Welcome to the beginning of a long weekend: the Memorial Day Holiday. (Everybody is going home early today.) It’s May 27, 2022, and National Grape Popsicle Day (I prefer cherry or orange). It’s also Cellophane Tape Day, a product patented on this day in 1930. Here’s part of the application, though it doesn’t say much:
Stuff that happened on May 27 includes:
- 1199 – John is crowned King of England.
- 1703 – Tsar Peter the Great founds the city of Saint Petersburg.
Here’s Peter’s summer palace outside the city, which I visited in July, 2011:
- 1933 – The Walt Disney Company releases the cartoon Three Little Pigs, with its hit song “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?“
Here’s the cartoon, with the famous song starting at 4:25:
- 1937 – In California, the Golden Gate Bridge opens to pedestrian traffic, creating a vital link between San Francisco and Marin County, California.
Here’s Opening Day: toll for pedestrians was 25¢. Second most beautiful bridge in the world:
- 1942 – World War II: In Operation Anthropoid, Reinhard Heydrich is fatally wounded in Prague; he dies of his injuries eight days later.
You could make a good case that Heydrich, who was a high-ranking official in the SS, one of the architects of the “Final Solution”, and creator of the deadly Einsatzgruppen, was just as evil as Hitler. I don’t mourn his assassination, as there was no alternative for stopping the man. But the Nazis exercised exteme reprisals, including wiping out the Czech towns of Lidice and Ležáky and killing nearly all the inhabitants of both. Here’s the malefactor in 1940, and oy, does he look nasty!
- 2016 – Barack Obama is the first president of United States to visit Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and meet Hibakusha.
*Turkey, a member of NATO, has threatened to deep-six the new applications of Finland and Sweden. But the way Erdogan has been acting, I think Turkey should simply be kicked out. Look what they did:
In April, as the world was occupied with Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, a NATO member launched an attack on two of its neighboring territories. In a bombing campaign, Turkey targeted the camps of Kurdish militants in Iraq and Syria, inflicting damage on shelters, ammunition depots and bases.
The irony went largely unnoticed. That’s hardly a surprise: For a long time, the Western world has turned a blind eye to Turkey’s heavy-handed treatment of the Kurds. Across decades, the Turkish state has persecuted the Kurdish minority — about 18 percent of the population — with devastating zeal. Thousands have perished and around a million have been displaced in a campaign of severe internal repression. But Western nations, except for a brief spell when Kurdish resistance was holding back an ascendant Islamic State, have rarely seemed to care.
. . . For the [NATO] alliance itself, the impasse brings to light facts currently obscured by its makeover as a purely defensive organization. NATO, which has long acquiesced in the persecution of the Kurds, is far from a force for peace. And Turkey, a member since 1952, proves it.
*The complaints are mounting about the lax response of the police to the Uvalde, Texas school shooting. Accusations, some of which are summarized by the Wall Street Journal, include the fact that the shooter (the late Slvador Ramos) stood outside the school firing for 12 minutes before walking into the unlocked school, locking himself into a classroom, and creating immense carnage. [I just heard on the NBC evening news that four classrooms were involved, not just one as previously reported. Other claims by law enforcement have also changed rapidly.]
[Victor. Escalon of the Texas Department of Public Safety] said he couldn’t say why no one stopped Ramos from entering the school during that time Tuesday. Most of the shots Ramos fired came during the first several minutes after he entered the school, Mr. Escalon said.
People who arrived at the school while Ramos locked himself in a classroom, or saw videos of police waiting outside, were furious.
DPS officials previously said an armed school officer confronted Ramos as he arrived at the school. Mr. Escalon said Thursday that information was incorrect and no one encountered Ramos as he arrived at the school. “There was not an officer readily available and armed,” Mr. Escalon said.
It also took a Border Patrol team an hour to get into the classroom after the gunman locked the door, while cops beat back parents urging them to do something (reports are that the cops had to get the keys to the classroom from a school official)
Videos circulated on social media Wednesday and Thursday of frantic family members trying to get access to Robb Elementary as the attack was unfolding, some of them yelling at police who blocked them from entering.
“Shoot him or something!” a woman’s voice can be heard yelling on a video, before a man is heard saying about the officers, “They’re all just [expletive] parked outside, dude. They need to go in there.”
Parents can be heard yelling to each other that their kids were inside the school and that they needed to get in. A woman can be heard yelling at a police officer, “He’s one person! Take him out!”
You can see one of these heartbreaking videos at below (from CNN), and only time will tell if “first responders” failed to do their job in a timely way.
*Here’s an interaction between a Sky News reporter and Ted Cruz, with the reporter asking Cruz why mass shootings are so prevalent in America. Cruz waffles, implying that the reporter is generally criticizing “American exceptionalism” (the reporter meant only in the frequency of shootings).
