I realized that it's been far too long since I've had a Mystery Guest, so let's rectify that here.
One of the things I say that I love about the show is that they'll have Mystery Guests who -- especially in today's day and age -- you would never see on a game show. And this episode fits in with that perfectly. It's Sir Edmund Hillary.
What's most fascinating about this is that, actually, he's not officially a Mystery Guest. The panelists don't have their eyes covered -- and he even signs in with his own name! (Albeit with his initials, but still, that "Hillary" name at the time had to have been renown. No, he didn't just become the first man to reach the top of Mt. Everest, that was nine years earlier, in 1953. But that's not all that long before. And he looks like Sir Edmund Hillary (for good reason). And the panelists on What's My Line? are pretty erudite. But still, he has a good time with it all. (Hurting the panelists is that they go way off the track, and host John Daly lets them...)
At one point afterwards, during the discussing, they mention Tensing Norgay, who was Hillary's Sherpa guide. It was fun to hear, and I mention that because years ago, 30 years or so, my dad took an organized hiking trip in the area, and the leader of is group was...Tensing Norgay!
Hillary is the first guest, or you can just jump to the 3:30 mark.
This month's The Writers Workbench column looks at accessories for traveling. As I've mentioned, it's a bit convoluted to format the column, so since it's already formatted on the Writers Guild website and Huffington Post, it's just FAR easier to link to.
There's a look at a very light and portable luggage scale, a fascinating international travel adapter/router, a bunch of TSA-approved luggage locks, some travel chargers and more.
You can find it all by clicking here.
I was in the grocery store today and walk looking at packages of dry beans. One company, Paco brand, had among the most fascinating cooking directions.
Things started off fine. For quick soaking, cook the beans for two minutes in hot water and then let them sit for an hour.
Well, that's reasonable. Now, on to the cooking --
On a low simmer, cook the drained beans for 56 minutes or until tender.
Yes, "56 minutes." Not 55 or an hour. That's 56 minutes. Got it?
But not even 56 minutes. You'd think that for directions that specific, it would be all you needed to know, and that would be that. But no, if it turns out that the beans aren't quite tender enough in 56 minutes, keep cooking them until they're tender. Like for a total of 58 minutes, maybe.
For anyone who was trying to listen to the WGA podcast that I linked to over the weekend, I was finally able to track down a code that allows me to embed it on the page here, making it easier to listen to.
When the embed code that is provided and the "Stitcher" website page isn't working, when it's worked in the past, is outside my pay grade...
But for those who don't want to scroll back a few days, here's the direct link.
Interesting article in light of the latest mass gun-killing, this time in Louisiana. The article, "So You Think You Know the Second Amendment?" by Jeffrey Toobin in The New Yorker, was written in 2012 on the heels of the Newtown school mass gun-killing.
The short version is that Toobin says until the Reagan Administration, the Second Amendment was interpreted differently by the courts than it is today.
The Second Amendment reads -- "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” And previously, Toubin writes, the Supreme Court and lower courts gave precedence to the first clause -- the one that refers specifically and only to militias. As such, they'd consistently ruled that it was state militias that had the right to bear arms, but not individuals.
Only after the corporate-owned, right wing NRA got involved pushing their agenda in the 1980s did courts begin re-interpreting the Second Amendment.
And it's worth noting, as we've discussed here and which Toobin brings up, that for those who insist the Second Amendment is inviolate and can't be restricted (never mind the re-interpretation...), we do already have restrictions to the right to bear arms. For instance, you can't own automatic weapons, assault rifles or tanks, among others. Only handguns. It was a convoluted Supreme Court decision crafted by its author, Antonin Scalia.
An interesting side-point that Toobin makes is that conservatives tend to be "original literalists" of the Constitution and scoff at liberals who try to suggest that it is a living document. Yet when it fits their needs, as with the Second Amendment, conservatives are just fine with changing the original interpretation that had been accepted for a couple hundred years.
The article isn't very long. You can read the full piece here.
But if you can't get to it now, it'll still be valid the next time there's a gun massacre.
This week's contestant is Audrey Lorden from San Diego, California. I actually got the composer style...except that I didn't think I did, it was more a random guess, so I dismissed it. So, I'm not going to give myself any points for that. As for the hidden song, I didn't have the slightest idea -- though there will be some who get it right away. I'll say that, when host Fred Child gave the contestant a clue, I guessed it immediately. But again, I don't give myself points for that.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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