Welcome to Monday, May 3, 2021, National Chocolate Custard Day. It’s also National Raspberry Popover Day, Melanoma Monday, World Press Freedom Day, Wordsmith Day, and International Sun Day, celebrating solar power. I saw a single bunny on my walk to work this morning.
Today’s animated Google Doodle (click on screenshot) celebrates Teacher Appreciation Week by recounting five stories of teachers who made a difference
After six months at the International Space Station, four astronauts returned to Earth early yesterday morning in a SpaceX “Dragon” capsule, splashing down in the sea at night—the first nighttime recovery since Apollo 8 in 1968. Here’s a great video of the landing and recovery:
Everthing’s bigger in Texas, including the hailstones. For some reason Texas gets tons of hail (when I recently rented a car there, although the vehicle was nearly new, its roof was pocked from hailstone strikes). And, according to the Washington Post, a storm in South Texas dropped hailstones that the paper describes as “the size of grapefruits”. GRAPEFRUITS! Somebody could have been killed! Below is a Texas record hailstone, more than six inches across! (The U.S. record is an eight-inch behemoth that fell on South Dakota.) h/t: Tim
Estimated max. dimension of this #gargantuan stone, accounting for perspective: 6.27-6.57 inches! It's gargantuan (>6")! Happy for colleagues to attempt/improve: @Albatrossoar @joshuasoderholm @igiammanco33 .@NWSSanAntonio #Hondo, TX beneath BWER, extremely low CC aloft. #hail pic.twitter.com/pRC2Y7c1Ft
— PSURadarMeteorology (@PSU_RadarMeteo) April 30, 2021
Catilyn Jenner, who you might know is running as a Republican for the governor of California, has declared that she doesn’t favor transgender women competing in women’s sports (see also here). She is of course facing serious backlash, including the usual accusations of being transphobic, which means she’s afraid of herself. It goes to show you can be both transgender and a transphobe. (h/t: Divy) A tweet:
I didn’t expect to get asked this on my Saturday morning coffee run, but I’m clear about where I stand. It’s an issue of fairness and we need to protect girls’ sports in our schools.https://t.co/YODLDQ3csP
— Caitlyn Jenner (@Caitlyn_Jenner) May 1, 2021
Slavery in this era? Apparently sometimes! A black South Carolina man with a cognitive disability was forced to work 100 hours per week for five years without pay or benefits. Not only that, but he was beaten and tortured. The “enslaver”, though is now in jail for ten years, and the abused employee has been awarded nearly half a million dollars in restitution.
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 576,638, an increase of 694 deaths over yesterday’s figure. The reported world death toll is now 3,217,378, an increase of about 9,800 over yesterday’s total.
Stuff that happened on May 3 includes:
- 1715 – A total solar eclipse was visible across northern Europe, and northern Asia, as predicted by Edmond Halley to within 4 minutes accuracy.
- 1802 – Washington, D.C. is incorporated as a city after Congress abolishes the Board of Commissioners, the District’s founding government. The “City of Washington” is given a mayor-council form of government.
- 1913 –, the first full-length Indian feature film, is released, marking the beginning of the Indian film industry.
Here’s a clip, with a movie poster below that. Most of the movie appears to have been lost.
- 1921 – Ireland is partitioned under British law by the Government of Ireland Act 1920, creating Northern Ireland and Southern Ireland.
- 1948 – The U.S. Supreme Court rules in Shelley v. Kraemer that covenants prohibiting the sale of real estate to blacks and other minorities are legally unenforceable.
- 1952 – The Kentucky Derby is televised nationally for the first time, on the CBS network.
Here’s the first Kentucky Derby that was televised; the winner was Hill Gail, ridden by the legendary Eddie Arcaro
- 1957 – Walter O’Malley, the owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers, agrees to move the team from Brooklyn to Los Angeles.
- 1963 – The police force in Birmingham, Alabama switches tactics and responds with violent force to stop the “Birmingham campaign” protesters. Images of the violent suppression are transmitted worldwide, bringing new-found attention to the civil rights movement.
