Saturday: Hili dialogue

It’s the weekend at last: Saturday, January 20, 2018: National Cheese Lover’s Day. It’s also the feast day of the saint Maria Cristina of the Immaculate Conception Brando, a distant relative of Marlon Brando. And, of course, the U.S. government shut down at midnight last night. Let the blame-affixing begin! As CNN reports:

Trump and his representatives had been labeling the event the “Schumer shutdown” after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, but the New York Democrat was quick to call it “the Trump shutdown.”

Ceiling Cat help our dysfunctional republic!

On January 20, 1783, Great Britain signed a peace treaty with the U.S., officially ending the fighting of the American Revolution.  In 1841, Hong Kong Island was occupied by the British; exactly 80 years later, the first Constitution of Turkey was adopted, making Turkey a republic. It was inspired largely by the Great Secularist Mustafa Kemal Atatürk,  whose legacy is now being dismantled by Erdogan and his theocratic thugs.  On this day in 1942, the famous Wannsee Conference was held outside Berlin, a meeting in which Nazi officials explicitly discussed the “Final Solution to the Jewish question”. For those who doubt the existence of the “Endlösung”, here’s a letter from Reinhard Heydrich, architect of the Holocaust, to Martin Luther, a Nazi diplomat, about the practical implementation of the “final solution of the Jewish question”. Note that it’s dated February 26, 1942.  This refuted the Holocaust deniers, unless they claim (as they have) that the “final solution” involved the deportation rather than the extermination of the Jews. Note the stamp that this is a “Geheime Reichssache!”, or “secret business of the Reich”:


January 20 is traditionally Inauguration Day for new U.S. presidents, so on January 20 these people were inaugurated: John F. Kennedy (1961), Richard Nixon (1969), Jimmy Carter (1977), Ronald Reagan (1981), George H. W. Bush (1989), Bill Clinton (1993), George W. Bush (2001), Barack Obama (2009), and Donald Trump (2017, 😦 )

Notables born on this day include Leadbelly (1888), George Burns (1896, died at 100), Aristotle Onassis (1906), Joy Adamson (1910), Federico Fellini (1920), Buzz Aldrin (1930), Bill Maher (1956), and Republicans Kellyanne Conway (1967) and Nikki Haley (1972).

Those who gave up the ghost on this day include John Ruskin (1900), Johnny Weissmuller (1984), Audrey Hepburn (1993), Gerry Mulligan (1996), and Miriam Rothschild (2005, although enriched with the Rothschild fortune, she chose to spend her time collecting and writing about insects; I once met her and she was patrician but funny as hell).

Here’s the Gerry Mulligan Quartet (with Chet Baker on trumpet) playing a Coo Jazz version of “Stardust”:

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is getting more and more depressed that she can’t go out (she hates snow):

Hili: I have a feeling that it’s not OK.
A: What is not OK?
Hili: Generally it’s not OK.
In Polish:
Hili: Mam wrażenie, że nie jest dobrze.
Ja: Z czym nie jest dobrze?
Hili: Tak w ogóle nie jest dobrze.

Some tw**ts from Dr. Cobb. This pair is very good:

This guy probably didn’t know it was Penguin Awareness Day:

And a scene from The Big Sleep; Dorothy Malone, who won an Oscar for “Written on the Wind”, here plays a Hot Bookstore Lady in The Big Sleep. The dialogue just drips with sexual innuendo (be sure to watch the four-minute clip; what a great movie that was!).  Malone died yesterday at 93.



  1. Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:38 am | Permalink

    A great movie indeed, Jerry. But as directory Hawks telegrammed to author Chandler: who killed the chauffeur? – MC

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:44 am | Permalink

      It is said that Chandler didn’t know the answer.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      And a great scene, too, but my favorite line is in the beginning, when Bogey’s ushered into the conservatory. Gen’l Sternwood offers brandy & a cigar. Bogey demurs. The Gen’l encourages him, saying, “At my age I must indulge my vices by proxy.”

