News Highlights, April 14th

Al Jaffee, Dead at 102

Did you read Mad Magazine? Do you remember those most awesome folding pages that formed new pictures when folded? That was Al. He pioneered Mad’s iconic “Fold-ins” and I don’t know about you but that was one of the reasons I loved to buy that magazine.

Jaffee died the 10th of April in Manhattan (NY) from multiple organ failure. He’d only just retired at the age of 99!

What started out as a spoof of the Playboy and Sports Illustrated magazines fold out pages, the ones in Mad became absolute legend. For more than 65 years he created new content … enough to fill a four-volume box set that was published in 2011.

Here was his first, published in 1964. Making fun of Elizabeth Taylor dumping Eddie Fisher for Richard Burton.

#FreeLolita AT LAST

On August 8, 1970, in the waters of the Puget Sound of Washington State, a pod of killer whales were attacked and rounded up by a group of killer whale herders, led by Ted Griffiths and Don Goldsberry.  Using speedboats, an airplane and releasing explosives in the water, they forced the orcas into Penn Cove. The juvenille orcas were separated from their mothers, as the infants were prime candidates to be sold to aquariums, while the adult orcas were released and free to leave.  However, the adult pod would not leave their offspring and refused to swim free, vocalizing human-like cries, until the last baby was pulled out of the water, never to return again. One adult and four infant orcas were killed during this capture. The industry, in an attempt to keep the orca deaths from the public, instructed the herders to slit open the bellies of the dead animals, fill them with rocks, and sink the creatures with anchors, hoping they would never be discovered.  It is because of the large number of violent orcas captures by the marine park industry in Washington State waters, that an entire generation of orcas was eliminated, and as a result, this orca population is now considered an endangered species.

One of the orca infants captured was a 4 year old named Tokitae, who was sold to the Miami Seaquarium. She arrived at the marine park on September 24, 1970, where she was renamed ‘Lolita’ and has lived there ever since. She performs tricks during her scheduled shows, and has done so for the past forty-six years.

Lolita’s tank is the size of a hotel swimming pool.

It is now known that killer whales are incredibly intelligent, sentient and social creatures.  Resident killer whales from the Pacific Northwest, which Lolita is classified as, stay with their mothers their entire lives. Lolita’s mother, known as L25, is still alive today at approximate 90 years old, and is photographed regularly by scientists and conservation organizations. Lolita currently lives alone with no other killer whale companions. When not performing in her show, Lolita floats listlessly in her tank. In the wild, killer whales swim hundreds of miles a day, diving as deep as 500 feet. In her tank, she swims in circles inside the 35 foot wide area and can only go as deep as 20 feet, in a small area in the center of the tank.

Lolita is the oldest living killer whale in captivity, in the smallest orca tank in the country.

It’s been an absolutely despicable situation.

But now, someone has taken up the cause to set her free.

“Lolita will receive the highest quality care as the team works to make relocation possible in the next 18 to 24 months,” Miami Seaquarium said in a statement Thursday.

“I know Lolita wants to get to free waters. I don’t care what anyone says. She’s lived this long to have this opportunity. And my only mission is (…) to help this whale get free,” said Jim Irsay, the Indianapolis Colts owner who is helping to pay for Lolita’s move.

He said Thursday the cost could reach “eight figures.” Source:

Artemis On Their Way!