Queen Mary’s final transatlantic voyage began today 50 years ago, as she leaves New York for the final time. She would go on to do two more cruises to Las Palmas, then finally leave Southhampton for Long Beach on Oct. 31, 1967.

Protest on September 11 (national day of Catalonia), 1977, demanding the amnesty for political prisoners and a Statute of Autonomy for Catalonia under the motto “llibertat, amnistia, estatut d’autonomia!” (liberty, amnesty, statue of autonomy!” in Catalan).

It was the first authorized protest in Barcelona after the death of the fascist dictator Franco, who had prohibited all manifestations of Catalan language, culture and identity.

A Beautiful Suicide

This photograph of a woman who committed suicide by jumping off the Empire State Building is one of TIME magazine’s most iconic pictures.

Evelyn McHale (23) travelled to New York on April 30, 1947, to meet with her fiancé and organise her upcoming wedding. Inexplicably, the next day, she visited the Empire State Building and hurled herself from the 86th story observation deck. She landed on the roof of a stationary car, her body miraculously intact. A passing photographer managed to capture Evelyn’s strangely peaceful pose, and he dubbed her ‘the most beautiful suicide in the world’.

Evelyn had been suffering from terrible anxiety and stress over her upcoming wedding, and had left a suicide note next to her neatly folded coat on the observation deck she jumped from. The note read:

“I don’t want anyone in or out of my family to see any part of me. Could you destroy my body by cremation? I beg of you and my family – don’t have any service for me or remembrance for me. My fiance asked me to marry him in June. I don’t think I would make a good wife for anybody. He is much better off without me. Tell my father, I have too many of my mother’s tendencies.”

In accordance with her wishes, Evelyn McHale was cremated with no funeral or memorial service.

The Most Subtle Joke in Hetalia

I’ve been meaning to make this post for a while now to show you this joke and why it is my favorite. This is the joke:

This joke may not make sense at first but I’m going to explain why it’s funny. The “William I” Japan mentions is Kaiser Wilhelm I, who was the king of Prussia and the first emperor of Unified Germany starting in 1861.

This guy, he was described as the most histrionic emperor in Europe, he was known for often breaking into tears. Every time he cried and acted dramatic he didn’t get his way. When Japan references Wilhelm, he’s saying exactly the same thing Italy said in the scene, he’s going to give in and not get his way. But he says it in a way that makes it hard to tell what he actually meant, and if Germany kept pressing Japan on what he meant, he would be disrespecting his former emperor, so Japan avoids confrontation, and that is incredibly Japanese. To understand the joke, you had to understand the obscure historical reference and Japanese negotiation tactics, it’s a brilliantly written, multi-layered, subtle joke. Jokes like these are part of what makes Hetalia so great, why I love the series, and why I believe that Himaruya is a genius.

The stars dust gold leafing on his skin. And we are looking at each other, just looking, and I swear there are whole lifetimes lived in those small, shared moments.
—  Mackenzi Lee, The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue