Thursday: Hili dialogue

Good morning on Thursday, October 15, 2020, with the wind howling in Chicago.

It’s Red Wine Day, and I’ll be having a nice Aussie Coonawarra Cabernet tonight along with a crusty baguette, aged Tillamook Cheddar cheese, and homegrown tomatoes drizzled with organic virgin olive oil. It’s a simple dinner for a man too tired to cook, but one that’s hard to beat.

Other food holidays today include National Cheese Curd Day, National Mushroom Day, and National Roast Pheasant Day.  It’s also ‘I Love Lucy’ Day, celebrating the famous t.v. comedy that premiered on October 15, 1951, and ran for six years, as well as Global Handwashing Day (do it properly, according to this video), National Grouch Day, and World Students’ Day.

News of the Day: As you surely know by now, the Thursday debate is off, and in its place we’ll have two competing Town Hall events, held at exactly the same time. You can’t watch both at once unless you have two televisions or some fancy split-screen technology. But I won’t be watching either, for I voted today, putting my mail-in ballot in a secure box at the polling place. And of course I did NOT vote for the lunatic who’s President now. The only reason to watch any Town Hall is to see what lunacy Trump evinces tonight.

The Amy Coney Barrett hearings continued with her last day of questioning yesterday. Unless something completely unforseen happens, she’ll be confirmed before election day. Lindsey Graham was especially noxious, praising her fulsomely for her pro-life stand. The Senators bloviate more today about Barrett, and you can read what to expect here.

Science news: An article in the Guardian reports that tardigrades, or “water bears”, which can survive the toughest things experimenters can throw at eukaryotes—including deep freezing and the vacuum of outer space—now are also found to withstand potentially lethal doses of ultraviolet light, absorbing the radiation with a fluorescent pigment that re-emits the energy by glowing bright blue. Not all species of tardigrade (a group that occupies its own phylum) can do this, but here’s one of the resistant ones (h/t Jez):

The bad news is that Covid-19 is making a big-time comeback in both the U.S. and Europe. Dozens of U.S. states are showing a resurgence, with Wisconsin showing the most deaths per day since the pandemic started. France now has a 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew in Paris and other major cities, and Germany has placed additional restrictions on social gatherings and domestic travel.

Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 216,792, a big increase of about 1,000 deaths over yesterday’s report. The world death toll is 1,097,6003, an increase of about 6,000 over yesterday’s report.  

Stuff that happened on October 15 include:

  • 1582 – Adoption of the Gregorian calendar begins, eventually leading to near-universal adoption.
  • 1783 – The Montgolfier brothers’ hot air balloon makes the first human ascent, piloted by Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier.
  • 1793 – Queen Marie Antoinette of France is tried and convicted of treason.
  • 1815 – Napoleon begins his exile on Saint Helena in the South Atlantic Ocean.
  • 1878 – The Edison Electric Light Company begins operation.
  • 1888 – The “From Hell” letter allegedly sent by Jack the Ripper is received by investigators.

This letter purports to be from Jack the Ripper, and may actually be authentic. As Wikipedia notes, this “was a letter sent alongside half a preserved human kidney to the chairman of the Whitechapel Vigilance CommitteeGeorge Lusk, in October 1888.

I’ve put a photo below (the original has been lost) and then a transcript:

From hell.

Mr Lusk,
Sor
I send you half the Kidne I took from one women prasarved it for you tother piece I fried and ate it was very nice. I may send you the bloody knife that took it out if you only wate a while longer
signed

Catch me when you can Mishter Lusk

He fried and ate the other kidney! Did he have it with fava beans and a nice Chianti?

  • 1917 – World War I: Dutch dancer Mata Hari is executed by France for espionage.

Here’s a photo before her execution, which was photographed:

  • 1945 – The former premier of Vichy France, Pierre Laval, is executed for treason.
  • 1956 – FORTRAN, the first modern computer language, is first shared with the coding community.
  • 1965 – Vietnam War: A draft card is burned during an anti-war rally by the Catholic Worker Movement, resulting in the first arrest under a new law.
  • 1966 – The Black Panther Party is created by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale.