*The actor Kevin Spacey has been charged with several counts of sexual assault in Britain. He was also charged multiple times in the U.S. with sexual assault on young men (Spacey is gay), but he was not tried on any of the charges, though his career is on the skids. Now the charges come from another country, though again he seems to be at little risk:
British prosecutors authorized charges against actor Kevin Spacey on Thursday, with several counts of sexual assault stemming from incidents alleged to have taken place in London and Gloucestershire between March 2005 and April 2013.
Rosemary Ainslie, head of the Crown Prosecution Service’s Special Crime Division, stated in a news release that the CPS authorized criminal charges for four counts of sexual assault against three men, as well as another count of “causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent.” The charges facing Spacey, 62, follow an investigation conducted by the Metropolitan Police. Spacey can be formally charged only upon arrest in England or Wales. A CPS spokesperson did not respond to The Washington Post’s request for comment on whether the actor would be extradited.
*According to Vanity Fair, actor Ray Liotta died in his sleep yesterday at only 67; he was on the set of a movie, and no cause of death has been disclosed. A memorial from Lorraine Bracco:
I am utterly shattered to hear this terrible news about my Ray.
I can be anywhere in the world & people will come up & tell me their favorite movie is Goodfellas. Then they always ask what was the best part of making that movie. My response has always been the same…Ray Liotta. pic.twitter.com/3gNjJFTAne
— Lorraine Bracco (@Lorraine_Bracco) May 26, 2022
Remember this scene with Joe Pesci and Ray Liotta in “Goodfellas”?
And, according to Nellie Bowles, the word “chief”, whose origins are misunderstood, goes down the tubes:
The name of the game is name games: With gun control and abortion rights debates roiling, the American left continues to fight the good fights. Like: San Francisco’s School District this week dropped the word “chief” from all job titles so as to avoid any implication that they are referring to Native American chieftains. No matter that the word comes from the French chef that comes from the Latin caput.
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is having her nap:
A: Do you have a moment?Hili: How can I know? It depends on what you are going to offer me.
Ja: Czy masz chwilę czasu?Hili: Skąd mogę wiedzieć, to zależy od tego, co mi zaproponujesz.
From Bruce: I bet this chill cat is going to play some Barry White:
Why do people DO this?
A tweet from Barry. Is Cat #2’s expression one of puzzlement or jealousy?
The other cats face 🤷♂️😂 pic.twitter.com/yvdCpcfWjN
— CCTV_IDIOTS (@cctv_idiots) April 20, 2022
A road sign from Jez. For what “Cats’ eyes” are in Britain, see here.
It’s a cat and mouse game pic.twitter.com/5VaqaNKDHO
— NW Historic Graffiti (@NWHistGraffiti) May 25, 2022
God speaks (and flogs His book):
"'We have a God-given right to carry guns.'
What part of the Bible did you find that in?
THE PART WITH ALL THE GUNS IN IT?"
–The Book of Pslams, 33:1-4.
— God (@TheTweetOfGod) May 26, 2022
From the Auschwitz Memorial. Photograph of the separation; nearly all these people were gassed within an hour, and brutally separated from their families. If you go to the site, you can stand on the platform, where one original “cattle car” remains.
Preserving historical accuracy is one of the ways we can pay respect to all people who suffered and were murdered in Auschwitz. It's as important as preserving historical sites, objects and documents.
— Auschwitz Memorial (@AuschwitzMuseum) May 27, 2022
Tweets from Matthew. Can you guess the missing factor?
There’s something missing from this list. I can’t think what. https://t.co/BZO7kvj82a
— Dr Adam Rutherford (@AdamRutherford) May 26, 2022
The March of the Eiders:
Eider ducks walk their ducklings to sea just 24 hours after hatching and even form large crèches with other families. Here are some birds on the move to the Isle of May Loch… pic.twitter.com/1n1awY5CSx
— David Steel (@SteelySeabirder) May 26, 2022
Sound up. Everybody wants a free ride!
Common Gallinule (Gallinula galeata)🐦🦜🕊️🎵🐤❤️🐤 pic.twitter.com/K1wTeh2xTY
— World birds (@worldbirds32) May 26, 2022
More than you want to know?
What's that you ask? Why it's a crappy photo of #octopus poo. Sometimes orange. Sometimes white. Always interesting. If you've not read my blog "How Do Octopuses Poo?" do yourself a favour and join those in the know about octo-poo 😉🐙https://t.co/yYrv4HU4wY#GiantPacificOctopus pic.twitter.com/UhT1XMuAgY
— The Marine Detective (@OceanDetective) November 12, 2019
What is this hamster doing?
— WholesomeMemes (@WholesomeMeme) May 22, 2022