Wednesday: Hili dialogue

It’s Wednesday, April 4, 2018, and that means it’s the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. A day after broaching the possibility of his own death (and saying that it didn’t matter to him, as he’d seen the “promised land”), he was brutally shot down by James Earl Ray at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

Here’s a brief memorial (and then a documentary) to the man who stands beside Nelson Mandela as one of the two great civil rights heroes of our era. And both (Mandela after his imprisonment) abjured violence, urging peaceful resistance and civil disobedience.

In his speech the night before he died, King said this:

Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live – a long life; longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I’m happy, tonight. I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord!

Longevity does have its place, and it’s ineffably sad that King didn’t get it. If he’d lived, he would be 89 this year, and I often wonder what he’d think of many modern civil rights activists who reject nonviolence as well as King’s dictum that people should be judged not by their race, but by the “content of their character.”

A short documentary on the assassination:

Today’s Google Doodle (click on screenshot) is an interactive one (clicking on the arrow at the site produces one of her poems) celebrating the 90th birthday of author Maya Angelou, who died in 2014. Most of you will know her work. Like King, she was a civil rights activist. As Refinery 29 reports:

Google gathered a star-studded cast of celebrities, including Alicia KeysLaverne Cox, and Oprah Winfrey, to help celebrate Dr. Maya Angelou.
Today’s Doodle honoring the poet, civil rights activist, and author on what would have been her 90th birthday is nothing short of a masterpiece. When you click the homepage illustration, you’ll hear the words of Angelou’s empowering poem “Still I Rise” read aloud as drawings illustrating each line fill the screen. The recorded reading from Angelou is interspersed with sections read by Keys, Cox, Winfrey, America Ferrera, Martina McBride, and Angelou’s son, Guy Johnson.

On April 4, 1581, Francis Drake was knighted for circumnavigating the Earth.  On this day in 1721, Sir Robert Walpole became the first Prime Minister of Great Britain. Exactly five years later, at least according to Wikipedia, the French zoologist Georges Cuvier delivered the first lecture on paleontology.  On April 4, 1850, Los Angeles was incorporated as a city. On this day in 1958, the CND [Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament] peace symbol was first publicly displayed —in London. As you see below, it’s derived from the semaphore flag signals for ND: “nuclear disarmament”. Few people who wear or know of this symbol are aware of its origin (I wasn’t).

On this day in 1964, songs by the Beatles occupied the top five positions on the Billboard Hot 100 rock music (“pop”) chart. I don’t think that feat has been duplicated. As noted above, it was on this day 50 years ago that Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. Exactly one year later, Dr. Denton Cooley implanted the first temporary artificial heart, which was to act as a bridge for a heart transplant. That transplant was done, but unfortunately the recipient died from an infection only 32 hours after the operation. On April 4, 1975, Microsoft was founded in Albuquerque, New Mexico under the partnership of Bill Gates and Paul Allen.

Notables born on April 4 include Dorothea Dix (1802), Tris Speaker (1888), Muddy Waters (1913), Maya Angelou (1928; see above), Berry Oakley (1948) and Heath Ledger (1979). Those who expired on this day include John Napier (1617), Johnny Stompanato (1958, stabbed to death by Lana Turner’s daughter), Martin Luther King, Jr. (1968), Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. (1972), Gloria Swanson (1983) and Roger Ebert (2013).

EXTRA SPECIAL NEWS: the first Episode of Cunk on Britain is actually on YouTube. It will certainly be taken down within a day, so watch it here. (Trigger warning: profanity.)

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili, exhausted from her job as editor of Listy, is having a lie-down:

In Polish:

Hili: Wszystkie poranne obowiązki załatwione.
Ja: I co teraz?
Hili: Teraz się prześpię.

Grania found a tweet supporting a theory (which is mine) that even until recently—but especially in the Middle Ages—artists couldn’t draw cats. They always gave them human faces.

An especially finicky kitty:

Don’t ask me what this animal cavalcade is about, or how it was arranged, but it’s amazing. Perhaps a reader can inform us.

I never saw this movie (I know, I’m a bad person), but it’s having its 50th anniversary:

The genuinely good uses of Twitter:

Poor dude!

Matthew sent me this great bicycle-kick goal, noting “Here’s a gab goal by Ronaldo against Juventus. The Juve fans all applauded.”

