A good morning! (sound up). Here’s a tweet Uncle Joe put out in September:
I’m Joe Biden and I approve this message. pic.twitter.com/TuRZXPE5xK
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) September 20, 2020
Yes, good morning on Ceiling Cat’s Day: Sunday, November 8, 2020: National Cappuccino Day (I’ve had mine; as this is cultural appropriation, it’s obligatory to be mindful of the oppression of Italians with your drink.) It’s also National Harvey Wallbanger Day (also a drink, invented less than a century ago, made with vodka, orange juice, and the herbal liqueur Galliano), World Urbanism Day, and International Tongue Twister Day.
Here’s a collection of international tongue twisters; I’ll give three. The Polish and Swedish ones were translated by Malgorzata.
French: Un chasseur sachant chasser sait chasser sans son chien de chasse.
Google translate: “A hunter who knows how to hunt, knows how to hunt without his hunting dog.”
Polish: W Szczebrzeszynie chrząszcz brzmi w trzcinie, i Szczebrzeszyn z tego słynie. [from the poem “Chrząszcz” by Jan Brzechwa].
“In Szczebrzeszyn [it’s a name of a Polish town] a beetle sounds in the reeds and Szczebrzeszyn got famous because of it.”
Swedish: Sju skönsjungande sjuksköterskor skötte sjuttiosju sjösjuka sjömän på skeppet “Shanghai”.
“Seven beautifully singing nurses took care of seventy seven seasick sailors from the ship ‘Shanghai'”.
News of the Day:
You all know the Big News:
Nevada has been called for Biden (6 electoral votes). Georgia, North Carolina, and Arizona haven’t been called yet. NC will go Republican, and I predicted that GA and AZ will go for Biden, as they will. With more than 98% of the vote counted in Georgia, Biden leads by about 10,000 votes out of about 5 million tallied, and in Arizona, with 97% of the votes counted, Biden leads by 18,600 votes out of about two million. I predict he will win both states, finishing with an electoral college total of 306. But even with losses in all those states, Biden’s win in Pennsylvania still takes him over the top. North Carolina is ahead for Trump 50.0% by 48.6%; they don’t deserve their barbecue today.
I received congratulations from friends all over the world, and that felt good. So many countries were hoping for Biden’s win! This one came from a friend in Calcutta, showing the Telegraph of India; my friend wrote, “Bravo! You made it!” And that despite the conservative Modi government.
And the New York Times published this (click on screenshot):
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 237,567, a big increase of about 1,000 from yesterday’s figure. The world death toll is 1,257,445, an increase of about 7,400 over yesterday’s report.
Stuff that happened on November 8 includes:
- 1519 – Hernán Cortés enters Tenochtitlán and Aztec ruler Moctezuma welcomes him with a great celebration.
- 1602 – The Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford is opened to the public.
- 1895 – While experimenting with electricity, Wilhelm Röntgen discovers the X-ray.
For that Röntgen won the first Nobel Prize in Physics—in 1901. Here’s what Wikipedia labels, “First medical X-ray by Wilhelm Röntgen of his wife Anna Bertha Ludwig’s hand.” I don’t know how “medical” it was: the swelling on her index finger may be a wedding ring.
- 1901 – Gospel riots: Bloody clashes take place in Athens following the translation of the Gospels into demotic Greek.
- 1923 – Beer Hall Putsch: In Munich, Adolf Hitler leads the Nazis in an unsuccessful attempt to overthrow the German government.
- 1932 – Franklin D. Roosevelt is elected as the 32nd President of the United States, defeating incumbent president Herbert Hoover.
- 1937 – The Nazi exhibition Der ewige Jude (“The Eternal Jew”) opens in Munich.
Here’s an anti-Semitic poster from that exhibition, very similar to the posters created in some Middle Eastern countries today. “Der ewige Jude” is also the title of a viciously anti-Semitic film made by the Nazis in 1940, and you might want to watch it as a history lesson (I have); it’s here.
- 1950 – Korean War: United States Air Force Lt. Russell J. Brown, while piloting an F-80 Shooting Star, shoots down two North Korean MiG-15s in the first jet aircraft-to-jet aircraft dogfight in history.
- 1960 – John F. Kennedy is elected as the 35th President of the United States, defeating incumbent Vice President Richard Nixon, who would later be elected president in 1968 and 1972.
