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Posts in 4/03: Chickentown
Where are we at?... (2.40)

Bobby: Where are we at?

Hall: Couldn't establish internal surveillance.

Bobby: Fuck.

Wendy: We knew Taylor wasn't gonna leave a key under the welcome mat.

Bobby: Who set up their security, fuckin' George Smiley?

George Smiley OBE is a fictional character created by John le Carré. Smiley is a career intelligence officer with "The Circus", the British overseas intelligence agency. He is a central character in the novels Call for the Dead, A Murder of Quality, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Honourable Schoolboy, and Smiley's People, and a supporting character in The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, The Looking Glass War, The Secret Pilgrim and A Legacy of Spies. The character has also appeared in a number of film, television, and radio adaptations of le Carré's books.

Le Carré created Smiley as an intentional foil to James Bond, a character whom he believed depicted an inaccurate and damaging version of espionage life. Short, overweight, balding, and bespectacled, Smiley is polite and self-effacing and frequently allows others to mistreat him, including his serially unfaithful wife; these traits mask his inner cunning, eidetic memory, mastery of tradecraft, and occasional ruthlessness. His genius, coupled with other characters' willingness to underestimate him, allows Smiley to consistently achieve his goals and ultimately become one of the most powerful spies in England.

The character is held in high esteem in England, where he has become a pop-culture icon on par with Bond. The Guardian has called him "the sort of spy [England] believes it ought to have: a bit shabby, academic, basically loyal, and sceptical of the enthusiasms of his political masters."

The Chinese didn't invent it... (2.50)

Wendy: Buy up the price on names they want to increase their size in. Costing them upside and picking tiny little percentages off their profits. It'll be like the old water torture drip, drip, drip.

Wags: Like the Japanese in W.W.II. Even though the Chinese invented it.

Wendy: No they didn't.

Wags: Then why is it called 'Chinese Water Torture?'

Bobby: Taylor will try to ignore it. Tell themselves that it's just a few bips here or there. But it won't work.

Wendy: Their need for mathematical perfection will erode their well-being. Then a real mistake can be induced.

Hall: If you ever get tired of working for him, call me.

Bobby: Oh, she's not going anywhere.

Hall: She's right, you know. The Chinese didn't invent it.

Wendy: Hippolytus de Marsiliis did, an Italian.

Chinese water torture is a process in which water is slowly dripped onto one's scalp, allegedly making the restrained victim insane. This form of torture was first described under a different name by Hippolytus de Marsiliis in Italy in the 15th or 16th century. The term "Chinese water torture" may have arisen from Chinese Water Torture Cell (a feat of escapology introduced in Berlin at Circus Busch September 13, 1910; the escape entailed Harry Houdini being bound and suspended upside-down in a locked glass and steel cabinet full to overflowing with water, from which he escaped), together with the Fu Manchu stories of Sax Rohmer that were popular in the 1930s (in which Fu Manchu subjected his victims to various ingenious tortures, such as the wired jacket). Hippolytus de Marsiliis is credited with the invention of a form of water torture. Having observed how drops of water falling one by one on a stone gradually created a hollow, he applied the method to the human body. Other suggestions say that the term "Chinese water torture" was invented merely to grant the method a sense of ominous mystery. The victim would be stripped of their clothes, shown to the public, then tortured. They would be driven insane while bystanders watched and mocked them.

Hippolytus de Marsiliis (born 1451 Bologna; date of death unknown) was a lawyer and doctor utriusque iuris (Lat. 'doctor of either law' — one who studied civil as well as canon law). He received his doctorate in 1480 but the date at which he became a lawyer is unknown. Throughout his life, he wrote many repetitiones and notabilia on many canons and decretals. In addition, he taught Roman law beginning in the year 1482. He is best known for documenting the Chinese water torture method, in which drops of water would consistently fall on a victim's forehead, causing the victim to go insane. He also was the first person to document sleep deprivation as a means of torture, wherein the interrogators would repeat same questions, shaking the victim at random intervals, pricking him with a sharp pin, or forcing him to march down a hallway endlessly. If the interrogators grew weary, they would switch out with another group, who then would ask the same questions (today police use this method, but it is known as the third degree).