If you click on the link in the Tweet, you can read an amazing (albeit a bit long) story:

Finally, for your morning delectation, I proffer the Dark Lord Cat:


  1. Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    I rank 2001 along with Lord of the Rings in the “highly overrated” category. I found it quite tedious in its pomposity.

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:51 am | Permalink

      I saw it the first day it arrived in town [UK] on a huge screen – I was 13 & as an avid reader of SciFi I knew the plot outline from the Clarke short story.

      The only sympathetic character was HAL & I was sad to see him slowly lose his mind. A sequel starring a reactivated HAL, with another director would have grabbed my interest.

      Loved the geometrical weirdness of the revolving space station & the spaceship Discovery [that went to Saturn]. Dull, pointless dialogue throughout [other than HAL], snails pace plot, no wit. The real 2001 [the year] was more interesting than the universe of the film.

      • JonLynnHarvey
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

        IMO, Space Odyssey is much more likely to seem tedious on a smaller screen.

        No other movie in history loses so much in transition to a smaller field of vision. It is the striking visuals that compensate for its leisurely pace.

        However, I can’t honestly agree with the notion of its being “pompous”. One if its virtues is that it gives the viewer a tremendous breathing room to interpret the story how they wish.

        I think making HAL the only sympathetic character is a deliberate conscious choice, though it’s carried a bit too far.
        If on the DVD, you switch to the French dialogue version, the astronauts are notably more expressive in their intonation of their lines than in the original movie.

      • MEH 0910
        Posted April 5, 2018 at 10:30 am | Permalink

        SCTV – The Merv Griffin Show – The Special Edition

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted April 5, 2018 at 10:44 am | Permalink

          Haha – brilliant & utterly new to me – never heard of this Merv Griffin. HAL’s career post-2001 is very interesting and he’s the best actor in this extended sketch.

    • Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      LotR was a terrible movie, at least in comparison to the books which were wonderful – although I read them in middle school and high school so I’m not sure if I’d have the same opinion if I read them later in life.

      Except for his last movie everything Kubrick did was excellent, and I’m including Barry Lyndon in that even though I’m the only person on earth who enjoyed it. The source material from Clarke was also first rate scifi. I find 2001 difficult to watch, but I’d still say its one of the best sci-fi of all time

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:54 am | Permalink

        Yes, 2001 was a movie well worth watching for the experience. And when it was made, digital effects were much less sophisticated so it was visually groundbreaking.

        Okay, so it was slow-paced, but then not every movie needs to be paced to suit audiences with 20-second attention spans.

        The LOTR movies, on the other hand, I can’t be bothered with. Part of the trouble is too many characters to keep track of, or to build an interest in, and I just found the hobbits annoying. How could such gormless characters beat the overwhelming odds?


        • Barney
          Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:20 am | Permalink

          A major point of LOTR is that the hero hobbits are not gormless – at least, once they’ve been pushed into the events. The Shire is cut-off, with plenty of gormless hobbits in, but the 4 who go on the journey have ‘the right stuff’ inside them – though the younger two have to mature from feckless teenagers in the process.

          And the explicit plan is that you can’t send a big hero to destroy the Ring – because they’ll be noticed. You have to go with unregarded nobodies who can sneak past the defences.

          It took me a long time to get round to watching all of 2001 (I think I may have seen the latter part on TV before). I was surprised at the amount of tedious sitting about in space stations and spacecraft before the actual HAL drama started – I think a drastic edit could have moved it along without sacrificing anything in the story.

          And I wish someone had cut the interiors down in size. They carry huge unnecessary amounts of structure to contain airy open-plan living areas. You just can’t afford to waste weight like that in space – and you’d think that aircraft design would have already taught everyone that.

      • Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        Sorry, I should clarify that I meant the books when I claimed LotR is overrated.

        I don’t say they are bad books, just that apart from defining a genre, they are nothing special, and also quite boring in parts.

        • Posted April 10, 2018 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

          I’ve tried many other fantasy books since and I find everything else is more or less rubbish by comparison — and, even worse, simply bad imitations of LoTR.

          • Posted April 11, 2018 at 7:18 am | Permalink

            Funnily enough I have read many other fantasy books since I read LotR and many of them have turned out to be much better by comparison.

      • JonLynnHarvey
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:58 am | Permalink

        I also like Barry Lyndon, a film more popular in Europe than in America, so you are not the only person on earth to like it.

