Tuesday: Hili dialogue

by Grania

Welcome to Tuesday, and apparently Boss’s Day in United States and Canada. (Seriously, you guys?)

Notable birthdays today are:

Oscar Wilde, Irish playwright, novelist, and poet (1854 – 1900)

Michael Collins, Irish general and politician, 2nd Irish Minister for Finance (1890 –1922)

Linda Darnell, American actress (1923 – 1965)

Angela Lansbury, English-American actress, singer, and producer (1925)

Wendy Wilson, American singer-songwriter, member of Wilson Phillips (1969)

I have an ongoing bid to get Jerry to like Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd – The demon barber of Fleet Street. So far he is resistant, but I will prevail until he likes it or goes mad. If you like your heroines less bloody, here’s Angela Lansbury as Mrs Potts singing Beauty and the Beast. Otherwise here she is singing A little priest.

Wendy Wilson is of course the daughter of Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson. This is a recording by her group Wilson Phillips singing their most famous hit Hold On from 1990.

In history today in 1950  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis was published, starting The Chronicles of Narnia series, although later a “prequel” was written for the series. The books are a strange mix of heady children’s adventure series with a distinct air of frowsty British academic as well as a touch of gallant sexism circa early 20th century; and heavy, unsubtle dollops of tendentious Christianity. Nevertheless, it was my first introduction to the world of Fantasy and for that I will always be grateful.

In 1975 Rahima Banu, a two-year-old girl from Kuralia in Bangladesh was the last known person to be infected with naturally occurring smallpox.

In 1984  Desmond Tutu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.


In Poland the furry duo are doing important stuff on their morning rounds.

Hili: Did you check everything?
Cyrus: Yes, somebody was here yesterday.

In Polish:

Hili: Sprawdziłeś wszystko?
Cyrus: Tak, wczoraj tu ktoś był.

Twitter contributions today

I am not sure what this is but you certainly don’t see this every day.

This is an interesting find. Matthew adds: “She had good teeth too”.

And someone on Tumblr drew her (I’m not good at reading Tumblr posts, I can’t make out which one is the artist, I think it might be “beecharts” who appears to have deleted her account now)

And a letter from a harried employee of the Inland Revenue.

I’m pretty sure this is essentially how all wars start.

It’s not just eagles, apparently bats can swim too.

My kind of facetiousness

There might be something slightly terrifying about having “houses” come crashing down out of the heavens and surrounding you with intent.

Some optical illusions for you, both natural and designed:

One of these is not like the others.

A really impressive bit of piloting

The end

Hat-tip: Matthew


  1. Randall Schenck
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    Did not know it was the Apple’s terms but then the devil made me do it. That cross wind landing was about as extreme as it gets.

    No problem with the Saudi murder. It was an accident. They also have a bridge to sell.

  2. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    That purple bubble – the guy is breathing in CO2 vapour then blowing it into a bubble made with purple bubble mixture (I didn’t know that was a thing but there’s a lot of it on Youboob).

    How he gets the multi-coloured bubbles at the end I don’t know.


    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:23 am | Permalink

      Unless of course it’s all been colourised in software but I’m reluctant to suggest that ‘solution’.


      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:31 am | Permalink

        Sadly, it’s been colorised. If you go here:

        you find the video as shown above on this page, followed by what looks like the exact same video but with white smoke & bubbles.



        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:32 am | Permalink

          Damn that was NOT meant to imbed!!! (Blasted WP strikes again!)

          Try this –



  3. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    “BTW, a creepy optical illusion on my Christmas Album,”

    That is creepy — Shatner’s droppin’ an Xmas album?

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      HERE IT IS – He’s duetting with the likes of Henry Rollins & Iggy Pop. I assume Shatner talks the lyrics while his ‘singing’ partner attempts a vocal melody [i.e. is roughly in tune]. I can imagine one of Spock’s eyebrows raised to the ceiling in bemusement.

      • rickflick
        Posted October 16, 2018 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

        McCoy’s lip trembles as he steps back and sets his phaser to stun.

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted October 16, 2018 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

          LOL. I can picture that. Scottie would have something sincere & useless to add in his crap accent.

        • George
          Posted October 16, 2018 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

          Phaser to kill for that.

          • rickflick
            Posted October 16, 2018 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

            McCoy didn’t believe in capital punishment on principle. Otherwise, yes.

