.14285), which approximates π (3.14159). It’s always struck me as strange that pi is an irrational number, as I don’t understand why it has to be that way. It could, for example, have been simply 3.14. Readers can enlighten us if there’s some proof that pi must be irrational. After all, it shows up in any number of non-geometric equations.
News of the Day: In yet another incident of gun violence that’s plagued our city, 14 people were shot outside a Chicago funeral home yesterday evening. Their condition is unknown, but this is one of the worst mass shootings we’ve had in the past few years.
Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood, has been canceled because she favored eugenics: her name has been removed from a Manhattan Clinic. No matter that her views had no weight in American policy, they have been cited as causing “harm” to people of color. A Planned Parenthood official said this:
“The Sanger legacy unchecked or unmet with a reckoning has been weaponized against women of color, and has effectively hampered our ability to be in a right relationship with women of color,” McGee said. “And we have left women of color to grapple with the totality of Sanger’s legacy.”
This is not even wrong. No woman of color abjures going to Planned Parenthood because of Margaret Sanger’s views.
Should Aristotle be canceled because he not only condoned slavery but defended it? A philosopher at my school, writing in the New York Times says “no”, because that defense was just “messaging context,” because he was a man of his times, writing his own society into his ethical theories. Sadly, though I agree with her conclusion, her reasoning is dubious, for it could apply to everyone who was “canceled”, including Confederate officials and generals.
“President” Trump resumed his pandemic briefings yesterday, but not with any health official—just by his lonesome self. At least he admitted that things will get worse before they get better, and called for mask wearing, even though he almost never wears masks. I didn’t watch the lying, narcissistic s.o.b.
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 142,031, an increase of about 1200 deaths over yesterday’s report. The world death toll now stands at 616,402, an increase of about 7000 deaths from yesterday.
Stuff that happened on July 22 includes:
- 1298 – Wars of Scottish Independence: Battle of Falkirk: King Edward I of England and his longbowmen defeat William Wallace and his Scottish schiltrons outside the town of Falkirk.
Here’s a re-enactment of that battle from the movie Braveheart. FREEEDOM!
- 1598 – William Shakespeare’s play, The Merchant of Venice, is entered on the Stationers’ Register. By decree of Queen Elizabeth, the Stationers’ Register licensed printed works, giving the Crown tight control over all published material.
Here’s that entry. If you can make it out you’re better than I:
- 1793 – Alexander Mackenzie reaches the Pacific Ocean becoming the first recorded human to complete a transcontinental crossing of North America.
- 1893 – Katharine Lee Bates writes “America the Beautiful” after admiring the view from the top of Pikes Peak near Colorado Springs, Colorado.
- 1933 – Aviator Wiley Post returns to Floyd Bennett Field in New York City, completing the first solo flight around the world in seven days, 18 hours and 49 minutes.
Here’s Jane Pauley recounting Post’s solo feat. His plane, the Winnie Mae, is on view at the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum, now in northern Virginia.
- 1937 – New Deal: The United States Senate votes down President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s proposal to add more justices to the Supreme Court of the United States.
- 1942 – Grossaktion Warsaw: The systematic deportation of Jews from the Warsaw ghetto begins.
- 1990 – Greg LeMond, an American road racing cyclist, wins his third Tour de France after leading the majority of the race. It was LeMond’s second consecutive Tour de France victory.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1849 – Emma Lazarus, American poet and educator (d. 1887)
- 1882 – Edward Hopper, American painter and etcher (d. 1967)
Here’s one of Hopper’s few paintings with cats: “Cat Study” (1941).
- 1888 – Selman Waksman, Jewish-American biochemist and microbiologist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1973)
Waksman was born in Ukraine to Jewish parents and came to America in 1922. Why is he identified as “Jewish-American”? Are other non-Jewish immigrants identified as “Christian-American”?
