Tuesday: Hili dialogue (and Leon monologue)

It’s Tuesday, January 30, 2018, and we’ve one more day to go in the month. It’s National Croissant Day, which is crazy because that’s a French food and shouldn’t be culturally appropriated with an American “National” Day. I’m shaking and crying now. It’s Fred Korematsu Day in California, celebrating the birthday of that Japanese-American civil rights activist.

On this day in 516 BC (how do they know the date with such certainty?), construction was finished on the Second Temple of Jerusalem.  On January 30, 1649, King Charles I of England was beheaded for treason; he was 48 years old. Exactly twelve years later, Oliver Cromwell, who helped doom King Charles but died of an infection in 1658, was exhumed and “ritually executed”: his lifeless body was hanged, beheaded, and thrown into a pit. On this day in 1908, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was released from prison in South Africa for refusing to carry his identity card. Though he was sentenced to two months in jail, cabinet member (and later Prime Minister) Jan C. Smuts ordered his release.  On this day in 1933, Adolf Hitler was sworn in as Chancellor of Germany.  Then, on January 30, 1948, Gandhi, on his way to a prayer meeting at Birla House, was assassinated by Hindu extremist Nathuram Godse.  Godse, along with a co-conspirator, was hanged in November, 1949.

Here are two videos; the first of the funeral procession and cremation itself, the second of Gandhi’s ashes after he was cremated. Note the presence of Nehru, as well as Lord Mountbatten and Edwina Mountbatten, in the second video. I, too, have paid by homage to Gandhi at the Raj Ghat where he was cremated.



On this day in 1969, the Beatles gave their last public performance. As you may know, it was an impromptu concert given on the roof of Apple Records, was broken up by the police, and was featured in the movie Let it Be. Here’s one of the nine songs they played:

Notables born on this day include Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882), Roy Eldridge (1911), Barbara Tuchman (1912), Gene Hackman (1930), Vanessa Redgrave and Boris Spassky (1937), Dick Cheney (1941), and Phil Collins (1951).  Those who expired on January 30 include Betsy Ross (1836), Mahatma Gandhi and Orville Wright (both 1948), and Coretta Scott King (2006).

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili is looking at Andrzej’s back as he bends down to get a book:

Hili: It looks very suspicious.
Cyrus: I think so, too.
In Polish:
Hili: To wygląda bardzo podejrzanie.
Cyrus: Też mam takie wrażenie.

Over in Wloclawek, Leon got a bit cold during his walkies in the snow:

Leon: My paw is frozen, breathe on it!

First, two serious tweet found by Grania: Iranian women risk arrest by publicly removing their hijabs:

Another tweet from Grania: Ratty takes a shower. This is amazing, but I’m wondering if it’s real. Station KATSU implies that it is, but there’s no identifying information (h/t Snowy Owl). What do you think?

And from reader Blue—Scottish Fold kitten in the loo:

Matthew sent a strange pair of roommates:

. . and two weird caterpillers:

Apparently a church-school assignment, sent by Matthew:


  1. Posted January 30, 2018 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    Is the date known because it was Tu bishvat?

  2. Posted January 30, 2018 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    The croissant was invented by an Austrian from Vienna IIRC. So the French appropriated it first.

    • Pierluigi Ballabeni
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:17 am | Permalink

      Yes. Croissants and other pastries are even called “viennoiseries” in French.

  3. Posted January 30, 2018 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    It’s not a rat, it’s a South American rodent called a pacarana, which can move its forelimbs in a more human-like way than a rat. It is also not very happy, as it has been soaped-up by a human and is trying to get the stuff off. All that for a few million clicks. 😦

    More here: http://www.newsweek.com/viral-shower-rat-video-not-what-we-think-starters-its-not-rat-794526

    – MC

    • Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:03 am | Permalink

      Yes – why would an animal need detergents in its fur? why do humans come to that???

    • Desnes Diev
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      Also there is something wrong with its right ear: it looks like cut.

      I am not sure this animal is well treated.

  4. Roger Latour
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Keep up the good work! More Canis lupus familiaris! “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” Mark Twain apparently.

    • rickflick
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      So true. My daughter has 3 dogs – a large hound a medium hound and a tiny cheweenie. It’s the cheweenie that rules the roost.

  5. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    The babble on the internet says it’s a young Pacarana rodent [no tail, big head] from Peru that someone covered with soap, which it’s trying to get rid of…

    I can’t find the source YouTube video, but here’s one of many that’s appeared recently:

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:17 am | Permalink

      MC – sorry. Didn’t refresh my WEIT tab before posting

  6. davidintoronto
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Were the anti-hijab photos actually taken in Iran? I ask because I see a lot of overcoats and snow.

