Saturday: Hili dialogue

August 26, 2023 • 6:45 am

Welcome to CaturSaturday, August, 26, 2023, the shabbos for all Jewish cats. It also happens to be National Cherry Popsicle Day, my favorite flavor when I was a kid (I liked Creamsicles better, though.)

It’s also National Toilet Paper Day (see Diana MacPherson for advice on how to align your roll), Pony Express Day, and, in the U.S., Women’s Equality Day, which, as Wikipedia explains,

. . . commemorate[s] the 1920 adoption of the Nineteenth Amendment (Amendment XIX) to the United States Constitution, which prohibits the states and the federal government from denying the right to vote to citizens of the United States on the basis of sex. It was first celebrated in 1971, designated by Congress in 1973, and is proclaimed each year by the United States President.

Readers are welcome to mark other notable events, births, or deaths on this by consulting the August 26 Wikipedia page.

Wine of the Day: I cooked a big honking t-bone steak to celebrate the departure of the Patio Ducks, and with it I chose this 2018 Spanish tempranillo, which I have marked as costing me $28:

One website says it’s made from 95% tempranillo grapes and 5% albillo, the latter a white grape.  It was a lovely wine, very slightly off-dry, velvety and smooth, with a nose of cherries and blackcurrants. No objectionable tannins are there. It is, I think, at the peak of its drinkability, and complemented my celebratory T-bone steak well (I was celebrating the departure of our Patio Ducks). It’s a bit pricey, but worth it.

The critics’ reviews are also good; here’s one from the Wine Spectator (rated 95, but they overrate):

This velvety red offers generous layers of cherry reduction, espresso, clove and loamy earth notes that are flanked with licorice, graphite and floral hints. Shows freshness and concentration. Drink now through 2039.

. . . and from the more reliable James Suckling, who gives it 93/100:

Very clean and transparent Duero red with dark-berry, floral and dry-soil aromas that follow through to a medium body, fine tannins and a fresh finish. Nice energy. 95% tinto fino and 5% albillo. From organically grown grapes. Drink now.

Da Nooz:

*The Kremlin has adamantly denied that it had anything to do with the death in a plane crash of Wagner group leader Yevgeniy Prigozhin  (still not verified).

The Kremlin on Friday curtly dismissed rampant speculation that it had ordered the killing of Wagner mercenary chief Yevgeniy Prigozhin as “all lies,” stating that an investigation was underway to establish the cause.

After President Vladimir Putin referred to Prigozhin in the past tense Thursday as a “talented man” who “made mistakes,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov talked about the “tragic deaths” of the passengers of the Embraer jet that crashed Wednesday in the Tver region of Russia, “including Yevgeniy Prigozhin.” All 10 people onboard died, including three crew members.

“We need to cover this topic based on facts,” Peskov said, condemning what he called “lies” about the incident in the West. “There are not many facts. They are to be found out in the course of investigative actions. Yesterday the president said he was waiting for the results of the investigation, which will be completed in the foreseeable future.”

. . .The suspected assassination has cowed Russia’s elite, with many seeing it as a sign that any perceived disloyalty — or even dissent about the war — will not be tolerated in Putin’s increasingly authoritarian state, with its long history of jailing, killing or poisoning its critics.

U.S. officials said it was possible that Prigozhin’s jet was destroyed by an explosion onboard, noting that there was no sign of a missile launch targeting the plane. Similar theories swirled on Russian Telegram channels, focused mainly on the possibility that explosives were planted on the jet.

I’m going with the bomb theory. But if you think the Kremlin’s denial is accurate, or that Putin had nothing to do with it, then I have some land in Florida I’d like to sell you.

*Slow News Day Item: A sunflower farm in England has been plagued with visitors posing among the flowers in the nude. They finally had to put up a sign discouraging nudity.

The signs that dot Sam Wilson’s family farm southwest of London carry an unusual warning for visitors seeking an Instagram-worthy photo amid the endless rows of golden sunflowers.

“No Public Nudity.”

When the notoriously gray and soggy weather cooperates, as it has in recent weeks, tourists flock to Sam’s Sunflowers, part of Stoke Fruit Farms, to take part in a quintessential British summer activity: flower picking. But a rash of guests baring it all for the cameras earlier this summer led Mr. Wilson, 38, part of the third generation of his family to run the farm, to plant the signs and turn to social media to remind guests about the rules of play.