It's time for Pericles to stroll the Parthenon... (7.07)

Charles Snr: It's time for Pericles to stroll the Parthenon. You smile, shake some hands. Like a pol on the hustings, which you are. Make the important people feel important.

Chuck: If they were really important, they wouldn't need me to make 'em feel that way. As Michel Foucault said…

Charles Snr: Save that falderal for someone with nothing better to do than to parse your Ivory Tower crap.

Chuck: Maybe I'll just stay home.

Pericles (c. 495 – 429 BC) was a prominent and influential Greek statesman, orator and general of Athens during its golden age – specifically the time between the Persian and Peloponnesianwars. He was descended, through his mother, from the powerful and historically influential Alcmaeonid family. Pericles had such a profound influence on Athenian society that Thucydides, a contemporary historian, acclaimed him as "the first citizen of Athens". Pericles turned the Delian League into an Athenian empire, and led his countrymen during the first two years of the Peloponnesian War. The period during which he led Athens, roughly from 461 to 429 BC, is sometimes known as the "Age of Pericles", though the period thus denoted can include times as early as the Persian Wars, or as late as the next century.

Paul-Michel Foucault (15 October 1926 – 25 June 1984), generally known as Michel Foucault, was a French philosopher, historian of ideas, social theorist, and literary critic.

Foucault's theories primarily address the relationship between power and knowledge, and how they are used as a form of social control through societal institutions. Though often cited as a post-structuralist and postmodernist, Foucault rejected these labels, preferring to present his thought as a critical history of modernity. His thought has influenced academics, especially those working in communication studies, sociology, cultural studies, literary theory, feminism, and critical theory. Activist groups have also found his theories compelling.

I'm Cassandra... (10.55)

Winston: I fucking knew it. There was something unnatural about the way we were getting sawed off. I even started an email to let you know, always seeing the future.

Sara: You never sent the email. The difference between you and Cassandra is: She didn't wait until after the fact to say it aloud.

Cassandra or Kassandra, also known as Alexandra, was a daughter of King Priam and of Queen Hecuba of Troy in Greek mythology. Cassandra was cursed to utter prophecies that were true but that no one believed. The older and most common versions state that she was admired by the god Apollo, and he offered her the gift to see the future in order to win her heart. Cassandra agreed to be his lover in return for his gift, but after receiving the gift, she went back on her word and refused him. Apollo was angered that she lied and deceived him, but since he couldn't take back a gift already given, he cursed her that though she would see the future accurately, nobody would ever believe her prophecies.  Some of the later versions have her falling asleep in a temple, where snakes licked (or whispered in) her ears so that she could hear the future. Cassandra became a figure of epic tradition and of tragedy. In modern usage her name is employed as a rhetorical device to indicate someone whose accurate prophecies are not believed by those around them.

Doobies? Doobie Brothers?... (13.28)

Porter: You used to think that it was so easy", you used to say that it was so easy. But you're trying, you're trying now.

Chuck: Doobies? Doobie Brothers?

Porter: Gerry Rafferty. My first job was writing record reviews You remember stuff. I'll tell you what else I remember: You didn't take me down to Baker Street when you could've. If you had, we could come to an agreeable compromise now over milkshakes and handjobs. But you didn't.

Chuck: I get that your ass is chapped, Lucien.

Porter: When you were US Attorney, you dealt your goods all over the place. But not to me.

Chuck: You wanna go to Baker Street, baby, we'll go now. Tell me how I can serve you.

