Saturday: Hili dialogue

It’s Caturday, May 18, 2019, and National Cheese Souffle Day (I’ve never had one). It’s also International Museum Day, with a theme that changes yearly; this year’s theme is “Museums as cultural hubs: the future of tradition.” The description makes it seem a bit woke, asserting that museums must now help deal with “contemporary social issues and conflict”:

While preserving their primary missions – collecting, conservation, communication, research, exhibition – museums have transformed their practices to remain closer to the communities they serve. Today they look for innovative ways to tackle contemporary social issues and conflict. By acting locally, museums can also advocate and mitigate global problems, striving to meet the challenges of today’s society proactively. As institutions at the heart of society, museums have the power to establish dialogue between cultures, to build bridges for a peaceful world and to define a sustainable future.

On May 18, 1652, Rhode Island passed the first law in the American colonies making slavery illegal. In 1756, the Seven Years’ War began when Great Britain declared war on France, and in 1804 Napoleon Bonaparte was declared “Emperor of the French” by the French Senate.

On this day in 1860, Abraham Lincoln won the Republican nomination for President, beating William H. Seward, whom Lincoln later appointed as Secretary of State. On May 18, 1896, in the case of Plessy v. Ferguson. the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that “separate but equal” facilities were constitutional. The ruling, by a 7-1 vote, began with objections to segregated cars on American railroad trains.  On this day in 1912, what is regarded as the first feature-length Indian film, Shree Pundalik (directed by Dadasheb Torne) was released in Mumbai, still the center of Indian cinema. Below is an ad for the film; I can’t find the movie online but there’s a short video about it here.

On this day in 1926, evangelist and religious superstar Aimee Semple McPherson disappeared in Venice, California. She returned on June 23 with a cockamamie story about having been abducted by a couple and escaped, wandering in the Mexican desert. Charges against her were dismissed, but she never again was as popular as she was at the height of her career. McPherson’s life is an interesting study in the first American “megachurch” with its attendant ceremony and ritual.

On this day in 1974, in the oddly named project “Smiling Buddha,” India successfully detonated its first nuclear weapon. It was the sixth country to do so; can you name the other five? Exactly six years later, Mount St. Helens erupted in Washington, killing 57 and ultimately causing $3 billion in damage. Finally, it was on this day in 1994 that Israeli troops finished the nation’s withdrawal from the Gaza strip, handing it over to the Palestinian National Authority.

Notables born on this day include Omar Khayyám (1048), Matthew Brady (1822), Oliver Heaviside (1850), Bertrand Russell (1872), Walter Gropius (1883), Frank Capra (1897), Perry Como (1912), Margot Fonteyn (1919), W. G. Sebald (1944), Reggie Jackson (1946), and Tina Fey (1970).

Those who crossed the Rainbow Bridge on May 18 include Gustav Mahler (1911), Elvin Jones (2004), Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (2012), and Roger Ailes (2017).

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn,

Hili: A live divinity is better than the wooden one.
A: I have never met a live god.
Hili: You are insulting me.
In Polish:
Hili: Boskość żywa jest lepsza od drewnianej.
Ja: Nie spotkałem żywych bogów.
Hili: Obrażasz mnie.

A tweet from Nilou. I’ll be snorkeling in Hawaii in just a month or so. The folks below are either looking for something in shalow or, more likely, learning how to snorkel:

From reader Barry: the cat knows that the crow wants to pull its tail!

From Grania. The first tweet instantiates the insanity of our “President”:

This is a reputable publisher for this kind of stuff? OY!

Stacked exposure of bees coming home, and a lovely photo:

Hey! Some females finds this a real turn-on!

Tweets from Matthew. The first shows a case of failed noms:

Literary recursion:

This is REALLY sad: thousands of koalas have perished in the heat and have disappeared from many places. Read the link:

This is true, and I may have posted a similar tweet before, but it’s worth seeing if you haven’t before:

22 Comments

  1. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 6:44 am | Permalink

    This reader’s hope is that one day, we will all have to go to the museum to see what all religions were like – not just the religions we see there today.

  2. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Typo : erupted not reputed

    I checked that autocorrect did not autocorrect the correct spelling of the word that was a typo and the correctly spelled word that is it’s replacement, while also using autocorrect and also correcting autocorrect as I type the addendum to my typo correction.

  3. Randall Schenck
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    The 7 years war was a worldwide event but the parts that took place in colonial North America was better known as the French and Indian war. It was fought primarily between the French, with their Indian allies and the British, with their Indian allies plus the colonies. Understanding this conflict and how it lead to the American Revolution is all part of early American history.

  4. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    That crazy bird with his mating dance – are we sure it wasn’t a guy in a suit? I think I recognise the front half of the alpaca from yesterday’s Hili…

    cr

    • Jonathan Wallace
      Posted May 18, 2019 at 7:47 am | Permalink

      One could be forgiven for thinking that! It is actually a Bateleur eagle Terathopius ecaudatus.

    • Posted May 18, 2019 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

      I also found it very humanlike.