“Reminder to all we are a family area and please keep your clothes on in the sunflowers!,” the farm, located near Portsmouth on England’s southern coast, said on its Facebook page earlier this month. “We are having an increase of reports of naked photography taking place and this must not happen during our public sessions please!”

Generally, photos are encouraged. Mr. Wilson even has props ideal for a photo shoot strewn across his fields, including a grand piano, a bathtub and a tractor. The flowers — golden, towering and elegant — are the perfect backdrop. Mr. Wilson’s farm has lots of them, about 2 million, making it easy to hide and take some risqué photos among these symbols of warmth, love and happiness.

“They obviously make people want to take their clothes off,” Mr. Wilson said.

The nudity isn’t new, but this year, it has been happening more often, in some cases where young children could see.

“We’ve always had people come to the sunflowers and do risqué photos shoots and things,” Mr. Wilson said. “It’s just about respect for other people around, people of all ages. We’re a family attraction.”

I don’t get why sunflowers would make people want to cavort around in the nude. Readers, please explain!

*Nellie Bowles posted her weekly news summary on the Free Press yesterday, and so I’ll steal the usual three items from her column, “TGIF: Everyone gets a mugshot.”

→ Mugshots for all: Trump and the whole Georgia election interference crew got mugshots this week. It’s pretty jarring to see it: Trump booked at a jail in Atlanta. The Florida and Georgia indictments seem more legit than the others, and I’m pro-laws and not opposed to a former president being jailed per se, though it is very banana republic and depressing.

The fever dream of so many for so many years instantly became Trump’s campaign message Thursday night: “Never surrender,” he blasted out with the mugshot moments after it came online. And you know he practiced the scowl: persecuted yet defiant. With the mug in hand, he’s back on Twitter posting for the first time since 2021, when he was banned from the platform by the previous owners. Expect to see that scowl on t-shirts for a long time, first seriously, then ironically, then seriously again, then one day in 100 years by teenagers who have no idea the meme wars we fought.

The mugshots of 12 the 18 named defendants in the Georgia indictment (caption and photo from Reuters):

A combination picture shows police booking mugshots of former U.S. President Donald Trump and 11 of the 18 people indicted with him, including Ray Smith, a lawyer who previously represented Trump in Georgia, Rudy Giuliani, who served as Trump’s personal lawyer, Jenna Ellis, Sidney Powell, former Georgia Republican Party leader Cathy Latham, Trump campaign attorney Kenneth Chesebro, former Georgia Republican Party leader David Shafer, Republican poll watcher Scott Hall, Trump’s former lawyer John Eastman, Harrison Floyd and former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows. Fulton County Sheriff’s Office/Handout via REUTERS Acquire Licensing Rights

→ Joe Biden didn’t make it rain: You might think there are certain stories that rise above partisan jabs, but you would be so wrong. Here’s Fox News this week covering the storm tearing through the American West: “The big story tonight: the wrath of Tropical Storm Hilary, 42 million desperate souls in the path of the storm, which made landfall in Mexico several hours ago. But they let it right into the country because it’s Biden’s America.” Guys. It’s a storm. I know it’s named Hilary. But it comes from the sky.

→ Meanwhile CNN’s contribution to the era: An actual August 2023 headline: “A guide to neopronouns, from ae to ze.” Here you go (again, this is being covered by CNN):

There are real issues. Italy is removing non-biological gay parents from birth certificates, walking back rights already won, for example. A woman was killed for a pride flag. I promise you we do not need to worry about neopronouns (i.e., calling some adorable Zoomer bunself). For a great rant on my favorite topic, I recommend Matt Yglesias this week on “The Two Kinds of Progressives,” where he writes about how leaders on the left are disgusted by compromise because they’re too rich to care about results anymore—“the uncompromising moral stand is more appealing if you are not personally counting on Medicaid expansion to make a concrete difference in your life,” Yglesias writes. This is how I feel about neopronouns or letting biological males self-identify into women’s prisons or any of these other bizarre notions: you can yoke your movement to these things only if actual gay rights don’t matter to you. Gays, we need to kick out the straights!

*Malcolm alerted me to a sad BBC article that reports the death of thousands of young emperor penguins.

A catastrophic die-off of emperor penguin chicks has been observed in the Antarctic, with up to 10,000 young birds estimated to have been killed.

The sea-ice underneath the chicks melted and broke apart before they could develop the waterproof feathers needed to swim in the ocean.

