Good morning on September 10, 2020: National Hot Dog Day. If you haven’t had one lately, the wurst is yet to come. It’s also TV Dinner Day, International Makeup Day, and World Suicide Prevention Day. Here are the suicide rates across the globe for males (top) and females (bottom), along with a key (suicides per 100,000 people). Note the sex difference in rates—the patriarchy is no picnic!
News of the day: Jessica Krug, the George Washington University professor who posed as Afro-Latina her entire academic career, has resigned her position. I still don’t have a take on this because, after all, although she was duplicitous, she also contributed through her teaching and her books, towards racial equality.
Am I getting the wrong impression, or has the New York Times’s science section gone seriously downhill. Carl Zimmer, always willing to dig a little deeper, doesn’t seem to write much there any more, and most of the posts are gee-whiz posts in the “Trilobites” column.
Norm sent in this video of a mini-Trump lipsynching to some Trump mimic; it’s The Preschool Apprentice.
According to CNN, Bob Woodward’s new book Rage contains a description of Trump’s knowledge about the coronavirus early on. It doesn’t paint a pretty picture of the President, but what does. However, you’d think he remembered that he said stuff like this before he started downplaying the thread of the virus. Remember when he said that it would likely disappear over the summer? From CNN:
President Donald Trump admitted he knew weeks before the first confirmed US coronavirus death that the virus was dangerous, airborne, highly contagious and “more deadly than even your strenuous flus,” and that he repeatedly played it down publicly, according to legendary journalist Bob Woodward in his new book “Rage.”
“This is deadly stuff,” Trump told Woodward on February 7.In a series of interviews with Woodward, Trump revealed that he had a surprising level of detail about the threat of the virus earlier than previously known. “Pretty amazing,” Trump told Woodward, adding that the coronavirus was maybe five times “more deadly” than the flu.
Trump’s admissions are in stark contrast to his frequent public comments at the time insisting that the virus was “going to disappear” and “all work out fine.”
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 190,714, an increase of about 1,200 deaths over yesterday’s report. The world death toll now stands at 903,262, an increase of about 6,300 deaths from yesterday.
Stuff that happened on September 10 includes:
- 1515 – Thomas Wolsey is invested as a Cardinal.
- 1608 – John Smith is elected council president of Jamestown, Virginia.
- 1776 – American Revolutionary War: Nathan Hale volunteers to spy for the Continental Army.
- 1846 – Elias Howe is granted a patent for the sewing machine.
Here’s that patent:
- 1939 – World War II: Canada declares war on Germany, joining the Allies: Poland, France, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia.
- 1960 – At the Summer Olympics in Rome, Abebe Bikila becomes the first sub-Saharan African to win a gold medal, winning the marathon in bare feet.
Sadly, Bikilia died at 41, four years after he was in a horrific car accident. But here’s his great barefoot victory (he was from Ethiopia). He won again four years later, but this time wore shoes.
- 1961 – In the Italian Grand Prix, a crash causes the death of German Formula One driver Wolfgang von Trips and 13 spectators who are hit by his Ferrari, the deadliest accident in F1 history.
Here’s a video of the crash, but don’t watch it if you’re sensitive:
- 1967 – The people of Gibraltar vote to remain a British dependency rather than becoming part of Spain.
- 1977 – Hamida Djandoubi, convicted of torture and murder, is the last person to be executed by guillotine in France.
- 2008 – The Large Hadron Collider at CERN, described as the biggest scientific experiment in history, is powered up in Geneva, Switzerland.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1659 – Henry Purcell, English organist and composer (d. 1695)
- 1864 – Carl Correns, German botanist and geneticist (d. 1933)
Correns was one of three people who rediscovered Gregor Mendel’s principles of heredity, publishing his paper (along with the other two) in 1900. Correns also discovered cytoplasmic inheritance. Here’s the Herr Professor:
- 1892 – Arthur Compton, American physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1962)
- 1896 – Adele Astaire, American actress and dancer (d. 1981)
- 1929 – Arnold Palmer, American golfer and businessman (d. 2016)
- 1933 – Karl Lagerfeld, German-French fashion designer and photographer (d. 2019)
- 1941 – Stephen Jay Gould, American paleontologist, biologist, and author (d. 2002)
the Wayback Machine has saved some photos and reminiscences of Gould by Jill Krementz. Here’s a photo of Gould taken on November 4, 1983, when he was battling mesothelioma, a cancer that’s nearly always fatal. If you knew Gould, you can see how extraordinarily thin he is here, certainly because of his treatments. Amazingly, Gould survived the cancer and lived another twenty years, dying of an unrelated cancer in 2002.