I remember the BPP well. Here’s a picture of Huey Newton (left) and Bobby Seale (right). Newton was murdered in Oakland in 1989, while Seale is still with us.

  • 1990 – Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev is awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to lessen Cold War tensions and open up his nation.
  • 1997 – The Cassini probe launches from Cape Canaveral on its way to Saturn.
  • 2008 – The Dow Jones Industrial Average closes down 733.08 points, or 7.87%, the second worst percentage drop in the Dow’s history.

People born on this day include:

  • 1542 – Akbar, Mughal emperor (d. 1605)
  • 1814 – Mikhail Lermontov, Russian author, poet, and painter (d. 1841)
  • 1844 – Friedrich Nietzsche, German composer, poet, and philosopher (d. 1900)
  • 1858 – John L. Sullivan, American boxer, actor, and journalist (d. 1918)
  • 1881 – P. G. Wodehouse, English novelist and playwright (d. 1975)

Here’s an audio-video of Wodehouse discussing Jeeves and Wooster:

  • 1905 – C. P. Snow, English chemist and author (d. 1980)
  • 1917 – Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., American historian and critic (d. 2007)
  • 1920 – Mario Puzo, American author and screenwriter (d. 1999)
  • 1943 – Penny Marshall, American actress, director, and producer (d. 2018)
  • 1946 – Richard Carpenter, American singer-songwriter and pianist
  • 1959 – Emeril Lagasse, American chef and author

Those who were either incinerated or began putrifying on October 15 include:

  • 1917 – Mata Hari, Dutch dancer and spy (b. 1876) [see above]
  • 1946 – Hermann Göring, German general and politician (b. 1893)

Göring committed suicide by taking a smuggled-in cyanide capsule while in prison. Here’s his body:

  • 1964 – Cole Porter, American composer and songwriter (b. 1891)
  • 1978 – W. Eugene Smith, American photojournalist (b. 1918)]

Smith is about my favorite documentary photographer, producing many wonderful spreads for Life Magazine.  Here’s one of many great photographs he took, this one from his essay “Country Doctor”, in which he documented the work of Dr. Ernest Ceriani in a remote part of Colorado (you can see all the photos here). The caption is from Life:

After finishing a surgery that lasted until 2 AM, Dr. Ceriani stands exhausted in the hospital kitchen with a cup of coffee and a cigarette. “The nurses,” LIFE noted, “constantly admonish him to relax and rest, but because they are well aware that he cannot, they keep a potful of fresh coffee simmering for him at all hours.”

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is really angry, but we’re not informed about what.

Hili: I will tell you the truth!
A: Maybe you’d better not do it when you are in such a mood.

In Polish:

Hili: Powiem ci prawdę!
Ja: Lepiej tego nie rób jak jesteś w takim nastroju.

Here’s little Kulka investigating some walnuts:

From Charles:

From Su:

From David:

What’s surprising about Titania McGrath is that there are still a lot of people who don’t realize that she’s purveying satire. That’s because what she says often comes pretty close to what the Authoritarian Left says, like the tweet below:

I retweeted the tweet  below that Matthew sent me. Yes, we’ve had our first mini-pandemic event at the University of Chicago, and both branches of the Business School have been shut down for face to face teaching. 100 students are in quarantine.

From Barry. All I can say is, “Oy!”

Tweets from Matthew:

First, WHAT WILL HAPPEN TONIGHT IF THERE’S A COLLISION??? The thread, at least on Wednesday afternoon, doesn’t say how serious this is. Readers, help if you can?

This boggles the mind:

The more I watch and learn about birds, the more impressed I am—with them and, I suppose, with the power of natural selection.

I’m not a fan of Amy Coney Barrett, but isn’t this question a bit unfair, even for a prospective Supreme Court Justice? She’s under duress here, and I can’t be too hard on her.