The Doobie Brothers are an American rock band from San Jose, California. The group has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide. It has been active for five decades, with its greatest success in the 1970s. The band's history can be roughly divided into three eras. From 1970 to 1975 it featured lead vocalist Tom Johnston and a mainstream rock and roll sound with elements of folk, country and R&B. Johnston quit the group in 1975, and was replaced by Michael McDonald, whose interest in soul music changed the band's sound until it broke up in 1982. The Doobie Brothers reformed in 1987 with Johnston back in the fold and are still active, with occasional contributions from McDonald. Every incarnation of the group emphasized vocal harmonies. The Doobie Brothers were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004.

Gerald "Gerry" Rafferty (16 April 1947 – 4 January 2011) was a Scottish rock singer-songwriter known for his solo hits "Baker Street", "Right Down the Line" and "Night Owl", as well as "Stuck in the Middle with You", recorded with the band Stealers Wheel. Rafferty was born into a working-class family in Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland. His mother taught him both Irish and Scottish folk songs as a boy; later, he was influenced by the music of The Beatles and Bob Dylan. He joined the folk-pop group The Humblebums in 1969. After they disbanded in 1971, he recorded his first solo album, Can I Have My Money Back? Rafferty and Joe Egan formed the group Stealers Wheel in 1972 and produced several hits, most notably "Stuck in the Middle with You" and "Star". In 1978, he recorded his second solo album, City to City, which included "Baker Street", his most popular song.

"Baker Street" was released as a single in 1978, it reached #1 in Cash Box and #2 on the Billboard Hot 100, where it held that position for six weeks, behind Andy Gibb's smash "Shadow Dancing". Additionally, it hit #1 in Canada, #3 in the United Kingdom, #1 in Australia, #1 in South Africa, and the top 10 in the Netherlands. Rafferty received the 1978 Ivor Novello Award for Best Song Musically and Lyrically. The arrangement is known for its saxophone riff. In October 2010, the song was recognised by BMI for surpassing five million performances worldwide. It was awarded Gold Certification on two occasions, on 1 April 1978 and 22 July 2013 by the BPI in the UK.

What kind of derivative?... (18.20)

Taylor: I just decided to work on a derivative.

Douglas Mason: What kind of derivative?

Taylor: An homage to Vadim Linetsky.

Douglas Mason: Oh. You're in a 'path integral methods' sort of mood, are you?

Taylor: Would you like to help me?

Douglas Mason: You bet.

Vadim Linetsky is a Professor in the Industrial Engineering & Management Sciences department of Northwestern University. This one is about as obscure as it gets. Obviously he is a mathematician. Here’s his page.

There's no nougat... (28.24)

Hall: Got something for you.

Wags: It's a giant Reggie Bar, right?

Hall: Better.

Bobby: Let's see it.

You lied. It's not better than a Reggie Bar. There's no nougat.

Bobby: Reggie Bar didn't have nougat either. But it was a thing of beauty. Like this.

The Yankees' home opener of the 1978 season, on April 13 against the Chicago White Sox, featured a new product, the "Reggie!" bar. In 1976, while playing in Baltimore, Jackson had said, "If I played in New York, they'd name a candy bar after me." The Standard Brands company responded with a circular "bar" of peanuts dipped in caramel and covered in chocolate, a confection which was originally named the "Wayne Bun" as it was made in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The "Reggie!" bars were handed to fans as they walked into Yankee Stadium. Jackson hit a home run, and when he returned to right field the next inning, fans began throwing the Reggie bars on the field in celebration. The bar did not live for very long however, and its career ended in 1981.

They've sent in the flying squad... (31.56)
Shoeless_Joe_Jackson_by_Conlon,_1913.jpeg.jpeg

Dollar Bill: They've sent in the flying squad. There's fucking seven of them.

Bobby: Well, then you got six more guys to deal with than anticipated.

Dollar Bill: What are the chances they can all be bought? It doesn't look good.

Bobby: Arnold Rothstein bought the White Sox, including Shoeless Joe. Get it done.

