Greetings on cat Sabbath: July 10, 2021: National Piña Colada Day. I am still recovering from my dunk in Botany Pond yesterday, and have to apply antibiotic cream to my scalp laceration twice a day. But it was all worth it: I’d do anything for my ducks!
It’s also Pick Blueberries Day, National Kitten Day (!!), Don’t Step on a Bee Day, Nikola Tesla Day, Statehood Day in Wyoming (see below), and Teddy Bear Picnic Day. Teddy Bears’ Picnic was my favorite song when I was small, and here’s Rosemary Clooney’s version that I loved and listened to repeatedly (I still remember the words). It was written in 1907 and the lyrics were addd 25 years later.
Here’s a 1908 ad for the sheet music:
News of the Day:
Prizer’s claim that their COVID-19 vaccination might need a booster since immunity to the virus begins wearing off after 6 months may be premature. Both the CDC and FDA says that conclusion is premature: Americans do not, they said in a joint statement, need a booster at this time, even if (like me) you were vaccinated 6 months ago. Sit tight till the data come in.
Fully a third of Americans, however, have declared that they won’t take the vaccination, most because they have false beliefs about it. What a world!
This is great news: China has declared that the wild population of giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleucans) has become so large—1800 individuals—that the species can be upgraded from “endangered” to “vulnerable”. Five years ago the International Union for Conservation of Nature already made that upgrade, but the Chinese took issue at the time. Now China is on board, and may thousands of giant pandas bloom!
The Race of the Billionaire Space Moguls has become petty, with Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic craft set to take off on Sunday, heading up to 56 miles high, just above the boundary that American recognizes as “space”. Jeff Bezos, however, argues that his “Blue Origin” spacecraft, which flies nine days after Branson’s is more “official,” since its 62 mile altitude (100 km) crosses the the Kármán line, “the boundary of space recognized by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), a Swiss organization that sets global rules for air sports.” Bezos and Branson have even dueled on Twitter about it: how ridiculous can you get? It goes to show that even if you have a billion dollars, you still need to lord it over someone else.
Reader Barry sent a great example of pareidolia from the BBC:
Neptune seems to have made an appearance on the East Sussex coast during a storm.
The sighting of the “face” of the Roman god of water was captured by BBC photographer Jeff Overs in Newhaven on Tuesday.
He took the picture as waves crashed over the harbour wall during the storm.
Stop what you’re doing right now and read this great NYT article, complete with videos, about the wonders of cuttlefish, my favorite mollusc. Read about how they passed the marshmallow test, and how they’ll squirt you if you’re too slow giving them food. Click on the screenshot and see the wonders of this creature; the piece is written by Veronique Greenwood.
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 606,198 an increase of 224 deaths over yesterday’s figure. The reported world death toll is now 4,036,353, an increase of about 9,300 over yesterday’s total.
Stuff that happened on July 10 includes:
- 138 – Emperor Hadrian dies of heart failure at Baiae; he is buried at Rome in the Tomb of Hadrian beside his late wife, Vibia Sabina.
- 1850 – U.S. President Millard Fillmore is sworn in, a day after becoming president upon Zachary Taylor‘s death.
Fillmore, our least known President and the last member of the Whig Party to occupy the White House.
- 1890 – Wyoming is admitted as the 44th U.S. state.
- 1924 – Paavo Nurmi won the 1,500 and 5,000 m runs every hour at the Paris Olympics.
Here’s a brief video of “The Flying Finn” at the 1924 Olympics. Winning those two races with only an hour’s rest is a fantastic feat!
What they mean is that there was only an hour between these two races!
- 1925 – Scopes Trial: In Dayton, Tennessee, the so-called “Monkey Trial” begins of John T. Scopes, a young high school science teacher accused of teaching evolution in violation of the Butler Act.
The Monkey Trial! Two photos below, one of Scopes in 1925 (center) with one with two of the opposing lawyers, Clarence Darrow (left) and William Jennings Bryan (right)
Howard Hughes in 1938, before he went nuts:
- 1942 – World War II: An American pilot spots a downed, intact Mitsubishi A6M Zero on Akutan Island (the “Akutan Zero“) that the US Navy uses to learn the aircraft’s flight characteristics.
Here’s the “Akutan Zero” being loaded onto a barge. It was reconstructed and flown by American pilots, which helped the U.S. figure out ways to defeat this deadly plane during WWII.
Remember the eponymous song by the Tornados? It also came out in 1962.
- 1966 – The Chicago Freedom Movement, co-founded by Martin Luther King Jr., holds a rally at Soldier Field in Chicago. As many as 60,000 people attend.
- 1985 – The Greenpeace vessel Rainbow Warrior is bombed and sunk in Auckland harbour by French DGSE agents, killing Fernando Pereira.
This was a mission of the French government, sad to say. The ship, as is meet, is now an artificial reef for diving. Here’s the wreck:
- 1992 – In Miami, former Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega is sentenced to 40 years in prison for drug and racketeering violations.
- 1997 – In London, scientists report the findings of the DNA analysis of a Neanderthal skeleton which supports the “out of Africa theory” of human evolution, placing an “African Eve” at 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.