            • infiniteimprobabilit
              Posted October 16, 2018 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

              Reminds me of an old tagline –

              “Prime Directive be damned. Set phasers to ‘Incinerate'”


              • rickflick
                Posted October 16, 2018 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

                I remember that episode well. The next line was Spock’s…”But Captain, as we know, libertarian free will does not exist. We will have to try to rehabilitate them.”

      • Posted October 16, 2018 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

        Oh dear. Shatner’s cover of “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” is the worst recording ever committed to vinyl. A friend of mine had bought the album and he played it to me because I didn’t believe anything could be as bad as he described. I was wrong.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted October 17, 2018 at 12:19 am | Permalink

          You were right, I mean wrong. You were right about being wrong. 🙂 Here it is:


          You can find everything on Youtube. I’m always happy to lower the tone of the discussion.

          But you were wrong about it being the worst, have you heard his Bohemian Rhapsody? (Freddy Mercury he is not)


          (Gods I’m a cruel bastard, ain’t I?)


    • Posted October 16, 2018 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      Say want you want about the guy, but he seems to be happy with himself, doing his own thing and not really harming anyone much. So, why not?

  4. Neil Wolfe
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    The sideways landing is impressive but I’m just as intrigued by the fact that the New China logo circumcised.

  5. Christopher
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Yeah, Boss’s Day, when we celebrate our undying love for Bruce Springsteen. What’s wrong with that?

  6. DrBrydon
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    I had to look up Linda Darnell’s death; I hadn’t known she’d died so young (42). She died in a house fire. Terrible.

    That letter from the Inland Revenue is awesome. I used to follow a website called “Letters of Note” that would showcase letters like this (it hasn’t been updated since last year). Here is my favorite from their files, from the redoubtable Colonel A. D. Wintle:

    From Lt. Col. A.D. Wintle.
    The Royal Dragoons
    Cavalry Club
    127 Piccadilly W.1.

    To the Editor of The Times.


    I have just written you a long letter.

    On reading it over, I have thrown it into the waste paper basket.

    Hoping this will meet with your approval,

    I am
    Your obedient Servant

    (Signed, ‘ADWintle’)

    6 Feb ’46

    • Steve Pollard
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      Very good!

      I recently read a piece about the great Rev Spooner, Warden of New College, Oxford, after whom the Spoonerism is named. He once wrote to a colleague (I paraphrase, and indeed invent, as I can’t find the original:

      “Dear Smith,

      I have asked the Head Porter to bring you this message. I am unable to identify a specific passage of Xenophon, and I would be glad if you would let me borrow your annotated copy. I will call on you at 5pm.

      Yours sincerely,


      PS: I have now found the passage in question, so I will not need to call upon you at all. I will see you in Hall at 7pm.”

      Anyone know the actual version?

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted October 16, 2018 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

        I don’t know it. Do you recall any key words?

  7. Posted October 16, 2018 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Lovely bit of piloting that. There are some equally impressive/terrifying youtube videos from Leeds Bradford airport. It’s an interesting experience looking out of the plane window during the landing and being able to see the runaway straight ahead of you.

    • DrBrydon
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

      Happy to say that in the dozen or so times I’ve flown into Leeds/Bradford that has never happened to me, but I’ve heard stories.

  8. rickflick
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    5,000-year-old prosthetic eye. Interesting. Also I’m happy to see she had good teeth. I occasionally worry about our ancestors dating back thousands of years when I think about the primitive state of dentistry then. But why worry(I chide myself)? They are all dead and life is utterly painless for them.

    • Posted October 16, 2018 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      Don’t know if agriculture was a thing there by then, but in places where less plants are eaten, teeth do survive better.

  9. Michael Fisher
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink


    The Chronicles of Narnia series, although later a “prequel” was written for the series. The books are a strange mix of heady children’s adventure series with a distinct air of frowsty British academic as well as a touch of gallant sexism circa early 20th century; and heavy, unsubtle dollops of tendentious Christianity…

    Excellent description

    • Mark R.
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

      My first fantasy read was The Hobbit followed by LOTR trilogy. After those 4 books, I tried reading Lewis’, but the characters and writing was so flat compared to Tolkien’s that I couldn’t get through the first (lousy) novel. I didn’t know about all the Xtianity allusions back then, which can only make a bad book worse.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted October 16, 2018 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

        Being a starter Catholic kiddo when I came across Wardrobe I was drawn to the cruelty, despair, violence & UNFAIRNESS of life – no punches are pulled. I loved it because of all those above qualities which I recognised as being the same as those extolled by nuns, priests & the unhinged god of Catholicism. I didn’t realise it was allegory – that Aslan was the Christ & Edmund Judas, but it seemed true to my life.