        The longer versions of Lord of the Rings movies are much better, with much better pacing. Jackson did not only add footage- he re-edited the footage common to both versions!! Ironically, the shorter versions of Lord of the Rings are the ones that seem tedious and excessively dragged out, while the much-needed better character arcs of the longer versions make them more engaging.

      • Posted April 10, 2018 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

        Please describe why you think the LoTR were terrible movies.

        I think they had some over-the-top moments; but I’ve seen all the film adaptations and I think Jackson’s films were very good (and not just in comparison — the other versions were truly dire.) I think they wer very true to the stories, even if they (understandably) had to cut some material from the books.

        I highly doubt anyone will every make another set of them — because these were so definitive.

        (I’ve read The Lord of the Rings at least three times, once as a youth, once in my 20s, and one in my 40s (and maybe one other time, not sure). I found it every bit as good, each time. I perhaps enjoyed it the most the most recent time (about 15 years ago). And I am not a big SciFi or Fantasy fan. I only rarely read novels, though I typically read at least one book per week.)

        I did not care for the Hobbit movies. Taking one thin novella and trying to spread it over the same screen time as the LoTR was a ridiculous mistake. It just turned it into a video game.

        I like 2001 very much. And I’m not a big SciFi fan. I also very much liked the Will Smith I Robot.

        2001 must be understood stylistically within the time of its making. I recommend people watch other movies of the same time frame: Films just moved slower in those days. People’s attention spans have shortened a lot in the last 50 years, and, in my opinion, at a much accelerated rate since the advent of videos games.

    • davidintoronto
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      Because of its pop cultural status, I suppose 2001 tends to get judged according to mainstream movie criteria. But actually, 2001 is firmly situated in the “art cinema” category. In the last BFI rankings of the best movies of all time, it holds the number 6 spot. And not so many films of this type (e.g., Bergman’s Persona, Ozu’s Tokyo Story, Dreyer’s Passion of Joan of Arc) are especially renowned for their populist accessibility or fast pacing.

      • Frank Bath
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        Yes, I saw 2001 in Cinerama when it arrived in London and I loved it, the space wheel, the PanAm girl walking upside down, Hal (IBM + 1)and Strauss’ music. Thrilling throughout except for the long ending which was too woo for me.

    • Richard
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      I first saw it in a cinema when I was about eighteen, and was amazed by it (and yes, I had read the book, and ‘The Lost Worlds of 2001’, before).

      Several years later (early eighties), I helped to arrange its showing at a university cinema, and noticed an odd phenomenon. There is a scene set on the space station in which Dr Heywood Floyd has a conversation with several scientists, one of whom is played by the late Leonard Rossiter. It is not a comic scene, Rossiter’s lines are not funny, and his delivery of them is not funny – yet the audience laughed at each line. Apparently they were conditioned by his later work (Reginald Perrin, Rising Damp, etc.) to think of him as a comic actor, and so that everything he said was funny. It would be interesting to show the film today to a student audience unfamilar with Rossiter, and see what its reaction was.

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

        It would be interesting to show the film today to a student audience unfamilar with Rossiter, and see what its reaction was.

        That would, indeed, be an interesting experiment.

      • Posted April 4, 2018 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        So the audience didn’t seem to be able to listen to what the character was actually saying and would just laugh because they were ‘conditioned’. I suppose if you took one of them aside and questioned them about it they’d be at a loss.
        This little observation is so depressing to me. What hope do we have if we can shut off our brains so easily? This is how a country of 310 million can elect Trump- by not actually hearing anything he says

        • Barney
          Posted April 4, 2018 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

          I am about the same age as that audience, and when I saw him in 2001, I was similarly unable to see that character without thinking of other Rossiter ones (I knew he’d done serious stuff too – award-winning theatre work, I think – but what I’d seen on TV was purely comedy – and he was very well known for it – I might add a series of comic ads he did with Joan Collins, typically in a plane, which felt very close to this “spaceport lounge” scene).

          But I was perfectly aware how it was making me see it.

          • Richard
            Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

            But did you laugh? 🙂

      • David Coxill
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

        He was in King Rat with George Segal ,very talented actor .

  2. Michael Fisher
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    The wonderful Twitter video is a recording of the weekly rescue animals Pet Shenanigans show at Busch Gardens amusement park, Williamsburg, Virginia. HERE for an Irish Examiner report with embedded videos. [though the Twitter one is best!]