The birds most likely drowned or froze to death.

The event, in late 2022, occurred in the west of the continent in an area fronting on to the Bellingshausen Sea.

It was recorded by satellites.

Dr Peter Fretwell, from the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), said the wipeout was a harbinger of things to come.

. . .the research team watched as sea-ice under emperor rookeries fragmented in November, before thousands of chicks had had time to fledge the slick feathers needed for swimming.

Four of the colonies suffered total breeding failure as a result. Only the most northerly site, at Rothschild Island, had some success.

Antarctic summer sea-ice has been on a sharp downturn since 2016, with the total area of frozen water around the continent diminishing to new record lows.

The two absolute lowest years have occurred in the past two summer seasons, in 2021/22 and in 2022/23, when the Bellingshausen was almost completely devoid of ice cover.

. . .More than 90% of emperor penguin colonies are predicted to be all but extinct by the end of the century, as the continent’s seasonal sea-ice withers in an ever-warming world.

“Emperors depend on sea-ice for their breeding cycle; it’s the stable platform they use to bring up their young. But if that ice is not as extensive as it should be or breaks up faster, these birds are in trouble,” he told BBC News.

“There is hope: we can cut our carbon emissions that are causing the warming. But if we don’t we will drive these iconic, beautiful birds to the verge of extinction.”

*And speaking of depressing loss of birds, the AP reports that America’s grassland birds are being severely cut back in numbers by a combination of factors.

North America’s grassland birds are deeply in trouble 50 years after adoption of the Endangered Species Act, with numbers plunging as habitat loss, land degradation and climate change threaten what remains of a once-vast ecosystem.

Over half the grassland bird population has been lost since 1970 — more than any other type of bird. Some species have declined 75% or more, and a quarter are in extreme peril.

And the 38% — 293,000 square miles (760,000 square kilometers) — of historic North American grasslands that remain are threatened by intensive farming and urbanization, and as trees once held at bay by periodic fires spread rapidly, consuming vital rangeland and grassland bird habitat.

So biologists, conservation groups, government agencies and, increasingly, farmers and ranchers are teaming up to stem or reverse losses.

Scientists are sharing survey and monitoring data and using sophisticated computer modeling to determine the biggest threats. They’re intensifying efforts to tag birds and installing radio telemetry towers to track their whereabouts. And they’re working with farmers and ranchers to implement best practices that ensure survival of their livelihoods and native birds — both dependent on a healthy ecosystem.

“Birds are the canary in the coal mine,” says Amanda Rodewald, senior director of the Center for Avian Population Studies at Cornell University’s ornithology lab. “They’re an early warning of environmental changes that also can affect us.”

. . .Although some grassland birds require large contiguous prairie lands, most adapted to living alongside agriculture, Cornell’s Rodewald says. That was possible because some habitat was nestled within fields or along the margins and farmers often fallowed some fields.

But more-intensive farming practices — including eliminating hedgerows and buffers, planting fewer crop types and pesticide use — have taken a toll. And climate change is bringing hotter, drier conditions that affect soil health and worsen erosion, while watering holes dry up.

So nonprofits and government agencies are working with farmers and offering incentives to improve soil, preserve grasslands and adopt bird-friendly practices, such as delaying mowing until after nesting season.

Well, we might save some grasslands, but we’re really doing zilch about climate change, something that can affect not only the vegetation, but the ability of birds to live in some areas. First the penguins, then the temperate-zone birds. I can’t imagine what nature will be like in 200 years, not with a human population of 15 billion people or more and a rotten, scorching climate.

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili has a question about evolution. My answer is “Maybe sometimes, but there are tradeoffs between speed and other adaptive traits.”

Hili: Did natural selection lead to the reproduction success of the fastest snails?
A: I think that you have to ask Jerry.
In Polish:
Hili: Czy dobór naturalny prowadził do sukcesu reprodukcyjnego najszybszych ślimaków?
Ja: Chyba musisz o to zapytać Jerrego.

And baby Hili 11 years ago today, with a dialogue (she didn’t like being licked by their dog Darwin, now gone):

Hili: I know I’m young and beautiful, but he exaggerates with this adoration.
Me: he really likes you.
Hili: Let her admire my photos, and I’ll lick my fur myself.


