Good morning! It’s Saturday, September 17, 2016—National Apple Dumpling day! (Do these things even exist any more?) But it’s a big holiday for Australia, for on this day in 1900, Queen Victoria issued the Proclamation for Declaring the Establishment of the Commonwealth of Australia. Can you imagine?: it’s not even listed under Wikipedia‘s Sept. 17 holidays!
Also on this day, in 1683 (and Matthew will like this), Antonie van Leeuwenhoek wrote a letter to the Royal Society describing his observation of “animalcules” under his microscope: the first recorded description of protozoa. On September 17, 1916, Baron von Richtofen, the first famous “ace,” scored his first aerial kill. After downing 80 enemy aircraft, Richtofen was killed in 1918 at the age of 25:
The greatest ace of all time, however, was another German, Erich Hartmann (1922-1993), credited with shooting down 352 allied aircraft, 345 of them Soviet. He crash-landed 14 times, but was never shot down. Captured by the Soviets, he eventually spent 10 years in labor camps before being returned to Germany:
Notables born on this day include Billy the Kid (1859), Warren Burger (1907), Stirling Moss (1929; still with us), Ken Kesey (1935), and perhaps the greatest mountaineer of all time, Reinhold Messner (1944; the first man to summit Everest alone and without supplementary oxygen: a stupendous feat). Notables who died on this day include Dred Scott (1858), Karl Popper (1994), Spiro Agnew (1996), and Red Skelton (1997). Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili was dithering about what to do, when suddenly it struck her that she was hungry:
Hili: Aren’t you surprised?A: At what?Hili: Before a cat can get its thoughts together it’s time to eat something.
Hili: Czy ciebie to nie dziwi?
Hili: Zanim się kot zorientuje już pora coś zjeść.