        Far superior to the feel good nonsense of Enid Blyton where justice is served & it’s cakes & pop for tea after the villains have been vanquished in the same ways as the previous 50 books. Yes Scooby Doo I’m lookin’ at chew too & your crap ‘tails’.

        LOTR was great although Tolkein is a nutter for description – far too much background being painted in for my liking. I saw the whole thing as cowboys & Injuns for some reason – the mysterious stranger [there two or three actually], the heathen hordes of baddies, the reluctant hero forced to exceed his own limited beliefs in himself.


        • Mark R.
          Posted October 16, 2018 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

          Shane indeed!

          I didn’t mind Tolkien’s extensive descriptions esp. since I could picture his made-up world so well. Now Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast novels were way too descriptive for my taste. I got through the first two, but just couldn’t get around to the third…maybe I’d like them better now that I’m older. I’ll never forget that damn butcher though sharpening his murderous blade.

          • Mark R.
            Posted October 16, 2018 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

            why do I even try html. Scare quotes from now on!

            • Posted October 16, 2018 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

              Fixed it for you. You put the slash in the first code instead of the last is all.


              • Mark R.
                Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

                Thanks Grania! I’ve never had special help from the host. Makes my night. 🙂

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted October 16, 2018 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

            Neil Gaiman is to produce a NEW Gormenghast adaptation for TV – I assume the BBC. If it happens it could be great. I didn’t finish book 1.

            • Mark R.
              Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

              Gaiman? That’s fantastic! If anyone can give life to those peculiar novels, he can. Thanks for the info., I’ll be on the lookout.

  10. Posted October 16, 2018 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    The “Pilot completely nails sideways landing in 40-knot crosswinds at Bristol Airport” video shows up as “Not available in your area” for me but, based on the title, here it is on YouTube:

    • rickflick
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      A steady hand. I can guess what the passengers were thinking. I’ve landed my little plane in about 18 knot crosswind and the technique is exactly the same. With the rudder you crab into the wind to produce a strait approach. Keep in a little power, and straighten it as you make contact. Also, cover your white knuckles with gloves if available.

      • Posted October 16, 2018 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

        Most of the passengers would not have been particularly aware of what was happening. Those with window seats on the starboard side might have been a bit alarmed that they could see the runway on approach I suppose.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted October 16, 2018 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

          Air Canada Flight 143 – the 767 that ran out of fuel and landed on a disused runway at Gimli – the “Gimli Glider” – was far too high on the approach and sideslipped to lose height quickly. That must have been spectacular. Sadly, no-one got video of it.


  11. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    I am having this mental image of Angela Lansbury singing a section of A Little Priest, dubbed into a scene where she is singing as Mrs Potts in Beauty and the Beast.

  12. Posted October 16, 2018 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    I heard somewhere that it seems plausible that all mammals can swim, but it is a matter of whether it is “desired” or how easy it is.

  13. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted October 16, 2018 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

    I’m a fan of Sondheim’s “Sweeney Todd” though I realize it can be a hard sell, and I benefited from seeing a first rate production of it.
    For many, an even harder sell is Sondheim’s “Assassin” which I regard as more philosophically profound. Having been in the embarrassing position of being a 4th grade classmate of John Hinckley, Jr. (even losing an election for homeroom president to him!!), a modest pleasurable consequence has been the experience of twice introducing myself to actors who played Hinckley in productions of the Sondheim musical (something I would be highly reluctant to do with Jodie Foster).


    For secularists, a great intro to the Narnia books is Laura Miller’s “The Magician’s Book: A Skeptic’s Adventures in Narnia”.
    As a child she loved the Narnia books, while disliking her Catholic upbringing (“guilt-mongering and tedious rituals”). She felt horribly betrayed when she discovered the Christian subtext in the Narnia books, but slowly moved towards re-embracing them on her own humanist terms. Miller is the literature editor at Salon.com which she co-founded.

    • stuartcoyle
      Posted October 16, 2018 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

      I worked as stage crew on a production of Sweeny Todd years ago. The best thing about it was there were always pies left over after the show. Not sure what was in them.

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