  5. Jim batterson
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Re: 1652 slavery illegal in rhode island, it appears to have gone the other way in colonial virginia. In acts by va general assembly in 1662, children of enslaved mothers are enslaved also and in 1705, the numerous indentured servants who would be freed after a period of servitude, became enslaved for life. Virginia explicitly and purposely created the institution of lifelong and inherited slavery. I have no expertise in history but learned this from the jamestown va historical park exhibits.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      Many of the early travelers to the New World were indentured servants who signed contracts to work for many years in exchange for the free ride to the destination. Jamestown or the later settlements were often business deals with company stock holders back in England looking to make a profit. Rhode Island was always going a different way from all other colonies in many ways. They allowed all religions, banned slavery and later refused to take part in creating the constitution. But slavery was never an economical thing in the northern states and frankly it became a way to bankruptcy in Virginia later on. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison both died broke.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      Many of the early travelers to the New World were indentured servants who signed contracts to work for many years in exchange for the free ride to the destination. Jamestown or the later settlements were often business deals with company stock holders back in England looking to make a profit. Rhode Island was always going a different way from all other colonies in many ways. They allowed all religions, banned slavery and later refused to take part in creating the constitution. But slavery was never an economical thing in the northern states and frankly it became a way to bankruptcy in Virginia later on. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison both died broke.

  6. rickflick
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    The “unexplained snorkeling deaths” article is surprising. It looks like there is an issue with tissues in the lungs being subject to excess pressure. One idea for a cause is the long flights on the way to Hawaii. An airliner which flies at around 30,000 feet is normally pressurized to the equivalent of 6000–8000 feet, which is much lower pressure than most people typically experience. Perhaps to verify this hypothesis investigators should look for a correlation between elevation of the deceased tourist’s home base. If the hypothesis is correct, they will have been mostly from low elevation towns. Perhaps, though, the data might be too sparse to draw conclusions.

  7. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Easy, the other five to conduct nuclear bomb tests were USA, USSR, UK, France and China, in that order.
    I’m sure Omar Khayyam, the tentmaker, was an atheist, or at least a sceptic, if his sarcastic poems are anything to go by.
    The Bateleur eagle is a native here, so I feel a bit partizan to it’s wonderful display.
    The Koala’s have been hit by a retroviral disease for more than a decade or so, that decimated their ranks. I think the heat is just a ‘whammy’ on top.

  8. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Yoshida Kenko’s words sound so ‘modern’, hard to believe he died 7 centuries ago. And we can do just what he proposed, recursion and a most wonderful comfort indeed!

  9. Andy Lowry
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    I would absolutely read the Viking vampire book if I found it laying around somewhere, just to experience the awe, but I don’t think I’d buy it just for that. I mean, I’ve read both the Old and New Testaments, Mein Kampf, and AA’s “Big Book,” so I’ve already hit some of the high points in bad writing.

  10. John Dentinger
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Two things: first, you just gotta love “cockamamie.” Second, for World Museum Day, the Bing browser quiz actually featured a museum in Boston that my wife & I visited two summers ago–MOBA, the Museum of Bad Art. It’s in the basement of a movie theater, and unquestionably the lowlight of our visit to Beantown. Lowly recommended! Especially the painting of JFK at his Inauguration–zombified!

  11. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    You, a real gastronome, has never had a cheese soufflé?
    Well, that is good in a sense: you have something to look forward to. A good cheese soufflé is really worth wile.
    I’ve made soufflés, but they are ‘delicate’ dishes, a soufflé fallen flat (yes that happens) is a real deflation, so to say.

  12. Jenny Haniver
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    In honor of the death day of the peerless lyric baritone and master of lieder,Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, here he sings Schubert’s paean to music, “An die Musik.”

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted May 18, 2019 at 10:40 am | Permalink

      It should be noted that he is accompanied by Gerald Moore.

    • Mark R.
      Posted May 18, 2019 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      That was beautiful. Thanks for posting.

  13. Roger
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    “Don’t fail to come to-night and bring your friends.”

    Ah the ol’ passive aggressive. Today’s equivalents being “Don’t forget to subscribe and turn on notifications” or “Share this or you hate cats you monsters”.

  14. Michael Hart
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    Jerry, this is my mom’s cheese souffle recipe. She died a few months ago so I make it often lately and think of her. Takes about 20 minutes to assemble. Probably comes from one of her old cookbooks but IDK which one.

    Separate 3 egg yolks from the whites; set the yolks aside. Beat the whites until foamy, then add 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar, and continue beating until stiff (needs a mixmaster or baker’s forearms); set aside.

    In a large saucepan make a thick roux: 4 tablespoons of flour whisked into 4 tablespoons of melted butter; gradually whisk in 1 cup of milk (I warm the milk first in the microwave so the roux doesn’t cool with the milk) and whisk in to make is smooth.

    Add 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard plus salt and pepper to taste.

    Whisk in 1 cup grated cheddar (I like smoked cheddar plus a little parmesan; suit yourself).

    Remove from heat and whisk in the 3 egg yolks. Then gently fold in the egg whites; you might want to transfer everything to a large bowl for this step; be gentle so as not to mix out all the air bubbles from the egg whites (this gives the souffle its texture.

    Pour into a 2-quart baking dish, and set in a large pan of water (this keeps the oven moisture high and prevents the bottom of the souffle from burning). Bake on the middle rack of a 350 F oven for about 50 minutes or until puffed and browned on top.

  15. ladyatheist
    Posted May 18, 2019 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

    re: cockamamie story of McPherson’s kidnapping, from Wikipedia:

    H.L. Mencken, noted journalist, satirist, cultural critic, and scholar and an ideological opponent of McPherson, opposite each other in the 1925 Scopes “Monkey” trial, unexpectedly came to McPherson’s defense. He wrote that since many of that town’s residents acquired their ideas “of the true, the good and the beautiful” from the movies and newspapers, “Los Angeles will remember the testimony against her long after it forgets the testimony that cleared her.”

    That is still true, apparently. 😦

  16. Andrea Kenner
    Posted May 23, 2019 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    My cat Mike was greatly interested in the video of the cat and crow talking to each other!


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