- 1923 – Bob Dole, American soldier, lawyer, and politician
- 1940 – Alex Trebek, Canadian-American game show host and producer
- 1992 – Selena Gomez, American singer and actress
Those who “passed” on July 22 include:
- 1916 – James Whitcomb Riley, American poet and author (b. 1849)
- 1934 – John Dillinger, American gangster (b. 1903)
Dillinger, fingered by Anna Cumpănaș, the “Lady in Red,” was gunned down by the FBI after going to the Biograph Theater in Chicago (the lady in red was an accomplice of the law). Here’s a photo from Wikipedia labeled “The crowd at Chicago’s Biograph Theater on July 22, 1934, shortly after Dillinger was killed there by FBI agents.”
- 1969 – Judy Garland, American actress, singer, dancer, and vaudevillian (b. 1922)
- 2004 – Illinois Jacquet, American saxophonist and composer (b. 1922)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is miffed that Szaron is eating from her bowl. Andzej response with a social-justice answer, implying that Szaron is a minoritized cat:
Hili: Isn’t he too insolent? After all, this is my bowl.A: Maybe he decided that you are abusing your white-paw privilege.
Hili: Czy on aby nie jest bezczelny? Przecież to moja miseczka!Ja: Może uznał, że nadużywasz przywileju kota z białymi łapkami?
From the Grammarly blog. This could be me!
A meme from Bruce:
I tweeted again about the world’s highest mammal (it used to be Hunter Thompson):
A yellow-rumped, leaf-eared mouse was found at the top of a Chilean volcano, living at 6205 meters (20,400 feet) making it the highest-altitude mammal known. https://t.co/XKTmuKO6lb, original paper: https://t.co/jN2rKsBhOz pic.twitter.com/Tvse7vxpxu
— Jerry Coyne (@Evolutionistrue) July 21, 2020
From Titania. The AP’s rationale for printing “Black” and “white”, referring to racial groups, is completely bogus; read for yourself. More on this later today:
In order to promote racial harmony, the Associated Press has issued new guidelines to journalists to use uppercase “B” for “Black” and lowercase “w” for “white”.
Other acceptable alternatives for “white” include:
• dumb cracka muthaf*ckas pic.twitter.com/FKQ2uxkheL
— Titania McGrath (@TitaniaMcGrath) July 21, 2020
A tweet retweeted by Ziya Tong:
This 3D face covering by Japanese artist Takahiro Shibata makes it looks like you’re wearing half a bowl of ramen on your face. https://t.co/ANUdqO0xYE
— My Modern Met (@mymodernmet) July 19, 2020
Tweets from Matthew. Dr. Johnson’s love for his cat Hodge is well known.
Boswell on Dr Johnson’s love for Hodge, his cat, is one of my favourite ever passages.
“But Hodge shan’t be shot: no, no, Hodge shall not be shot.” pic.twitter.com/JSs4b6IOMb
— Tom Holland (@holland_tom) July 21, 2020
This is a good question. Another answer is “God works in mysterious ways.”
Why are octopi (octopodes…) so darn smart?
Unlike humans, corvids, and cetaceans, they don't live socially and they don't live a long time (slow life) so…why??
— Adam J Calhoun (@neuroecology) July 21, 2020
Read the thread, which is good. Farrar runs the Wellcome Trust:
It is discomforting that most people still underestimate true impact of #Covid19. Immediate effects are so shocking that we are all caught up in them.But longer-term implications may be more profound still. If we are not careful, they will shake the world order to its foundations
— Jeremy Farrar (@JeremyFarrar) July 21, 2020
This is SHOCKING!
🔞 WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT. An uneasy truce is shattered by a sickening act of violence.
📹: Imgur user AjKaramba pic.twitter.com/Gj22w5JfOg
— Paul Bronks (@SlenderSherbet) July 21, 2020
Be sure to click on the tweet that Matthew is retweeting here:
This is an excellent compilation of Aikiyoshi's greatest hits, a long with a nice explanation of the role of Gabor patches (no, me neither) in how they work. https://t.co/bvZ9ScR5VQ
— Matthew Cobb (@matthewcobb) July 21, 2020