Tuesday: Hili dialogue

I’m off to the dentist’s today for my semiannual cleaning, as it’s Tuesday, August 28, 2018. That also means it’s National Cherry Turnover Day, and also that posting will be light, at least this morning.

Duck news: Honey was here yesterday, though she was hiding and, after thoroughly scanning the pond in the afternoon and not seeing her, I still whistled for her. No duck came. I kept whistling, convinced that she’d migrated at last. Just when I was about to give up and leave with her food, I heard several muted quacks behind me. She’d waddled up on my rear and was asking for food! Where she was hiding I have no idea.  I’ll check the pond for her in about an hour.

Here she was on the island yesterday afternoon:

On April 28, 632, Fatimah, the daughter of Muhammad (peace be upon him) died at 29. As the only surviving child of Muhammad (peace be upon him) and the only one to produce a male heir, she’s a figure of both veneration of controversy in Islam, analogous for Shiites to the Virgin Mary.  On this day in 1565, the Spanish explorer Pedro Menéndez de Avilés landed at St. Augustine, Florida, establishing the longest continuously occupied city established by Europeans in the continental U.S.  On this day in 1789, William Herschel discovered a new moon of Saturn, Enceladus, a planet that, as the spacecraft Cassini found, expels big geysers of water vapor and other gases. Here’s a video showing the south polar “jets”:

On August 28, 1845, the first issue of Scientific American was published. Fourteen years later, a huge geomagnetic storm struck the Earth, the Carrington event. There wasn’t much electricity then, but it did disrupt electrical telegraph service. As Wikipedia notes, “A solar storm of this magnitude occurring today would cause widespread disruptions and damage due to extended outages of the electrical grid. The solar storm of 2012 was of similar magnitude, but it passed Earth’s orbit without striking the planet.

On this day in 1898, the beverage “Brad’s Drink” invented by Caleb Bradham, was renamed “Pepsi-Cola”.  On August 28, 1955, the black teenager Emmett Till was lynched in Mississippi, killed for supposedly flirting with a white woman. This helped push the civil rights movement forward. August 28 was a big day for civil rights; here are two more events taking place on this day (from Wikipedia):

On August 28, 1968, the famous riots took place in Chicago during the Democratic National Convention, leading to a police crackdown and, eventually, the trial of the “Chicago Seven.” On this day in 1990, Iraq declared Kuwait to be its newest province. Big mistake (for everyone)! Finally, and I’ll quote Wikipedia again, on this day in 2003, “In ‘one of the most complicated and bizarre crimes in the annals of the FBI’ , Brian Wells dies after becoming involved in a complex plot involving a bank robbery, a scavenger hunt, and a homemade explosive device.”

Notables born on August 28 include Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749), Bruno Bettelheim (1903), Roger Tory Peterson (1908), Donald O’Connor (1925), George M. Church (1954), Shania Twain (1965), Sheryl Sandberg (1969), and LeAnn Rimes (1982). Those who died on this day include Augustine the Hippo, known for his girth (430, yes, I made up some stuff), Emmett Till (1955, see above), and John Huston (1987).

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili caught a mouse, but Cyrus doesn’t like it.

Cyrus: Hili, why did you do it?
Hili: It’s the law of the jungle.
In Polish:
Cyrus: Hili, dlaczegoś to zrobiła?
Hili: Prawo dżungli.

A tweet from my friend Ivan, who knows about my love of ducks. And good for Canada once again!

Make way for ducklings!

From Matthew: A tweet from a (properly) disgruntled American:

More from Matthew. Read the thread: lots to learn about giraffes:

Look at a crow’s ear!

Some tweets from Grania.  You can hear Maajid Nawaz’s initially polite but then irate response to this caller here.

Glory be! The Irish are going “meh” about the Pope’s visit this week:

Another misguided bit of “fake news” about biology:

An article worth reading:

This is ineffably sweet: a girl singing to her ginger cat:

And a kitten learns to drink:





  1. Lurker111
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    My big orange kitty can’t stand it when I sing to him.

    Maybe it’s the voice? 😉

  2. Michael Fisher
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    The gradual, subtle PCC[E] campaign to reclassify the Solar System continues:

    “On this day in 1789, William Herschel discovered a new moon of Saturn, Enceladus, a planet that, as the spacecraft Cassini found, expels big geysers of water…”

    Thus we now have around 200 ‘planets’ closer than Neptune & a billion [?] if we include the Kuiper belt & Oort cloud… 🙂

    • Torbjörn Larsson
      Posted August 28, 2018 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

      It is good as long as it is a geophysical planet. The downside if you start to place them astronomically, it is like the species concept: once you identify one, you better evolve many fingers to count with!

      In related news, a standardized bacterial taxonomy has been worked out that shows much better congruence with phylogenies than the NCBI and related taxonomies (SILVA et cetera) [ https://www.nature.com/articles/nbt.4229 , http://gtdb.ecogenomic.org/ ]. I don’t know if people will accept it, but it would be nice to see of the same methods could sort out Archaea too. They also identify some deep nodes, I will have to play with it soon…

  3. Ken Kukec
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    On this day in 1990, Iraq declared Kuwait to be its newest province. Big mistake (for everyone)!

    As a pair of Dudes put it, “This aggression will not stand, man”:

    • harrync
      Posted August 28, 2018 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

      A few thoughts about Iraq-Kuwait: It is somewhat possible that Kuwait was stealing Iraq’s oil via slant drilling; ambiguous statements by the American ambassador to Iraq seemed to imply an Iraqi invasion of Kuwait was OK by the US; low income Kuwaiti citizens, and especially “guest workers”, may very likely have done better under Saddam than the Kuwaiti princes [OK, is you were an attractive, young female who caught the eye of Saddam or one of his sons, you definitely were not better off]; stationing troops in Saudi Arabia was a contributing factor to 9/11; and if it meant higher oil prices, probably good for the fight against global warming. In hindsight, I say maybe we should have “just let it stand”. Of course, just like “prediction, with respect to the future”,is very difficult, so is counter-history.

      • Posted October 13, 2018 at 10:27 am | Permalink

        How did stationing troops in Saudi Arabia contribute to 9/11?

  4. mikeyc
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    That Pluckrose article was a good one.

  5. Torbjörn Larsson
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    That lullaby put some Sunshine in a cloudy day!

    The Irish are going “meh” about the Pope’s visit

    And the cult administration had to do some fast tap dancing after he blabbered about “homosexual tendencies” and psychiatry.

    Worse, turns out the pointy hat leader was revealed as in on the mafia stay-silent-and-help-out corruption that allow pedophiles free action. I don’t know if the same numbers are kept circulating. But when the Philadelphia scandal had someone claiming that the numbers could reach 4 % pedophiles, I checked. The behavior – which does not seem correlated with sex and/or power – has been estimated at 3-5 % in males, 2-4 % in females, from small statistics.

    I then saw Spotlight that put the frequency at 6 % in Boston. Hard to tell if the cult draw pedophiles. But it sure is corrupted to the core if it allows and apparently encourages all of them to act out!

    The cult seems destined to remain the moral “do not be like this” standard of the modern world.

  6. DrBeydon
    Posted August 28, 2018 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    To be fair, Augustine would be a good name for a Hippo. Ach du lieber!

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