    • barn owl
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 10:51 am | Permalink

      The cat makes climbing up the rope look so easy!

    • barn owl
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

      I don’t imagine it’s as easy to train cats as it is many dogs, but of course there’s precedence with animal actors, such as Orangey the cat:

      He played Cat in Breakfast at Tiffany’s – the scene in which Holly puts him out in the rain made me cry as a child, because I really thought she was going to leave him there.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

        This scene: Great movie. I didn’t know the marmalade “Cat” had a Hollywood furry actor pedigree until now. Putting the kitty out of the cab to make a point [of being an independent, free spirited woman] was a strange thing to do – it is off tune, suggesting the writers didn’t understand the cat/humin thing. No kitty person would ever have done that!

        I hope you are well 🙂

        • barn owl
          Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

          In retrospect it seems strange that the scene would upset me so much, and it was the same tears for shows such as Lassie and Flipper, even if I’d seen the episodes multiple times. My parents would reassure me that “they’ll pick up Cat” or “Lassie will be found” or “Flipper will get off the sandbar,” but that didn’t seem to help. Maybe it’s just that many children live in the moment, so what’s important is that the animal is lost/hurt/abandoned right now, not what you know will happen later on.

          Or maybe I was just a sappy little kid. 😉

          Hope you are well too!

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

            Send me an email [in my avi] if you like
            I’m out your way seeing distant branches of the fam at around xmas or Spring & I needs an owl for wisdom. And owls are good backup, they don’t go hungry.

  3. Laurance
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    Oh boy! The Peace Sign! Now how in the devil did I do this? It was back in the very early ’60’s, when the Peace Sign was new and I was young. I wanted to know, and somehow I was aware that Bertrand Russell was associated with this symbol.

    So I wrote a letter to him and asked him about it. How on earth did I find his address without Google and the Internet?? I can’t remember!! How did I find anything back in those Pre-Intergoogle days??

    And he wrote back! Yes he did! And he explained about the semaphores. I have the letter, together with a letter from A.S. Neill and a wonderful one from Norman Thomas.

    I’m so spoiled by this modern technology! I can’t remember how I functioned back in the Pre-Electronic Marvels Days.

    The Peace Sign was a serious thing back then. It made a major statement. I was an Air Force Officer’s wife, and I wore the Peace Symbol on the base. My then-husband objected to the Vietnam War and resigned his commission over it. We were lucky. We got thrown off the base in a hurry and sent back to Pennsylvania where we came from. But by some six months later people who resigned a commission were now getting court-martialled and imprisoned.

    Young people with a Peace Sign could get in big trouble with their parents and disowned. In State College, where Penn State is, some young people painted a Peace Sign on the house and found themselves in trouble with the borough and the law and were forced to remove it. I got a job in a wonderful bookstore, and there were some customers who told me to go back to Russia where I belong.

    It feels weird nowadays to see the Peace Sign as bling, colorful jewelry, as decoration, as a pretty colored design on children’s backpacks and ladies’ shirts. I see these things and think, “Shit! Back in the day, you wear that symbol and your dad is likely to beat you up.”

    • David Coxill
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

      I always thought the peace symbol was meant to be a nuclear armed Airplane ,but to be honest lots of things remind me of Aircraft .

  4. Nicholas K.
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    I was just in Memphis over the weekend. We visited the Lorraine Motel, now the Civil Rights Museum on Sunday morning and found it very quiet with almost no people around (they are expecting very large crowds today). It is a powerful memorial with everything looking as it was on that fateful day. Quite moving.

    • Debbie Coplan
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:20 am | Permalink

      I was in Memphis this past week also and just returned.
      I had the opportunity while there to see a wonderful documentary called, “At the River I Stand.”
      It can be rented on Vimeo and it is well worth seeing. It is about the struggle the sanitation workers had that preceded MLK’s death. One of the original sanitation workers who had participated in that strike was at the viewing of the film. It was quite a moving experience.
      The Civil Rights Memorial was also worth a trip to Memphis. At the end of the museum you are basically at the room and right near the balcony where MLK was shot. Across the street you can go to window where James Earl Ray shot MLK. It is very powerful experience 50 years later.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        I suppose the sanitation worker at the viewing is 75yo Rev. Cleophus Smith who still works at the Department of Sanitation in Memphis. This moving video about him & how King changed his life appeared today in the online NYT:

        • Debbie Coplan
          Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:47 am | Permalink

          Yes, thank you for this film clip.
          One of the complaints the sanitation workers have now is that fire trucks and police cars all have air condition. Garbage trucks do not. The garbage truck that comes to my area is an automated trash pickup kind so the driver does not have to get out of the truck and constantly get out.
          There is no reason why he should not have air condition also.

