Wednesday: Hili dialogue

I am back in Chicago and it’s bloody hot here. My first task is to buy new Rollerblades so I can exercise in the heat without killing myself. And the state of the world is dispiriting: too much violence, too much hatred, too many obtuse and self-deluding Regressive Leftists, and so on. The good news, though, is that Trump is going to lose. Does anybody want to bet me that he’ll win? That’s a bet you can’t lose, for if Trump loses, you’ll be happy and won’t mind paying me!

It’s June 22, otherwise known to Catholics as the Feast Day of Thomas More. On this day in 1633, the Pope forced Galileo to recant his notion of a heliocentric Solar System. In 1906 the flag of Sweden was adopted on this day; do you know what it looks like?


Felicitations to our Swedish readers!

On this day in 1941, Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union, breaking their nonaggression pact and ensuring that, in the end, Germany would lose the war. And for soccer fans, since we’re in the middle of a tournament (go Argentina!), Wikipedia says this happened on June 22, 1986:

” The controversial Hand of God goal by Diego Maradona in the quarter-finals of the 1986 FIFA World Cup match betweenArgentina and England. This was later followed by the Goal of the Century also by Maradona. Argentina would win 2–1 and go on to win the world cup.”

The second goal was quite an achievement. Although I’ve posted it before, here it is again:

Notables born on this day include John Dillinger (1903), Dianne Feinstein (1933), Kris Kristofferson (1936), and my heartthrob Meryl Streep (1949, making her just six months older than I). Those who died on this day include Fred Astaire (1987) and Eppie Lederere (aka Ann Landers; 2002). Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Editor Hili is riding herd on Malgorzata and Andrzej. Hili’s job is just to enjoy herself and ride herd on those who do the real work! In other words, she’s a cat

Hili: Tabula rasa.
A: I don’t understand.
Hili: That’s what the ancient Romans used to say when they saw an empty computer screen.

In Polish:
Hili: Tabula rasa.
Ja: Nie rozumiem.
Hili: Tak starożytni Rzymianie mówili widząc pusty ekran komputera.


  1. Dominic
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    Hili still uses XP?!

    It may be hot there but the nights are drawing in!

  2. Posted June 22, 2016 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Typo alert. Fred Astaire died in 1987, not ’37.

  3. E.A. Blair
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    Also on this day: in 1951, Great Britain repealed the last of its witchcraft laws.

    • Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:13 am | Permalink

      Also for 22 June:

      H. Rider Haggard born, 1856. Who could imagine a world with Allan Quartermain?

      And even more significantly: George Carlin died on this day in 2008.

  4. somer
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    I think someone might have posted this in an earlier thread but with Cory Lewandowski gone and campaign finances a mess lets hope the Trump ego bubble has been pricked beyond patching!

  5. darrelle
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    Maradona was without doubt one of the greatest to date in soccer. But I’ve always thought this goal was over-hyped. What stands out most to me when I watch it is not so much the skill of Maradona but really poor playing by the defenders. So poor in two instances that it almost looks like they “took a dive.”

    • rickflick
      Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      That was my impression as well. (Caution: I’m not a serious fan, so I don’t really know what I’m saying here).

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted June 22, 2016 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      So poor in two instances that it almost looks like they “took a dive.”

      Paid to lose? In soccer! Such a thing has never been suggested before. [Opens brown envelope and starts counting.]

  6. Torbjörn Larsson
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    Thanks and I hope for a return of happiness back! Our flag always translates in my mind to blueberries in thick cream – yum.

  7. John
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:43 am | Permalink

    I believe it should be “making her just six months older than me” or “making her just six months older than I am”, not “making her just six months older than I” (the type of thing that as a hypercorrection)

    • HaggisForBrains
      Posted June 22, 2016 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      The last version is still correct, with “am” understood

  8. Randall Schenck
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Speaking of soccer – U.S. v Argentina just played. Messi, Messi, Messi

    • John Conoboy
      Posted June 22, 2016 at 11:58 am | Permalink

      It was a good game–for Argentina. For the US, not so much. Messi is a great team player. He actually could have taken a shot, but instead passed to a team mate who then scored. I started watching on Univision, but found that there is a site where you can watch the Copa America online for free.

  9. Vaal
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    About that soccer clip: it’s funny because I’d just seen a basketball clip on another forum to which I had the same reaction. Someone had asked why was Jordan known as the best basketball player? The response was to post a clip of Jordon goal highlights.
    To me, someone who doesn’t follow basketball, it told me nothing. It looked like a basketball player making nice plays – exactly what I see any other time basketball is on TV. I couldn’t discern anything about it that is supposed to tell me why he was doing anything better.

    Same with that soccer goal clip. It’s completely non-descriptive to a non-soccer-follower like myself and I’m sure I’ve seen plenty of other more impressive looking goals.