A scary act of predation:

 

70 Comments

  1. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    The Amy Coney Barrett hearings continued with her last day of questioning yesterday.

    Screw the ACB hearings. I’m still sitting shiva for the Notorious RBG.

  2. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    Jimmy Kimmel described fake ballot boxes …. in this monologue : https://youtu.be/5EZALCwqQAo

    … Kimmel claimed that “Republicans” set the boxes up.

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:01 am | Permalink

      It’s a big issue here in California. The GOP have admitted to doing it and have mostly refused to remove them. It’s hard to know how they intend to make use of them to cheat but it is also hard to see how they make sense other than to cheat. From what I know of the situation, they are legal as it is allowed for a third party to take sealed ballots from voters to official polling places and ballot boxes. However, it was not intended to allow an unknown third party to do so. The GOP may also get into trouble by saying “official” on their fake ballot boxes.

      • rickflick
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

        They should be tried convicted and sentenced to spend the next 3 week inside their own ballot box. Wearing masks of course.

  3. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    Asking a SC nominee that is like asking a faculty member up for tenure what all the amino acids – including the unusual ones – are.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      Or a grad student at their prelim exam.

      Glycine
      Alanine
      Valine
      Leucine
      Isoleucine

      Phenylalanine
      Tyrosine
      Tryptophan
      Histidine

      Glutamic Acid
      Aspartic Acid
      Glutamine
      Asparagine

      Arginine
      Lysine

      Cysteine
      Methionine

      Proline
      Serine
      Threonine

      Cystine = crosslinked cysteine
      Selenocysteine
      Tryptathionine x-linked cysteine/tryptophan…

      Passing that, they might ask which three amino acids are involved in formation of the fluorophore in green fluorescent protein.

      (And BTW, while the above are grouped by properties, the way to get all the amino acids quickly is to know the one-letter code. That way, you just run thru the alphabet in your head. Relatedly, for 50 bonus points, why is Tryptophan W? Credit only given for the original reason.)

      • ThyroidPlanet
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:22 am | Permalink

        My raw guess was the isolation source was a Wolbachii-something-or-other bacterium but that is not-even-wrongity-wrong-wrong – I had to look it up. It is a combination of order of discovery, mnemonics, letters remaining… and in particular this :

        “For tryptophan the double ring of the molecule is associated with the bulky letter W. ”

        Source:

        “IUPAC / IUB (since 1991, IUBMB)
        joint 1983 recommendations on “Nomenclature and Symbolism for Amino Acids and Peptides”
        Section 3AA-21.2 “The Code Symbols””

        Source of the source :

        https://chemistry.stackexchange.com/questions/66109/where-did-amino-acids-get-their-one-letter-codes

        Follow up question :

        Why is Tungsten W?

      • Mike
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:55 am | Permalink

        Lisp: Twyptophan

        • merilee
          Posted October 15, 2020 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

          Twyptophan😂

      • Hempenstein
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        tWiptophan is correct. The single-letter code appeared on an early page in the first edition of Margaret Dayhoff’s Atlas of Protein Sequences (1965), along with mnemonics, and for Trytophan it was tWiptophan with an asterisk referring to a notation something to the effect of “the editors insist that I accept all responsibility for this” followed by some initials which by memory was R.E.O., and stood for Robin E Offord, but I can’t find any reference to that online. In subsequent editions it was sanitized to “tWo rings”

        Somewhere deep in a file cabinet I have a copy of that page.

    • an old law prof
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      No, it’s not. She was a law professor (who wrote about, probably taught about, the Constitution) and this should be a softball questions. Speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition.

      • ThyroidPlanet
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

        “No, it’s not. […] this should be a softball questions.”

        *should* be. But in an oral exam, the chances are they’ll forget one.

