Another Π Day!

So, it’s Π Day again! For my friend Michael, that would not be ampersand-pound-928-semicolon. It would be ampersand-pound-127829-semicolon, which is 🍕!

Meanwhile, please be sure to watch Vi Hart’s video for 2019-03-14.


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Graphic History

Readers who enjoy their history presented in graphic format might enjoy The Long Road to Women’s Suffrage by Ellen T. Crenshaw and Eleri Harris. It’s a comic that appeared in The Nib. Does there seem to be a (cough-cough) parallel (cough) story unfolding in contemporary times?

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Susan B. Anthony

In addition to being International Women’s Day, today is the anniversary of Susan B. Anthony’s testimony to the U.S. Congress supporting suffrage for women. According to the U.S. Library of Congress:

On March 8th, 1884 Susan B. Anthony appeared before the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives. Anthony began her statement thus:

“We appear before you this morning…to ask that you will, at your earliest convenience, report to the House in favor of the submission of a Sixteenth Amendment to the Legislatures of the several States, that shall prohibit the disfranchisement of citizens of the United States on account of sex.”

Anthony’s statement argued for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution granting women the right to vote, sixteen years after legislators had first introduced a federal woman’s suffrage amendment.

Read more from the LoC here. There’s some cool facts and fascinating pictures.

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Women’s Day!

It’s wonderful to celebrate International Women’s Day today! Thanks at least in part to Theresa Serber Malakiel for her contribution in founding a predecessor, Women’s Day, International Women’s Day has a social vibe with which I resonate.

One can get a sense of Ms. Malakiel’s social views in her fictionalized diary of a seamstress out on strike in the early 1900s: Diary of a Shirtwaist Striker. Of course, one can find copies from on-line book sellers, but why pay the man? It’s available for free at

Ms. Malakiel’s views are echoed in this year’s theme, #BalanceforBetter, promoted by the folks at International Women’s Day. “A balanced world is a better world. How can you help forge a more gender-balanced world? Celebrate women’s achievement. Raise awareness against bias. Take action for equality.”

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HB, Julian Bond!

Among the many wonderful colleagues I have had at U.Va., Julian Bond was special. We didn’t know each other well, but when we would encounter each other on a walk across the grounds or at an eatery on the downtown mall, he would raise a hand and nod, tilting his chin just a bit toward his right shoulder, one time as we greeted each other in passing.

Professor Bond may not have had any idea who I was. We only spoke personally a couple-a-few times, and then we spoke only briefly. But he recognized me!

What an honor to be recognized by someone of his considerable stature. Julian Bond, a person who did so much for civil and human rights, took the time to nod to me.

I guess that he did so as a part of the essence of his contribution. It ensures me that he gave a damn about other people, even his colleagues whom he barely knew. He must’ve really cared about people.

It is terrifically important that people acknowledge others. Mr. Bond did so with me. I appreciate his humane consideration.

We the people could use a lot more Julian Bonds. On his birthday, I pledge to carry his mantle.

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Avogadro’s Number

It’s Mole Day 2018. Today’s the day to commemorate that basic measure in chemistry, the mole, Avogadro’s Number (6.02 x 1023). Check the Web site for an explanation. One can follow @nationalmoleday on Twitter.

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Mole Day!

Happy Mole Day! It’s the day to celebrate Avogadro’s Number (6.02 x 1023) from 6:02 AM to 6:02 PM…I guess in whatever time zone one finds oneself. It’s a rather weighty commemoration.


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