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:24 am | Permalink

      They have ski resorts in Iran – good ones!
      Some winters my Tehran friend has Mojdeh to clear snow off the flat roof or it will collapse under the weight. One can see the Alborz mountains North of Tehran from Tehran. In summer she sleeps out on the roof.

    • Paul S
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:33 am | Permalink

      From website iranthisway
      The weather of Tehran can sometimes be unpredictably harsh. The record high temperature is 43 °C (109 °F) and the record low is −17 °C (1 °F). On January 5 and 6, 2008, after years of relatively little snow, a wave of heavy snow and low temperatures covered the city in a thick layer of snow and ice, forcing the Council of Ministers to officially declare a state of emergency and close down the capital on January 6 and 7.

  7. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    No idea why a bee would live with a wolf spider. The mind is boggled.

  8. dabertini
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    Will the fiftieth anniversary of LET IT BE mean that Paul and Ringo will finally reissue the movie and music in all forms? I am not holding my breath.

    • Barry Lyons
      Posted January 30, 2018 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      I doubt it. You’ll recall that a decade or so ago McCartney oversaw a CD release called “Let it Be… Naked.” I won’t go so far as to say that it was an attempt at a whitewash, but McCartney’s intention with that release — I’m referring to the second CD, which contained snippets of talk from the sessions — was to downplay the acrimoniousness of those January sessions. To release the movie in its full “glory” would only expose the degree to which the Beatles were not getting along. That ain’t gonna happen, at least not while the two remaining Beatles are still with us.

      • revelator60
        Posted January 30, 2018 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

        “Let It Be Naked” was also an attempt to remove Phil Spector from the album, since McCartney hated his production and the additions made to “The Long and Winding Road.”

        I really don’t see any reason not to reissue the movie. The degree to which the Beatles were not getting along is common knowledge, and the Beatles Anthology documentary even reproduces the McCartney-Harrison fight from “Let It Be.”

        The acrimoniousness of those sessions also strikes me as overstated. Before watching “Let It Be” I prepared myself to view a depressing, anger-ridden film. But it wasn’t. Even the famous McCartney-Harrison fight was more of a passive-aggressive snit than a real fight. The Beatles were still functioning well enough to leave behind an album’s worth of good songs and a terrific live performance on the rooftop. I enjoyed “Let It Be” more than any other Beatles film because it presented the group as it was, not behind a fictional storyline. It has moments of stress and bitterness, but it ultimately shows the greatest band in the world working its magic.

  9. peter
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    30 January 516 BC:
    Book Ezra 6: 15
    ‘On the third day of the month of Adar in the sixth year of the rule of Darius, the temple was finished’
    Someone will have made a list to compare date.

  10. Jenny Haniver
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    The article in the Brisbane Times https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/the-odd-couple-keen-eye-spies-bee-and-spider-bedfellows-in-world-first-20180125-p4yywi.html cited in the tweet about about the bee and the spider is worth a look. It wasn’t just a one-time signting; he watch the nest for several days.

  11. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    I’d totally forgotten about the police breaking up the “Let it Be” concert, but it is apparently shown in the film (which has not been available since the early 1980s- there are no home video releases).

  12. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    The Second Temple is traditionally said to have been finished on on the third day of the month Adar. If this is true, it’s actually a fairly simple calculation to figure out the Gregorian (of Julian) date.

  13. Nobody Special
    Posted January 30, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Ghandi’s funeral reminded me of a wonderful anecdote I heard regarding the funeral scene in Richard Attenborough’s eponymous epic.
    Apparantly, the hundreds (thousands?) of extras were on set, there to play the role of the mass of mourners. Attenborough called the set manager – a bluff Londoner – to discuss what he wanted.
    “Right, darling,” said Attenborough, “I need you to impress on the extras exactly what’s happening. You need to tell them, love, that Ghandi, the father of their nation, is dead, that the whole country is in mourning, darling, and they need to portray the devastation felt by every Indian, the absolute and total grief of losing their very own Messiah; that every ounce of their being has been shaken to the very core; that their souls have been torn assunder” and so on, as only Attenborough could.
    The set manager listened to it all, picked up his megaphone, turned to the crowd and yelled “Right, you lot, listen up. Ghandi’s dead and yer all fuckin’ sad”!

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