From LMBPN Publishing:

Another Gary Larson Far Side cartoon about ducks (he has a duck thing):

From the Absurd Sign Project 2.0:

From Masih: a brave Iranian woman showing not only her hair, but a strip of her stomach. She was of course arrested. Sound up (there are English subtitles).

Ricky Gervais and his cat Pickle:

From Simon, who doesn’t believe the height and weight recorded for Trump when he was just indicted (it’s the same as Muhammad Ali’s). Here’s what Simon said:

Assume you saw that the former guy’s self-reported height and weight in Atlanta was 6’3” and 215lb. (This is an inch taller and 25 pounds lighter than the same self reported data when arrested in NY a few weeks ago.) AS someone noted, it’s a big enough lie to add to his rap sheet.

From gravelinspector: a classification of hurricanes:

From the Auschwitz Memorial, a 4-year-old girl gassed upon arrival:

Tweets from Professor Cobb. The first is a remarkable example of mimicry: a beetle that resembles a termite larva and hides from predators by living among termites. Ah, the power of natural selection!

Flying squirrels! They’re all over the northern, eastern, and extreme NE U.S., but I bet you’ve never seen one because they’re secretive and nocturnal. Look at them glide!

. . . and a tweet about Rudy Giuliani:

36 thoughts on “Saturday: Hili dialogue

  1. Why Sunflowers and nudes? See “Calendar Girls”, a movie starring Helen Mirren (Best Actress, 2003) and Julie Walters. Inspired by a true story.

    1. Living in Kansas I have never seen many nudes running around out there. The neighbor in back of us happens to have one wild sunflower in his back yard. He had several others but must have cut them down but left this one, maybe because it is so tall. I would estimate about 20 feet. Has three blooms. I will try to send a photo to Prof. Coyne.

    2. Sunflowers look like tall (albeit thin) people. The height is right. Their stalks are unadorned. Perhaps people imagine sunflowers to be (something akin to) naked people and they simply join in on the fun. (A double-blind clinical trial is needed to test this theory.)

  2. On this day:
    1346 – At the Battle of Crécy, an English army easily defeats a French one twice its size.

    1768 – Captain James Cook sets sail from England on board HMS Endeavour.

    1789 – The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen is approved by the National Constituent Assembly of France.

    1863 – The Swedish-language liberal newspaper Helsingfors Dagblad proposed the current blue-and-white cross flag as the flag of Finland.

    1883 – The 1883 eruption of Krakatoa begins its final, paroxysmal, stage.

    1920 – The 19th amendment to United States Constitution takes effect, giving women the right to vote.

    1942 – The Holocaust in Ukraine: At Chortkiv, the Ukrainian police and German Schutzpolizei deport two thousand Jews to Bełżec extermination camp. Five hundred of the sick and children are murdered on the spot. This continued until the next day.

    1970 – The fiftieth anniversary of American women being able to vote is marked by a nationwide Women’s Strike for Equality.

    1972 – The Games of the XX Olympiad open in Munich, West Germany.

    2009 – Kidnapping victim Jaycee Dugard is discovered alive in California after being missing for over 18 years. Her captors, Phillip and Nancy Garrido are apprehended.

    2014 – The Jay Report into the Rotherham child sexual exploitation scandal is published.

    2015 – Two U.S. journalists are shot and killed by a disgruntled former coworker while conducting a live report in Moneta, Virginia. [Yikes! Eight years ago already?]

    1695 – Marie-Anne-Catherine Quinault, French singer-songwriter (d. 1791).

    1728 – Johann Heinrich Lambert, Swiss mathematician, physicist, and astronomer (d. 1777).

    1740 – Joseph-Michel Montgolfier, French inventor, invented the hot air balloon (d. 1810).

    1743 – Antoine Lavoisier, French chemist and biologist (d. 1794).

    1880 – Guillaume Apollinaire, Italian-French author, poet, playwright, and critic (d. 1918).

    1904 – Christopher Isherwood, English-American author and academic (d. 1986).

    1910 – Mother Teresa, Albanian-Indian nun, missionary, Catholic saint, and Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1997). [Hitch had her number.]

    1918 – Katherine Johnson, American physicist and mathematician (d. 2020).

    1935 – Karen Spärck Jones, English computer scientist and academic (d. 2007).

    1938 – Jet Black, English drummer (d. 2022).

    1940 – Nik Turner, English musician and songwriter (d. 2022).

    1944 – Alan Parker, English guitarist and songwriter.

    1946 – Alison Steadman, English actress.