    Looks all the same to me.

    Reminds me of my poor Father in law and my sons. He only listens to classical music and when he hears me kid’s music he thinks it’s terrible because “it all sounds the same.” So he tries strenuously to get them to appreciate classical music by taking them to the symphony every few months. When my kids come home and I ask what they thought, they inevitably say “It’s ok I guess, but…it all sounds the same.”

    • Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      I’m sure you weren’t asking seriously but on Jordan:

      1. He could shoot. He practiced it more than pretty much anyone else. He practiced his ass off. Great work ethic.

      2. His ability to move, like very few can. He could move his body in ways that made good players look like idiots.

      3. His sense of what was going on around him. Some of his passes were insanely difficult yet right on the mark and, like his moves, allowed teammates to score and made the opponents look like fools.

      4. Sheer athleticism. His speed and jumping ability were amazing to watch. He had great endurance (again, hard work).

      5. He played a very clean game.

      6. He had style, on and off the court.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:59 am | Permalink

        Not an expert in basketball at all but – 5 championships in a row with the Bulls. Even a non expert like me could just watch him play a couple of games to see what a great player he was. Really no one could touch him in his prime. Like watching Messi play soccer…no big deal?

      • Vaal
        Posted June 22, 2016 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

        Thanks jblilie, that’s an enlightening list for an ignorant putz like me.

    • Posted June 23, 2016 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

      The music story is beautiful!

  10. Posted June 22, 2016 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    I sympathise with those who might not see the brilliance of the second goal (the first was pretty brilliant in an ‘underhand’ way), but Maradona starts nearly 10 yards inside his own half with a brilliant turn that takes him away from two close defenders, outruns Peter Reid (OK, he’s not the quickest, but he was terrier like) cuts inside Terry Butcher, who should have pushed him to the right, squared up Terry Fenwick, who presumably was determined to push him on to his right, then dummied Peter Shilton to pass him on the right, evading Butcher’s lunge to poke the ball home.

    All this on a blisteringly hot day in Mexico on a bumpy pitch in a World Cup quarter final against a country they had just fought a war against. High octane stuff. Granted, an Italian defender would probably have simply blocked him before he got close to the penalty box. Never mind.

    The genius to me is the way that Maradona manipulates the ball almost entirely with his left foot even when going right; the balance of the man is astounding.

    Funnily enough England had a warning of his dribbling skills in a similar situation a few years before – see here:

    • Vaal
      Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      That’s a fascinating insight from someone who knows soccer. I went back to watch the clip again and, unfortunately, it’s still lost on me. I can’t discern what he is doing any differently from any other soccer player – it looks exactly like any other time I happen to watch soccer for a couple of minutes. I think I’d have to watch soccer for quite a while to get any true feeling for what is special about that sequence.

      (It’s similar to my interest in MMA and people who watch MMA for the first times “It looks just like two guys rolling around on the ground” but to someone familiar with the techniques it’s captivating).

      • Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:45 am | Permalink

        I understand what you are saying because, like you, I can’t see what good basketball players are doing different to the others either!

        The reality of ball sports is that the ball is subject to numerous influences (including one’s own clumsy touches) that stop it going where one wants. The little shifts that Maradona makes with his left foot to pass to the right of Fenwick and Shilton are exquisite and extremely difficult to do at speed, on a bumpy pitch and against (reasonably) good opposition, and they are subtle enough to not be obvious, I guess. He’s almost doing nothing! Most players would not be able to keep the ball so close and under control with these touches – the ball would run away from them. They allow him to practically walk the ball into the net.

        I also think his very left-footedness helps his dribbling. Most players going right would naturally use the right foot to continue, but even on the final poke, he uses his left. This ‘monodexterity’ is unusual and defenders were (often) surprised by it.

        I myself complained about the quality of English defending at the time (clatter him!), but the goal still stands as a moment of sublime skill.

  11. kansaskitty
    Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    My daughter and I were in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis one time looking for the graves of relatives when we came upon the grave of John H. Dillinger Jr. He’s buried in a family plot there. The name Dillinger may have one time been just another surname, but the miscreant has forever sullied the name & it is now associated with the lowest sort of criminality! It was a weird feeling to stand at the grave of a gangster & murderer!

  12. Posted June 22, 2016 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Go on with the roller blades.

    I too found them a superb way to get exercise. (I hope you wear protective gear against falls. I occasionally fell even after I got pretty good. I wore leather gloves, wrist braces, and hard-shell knee pads.)

    No good place to use them now, too worried about falling injuries since I’m older now.

  13. Posted June 23, 2016 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    I think that there is a high probability that Trump will win. I like the idea of the bet, but I am not thrilled about the money transfer. I’d instead suggest the loser to send the winner an article reprint.

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