Arnold Rothstein (January 17, 1882 - November 6, 1928) nicknamed "the Brain", was an American racketeer, businessman and gamblerwho became a kingpin of the Jewish mob in New York City. Rothstein was widely reputed to have organized corruption in professional athletics, including conspiring to fix the 1919 World Series. He was also a mentor of future mafia boss Lucky Luciano. There is a great deal of evidence both for and against Rothstein being involved in the 1919 World Series fix. In 1919, Rothstein's agents allegedly paid members of the Chicago White Sox to "throw", or deliberately lose, the World Series to the Cincinnati Reds. He bet against them and made a significant profit in what was called the "Black Sox Scandal".

The Chicago White Sox are an American professional baseball team based in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League (AL) Central division. The White Sox are owned by Jerry Reinsdorf, and play their home games at Guaranteed Rate Field, located on the city's South Side. They are one of two major league clubs in Chicago; the other is the Chicago Cubs, who are a member of the National League (NL) Central division.

Joseph Jefferson Jackson (July 16, 1887 – December 5, 1951), nicknamed "Shoeless Joe", was an American star outfielder who played Major League Baseball (MLB) in the early 1900s. He is remembered for his performance on the field and for his alleged association with the Black Sox Scandal, in which members of the 1919 Chicago White Sox participated in a conspiracy to fix the World Series. As a result of Jackson's association with the scandal, Kenesaw Mountain Landis, Major League Baseball's first commissioner, banned Jackson from playing after the 1920 season despite exceptional play in the 1919 World Series, leading both teams in several statistical categories and setting a World Series record with 12 base hits. Since then, Jackson's guilt has been fiercely debated with new accounts claiming his innocence, urging Major League Baseball to reconsider his banishment. As a result of the scandal, Jackson's career was abruptly halted in his prime, ensuring him a place in baseball lore.

Lemme get in the ring for you... (32.50)

Cruz: I really appreciate you looking out for the little guy in the ring, and that you think it's the right thing to do to stand in his corner. But it isn't.The right thing is to get his ass out of the ring so he's not taking punches.

Sacker: No, the right thing to do is to get Triple G to go in the ring for him and fuck the other guy up. So come on. I'm the Triple G of the Southern District. Lemme get in the ring for you.

Cruz: And I'm sure you are. But no thanks. At the end of the day, I just don't wanna get sued.

Gennady Gennadyevich Golovkin (born 8 April 1982), often known by his nickname "GGG" or "Triple G", is a Kazakhstani professional boxer. He is a former unified middleweight world champion, having held the WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, and IBO titles between 2010 and 2018. As of October 2018, he is ranked as the world's second best active middleweight by The Ring magazine, the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board (TBRB), and BoxRec. He is also ranked as the world's sixth best active boxer, pound for pound, by The Ring; third by BoxRec; and seventh by the TBRB.

Forget it, Bill. It's Chickentown... (39.50)

Wags: You intend to kill a few hundred thousand chickens?

Dollar Bill: They're getting killed anyway. This just accelerates the process, that's all.

Wags: That's a good point.

Dollar Bill: Right, so…

Bobby: But there is a cost-benefit analysis to take into consideration here that of poisoning the food supply. One I am familiar with. As you know.

Wags: One that requires meticulous calibration. Or else we're all in Contagion. Gwyneth Paltrow dead on the gurney and Matt Damon as the last living man on earth.

Dollar Bill: If I don't do this it's gonna be a huge loss.

Wags: He's right about that.

Bobby: It's okay.

Dollar Bill: It's not okay! I'm the guy who delivers.

Bobby: Yeah. Most of the time, you are. But, and I can't believe I'm fucking saying this: we can't all be right all of the time. Sometimes you just gotta take a loss.

Wags: Forget it, Bill. It's Chickentown.

Contagion is a 2011 movie directed by Steven Soderbergh (who comes up quite frequently) starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Matt Damon, among others. Healthcare professionals, government officials and everyday people find themselves in the midst of a worldwide epidemic as the CDC works to find a cure.