- 1999 – In women’s association football, the United States defeated China in a penalty shoot-out at the Rose Bowl near Los Angeles to win the final match of the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The final was watched by 90,185 spectators, which set a new world record for attendance at a women’s sporting event.
The U.S. won 5-4 after no points were scored in regular time; here’s a video of the highlights. Remember when Brandi Chastain pulled off her shirt? Watch on Youtube by clicking the words below.
- 2019 – The last Volkswagen Beetle rolls off the line in Puebla, Mexico. The last of 5,961 “Special Edition” cars will be exhibited in a museum.
Here’s the very last Beetle, a car beloved of hitchhikers in my college years (a VW Van was even better), as owners of these cars tended to be young folks who would give you a ride.
Notables born on this day include:
- 1509 – John Calvin, French pastor and theologian (d. 1564)
- 1802 – Robert Chambers, Scottish geologist and publisher, co-founded Chambers Harrap (d. 1871)
- 1839 – Adolphus Busch, German brewer, co-founded Anheuser-Busch (d. 1913)
- 1856 – Nikola Tesla, Serbian-American physicist and engineer (d. 1943)
- 1871 – Marcel Proust, French novelist, critic, and essayist (d. 1922)
Proust! Can you summarize him?
- 1882 – Ima Hogg, American society leader, philanthropist, patron and collector of the arts (d. 1975)
She was the daughter of the governor of Texas, and no, she didn’t have a sister named “Ura Hogg”.
Like most of his fellows, Diamond died early—shot at age 34. He’d survived four shootings before that, and became known as “the clay pigeon of the underworld”:
- 1911 – Cootie Williams, American trumpeter and bandleader (d. 1985)
Here’s Williams playing on Duke Ellington’s famous song, “Concerto for Cootie” (1940); it’s one of Ellington’s best songs from the best era of his band:
- 1931 – Alice Munro, Canadian short story writer, Nobel Prize laureate
- 1939 – Mavis Staples, American singer
- 1943 – Arthur Ashe, American tennis player and journalist (d. 1993)
Those who closed their eyes for the last time on July 10 include:
- 1851 – Louis Daguerre, French photographer and physicist, invented the daguerreotype (b. 1787)
- 1884 – Paul Morphy, American chess player (b. 1837)
- 1989 – Mel Blanc, American voice actor (b. 1908)
- 2015 – Omar Sharif, Egyptian actor (b. 1932)
From the 1965 movie “Dr. Zhivago”. Yuri (Sharif) reunites with his great love Lara (Julie Christie):
Through a third party, I’ve heard that the Internet is down in Dobrzyn, so there is no Hili dialogue this morning! If it’s restored, I’ll add it here. This situation is very rare, but not unprecedented!
Instead, enjoy a picture of baby Kulka with the caption, “Attachment from Paulina” (in Polish: “Załącznik Pauliny”).
From Bruce, showing a food truck parked in an inappropriate place:
From Jesus of the Day: I want this bumper sticker! But all the lines should be the same size.
A retweet by Ricky Gervais. Someone please tell us what the David Brent Dance is:
— David Brent Music (@DavidBrentMovie) July 9, 2021
A tweet from Barry: Nature red in tooth and naughty bits:
Okay these orchids are just lewd. pic.twitter.com/ERzZ6RVJb2
— PrairiePhlox (@PrairiePhlox) July 8, 2021
Tweets from Matthew. First, a wonderful photo of Neptune and one of its moons:
This scene is like something out of a movie.
But it's a real photo of Neptune and its largest moon Triton, taken by @NASAVoyager 2 during its flyby in 1989.
Neptune is 30 times farther from the Sun than we are. And we know so very little about it.
— Prof. Paul Byrne (@ThePlanetaryGuy) July 9, 2021
Chemistry readers can tell us what kind of bonds are being formed:
Example of chemical bond formation pic.twitter.com/WNjHzuU3Nu
— Chemistry (@ChemistryTe) July 8, 2021
It’s animal teeth, not human teeth:
ornamental building made of teeth https://t.co/zh48rcnLvf
— Will Wiles (@WillWiles) July 9, 2021
This is the best building in the world: a veritable apotheosis of architecture. Have a look at Kindergarten Wolfartsweier in Karlsruhe, Germany. Designed by Tomi Ungerer and Ayla Suzan Yöndel it was built in 2002. I know I’ve shown it before but you can’t see too much of this wonderful school:
#ArchitectureFriday | 'When your end-user are two and three year olds, what could be more appropriate than a building that looks like a cat? Postmodernism takes joy seriously. – Owen Hopkins, @Phaidon #LessIsABore> https://t.co/hEukpBzF6N pic.twitter.com/UEADkwooL1
— Design Museum (@DesignMuseum) July 9, 2021
This is a thread of pets, each of whom has many different names. Go to the site to see many more.
Buster – aka Babycakes, B Cakes Esq, Bastard Cakes, FootleMcTootle, Chad Chaddington the Third, Boomboom, Pumpkin Precious, Puskin-a-Puskin (Pussitup) pic.twitter.com/12CAT34yvj
— anna maxted (@annamaxted) July 8, 2021