Monday: Hili dialogue

by Grania

Good morning, and welcome to another week!

In birthdays today we have:

1887 – Paul Wittgenstein, Austrian-American pianist and educator (d. 1961)

1906 – Fred Lawrence Whipple, American astronomer and academic (d. 2004)

1911 – Roy Rogers, American singer, guitarist, and actor (d. 1998)

1913 – Vivien Leigh, Indian-British actress (d. 1967)

1941 – Art Garfunkel, American singer-songwriter and guitarist

1943 – Sam Shepard, American playwright and actor (d. 2017)

1965 – Famke Janssen, Dutch model and actress

Art Garfunkel has a back-catalog as long as my arm (longer actually), so it is impossible to choose only a couple of songs that would be representative of his career, so I chose these because they were pretty and soothing for a Monday morning.

In history today in 1605 the Gunpowder Plot failed when Guy Fawkes was seized before he could blow up the English Parliament.

in 1940, President Franklin D. Roosevelt won an unprecedented third term in office, beating Republican challenger Wendell L. Willkie. 1968, Republican Richard M. Nixon won the presidency, defeating Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey and third-party candidate George C. Wallace.

1872 Suffragist Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 for attempting to vote in a presidential election.

1999 A federal judge declared Microsoft Corp. a monopoly.

2006 Saddam Hussein was convicted and sentenced by the Iraqi High Tribunal to hang for crimes against humanity.

In Poland today it appears that Hili is taking an admirable approach to Monday.

A: Hili, editorial meeting.
Hili: OK. Wake me up when it’s over.

In Polish:

Ja: Hili, zebranie redakcyjne.
Hili: Dobrze, obudź mnie jak się skończy.


On the Twitters recently:

Undoubtedly the most inspiring words after the recent horror in Pittsburgh. Click through on the Tweet below to read the rest of it. If only all humans had the grace to think and act in this way, the world would be an infinitely better place.


Less aspirational, but nevertheless emblematic of the Internet of 2018:


Some amazing mimicry

The turtle ant.

And the astonishing life of plants

Gratuitous abuse of Venn Diagrams

Never underestimate the egocentrism of the cat


And another piece of music, because why not.

Jesus must be so proud

Bureaucracy’s only purpose is to break our brains. On the other hand, Geek Passport, heh.

Peak Humanity

And finally, a doodle.

Hat-tip to Matthew and Nilou


  1. Ken Kukec
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    I think Mr. Garfunkel deserves a credit as “actor” as well, given his roles in Catch-22, Carnal Knowledge, Bad Timing, and other films.

  2. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 7:05 am | Permalink

    A Helenic (sic) citizen would presumably be Trojan, not Greek.

    (Geekish joke that the dumb peon who wrote that form would never get).


    • Posted November 5, 2018 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      As a pun that’s a homerun.

      • Giancarlo
        Posted November 5, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

        A homer?

        • mikeyc
          Posted November 5, 2018 at 10:56 am | Permalink

          Careful. Pun cascades can get out of hand and become an odyssey.

          • Posted November 5, 2018 at 11:03 am | Permalink

            And you’re greecing the skids, aren’t you?

            • Giancarlo
              Posted November 5, 2018 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

              I think the Trojan horse was on lubricated wheels, not skids.

              • Posted November 5, 2018 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

                Good thing Jerry doesn’t charge us for this website, or I’d be feeling Fleeced right now.

    • Posted November 5, 2018 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      Or possibly a Parisian.

      • Posted November 5, 2018 at 11:28 am | Permalink

        Though not if they *used* a Trojan.

        • Giancarlo
          Posted November 5, 2018 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

          She used the Trojan for sure, but not correctly, since she had more than one little Parisian who didn’t survive infancy. Besides, with Menelaus she also had Hermione who should thus be considered a Helenic and Hellenic citizen.

  3. Ken Kukec
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    “Priests officially opening a new shooting range in Poland earlier this week.”

    After all, doesn’t the Good Book say “Whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him and empty all six chambers”?

    • Mark R.
      Posted November 5, 2018 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      Maybe they want to have the wonderful freedom of firearm ownership the U.S. enjoys. It is an enormous benefit to a healthy society; it amazes me other countries don’t adopt their own 2nd Amendment. USA, USA!!!

      sorry, couldn’t help myself…determinism sucks. 😉

      • Posted November 12, 2018 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        Where I live, nobody goes to a shooting range with his own firearm.

    • Richard
      Posted November 6, 2018 at 5:00 am | Permalink

      Next week: a training session on how to throw the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch.

      “First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then, shalt thou count to three. No more. No less. Three shalt be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, nor either count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then, lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it.”

    • Posted November 12, 2018 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

      Here, I disagree with everybody. Shooting ranges are one of the few instances where I think firearms are OK. Small shooting ranges where kids win novelty toys have been present in our resorts and country fairs since times immemorial.

