It’s December 15, 2016, already Thursday, and only ten shopping days till Christmas. It’s also the Day for Two Weird Comestibles: National Gingerbread Latte Day and National Lemon Cupcake Day. Don’t talk to me about flavored lattes, which have turned coffee into a milkshake, just as bottled water is becoming soda and granola bars became candy. Fortunately, it’s also a non-fake holiday: International Tea Day.
On this day in 1791, the Bill of Rights—the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution—became law after ratification by the Virginia legislature. In 1933, the 21st Amendment was affirmed, repealing the ill-fated 18th Amendment, which prohibited the manufacture and sale of alcohol and gave rise to the miserable era of Prohibition. Exactly six years later, the movie “Gone With the Wind” premiered in Atlanta, listed by Wikipedia as still the highest-grossing film of all time—when adjusted for inflation. On this day in 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders in the DSM compilation. On December 15, 1961, Adolf Eichmann was sentenced to Death (btw, I’ve finished The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich). And on this day in 1978, Jimmy Carter severed diplomatic ties with Taiwan and recognized the People’s Republic of China.
Notables born on this day include Nobel Laureate Maurice Wilkins (1916), Max Yasgur (1919; and you better know who he is!), and Freeman Dyson (1923). Those who died on this day include Sitting Bull (1890). Fats Waller (1943), Glenn Miller (1944), Wolfgang Pauli (1958), Walt Disney (1966), and William Proxmire (2005). I’m a Waller fan; although he mugged and played the clown, he was an absolutely terrific stride piano player and entertainer. Here he is playing his most famous song, “Ain’t Misbehavin'”. This is from the movie “Stormy Weather” with Lena Horne; accompanists on this song include Benny Carter on trumpet and Zutty Singleton on drums:
And since we’re doing this movie, here’s the “Jumping Jive” sequence with Cab Calloway and the fabulous Nicholas Brothers, a scene that Fred Astaire called the greatest movie musical number he had ever seen. I have to agree it’s up there (and Astaire knew what he was talking about). The Nicholas Brothers’ performance (starting at 1:33) is beyond belief. (I know I’ve put this up before.)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili set up headquarters in the wood basket next to the fireplace, but its salubrious location also made her uncomfortable:
Hili: After long deliberation I’ve come to a conclusion.A: What conclusion is that?Hili: That it’s not very comfortable here.
Hili: Po głębszym namyśle doszłam do wniosku.
Hili: Tu nie jest bardzo wygodnie.