        How about : it’d be like asking PCC(E) to cite the full title of Charles Darwin’s most famous book. Someone did that to Dawkins. The result only tells us the title is non-trivial to recall in the spot – nothing about the individual’s mastery of evolution.

      • uommibatto
        Posted October 16, 2020 at 12:28 am | Permalink

        Person
        Man
        Woman
        Camera
        TV

        There, it’s not so hard.

        Larry Smith

        • rickflick
          Posted October 16, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

          ⛹️👨👩🤳📺

  4. Randall Schenck
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    Good chance of space debris colliding. There are thousands of lawyers standing by for the call.

    • boudiccadylis
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      What sort of effect will we observe if it collides?

      • John Conoboy
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

        I don’t know if it will be visible. Biggest effect would be the creation of more pieces of junk in orbit. There are thousands of pieces of space junk orbiting the earth and they are a threat to operating satellites as well as the ISS. There is a good article about this in the Sept. 28 issue of the New Yorker. You can find it at the magazine web site.

        • merilee
          Posted October 15, 2020 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

          I posted a link to the New Yorker article a few hours ago.

  5. Historian
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    In the picture,I believe Bobby Seale is left and Huey Newton is right.

    • merilee
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      Amanpour interviewed Angela Davis a couple of nights ago and had a recent shot of Bobby Seale. I would never have recognized Angela.

  6. Jim batterson
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Your dinner plan for tonight sounds great. I think that i will emulate though with a different, but very good cab. This will be a nice 78F day and a great last evening for dinner on the patio before your howling wind of today brings a cold rain to us in southeastern virginia tomorrow.
    FORTRAN IV (ansi 66) was the first computer language that i learned in college (1966). It served me well for more than thirty years through grad school and a career in aerospace engineering both in direct use and providing a basis and context for learning and using some two dozen additional high level languages and, believe it or not, machine and assemby code for several years in the 80’s.

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      For me red wine has to be Spanish! I think they do it best… preferably rioja

      I wonder where Jerry grows his homegrown toms – in the lab? In the office?!

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      FORTRAN was also my first real programming language. Used it extensively in college and the first few years of professional programming.

    • darrelle
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      I took Fortran 77 in college, though that was not the first language I learned.

      • merilee
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

        I thought I took FORTRAN4 in the late 70s, but I may be mistaken.

  7. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    I’m not a fan of Amy Coney Barrett, but isn’t this question [re the five freedoms set out in the First Amendment] a bit unfair, even for a prospective Supreme Court Justice? She’s under duress here, and I can’t be too hard on her.

    I can’t be too hard on Barrett either under the circumstances. But one can’t be hard enough on that insufferable windbag from Nebraska, Ben Sasse, and the relish he takes in disporting his fatuous self-importance on national tv.

    For pure unlikability, despite some stiff competition, he ranks second on the senate judiciary committee only to Ted Cruz.

  8. Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    1956 – FORTRAN, the first modern computer language, is first shared with the coding community.

    I think I would argue that FORTRAN, particularly the first incarnation, is not a modern computer language. Modern computer languages have many features that FORTRAN lacked at that time (and perhaps still does).

    I think it is fair to say it was the first high level computer language but it is not modern.

    • David Harper
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

      FORTRAN has evolved quite a lot since it was first used, borrowing good ideas from other programming languages whilst remaining a highly effective language for solving complex mathematical problems. It’s still being used after more than sixty years.

      • Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        That’s as maybe, but then the current incarnation of Fortran is not the same language that was published in 1956.

        • David Harper
          Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

          That’s true of most programming languages. Today’s Java or Perl or Python are all very different from the first release of each of those languages. FORTRAN simply has the distinction of having started its journey decades earlier than those relative latecomers 🙂

          • Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:18 am | Permalink

            The point is that the language launched in 1956 was not a modern computer language.

            If you are going to describe the first ever high level computer language as modern, the word “modern” has no meaning.

    • ThyroidPlanet
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

      “Modern computer languages have many features that FORTRAN lacked at that time (**and perhaps still does**).”