- 1945 – José Feliciano, Puerto Rican singer-songwriter and guitarist
- 1968 – Guy Ritchie, English director, producer, and screenwriter
- 1982 – Misty Copeland, American ballerina and author.
Here’s a short segment of Copeland in Swan Lake:
Those who went to glory on September 10 include:
- 1797 – Mary Wollstonecraft, English philosopher, historian, and novelist (b. 1759)
- 1935 – Huey Long, American lawyer and politician, 40th Governor of Louisiana (b. 1893)
- 1965 – Father Divine, American spiritual leader (b. 1880)
Here’s a short video of Father Divine and his flock (his given name is, as with many aspects of his early life, unknown):
- 1975 – George Paget Thomson, English physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1892)
- 2005 – Hermann Bondi, Austrian mathematician and cosmologist (b. 1919)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is, as Christopher Smart wrote, “rolling upon prank”:
A: What are you doing?Hili: I’m trying to get more comfortable.
Ja: Co ty robisz?Hili: Szukam, w której pozycji jest mi najwygodniej.
Some pictures of the BFFs Szaron and Kulka, one with Szaron grooming the kitten:
From Moments in Time, found by reader Ken. You can get yourself a Bible signed by that old atheist Donald Trump. Price: $37,500.
From Jesus of the Day:
Titania’s still banging on about “womxn”:
Cisgender menstruators claim that we are ERASING their identity by banning the word “women”.
Actually, “womxn” is SO much more empowering for womxn & gxrls & femxnists who wish to celebrate fxmxninity and dxsmxntle mxsxgyny so thxt xx xxsh xxxoux xx xxxax xxxck xxxx xxx xxxxx.✊
— Titania McGrath (@TitaniaMcGrath) September 8, 2020
Two tweets from Simon. This first one is sort of “viral”; it’s shows businessman whose office overlooked a mallard nest a floor above the ground, and who realized the babies would have to jump to the cement. When they hatched, he went down and caught nearly all the babies, scooping up the stragglers. And then he led them to water. What a fantastic guy! (There’s music here if you want the sound up.)
“Birds can fly. Reject”. pic.twitter.com/vN8BZ3HYeM
— Oded Rechavi 🦉 (@OdedRechavi) September 8, 2020
Well, I don’t have the spoons today to figure out exactly what is going on, but this is a cool experiment.
Tweets from Matthew. Loaches often hang on to vegetation underwater, but some species climb out on vegetation to bask for a while.
Ever wonder why River Loaches (#Balitoridae) like this #Homaloptera_bilineata are sometimes called lizardfish. Now you know.😀
📷: @Zach__Randall https://t.co/oipAM7tHcyhttps://t.co/yDjb1AZ7nR pic.twitter.com/LonyNkGC7c
— John P. Friel, Ph.D. (@friel) September 9, 2020
I hope this lovely little mutant seal will be all right. You can read more, and see more photos, at the link:
Rare blue-eyed ginger seal pup found by biologists @ Sea of Okhotsk rookery. Nicknamed ‘ugly duckling’ for its appearance, the pup will be monitored to ensure its not rejected by the others like it happened years ago to another seal called Nafanya (3d pic) https://t.co/Nf3W6gHacn pic.twitter.com/0Gtnf9b0PW
— The Siberian Times (@siberian_times) September 9, 2020
Spot the three (very small) beetles. The second photo gives the answer.
— 腹黒男爵 (@H6G5DvviYHh8pxa) September 9, 2020
Do you know what this is? Hint: count the legs.
When you spend all your time at the gym on your arms and forget all about your scrawny legs.
Philates sp. pic.twitter.com/KqdmOHqBYM
— Nicky Bay (@singaporemacro) September 9, 2020