Thursday: Hili dialogue

April 20, 2023 • 7:30 am

Greetings on Thursday, April 20, 2023, National Pineapple Upside Down Cake Day, a treat I dearly love but never get to eat (my mom used to make it for me).

I returned from Paris yesterday late afternoon, after an eight-hour flight that, with watching a few movies whose names I won’t divulge, wasn’t too unpleasant.  And here is my last meal in France, or at least on Air France.  Winnie expected that an Air France flight from Paris would have good food, but, sadly, it didn’t. Have a gander:

Le Menu

Gloppy chicken and mashed potato with some kind of nondescript gravy
Salad with lentils and various veggies (not bad, but not that good, either)
Semi-stale roll with a pat of butter and a hunk of unripe and cold Camembert cheese
Dessert: a chocolate fudge cake that was decent but the portion was too small
Diet Coke (my order; I don’t usually have alcohol on flights). Cut was too tiny.

This is pretty much the same thing we had flying to France, except the Camembert was replaced by a lame cheddar cheese.

For our prearrival snack, we had some kind of dreadful vegetable sandwich, a muffin, and a container of drinkable yogurt before we landed at O’Hare. I could have paid $450 to upgrade to business class, but it wasn’t worth it for a slightly better seat and meal.

Yes, I know I’m spoiled with respect to food.

Posting will be light for a few days until I get up to speed, as I’m badly-jet lagged and have to catch up with tasks that accumulated. Bear with me; I do my best.

Da Nooz is also short: There’s a NYT op-ed by Jack Resneck, Jr., President of the American Medical Association, about the ludicrous intrusion of courts into the FDA’s system of drug approval—namely, one courts’ decision that the FDA decided wrong. The op-ed is called “This could be one of the most brazen attacks on American’s health yet.” And it is for it allows the judiciary, which has no expertise in this area, to arrogate to itself whether a drug has been properly tested for safety.

But I would be delighted if readers would bring me up to date on the last week’s news, perhaps with a brief comment on what they thought was the most important event since April 11.

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is up in the rosebushes, looking quite regal.

A: So why did you get there? You will prick yourself.
Hili: None of your business.
In Polish:
Ja: No i gdzie tam wlazłaś? Pokłujesz się.
Hili: Nie twój interes.

From Divy,  a truth all rational people know:

From Nicole, who has chosen wisely:

From Science Humor on FB:

A tweet from Masih. Although the women covered their faces, the photos are on their social media pages, so they could still be identified. (“Haram” means “forbidden” in Islam.)

From Simon, another mockery of academia by Oded Rechavi. Simon adds,  “Wrong font! Even if you match the space you can’t ignore the font requirements….”

From Malcolm, An overeager cat:

A Pinocchio weevil from Dom!  Now what is that rostrum for?

From Luana; this appears to be a true story of a man who put himself in a burka.

From the Auschwitz Memorial, with everyone in the family probably gassed upon arrival.

Tweets from Matthew. The first comes from his research on Crick’s life, and is a long response to a young person. The mentions of Avery et al. and Chargaff are right on, and everyone should know what their contributions were to solving the structure of DNA:

Of course Poncho won’t obey. He’s a CAT!

19 thoughts on “Thursday: Hili dialogue

    1. Correction: one-hour window opens at 9:28 eastern time 828 chicago time. Sorry! Site was confusing to me.

  1. Noted in passing:
    Burqa: How is anyone supposed to blow their nose inside one of those things?

    And Crick got it’s wrong.

  2. On this day:
    1657 – Freedom of religion is granted to the Jews of New Amsterdam (later New York City).

    1828 – René Caillié becomes the second non-Muslim to enter Timbuktu, following Major Gordon Laing. He would also be the first to return alive.

    1861 – Thaddeus S. C. Lowe, attempting to display the value of balloons, makes record journey, flying 900 miles from Cincinnati to South Carolina.

    1862 – Louis Pasteur and Claude Bernard complete the experiment disproving the theory of spontaneous generation.

    1902 – Pierre and Marie Curie refine radium chloride. [Yesterday was the anniversary of Pierre’s death in 1906.]

    1918 – Manfred von Richthofen, a.k.a. The Red Baron, shoots down his 79th and 80th victims, his final victories before his death the following day.

    1945 – World War II: Führerbunker: On his 56th birthday Adolf Hitler makes his last trip to the surface to award Iron Crosses to boy soldiers of the Hitler Youth.

    1946 – The League of Nations officially dissolves, giving most of its power to the United Nations.

    1961 – Cold War: Failure of the Bay of Pigs Invasion of US-backed Cuban exiles against Cuba.

    1968 – English politician Enoch Powell makes his controversial “Rivers of Blood” speech. [Eric Clapton later says “Enoch was right” during a racist rant, inspiring the launch of the Rock Against Racism campaign.]

