Sunday: Hili dialogue

Praise Ceiling Cat, from whom all good things flow: it’s Sunday, October 8, 2017. Here in America it’s National Fluffernutter Day, and if you don’t know what that is, click the link (not recommended). And it’s Air Force Day in India.

Not much happened on this day in history (maybe history slows down in this hemisphere when winter approaches). But on October 8, 1918, American corporal Alvin C. York singlehandedly killed 28 German soldiers and captured 132 (as well as 35 machine guns), a feat for which he received the Medal of Honor.  Raised in extreme poverty in Appalachia, York became a hard drinker and then stopped when he became a Christian. A conscientious objector, he nevertheless served in the Army and, when the time came, did his duty. After the war, when he became famous, he turned down many lucrative offers, preferring to become a farmer and start a Bible school. “Sergeant York,” a 1940 movie based on his exploits, and starring Gary Cooper, became a huge hit (I’ve seen it several times); it got Cooper the Best Actor Oscar.

Here’s a battle scene from the movie:

And the real Alvin York:

On this day in 1956, New York Yankees pitcher Don Larsen performed a baseball feat that never happened before and hasn’t happened since. Do you know what it is?  On October 8, 1967, Che Guevara was captured in Bolivia; he was executed the next day. On this day in 1982, the musical Cats opened on Broadway. It ran almost 18 years, closing on September 10, 2000. I never saw it despite my love of cats. The notion of humans in cat suits playing felids somehow doesn’t appeal. On this day in 2001, George W. Bush established the Office of Homeland Security. One of its sub-agencies is the Transportation Security Administration, is specially tasked with groping my buttocks every time I travel. Finally, on October 8, 2014, the first person in America diagnosed with Ebola virus died.

Notables born on this day are few, including only Chevy Chase (1943) and Sigourney Weaver (1949, only three months older than I ). Those who died on this day were also few, including, Henry Fielding (1754), Wendell Willkie (1944), Willy Brandt (1992), and Paul Prudhomme (2015).

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, reports are that Hili is starting to put on her winter weight. But she’s still trying to look like a predator:

A: You look threatening.
Hili: I’m trying.
In Polish:
Ja: Groźnie wyglądasz.
Hili: Staram się.

Here are some police saving a brood of ducklings that fell into a drain, and reuniting them with their mother. Who says all cops are bad?

From Matthew we have two edifying tw**ts. First, LOOK AT THIS BIRD! To find out more, go to Wikipedia’s long-wattled umbrellabird (Cephalopterus penduliger) page, where you’ll learn why only the males have the long throat wattle.

And, in China, a tidal bore moving upstream strikes the water going downstream:


  1. Randy schenck
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Oh yes. A perfect game in the world series.

  2. Frank Bath
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    Good bore. The world renowned Severn bore in Britain is famous for the surfers that ride the wave for mile after mile up river. Youtube.

  3. Posted October 8, 2017 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    Wonderful video of the Umbrellabird!

  4. Art
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    “Who says all cops are bad?”
    I give up; who?

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted October 8, 2017 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      Fox News says that’s what ALL liberals say, especially if they’re Black.

    • Kiwi Dave
      Posted October 8, 2017 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

      Presumably, not Duck Lives Matter.

  5. Posted October 8, 2017 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    Didn’t know about the tidal bore. Nature is so awesome.

  6. BJ
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    I don’t know about all that explaining in the tidal bore video. As a brilliant man once said, “tide goes in, tide goes out. Never a miscommunication. You can’t explain that. You can explain why the tide goes in…”

    Anyway, that bird has a beard even better than Daniel Dennett.

  7. David Harper
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Tidal bores occur on many rivers. Here in Britain, the best known is the bore on the River Severn, in southwest England.

    One of the most interesting seminars I ever attended as a graduate student in Liverpool was given by a visitor from the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory. Tidal bores were his hobby. He had figured out a reliable way to predict when a bore would occur on any given river, and he travelled around the world filming them. His seminar (to the applied mathematics department) consisted of a single equation, then a series of videos of bores from around the world, culminating with a bore on the River Mersey, our local river, filmed from a helicopter hovering over the Runcorn Gap, where the Mersey estuary narrows very sharply.

    • bonetired
      Posted October 8, 2017 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      Bores from around the world? Does that include Ken Ham?

      (probably too easy a quip but I couldn’t resist it!)

    • John Conoboy
      Posted October 8, 2017 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

      They are quite interesting to watch. I have see the one in the Bay of Fundy, which is probably the one place best known to folks in the U.S. and Canada.

  8. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Cats is OK, but much better is its source material, T.S. Eliot’s “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats”

  9. Posted October 8, 2017 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    Unfortunately, the captioning on the bore video manages to screw it up:

    Bores are most obvious at high tide when the Earth and the Moon are in alignment

    I’m assuming they missed out “with the Sun”.

    • Zetopan
      Posted October 10, 2017 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

      “I’m assuming they missed out “with the Sun””

      Indeed, that was the first thing that I had noticed as well. Exactly when are the Earth and Moon NOT in alignment?

  10. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted October 8, 2017 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    That’s an impressive tidal bore!

    However, the initial 30 seconds’ worth of images, of two waves colliding and the resulting impact line appearing to ‘travel’ at very high speed, can be seen on any very flat beach where the waves sweep across the sand (though possibly on a smaller scale).

    Waves can do bizarre things on very flat beaches – one time I was with some friends and we drove down Karioitahi Beach to near the Waikato river mouth, parked 50 yards from the water’s edge, and then after a few minutes the sea came in, a foot deep, sweeping across the sand like an express train. I was leaning into it and sliding backwards, on our Honda CR-V it piled up to half-way up the windows on the seaward side, luckily the Honda dug in diagonally nose-down instead of being swept away. After it receded we found the total uselessness of alleged ‘all-wheel-drives’ without difflocks when one wheel has no traction. It took fifteen minutes (interrupted by another, luckily smaller, freak wave) and the assistance of a proper 4-wheel-drive with a chain to extract it from the sand.

    It seems the ocean waves and the Waikato River estuary form a chaotic system which irregularly combines to produce a monster wave.


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