- 1965 – The Murder (Abolition of Death Penalty) Act 1965 is given Royal Assent, formally abolishing the death penalty in the United Kingdom for almost all crimes.
- 1988 – U.S. Vice President George H. W. Bush is elected as the 41st president.
- 2016 – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi publicly announces the withdrawal of ₹500 and ₹1000 denomination banknotes.
Since I had a bunch of 500 and 1000 rupee notes left over from a trip, and planned to use them when I went back to India, my notes became worthless, as they had to be taken to a bank in India. I lose about $60. Thanks, Modi! (This was largely to eliminate counterfeit cash and stifle the “shadow economy”.)
- 2016 – Donald Trump is elected the 45th President of the United States, defeating Hillary Clinton, the first woman ever to receive a major party’s nomination.
A dark day then, but a bright day today!
Notables born on this day include:
- 1656 – Edmond Halley, English astronomer and mathematician (d. 1742)
- 1908 – Martha Gellhorn, American journalist and author (d. 1998)
Gellhorn, a journalist was the third wife of Ernest Hemingway. Here they are in a photo labeled “Gellhorn and Ernest Hemingway with General Yu Hanmou, Chongqing, China, 1941.” Like Hemingway, she committed suicide, but only when she was 90 and ill with cancer.
- 1931 – Morley Safer, Canadian-American journalist and author (d. 2016)
- 1947 – Minnie Riperton, American singer-songwriter (d. 1979)
Riperton, a Chicago girl, died of ovarian cancer at the age of only 31. She performs her one #1 hit, “Lovin’ You” (1975) live below; it shows her famous ability to sing in the “whistle register”, the highest register of the human voice.
- 1949 – Bonnie Raitt, American singer-songwriter and guitarist
And here’s my favorite song by Raitt, “Nick of Time,” performed live at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in 1991. She’s about my age—one of those people you can compare yourself to to judge your your rate of aging. (Sissy Spacek is another—only five days older than I.) Sadly, this song is about getting old.
Those who crossed the Rainbow Bridge on November 8 include:
- 1308 – Duns Scotus, Scottish priest, philosopher, and academic (b. 1266)
- 1674 – John Milton, English poet and philosopher (b. 1608)
- 1887 – Doc Holliday, American dentist and poker player (b. 1851)
- 1978 – Norman Rockwell, American painter and illustrator (b. 1894)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is interfering with Listy again:
A: Could I check something in my calendar?Hili: Not now.
Ja: Czy mógłbym coś sprawdzić w kalendarzu?Hili: Nie teraz.
An election cartoon from reader Roger Sorensen, who says, “I drew up a thought that’s been in the back of my mind all week.”
Given the circumstances, all of today’s tweets will be related to the election. This first one was sent to me by several readers:
— jillsobule (@jillsobule) November 7, 2020
From Simon, an academic in-joke (papers submitted for publication should not be listed on c.v.s):
C.Vs that say “submitted to Nature” https://t.co/BbS0WcBKus
— Oded Rechavi 🦉 (@OdedRechavi) November 7, 2020
Also from Simon, the latest ad from the Lincoln Project, clearly prepared in advance:
It’s morning in America. pic.twitter.com/I8vbiZ7kWy
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) November 7, 2020
Matthew, who’s very happy, sent the rest of the tweets. This first one is quite clever:
When the news broke, Trump was playing golf. Which makes him the second fascist to end his reign in a bunker.
— David Pattie (@DavidPattie) November 7, 2020
And in Paris, celebration in solidarity with the sane Americans (sound up):
Another clever one:
Trump got the whole 2020 experience
Got covid, got fired, got evicted
— Dan Price (@DanPriceSeattle) November 7, 2020
Steve and Rebecca celebrate in their place on Cape Cod:
A few minutes ago…. pic.twitter.com/ZjZUE9PNQM
— Steven Pinker (@sapinker) November 7, 2020
This election has brought out the wags on Twitter:
This is what I tell my wife about the freezer when she can't find the ice cream I might possibly have eaten:
BAD THINGS HAPPENED INSIDE. BIG CHANGES TOOK PLACE!https://t.co/I03YZ8i9YR
— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) November 7, 2020
John Banville is an Irish novelist:
I won the Nobel prize for Literature, by a lot.
— John Banville (@John_Banville) November 7, 2020
And one extra: The covers of the German magazine Der Spiegel (“The Mirror”), on February 4, 2017, and today.
— Anne Rohr (@Frau_Rohr) November 7, 2020