    1970 – Melissa McCarthy, American actress, comedian, producer, and screenwriter.

    1980 – Chris Pine, American actor.

    Life is hard. Then you die. Then they throw dirt in your face. Then the worms eat you. Be grateful it happens in that order.
    1723 – Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, Dutch microscopist and biologist (b. 1632).

    1930 – Lon Chaney, American actor, director, and screenwriter (b. 1883).

    1946 – Jeanie MacPherson, American actress and screenwriter (b. 1887).

    1958 – Ralph Vaughan Williams, English composer and educator (b. 1872).

    1972 – Francis Chichester, English pilot and sailor (b. 1901).

    1974 – Charles Lindbergh, American pilot and explorer (b. 1902).

    1976 – Lotte Lehmann, German-American soprano (b. 1888).

    1980 – Tex Avery, American animator, director, and voice actor (b. 1908).

    1981 – Roger Nash Baldwin, American trade union leader, co-founded the American Civil Liberties Union (b. 1884). [What would he make of it now?]

    2000 – Bunny Austin, English tennis player (b. 1906). [Also born on this day in 1906. For 74 years he was the last Briton to reach the final of the men’s singles at Wimbledon, until Andy Murray did so in 2012. He is also remembered as the first tennis player to wear shorts.]

    2018 – Neil Simon, American playwright and author (b. 1927).

    1. I just wanted to mention that the late Katherine Johnson was one of the nicest people I have ever known. My office was next to hers for several years of my NASA career – this was well before she became famous in “Hidden Figures” – and she brought such a wealth of experience that she unhesitatingly provided to us youngin’s. Happy birthday Katherine!

    1. I saw one glide in the trees outside my balcony when I lived in Arlington, VA. I had no idea flying squirrels lived in the area, and in the dark I thought it was someone’s sugar glider pet that had escaped!

    2. When I was a child I stayed in the woods late one evening hoping to see an owl. Instead I saw a flying squirrel float out of a tree like a falling leaf. I never saw another even though I walked in that woods nearly every day for a decade.

  3. BBC article: “There is hope: we can cut our carbon emissions that are causing the warming. But if we don’t we will drive these iconic, beautiful birds to the verge of extinction.”


    AP article: “But more-intensive farming practices […] — have taken a toll.”

    Maybe it’s just coincidental:


    Degrowth will decrease carbon dioxide. Poverty will disappear (Sustainable Development Goal #1).

    Trust the science. Trust the UN and the World Economic Forum.

  4. Wouldn’t we be a banana republic for not prosecuting a powerful politician who attempted to overthrow democracy? And aren’t the Republican candidates all aiding and abetting an insurrectionist by pledging support for Trump as the eventual nominee of the white supremacist party? Indeed, we will in fact be a banana republic if he’s convicted and wins the electoral college and pardons himself with assistance from the execrable Thomas’ and Alito’s jurisimprudence or even if he’s exonerated by a nullifying cult member on the jury. The entire planet will not soon recover from a Trump Presidential vengeance tour.

      1. As the Onion did when it went partisan for Sanders, the Babylon Bee loses effectiveness when going to bat for its political idol. Pro-Trump satire functions about as well as a fish on a bicycle.

    1. There are likely several states that will attempt to disqualify Trump via the 14th amendment. See you at the supreme court.

    2. “Wouldn’t we be a banana republic for not prosecuting a powerful politician who attempted to overthrow democracy?”

      In the case of Trump we’d more appropriately be an orange republic.

    1. Some have compared Trump’s look to the “Kubrick stare” seen with various deranged characters in Kubrick movies:

      If he has any self awareness, he’s probably mad at himself for getting himself into this mess. But it isn’t clear he can ever recognize when he’s at fault. As for the Babylon Bee bit above, if he stopped at questioning election results, and not trying to illegally manipulate them as well, he wouldn’t have criminal charges against him for it.

      1. “. . .if he stopped at questioning election results, and not trying to illegally manipulate them as well, he wouldn’t have criminal charges against him for it.”

        Don’t be silly. The DOJ would have found some criminal charges or else manufactured some, just like Trump was trying to do with votes.

        1. Someone who pretends they can read the DOJ’s mind has no business telling others to stop being silly.

        2. It’s no small thing to prosecute a former president. I don’t believe they would do so if they didn’t have a good case. Heck, as much as I don’t like him, I’d be against a prosecution if it wasn’t warranted. His attempts at vote manipulation were blatant, he even admitted to much of it himself. It would be ridiculous if they didn’t prosecute.