    1999 – Columbine High School massacre: Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold kill 13 people and injure 24 others before committing suicide at Columbine High School in Columbine, Colorado.I

    2008 – Danica Patrick wins the Indy Japan 300 becoming the first female driver in history to win an Indy car race.

    2010 – The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven workers and beginning an oil spill that would last six months.

    2020 – For the first time in history, oil prices drop below zero, an effect of the 2020 Russia-Saudi Arabia oil price war.

    2021 – State of Minnesota v. Derek Michael Chauvin: Derek Chauvin is found guilty of all charges in the murder of George Floyd by the Fourth Judicial District Court of Minnesota.

    1893 – Harold Lloyd, American actor, comedian, and producer (d. 1971).

    1893 – Joan Miró, Spanish painter and sculptor (d. 1983).

    1924 – Leslie Phillips, English actor and producer (d. 2022). [“Herl–air–oh!”]

    1939 – Gro Harlem Brundtland, Norwegian physician and politician, 22nd Prime Minister of Norway.

    1941 – Ryan O’Neal, American actor.

    1949 – Jessica Lange, American actress.

    1951 – Luther Vandross, American singer-songwriter and producer (d. 2005).

    1953 – Sebastian Faulks, English journalist and author.

    1964 – Andy Serkis, English actor and director.

    1969 – Felix Baumgartner, Austrian daredevil. [Known for jumping to Earth from a helium balloon from the stratosphere on 14 October 2012. Doing so, he set world records for skydiving an estimated 39 km (24 mi), reaching an estimated top speed of 1,357.64 km/h (843.6 mph), or Mach 1.25. He became the first person to break the sound barrier relative to the surface without vehicular power on his descent.]

    The Duck of Death is short and has a squeaky Cockney voice, so he uses a poor-quality megaphone in order to sound more intimidating: [With apologies to Conker’s Bad Fur Day.]
    1769 – Chief Pontiac, American tribal leader (b. 1720).

    1831 – John Abernethy, English surgeon and anatomist (b. 1764).

    1912 – Bram Stoker, Anglo-Irish novelist and critic, created Count Dracula (b. 1847).

    1991 – Steve Marriott, English singer-songwriter and producer (b. 1947). [ “Laaazy Sunday afternoon…”]

    1991 – Don Siegel, American director and producer (b. 1912).

    1992 – Benny Hill, English comedian, actor, and screenwriter (b. 1924).

    2012 – Bert Weedon, English guitarist and songwriter (b. 1920).

    2016 – Victoria Wood, British comedian, actress and writer (b. 1953).

  3. “But I would be delighted if readers would bring me up to date on the last week’s news, perhaps with a brief comment on what they thought was the most important event since April 11.”

    Robert Kennedy Jr. launching his presidential campaign. Not a huge fan of Kennedy’s, but Cheryl Hines would make a steamin’ First Lady.

  4. My understanding of the court’s decision on the Abortion pill is not that the court said the FDA was “wrong”, but that it failed to follow the proper process for approval.

  5. The Crick letter is cool. I always had the impression that Avery, MacLeod and McCarty were insufficiently credited by the phage group. If you ask American students, “Who showed that DNA is the source of genetic information?”, I’ll bet most would say Hershey and Chase.

  6. Concerning the long slender rostrum in many weevils, including this so-called Pinocchio [Erodiscus]. Generally, the rostrum enables the weevil to chew a deep hole into plant tissues, then pull out, reverse,, and lay one or more eggs. So, a substitute ovipositor.

    Note also, the very long slender basal segment of the antenna, which folds into a groove on the rostrum and keeps the antenna out of the way..

  7. There were a lot of mass shootings since 4/11, but I guess that’s not really news. Even so, in the last 10 days there were 19 shootings leaving 19 dead and 104 injured.

    Also, three people got shot for essentially doing nothing, just honest mistakes, or guilty of being black. A 16 year-old black kid thought he was at a house to pick up his twin brothers, he rang the doorbell and an 84 year old white man shot him in the head and he’s recovering in hospital (I’m only mentioning the race because race was a factor in this incident); a woman and her boyfriend pulled into a driveway to turn around, and after turning around and leaving, the home owner shot at the car and killed the 21 year-old woman; a cheerleader was dropped off at her car by some friends, she opened the car door, but there was someone in the car and she realized it wasn’t her car so she went back into her friend’s car; the guy in the car came out and shot two of the girls in the car, critically injuring one. So I guess the new trend is to shoot first and ask questions later. I wonder if the “stand your ground” laws will stand up in court in these cases; I know that’s what the 84 year old is planning to do as he plead not-guilty.

    This problem isn’t going away, nor will it fix itself, especially with the gun-nut mindset that to fix it, we need to arm more people.

    1. Yes, those cases have made the news here in the UK, too. It’s hard to know if such egregious cases happen all the time, but are being picked up on now because the first case, where the kid rang on the wrong doorbell and was shot through the door, was such an extreme example.

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