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      The acquired wisdom is Owen Taylor killed himself, but the fact is Chandler originally forgot him somewhere down the line.

  2. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:43 am | Permalink


    Even the font is so evocative it’s practically never used seriously anymore, like the moustache, or the names…

  3. Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    Coyote on the bus! Brilliant!

    And I am sure Gethyn invented National Cheese Lovers’ Day! 😂

  4. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Last year, today was dubbed “Know Your Penguins” day – we still have the printout. Liberal propaganda for sure – but I’ll take that propaganda over the other…

  5. Randall Schenck
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    Really looks like winter in Poland. Hili will need skis out there.

  6. moleatthecounter
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    The Wannsee Conference – There is a good film (TV movie actually) depicting the events (or some of them at least) of that notorious meeting. It’s called ‘Conspiracy’ and features Kenneth Brannagh, Stanley Tucci and an excellent cast.

    I saw it last month, and it’s rather good in my view – well-acted, fascinating and well, rather chilling in the eventual general acceptance of what is going on…

    • mfdempsey1946
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      I remember a 1984 German film, “Die Wannseekonferenz,” that played in a few US theaters as “The Wannsee Conference.”

      It runs 85 minutes, a selling point in the film’s advertising because the conference reportedly ran 85 minutes as well. (In this respect, it is like “High Noon.”)

      However, no transcript of the exact words spoken at Wannsee is known to exist, so all the film’s dialogue had to be created using other documents.

      This movie’s tone suggests a Fortune 500 board meeting — quiet, mostly matter-of-fact, steadfastly businesslike, and all the more unnerving for that.

      • moleatthecounter
        Posted January 21, 2018 at 7:09 am | Permalink

        Yes, good choice of phrase there – that was what I found most chilling and disturbing about ‘Conspiracy’… The sheer business-like attitude of certain group members, especially Reinhard Heydrich (The Brannagh character) was remarkably well depicted. He seemed almost likeable…

  7. George
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    PCC(e) – slight typo in you paragraph about inauguration of US presidents. First time you write the date, it is November 20. Second time you have it right.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 8:01 am | Permalink

      Yeah, I heard that from another reader, too. I fixed it, thanks.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 9:17 am | Permalink

        There’s another leaving the “l” off of “Cool Jazz.”

  8. Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    / Ceiling Cat help our dysfunctional republic!/

    I put my head back and had my first good laugh today. Ty jc.

  9. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    I first came across Miriam Rothshild on an edition of the superb & wacky late night TV programme, After Dark, which was broadcast absolutely live with no scheduled end – a sadly missed prog [UK TV, channel 4, 1988] – that edition was on animal rights. HERE’S A PHOTO OF THE PANEL with her on the right wearing purple [she often wore purple I noticed] – she was 79 then & what an interesting life she had! She was a coder at the top secret Bletchley Park during WWII.

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      I think Pannonica de Koenigswarter, the patron saint of Thelonious Monk, was Miriam’s kid sister.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

        That’s right Nica, the BeBop Baroness as she became known, she was a patron to both TM & Bird. Bird died in her suite at the segregated [no blacks] Stanhope Hotel, 995 Fifth Avenue in 1955. A shrine!

        The hotel kicked her out the next day I think

  10. George
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    By the time the Wannsee Conference was held, the Germans had been busy killing Polish Jews for almost two and a half years – since September of 1939. The Final Solution (i.e. kill the Jews in death camps and dispose of their bodies in crematoria) does not get going until the summer of 1942. The Final Solution should not be equated with the Holocaust. It was a part of the Holocaust which had been proceeding at a rapid pace before the implementation of the Final Solution.

    Not many Polish Jews were left to send to the death camps. Most of those Jews were from the rest of Europe. By the time of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in April of 1943, there were not that many Jews left in Warsaw. Disease, starvation and bullets were the weapons used.