      LOL

      I wonder if there pockets of FORTRASH stewards keeping it up to date with modern stuff like GPS – getting it to run a “smartphone”.

      • David Harper
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

        It wouldn’t surprise me if the software used by the U.S. Navy to perform the orbit computations for GPS satellites is written in FORTRAN.

        • Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

          It’s possible, but the US Department of Defence mandates – or used to mandate – Ada for pretty much everything since the 1980’s.

    • TJR
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      Until very recently we still had a Fortran 66 short course on the books, because some people still needed to learn it to cope with legacy code.

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      I think what they meant by “modern” is that FORTRAN was the first language like the ones we know today.

      • Posted October 15, 2020 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

        I think what they actually mean is that it is the first high level language which is to say you program an abstract model rather than any particular real machine architecture.

  9. Barbara Radcliffe
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    I hope you enjoyed the Coonawarra cabernet (from the southeast of South Australia). They produce some excellent big reds in that area. You could also try reds from the Barossa Valley or from McLaren Vale. And then there are the whites…..

  10. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    If I could ask the Supreme Court nominee any question, it would be :

    How can religion benefit from supreme court decisions, and, given how profoundly religion interacts with everything in life, how is it not a conflict of interest in your case?

    Because I can see it from a mile away – the glee with which this is playing out for the political party and the victims of the Christian religion – nobody can criticize the religious pollution, as it is “compartmentalized”, yet it is *everything* anyone wanted – the whole reason for existence, for law school degrees, the whole lot.

    • Mark R.
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

      That’s a good question.
      I’d also like this question asked:
      “You’re nomination breaks 200 years of precedence and is seen by the majority of American citizens as nothing more than a power grab. How do you feel being seen by most Americans as an illegitimate justice, and what does accepting the nomination just weeks before an election say about your integrity?“

      • ThyroidPlanet
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

        [ liberals high five each other ]
        [ promptly lose ]

  11. David Harper
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    Apropos the satellite collision, this is going to happen 600 miles above the Earth’s surface, over Antarctica, so there’s no danger to anyone on the ground. But if there is a collision, it will generate a cloud of debris that will endanger other spacecraft for decades to come.

  12. Dom
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    Regarding human evolution –
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/joa.13224

  13. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    A Coonawarra cabernet a day keeps the coronavirus away

  14. Blue
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    a n g e r i n g: AT the very end of yesterday’s completed SCOTUS hearing,
    Judge Coney Barrett was yet one more time just praised and praised
    and was told that she was soooo, so amazing ( Senator John Kennedy / R – LA )
    as a parent and was entirely and fabulously consternating to him /
    to the many others there … … as to how could she possibly handle so, so, so, so much.

    Wuuuull, ah, as a Scalia – LIKE Originalist ( what she WOULD answer )
    from y1789, she is a person who then believes
    the US Constitution in re her and US citizens’ rights, OR not, as one … … whose husband CAN,
    NOW, not only own slaves but CAN have AS HIS … … ALL property and ALL children that she has or bore,
    there having been NOT ONE person of color NOR NOT ONe woman … …
    constructing said Original United States Constitution.

    An instantiation of that type of ” rights ” and of Originalist – ” ownership, ”
    AT NOT ONE TIME / AT NO ( e a s y ! ) ‘OPENING’ in order to do so ( at its END ), DID SHE EVER
    EVEN acknowledge her constant and steady children’s caregiver of so, so very
    many years’ ( at least 17 years ! ) time = that aunt of her and her Spouse’s household.

    Judge Coney Barrett, the TAKER, T O O K onto her own person over all three days’ worth

    absolutely ALL

    of those very, very many accolades. AT NOT ONE TIME did she give much, much credit
    to whom it was actually due. Never. Utterly UNjust and utterly UNdeserved of her
    to have done that entire and determined slight.