  4. Blue
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    How Mr Mahler believes in re himself … …
    has ” derogatory connotations, ”
    is, since I was old enough to know that I was
    a human being and not of another species,
    .exactly how I believe. when persons, any of
    them, state or write thus: the girl guitar
    player, the woman researcher, the girl
    athlete, the girl coder, the female
    veterinarian and on and on and on ad nauseum.

    I figured out truly, truly early on, that:
    I was quite correct in re the dehumanization
    and the derogation … … of that modifying
    nomenclature attached thereto. That I, indeed, am
    The Other, the Not Male, the (ab)Normal.


  5. DrBrydon
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Well picked, Grania. Not sure which I enjoyed more, Denver and Cash or the gymnastic unicorn.

    • Posted November 5, 2018 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

      I thought after seeing Denver and Cash my day would not get any better. Then a unicorn made me rethink that.

  6. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    I am reminded here of the duet between James Brown and Pavarotti. It exists on YouTube.
    Such wonders seldom pass our way.

  7. Posted November 5, 2018 at 9:42 am | Permalink

    That cat should be afraid of being turned to stone.

  8. rickflick
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    The moth that pretends to be a jumping spider is quite amazing. One wonders why he’d want to do that. Are jumping spiders not good enough for birds in the Philippines? Adaptation just to impress biologists, perhaps.

    • Giancarlo
      Posted November 5, 2018 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

      I think it would depend on the biologist environment. Impressing a lab of comparative anatomists may not be an advantageous adaptation.

  9. BJ
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    The words of that nurse were beautiful. I’m normally not a sentimental guy, but that really got to me. I’ve experienced plenty of antisemitism in my life, from the normal insults and having pennies thrown at me when I was in middle and high school, to college professors and students on my extremely “progressive” college campus openly talking about Jewish and Israel conspiracy theories as if they were fact. Thankfully, I haven’t experienced it since college, at least not directly.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted November 5, 2018 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

      There’s anti-Semitism on the Left, especially of the Jeremy Corbyn variety, no doubt about it, stemming primarily from a misconceived sympathy for the Palestinian people. It’s despicable where it rears its head.

      But let us never forget that the traditional seat of anti-Semitism, especially in its most virulent and violent form, is the Far Right, as was demonstrated again by the synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh.

      • BJ
        Posted November 5, 2018 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

        I don’t forget any of that. But I think it’s a mistake to think that the most virulent form is on the Right. It may be the most violent (although that violence is rare, and I don’t consider crazed lone gunmen a symptom, as I would only consider that if it became a trend), but the Left is catching up in its rhetoric, allies, and media. In fact, part of what scares me about the growing Left antisemitism is that the antisemitism in Far Right media is kept to the fringes, while antisemitism in Left media is creeping quite quickly into more mainstream sources (e.g. PuffHo and various popular Left sites that aren’t exactly “fringe”). It also frightens me that Left institutions are increasingly tolerant of and often even helpful to antisemitic movements (largely talking about academic institutions here).

      • BJ
        Posted November 5, 2018 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

        Oh, and it also concerns me that the ideology built by the Far Left in the past couple of decades (modern social justice ideology originated with academics back in the 90’s) somehow incorporates every group it considers historically oppressed except the Jews, who have conveniently been lumped into the “oppressor” category.

  10. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    The only Simon and Garfunkel work in which Garfunkel actually has a writing credit is “Scarborough Fair/Canticle”. Garfunkel is the author of melody of the 2nd song “Canticle” though the lyrics are by Paul Simon, derived from a discarded Simon song “This Side of the Hill”. Of course, Scarborough Fair is a traditional Irish folk song, the original with a male voice and a female voice. The female part was discarded by S&G.

    Garfunkel was often at his best singing traditional Celtic songs. I also like very much Loreena McKinnett’s version of this song, but I post here Art Garfunkel’s version of “She Moved Through the Fair”


    3 out of 5 of the gun collectors I have known has been anti-NRA and want more gun control.
    The cognitive dissonance of a bunch of clerics showing up at a gun range is astonishing.

  11. Jimbo
    Posted November 5, 2018 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    Bookends is one of the most simple, beautiful, and poignant pieces of music I’ve ever heard. Another would be Chopin’s Prelude Op28 no7 in A major.

  12. Beau Quilter
    Posted November 6, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Thank you for the Garfunkel selections and the Denver/Cash duet! Just what my ears needed today!

  13. SRM
    Posted November 7, 2018 at 5:54 am | Permalink

    Next time somebody claims representations of double-helices in ancient art are indications of pre-1953 knowledge of the structure of DNA, they should be shown the Shaggy/Scooby-Doo drawing.

  14. Zetopan
    Posted November 9, 2018 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    “The cognitive dissonance of a bunch of clerics showing up at a gun range is astonishing.”

    Not astonishing at all if you were to watch the clergy in greater detail. Such antics are actually very common, even within the US. Since a complete list would be way too long here are the results of just one search:

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