  5. Barney
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Both the ‘April 4’ and ‘Georges Cuvier’ sections of Wikipedia give his first pal(a)eontological lecture as April 4 1796 – so 75 years after Walpole becoming PM, not five. He wasn’t born until 1769.

    (Wikipedia can’t make up its mind on which spelling to use – both appear in the Cuvier article)

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      (Wikipedia can’t make up its mind on which spelling to use – both appear in the Cuvier article)

      Both are correct. One is for language users who can handle diphthongs and the other is for American English.
      It does irk me, but then I remember a lesson I read recently – Falsehoods Believed About Names :
      [A] list [of] assumptions your systems probably make about names. All of these assumptions are wrong.

      People have exactly one canonical full name.
      People have exactly one full name which they go by.
      People have, at this point in time, exactly one canonical full name.
      People have, at this point in time, one full name which they go by.
      People have exactly N names, for any value of N.
      People’s names fit within a certain defined amount of space.
      People’s names do not change.
      People’s names change, but only at a certain enumerated set of events.
      [30-odd other items]
      People have names

      It’s at moments like this that I feel the need for a Preview function. Oh well, [holds nose].

  6. Simon Hayward
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Had to kill half an hour, so watched Cunk, some good digs at Colchester and Paltrow, thanks. Now it’s time to trek through the snow to get my teeth scraped 😦

    Snow! It’s bloody April!

    • Barney
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      I liked “the Scots have always been a proud, confident nation, ready to complain if they’ve not been given their own section in a landmark history programme …”.

      It’s a “1066 And All That” for the TV age. Which is a Good Thing, since I think there are fewer of us these days who had the kind of British history teaching which that book satirises.

      • Simon Hayward
        Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink

        I used to have a copy of “1066 and all that”. I wonder where it might be, probably lost in a move somewhere. You’re right, Cunk is in exactly that spirit. Still available on Amazon, it seems, only 88 years after it was first published.

  7. Ken Kukec
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    “Poor Dude!” — which one is he supposed to be, Vladimir or Estragon?

  8. Ken Kukec
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    They ain’t makin’ years like ’68 anymore — from Tet, to Gene McCarthy’s surprise in New Hampshire, to LBJ not seeking reelection, to Martin gettin’ clipped at the Lorraine and Bobby at the Ambassador, to the riots in Chicago, to Nixon’s snaking the peace deal in Paris, to Nixon’s squeaker over Humphrey.

    Still, there’s something happenin’ here, and even if what it is ain’t exactly clear, there’s a spirit in the air again. Trump fires Mueller, gonna be time to take it back out to the streets.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      Yes, 1968. Said to be a terrible year. The year I turned 18, graduated high school. Went away to work in some odd jobs and also registered for the draft. Joined the air force before the year was out to avoid the draft. Many of us escaped in our own way.

      I think Trump will talk to Mueller’s group and it will be up to congress to get rid of this self-inflicted problem. Yes, yes, they show no moral backbone to do it. Mueller will also be submitting papers to his boss. First one apparently on the obstruction.

      • Posted April 4, 2018 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

        What was the advantage to volunteer for the air force before being summoned by the draft?

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted April 4, 2018 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

          What was the advantage

          Probably getting to choose which cess pit to snorkel in. As an air force volunteer, you’d probably have a lower chance of being in a front line posting than a conscript to the infantry – unless you had a pilot’s license. If you did have a pilot’s license, then the Silent Service (submarines) would be the logical place to go.

    • Posted April 10, 2018 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

      I highly recommend Mark Kurlansky’s eponymous history of 1968.

  9. Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink


    I never saw this movie (I know, I’m a bad person)

    Well yes, yes you are. So do something about it. Rent the movie. And while you’re at it I bet readers could recommend movies that you originally turned your nose up at but might enjoy.
    There are a few movies that I was adamantly against at first but after being outright forced to watch I begrudgingly enjoyed. Fight Club comes to mind.

    • Posted April 10, 2018 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

      Indeed: Fight Cluib. I feel the same way about it.