  5. Expect to see that scowl on t-shirts for a long time, first seriously, then ironically, then seriously again, then one day in 100 years by teenagers who have no idea the meme wars we fought.

    I’d say 60 years, tops. That’s how long ago Alberto Korda took the dreamy-looking photo of Che Guevera, and memes morph much, much faster now.

  6. “The big story tonight: the wrath of Tropical Storm Hilary, 42 million desperate souls in the path of the storm, which made landfall in Mexico several hours ago. But they let it right into the country because it’s Biden’s America.”

    Recalls when televangelists like Pat Robertson and John Hagee proclaimed Hurricane Katrina to be The Lord’s wrath over a New Orleans gay-pride parade.

  7. From Simon, who doesn’t believe the height and weight recorded for Trump when he was just indicted (it’s the same as Muhammad Ali’s).

    Reckon that makes Roger Stone Trump’s Bundini Brown. 🙂

  8. A sunflower farm in England has been plagued with visitors posing among the flowers in the nude. They finally had to put up a sign discouraging nudity.

    The Wilson sunflower farm is private property, and, as such, the family is of course free to do with it as they see fit. But it seems a reasonable accommodation of interests would be for the owners to set aside a small, relatively isolated section of the farm as “clothing optional.” Uptightness over discreet public nudity seems a relic of the Victorian age and testament to the tendency of religion to poison everything.

    1. Why should the owners of private property be chivvied into making any reasonable accommodation to anyone who enters the land under the permission of the owner, Ken? Subject only to obligations under Human Rights Codes or Civil Rights Laws (as they are variously known in different parts of the civilized world) to not discriminate on the basis of protected categories in providing a service to the public, the landowner can tell anyone else claiming an “interest” in his land to get lost. If the landowner yields to this pressure and condones nudity he may lose the right to prohibit it if he changes his mind.

      Nudity shmudity. This is important because indigenous activist groups in Manitoba are claiming the right to enter private land with shovels to dig for the remains of thousands of imaginary missing children, anywhere the elders can hear the ghosts of the children crying. Yep, religion sure does poison everything. That and $320 million from the federal government to fund this scavenger hunt.

      The national law on public nudity (even on private property where “someone might see”, particularly a child) needs to be considered. The Wilsons may be afraid of being prosecuted if a person visiting the farm with children to see sunflowers encounters a nude person unexpectedly and calls the police….or even if the police visit to do a little exploring. Mock Victorian mores all you like but no one wants to have to retain your services to mitigate a large fine or a jail sentence for flouting them.

      The operative rule, I think, is that if you want to run a business involving nudity, you will make the effort to stay within the law so your business can operate without molestation. If your business doesn’t involve making money from nudity, there is no upside to permitting it.

      1. In the first sentence of my comment, Leslie, I said that, since the sunflower farm is the private property of the Wilson family, they are, of course, free to use it as they alone see fit. Nothing I wrote suggests that the Wilsons should be compelled (or “chivvied”) to make such an accommodation, only that such an accommodation would seem reasonable if they should so choose.

        If the dedicated plot of the sunflower farm were small, relatively isolated, and clearly marked “clothing optional,” parents would have to be looking to take offense by bringing their children within eyeshot. Plus, your contention that nudity on private land might run afoul of a law proscribing public nudity contradicts your earlier contention that “the landowner can tell anyone else claiming an ‘interest’ in his land to get lost.”

  9. We can all be deeply reassured that the Russian government is conducting a thorough investigation of the crash of Prigozhin’s airplane. Almost as reassured as we were when President Richard M. Nixon announced this in regard to the Watergate matter: “I was determined that we should get to the bottom of the matter, and that the truth should be fully brought out—no matter who was involved.” That was April 30 (not April 1), 1973.

  10. There are worse things than participating in nude photos amongst sunflowers (assuming that is all that took place). Example of something worse: last Sunday NY Times special fashion insert magazine cover of a scantily clad woman leaning back with wide spread legs. Or oversize breasts breaking out of a dress on a live woman in public. The smudging of private and public behavior is arguably the main evidence of societal degeneration, not just bad taste. But maybe I am just too old….

    1. No not too old. It is bad taste.
      At my age I truly believe that most if not all people look much better with their clothes on, at least I definitely do!

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