    Blue

    • Blue
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      “Amy Coney Barrett
      Supports Health Care
      Available in Year
      Constitution Was Written ”

      satire from Mr Andy Borowitz //
      upon 12 October y2020 =
      a year of S A F E & legal abortions

      Yeah.

      Blue

  15. Hempenstein
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    FWIW, Göring’s cyanide ampuole was hidden in the bottom of his jar of face cream(!), which he asked his guard to bring him just as it was apparent that they had completed building the gallows, as I learned from a book on the Nuremburg trials. I gathered that this was among his possessions that would be taken to him whenever he asked.

    • mike cracraft
      Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      His guard actually became buddy buddy with Hermann and was given his wrist watch as a souvenir.

      • Hempenstein
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

        Oy! I recall reading some while back that one of Saddam’s guards developed a rapport of sorts with him. I always expected a book to come out of that.

  16. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Tomatoes are among the foods that contain the highest quantities of glutamate – the same glutamate in “MSG” – the sodium salt of glutamate. It produces an “umami”, or savory flavor experience. I hazard a guess that the Anjimoto corporation of Japan makes most of the crystalline MSG out there – but for the same flavor to add into other stuff, check out tomato paste or even tomato powder:

    https://www.fda.gov/food/food-additives-petitions/questions-and-answers-monosodium-glutamate-msg

    … not sure why I’m over commenting today – time to cool it….

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      Is it the MSG talking? 😉

      • ThyroidPlanet
        Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        Given that it is a neurotransmitter, and my recent intake of guanylate (mushroom powder), and glutamate (tomatoes), it has to be.

        BTW I’m still looking for a good plant source for inosinate – maybe seaweed, but not really sure.

  17. boudiccadylis
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    The raven only turns over rather than rolling all the way over. Any known reason?

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:17 am | Permalink

      Don’t you think it is so it can see in certain directions that it can’t in its normal orientation? Though I suppose it can rotate its head to do that.

  18. rickflick
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    “The only reason to watch any Town Hall is to see what lunacy Trump evinces tonight”

    tRump is fun to watch. You never know what nonsense he will sputter next. This is why tRump will have stronger “ratings”, which he will call a win. What he will be winning is a best-clown contest.

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      I agree. He will definitely get the higher ratings as people who would never vote for him, like me, will watch to see what new outrage he comes up with. On the other hand, I suspect he will tone it down tonight, partly due to the town hall format and partly because he got dinged for being over the top last time. On yet another hand, he knows his base loves it so he may not be able to help himself.

  19. Jenny Haniver
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    What happened to Hili? She’s become a Munchkin cat.

    I loved the photo posted the other day of Kulka napping while curled around Andrej’s neck.

  20. merilee
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    And ✔️

  21. William Boecklen
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    Call me anachronistic, but I still use FORTRAN. It works.

    • Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      Definitely anachronistic. However, I believe it still is considered the best high-level language for generating optimized code for numerical applications.

  22. Mike
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    About “Things he still fears”, I am a little bit afraid of vegans.

  23. Curtis
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    If you are interested in per capita coronavirus cases in western countries here is a good graph.
    https://ourworldindata.org/coronavirus-data-explorer?zoomToSelection=true&time=2020-03-01..latest&country=USA~ITA~GBR~FRA~ESP~EuropeanUnion~DEU&region=World&casesMetric=true&interval=smoothed&perCapita=true&smoothing=7&pickerMetric=total_deaths&pickerSort=desc

    Only Germany stands out having fewer cases over time and their cases have triple in the last month. The US clearly had more cases in the summer but it is likely that will reduce cases over the winter.

    The virus is nasty and we cannot really stop it once become endemic. I was listening to a French reported on NPR and it was clear she wanted to blame someone for the skyrocketing cases but there was no one to blame. Endemic coronavirus is a force of nature that we cannot yet contain.

  24. openidname
    Posted October 15, 2020 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

    Ravens and crows show visible signs of enjoying flight more than any non-Corvidae.

    Anybody got any counter-examples?


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