  11. Torbjörn Larsson
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    January 20 is traditionally Inauguration Day for new U.S. presidents

    I saw one of our newspapers summed the year under the lede “It is hard to imagine that we have to suffer three more years” [of “the Shithole president”].

    • rickflick
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      The only thing that might save us the catastrophe of 3 more years is a lucky, final, spasm of the dying heart of a heartless man. It’s unseemly to wish the death of others, so I’ll just keep it to myself.

  12. Ken Kukec
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    The lovely and talented Ms. Malone became known to another generation of tube-watching Americans as Mia Farrow’s mother in the original prime-time soap, “Peyton Place.”

  13. Saul Sorrell-Till
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    That is a very funny clip. Almost every aspect of male fantasies about ‘dowdy’ women condensed into a single scene:

    the astonishment when the female book-store owner takes off her glasses, as though she’s immediately transformed from a hideous monstrosity into a beauty queen,

    the fact that she immediately shuts the shop down and pulls down all the blinds as soon as she’s offered a drink of hard liquor from a complete stranger,

    the fabulously juvenile male dream of a woman who’ll do anything you want and be up for it at any future date without ever being offended when you bugger off afterwards without a backwards glance;

    it all plays into the general male fantasy that every woman is secretly a seething bag of horniness, just waiting for some average schmoe to come into their life and do them the favour of having sex with them, a favour for which they will be eternally grateful and which they will allow said schmoe to repeat as many times as he wants, without any strings attached.

    You know, modern Hollywood gets a lot of stick for the way it treats female characters, but this clip does put things into perspective…:)

    • rickflick
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      Yes! My thoughts exactly. I would have married the hideous monster.

      • Saul Sorrell-Till
        Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

        I think that’d have been overkill. She’d clearly have been satisfied if you just visited her for sex every week with a couple of bottles of fortified wine.

        • rickflick
          Posted January 20, 2018 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

          Not my cup-o-tea.

          • gravelinspector-Aidan
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:24 pm | Permalink

            So, your pick-up beverage of a cup of tea was unsuccessful, and the Lizard King’s “half gallons of wine and six packs of beer” worked better. Who’d a thunk it?

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

            He had the romantic fatalism, unwashed leather, tunes & prose workin’ their Mr. mojo risin’ on his behalf though. Plus he shagged anything with [mostly] a pulse.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:28 pm | Permalink

      Did I spot a continuity error? When Bogie walks in, the sign (hanging on the inaccessible side of the door) is showing blank, but when she goes to close the door the sign is showing “CLOSED” to the outside world.

      • rickflick
        Posted January 21, 2018 at 5:12 am | Permalink

        You’re right. Only a gravelinspector would notice. 😎

  14. DrBrydon
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    I first noticed Dorothy Malone in The Big Sleep. Still have a crush.

  15. nicky
    Posted January 20, 2018 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    If I recall correctly the Wannsee Conference was mainly a kind of briefing to second order commanders to implement the ‘Endlösung’. Hitler nor Himmler attended, the decisions were already made. Still one of the most abject ‘conferences’ in human history.
    Heydrich was presiding, and indeed the most senior Nazi official present.
    [He was ‘SS-Obergruppenführer’ and ‘General der Polizei’. And also ‘stellvertretender (acting) Reichsprotektor’ of Bohemia and Moravia. An important Nazi leader, but just ‘sub-top’. He was killed in 1942 by the Checko-slovak resistance.]

    • Posted January 20, 2018 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

      My argument about this was directed against the denialists’ claim that there is no WRITTEN Nazi document ordering the implementation of the mass killing of Jews.

  16. Posted January 20, 2018 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    Wrt Holocaust deniers, I recommend the movie “Denial”, available on Netflix.

  17. Posted January 21, 2018 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Great Dorothy Malone.
    Especially beautiful in that captivating scene from that mysterious, messy, wonderful film whose obscurity is so fascinating.
    For me, by the way, she’s even more charming with her hair clip and glasses on.

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