Here ia a short video of the Birmingham police attacking protestors in 1963:
- 1978 – The first unsolicited bulk commercial email (which would later become known as “spam”) is sent by a Digital Equipment Corporation marketing representative to every ARPANET address on the west coast of the United States.
- 1979 – Margaret Thatcher wins the United Kingdom general election. The following day, she becomes the first female British Prime Minister.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1849 – Jacob Riis, Danish-American journalist and photographer (d. 1914)
- 1860 – Vito Volterra, Italian mathematician and physicist (d. 1940)
- 1903 – Bing Crosby, American singer and actor (d. 1977)
- 1919 – Pete Seeger, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and activist (d. 2014)
Here’s Seeger with one of his banjos, inscribed with a slogan:
I’ve shown the music video of Hopkin’s most famous song, “Goodbye,” before, but here it is again. It was written by Paul McCartney, shown in the video, but who thought it was pretty schlocky. I happen to like it, and it reached #2 on the British charts. (You can here McCartney’s demo here.) From Wikipedia:
For the recording, Hopkin sang and performed acoustic guitar, while McCartney played bass guitar, an acoustic guitar introduction and solo, along with lap-slapping percussion and drums. Backing vocals, horns and strings, in Hewson’s arrangement, were overdubbed. The session was filmed by Apple’s Tony Bramwell for a promotional clip. In the footage, Hopkin can be seen miming to the song inside the studio, combined with shots of her and McCartney in the control room listening to a playback.
Those who expired on May 3 include;:
- 1779 – John Winthrop, American mathematician, physicist, and astronomer (b. 1714)
- 1991 – Jerzy Kosiński, Polish-American novelist and screenwriter (b. 1933)
- 2007 – Wally Schirra, American captain, pilot, and astronaut (b. 1923)
- 2014 – Gary Becker, American economist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1930)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is upset, as he knows that Malgorzata and Andrzej don’t like moles digging up their yard:
Hili: We have a problem.A: What problem?Hili: The moles have gone crazy.
Hili: Mamy problem.Ja: Jaki?Hili: Krety oszalały.
This is remarkable: Hili and Szaron asleep together on “my” sofa in Dobrzyn. They are managing to tolerate each other!
Kulka resting on the windowsill:
From John; a Bizarro strip by Dan Piraro:
From Rick, a very good one:
Two tweets from Barry. The first is about the famous Trolley Problem:
— Steve Stewart-Williams (@SteveStuWill) May 2, 2021
And here’s some Commie Cats who come running when they hear the Commie Anthem, which seems to be as attractive to them as hearing a tuna can being opened (second tweet):
— Sanho Tree (@SanhoTree) May 1, 2021
Tweets from Matthew. I love aged fruit bats, though I don’t know why. Remember Statler, who lost his ability to fly and had to have his wings exercised in faux flight. Well, meet Enzo, who is depilated.
Meet Enzo! Enzo is a 29 year old Jamaican fruit bat, and as you can see, has suffered some hair loss in his old age. Join Enzo for a bit of lunch! 🦇 https://t.co/iN8hNlxXwX
— Bat World Sanctuary (@batworld) May 2, 2021
These squares are actually square!
Distorted squares pic.twitter.com/Wf0Jw4lEhf
— Akiyoshi Kitaoka (@AkiyoshiKitaoka) April 30, 2021
This is ineffably sweet: dog brings home orphaned kitten, and even holds it gently in his mouth:
Little pooch brings home a kitten that has been abandoned. 😊❤️ pic.twitter.com/DAwiCqozxC
— Fred Schultz (@fred035schultz) April 29, 2021
I love this one:
when theorists design multiple choice questions pic.twitter.com/7cAz8CQpkL
— Shit Academics Say (@AcademicsSay) May 2, 2021
Well, I guess Pluto has less mass than the Moon:
— Simon Kuestenmacher (@simongerman600) May 1, 2021