  10. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    That story about Buckingham and Charles 1 is a delightfully Rabelaisian tale.

    Historical figures (well, some of them anyway) just seem to have had so much more fun than modern ones.


    • Richard
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      If you can find it, try ‘Extraordinary Seaman’, a biography of Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald, by J.P.W. Mallalieu. His real-life naval exploits put those of fictional characters such as Hornblower and Aubrey to shame – a real case of “you could not make this stuff up”!

      • Posted April 10, 2018 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

        Readily available used on Amazon.

  11. naveen1941
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    “Here’s a brief memorial (and then a documentary) to the man who stands beside Nelson Mandela as one of the two great civil rights heroes of our era. And both (Mandela after his imprisonment) abjured violence, urging peaceful resistance and civil disobedience.” Well what can you say!!!!
    Great as these two were, the real inspiration and the teacher for both was Mahatma Gandhi, who using nonviolence, ousted Britain, the most powerful colonial power of the day and achieved independence for India. Not only that but his world legacy for peaceful struggle against tyrants is seen in Los Angeles, in France, in Germany, in Egypt, in Tiananmen square, in Green Peace and other areas. When leaders of these movements talk, they talk of Gandhi and not of the other two. Thank you very much.
    To assert that King and Mandela were the two great civil rights heroes, ignoring the Mahatma, is pure unadulterated revision of history. True Americans whenever they get a chance try to undermine Hindus and their achievements- but this takes the cake.

    • Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:25 am | Permalink

      To Naveeen: I was talking about civil rights leaders who, as that term is usually used, dealt with blacks versus whites. I think of Gandhi, whom I’ve often posted about as one of my personal heroes, as someone who was an anti-colonialist, not a civil rights leader. After all, he got the British to leave India, while blacks and whites coexist in South Africa and the US.

      At any rate, your last sentence is complete idiocy, given my love of India and the Mahatma. Go post somewhere else. You clearly haven’t read what I’ve said about Gandhi, nor understand what I meant.

  12. mikeyc
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    That was the goal of the century. Even the Juventus fans gave him a standing ovation.
    The Beautiful Game, indeed.

  13. busterggi
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    You don’t fool me with the animal cavalcade video – those people sitting on the railing are all cgi.

    Creepy medieval cats, maybe they actually looked like that back then. KIt would explain a lot.

  14. George
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Is anyone interested in the five Beatle songs that occupied the top of the Billboard 100 on April 4, 1964? If so, they were:
    No. 1, “Can’t Buy Me Love”
    No. 2, “Twist and Shout”
    No. 3, “She Loves You”
    No. 4, “I Want to Hold Your Hand”
    No. 5, “Please Please Me”

  15. Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    The animal cavalcade video reminds us that maximizing both complexity and pointlessness together is damn funny.

    • busterggi
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:31 am | Permalink

      Never know, Rick Warren may write a book describing the purpose of the video.

  16. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    “On this day in 1964, songs by the Beatles occupied the top five positions on the Billboard Hot 100 rock music (“pop”) chart. I don’t think that feat has been duplicated.”

    In 1967 or 1968, all five nominations for the Hugo Award for best science-fiction drama were Star Trek episodes. Pretty close, I would say.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      A documentary about the history of SF which I listened to once had a chapter cheekily entitled “And the Award Goes To … Robert A Heinlein!”

      • Posted April 10, 2018 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        I loved Heinlein as a youth.

        But, re-reading him today, his dialogue is just horribly cheesy. 1940s he-man magazine stuff.

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted April 10, 2018 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

          He had certain … obsessions. And gave them full rein.

  17. mfdempsey1946
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    In Cinerama back in the day or on a 15-inch computer screen today (but doubtless not on a smartphone screen, a theory I never intend to test)…

    “2001: A Space Odyssey” was and is, for me and many numbers 50 years on, a wondrous achievement for whose existence I remain most grateful.

    • JonLynnHarvey
      Posted April 4, 2018 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

      Now I have to test about 5 minutes of it on a smartphone screen. High quality ear buds a must.

  18. Posted April 4, 2018 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    I’m with “Confused Matthew” – 2001 is an outstanding slide show with good music, but not much of a movie.

  19. Jenny Haniver
    Posted April 4, 2018 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    So un-PC, and, I suppose, disrespectful, but whenever I hear or see the title of that Maya Angelou poem, my thoughts go phallic.

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