The whole Chickentown thing, and this scene in particular, is a huge nod to Chinatown, the 1974 American neo-noir mystery film, directed by Roman Polanski from a screenplay by Robert Towne, starring Jack Nicholsonand Faye Dunaway. The film was inspired by the California Water Wars, a series of disputes over southern California water at the beginning of the 20th century, by which Los Angeles interests secured water rights in the Owens Valley. The Robert Evans production, a Paramount Picturesrelease, was the director's last film in the United States and features many elements of film noir, particularly a multi-layered story that is part mystery and part psychological drama.

It's a Sicilian message.... (43.33)

Wags: Only Taylor doesn't make math mistakes.

Bobby: No.

Wags: It's a Sicilian message.

Bobby: It's a Kappa Mu Epsilon message. They knew they were being watched.

Wags: A lot of effort to lead you on a snipe hunt.

Bobby: I think they're the one hunting. For something bigger. The Treaty of Versailles.

The Sicillian message is another nod to The Godfather and Luca Brasi swimming with the fishes.

Kappa Mu Epsilon (KME) is a mathematics honor society founded in 1931 at Northeastern Oklahoma State Teachers College to focus on the needs of undergraduate mathematics students. There are now over 80,000 members in about 150 chapters at various American universities and colleges in 35 states,[1] primarily at mid-sized public universities or smaller private institutions. The five goals of Kappa Mu Epsilon are to further interest in mathematics, emphasize the role of mathematics in the development of civilization, develop an appreciation of the power and the beauty of mathematics, recognize the outstanding mathematical achievement of its members,and familiarize members with the advancements being made in mathematics.

The Treaty of Versailles was the most important of the peace treaties that brought World War I to an end. The Treaty ended the state of war between Germany and the Allied Powers. It was signed on 28 June 1919 in Versailles, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, which had directly led to World War I. The other Central Powers on the German side of World War I signed separate treaties. Although the armistice, signed on 11 November 1918, ended the actual fighting, it took six months of Allied negotiations at the Paris Peace Conference to conclude the peace treaty. The treaty was registered by the Secretariat of the League of Nationson 21 October 1919.

It's gonna get worse... (45.48)

Bobby: I got that you were proposing armistice the second I looked at the algorithm. But you should have considered the joys of peace before you assassinated the Archduke.

Taylor: It's a distraction. To me, and to you. It prevents us both from operating at our full potential.

Bobby: Oh. So you'd like to calm the blood feud for the sake of self-actualization?

Taylor: I'd like to end it because it's the rational thing to do.

Bobby: That's convenient, that you can fall back on what's rational just 'cause you don't like the consequences of your actions.

Taylor: Bullshit.

Bobby: You're frustrated. Good. It's gonna get worse.

The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne, and Franz Ferdinand's wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, occurred on 28 June 1914 in Sarajevo when they were mortally wounded by Gavrilo Princip. Princip was one of a group of six assassins (five Serbs and one Bosniak) coordinated by Danilo Ilić, a Bosnian Serb and a member of the Black Hand secret society. The political objective of the assassination was to break off Austria-Hungary's South Slav provinces so they could be combined into a Yugoslavia. The assassins' motives were consistent with the movement that later became known as Young Bosnia. The assassination led directly to World War I when Austria-Hungary subsequently issued an ultimatum to the Kingdom of Serbia, which was partially rejected. Austria-Hungary then declared war on Serbia, triggering actions leading to war between most European states.

Michael Bolton... (48.00)

So Charles Snr. and Chuck end the episode at at Michael Bolton gig.

Michael Bolotin (born February 26, 1953), known professionally as Michael Bolton, is an American singer and songwriter. Bolton originally performed in the hard rock and heavy metal genres from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, both on his early solo albums and those he recorded as the frontman of the band Blackjack. He became better known for his series of pop rock ballads, recorded after a stylistic change in the late 1980s. Bolton's achievements include selling more than 75 million records, recording eight top 10 albums and two number-one singles on the Billboardcharts, as well as winning six American Music Awards and two Grammy Awards.