The 231163 Diaries:
Pope Paul VI.

Religion Pope Paul VI, born Giovanni Battista Enrico Antonio Maria Montini was pontiff between 1963 and 1978. In his address on the 23rd December 1963, he mentions the events of the day before then heads off into agricultural matters. The two met earlier in the year:


Saturday 23 November 1963.

Your Excellencies and Gentlemen,

While we welcome you here today, We cannot commence Our discourse without a reference to the tragic death of the President of the United States of America, John Fitzgerald Kennedy. We wish to reiterate here the sentiments to which We have already given public expression: of deploration of the criminal action; of admiration for the man and the statesman; of prayers for his eternal repose, for his country, and for the world, which recognized in him a great leader; and finally of prayerful wishes that his death may not hinder the cause of peace, but serve as a sacrifice and an example for the good of all mankind.

We take this occasion to send Our greetings to all the nations represented at this Audience, especially to those who have recently become members and associates of the Food and Agriculture Organization.

We pray that God may grant each country prosperity and peace, in international cooperation, and in well-organized modernized work-for work was not cursed by God, when He said: «In the sweat of your brow you shall eat bread» (Gen. 3, 19); that is, the honest sweat of good labour, according to the example of Christ, Who was Himself a workman.

To solve the grave problem of the life of human kind, this, then, is the right road: to increase the supply of bread, of food; and not to mortify and destroy the fecundity of life, for the Creator ordered His first creatures to «Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth» (Gen. 9, 1).

We congratulate you on your notable accomplishments in this regard, We pray that your efforts to help the human race by incrementing its food supply may be ever more successful, and to you, your collaborators and your families, We gladly impart a special Apostolic Blessing.

Big Finish have brought the entire original Torchwood team back together and hopefully it'll be set during the half decent second series rather than the mostly rubbish first or be better than both as is customary with audio Torchwood:
“It’s been ten years since there's been an adventure featuring Jack, Gwen, Ianto, Tosh and Owen,” says writer Guy Adams, “and coming up with something big enough – and complex enough – to need them was great fun. After all, taking down an entire religion isn’t easy. But if anyone can do it…” [Big Finish]
President Richard Nixon meets our Royal Family in 1969:

Samantha Bee, one corner of my Oliver/Myers/Bee US satire info triangle, interviewed:
"“That’s the loudest, most unfiltered version of me that exists,” she says. “In my private life, I’m not like that at all. I don’t kick doors in and walk into meetings wowing everybody with my Entertainment Personality. It’s a wonderful 21-minute catharsis, once a week, but I don’t need to be that person in my day-to-day life.” Her 65-strong team of writers, producers, technicians and graphic designers is notable for its diversity: half of the staff are female and a third are non-white. “It’s not like we have solved the world’s diversity problem, but we do think about it all the time,” she says. “When we need to hire people, we think: let’s try to find a woman for this.”" [The Guardian]

Ben Jackson's Racist Past.

TV One of my Christmas presents this year (last year now?) was the superb The Doctor Who Audio Annual: Multi-Doctor stories, in which a variety of stories from the old World Publications have been recorded in the style of the Target novelisations by various luminaries, usually a companion from that era.

The stories in the earliest books, from the 1960s, are notoriously off-piste in their characterisation of the Doctor and his companions as is demonstrated in the choice of 2nd Doctor story, The King of Golden Dead from 1968.

"Dr. Who" and Ben and Polly land in an Egyptian tomb, recently buried and none of them come out of it well in moral terms, the bad place beckons.  The Doctor spends most of the "adventure" obsessed with trying to discover if its the final resting place of Tutankhamun, whilst trying to convince his companions not to rob the place.

Eventually an antagonist arrives in the form of some contemporary grave robbers attempting to find a way through which leads to a conversation in which, whoevers writing this, takes Ben's already pretty stupifying cockneyness into the teritory of a racial slur when describing their potential assailants:

Did you spot it?  The only reason I noticed it is because I'm reading along with the annuals so I can enjoy the illustrations with the narration.  For the most part the readings are accurate, a missed paragraph here, misunderstood letter or punctuation there.

On this occasion the script is rewritten for Anneke Wills who may not even have been aware of the original text.  Instead she says, "If there's so many take to his lark of robbing tombs of the mummies ..." which is perfectly fine and gets the point across even if the whole thing is entirely out of character for Mr Jackson.

When plenty of us folk were complaining about the treatment of the First Doctor in this year's Christmas special (last year?) with anachronistic language being used in an out of character way all of it was sexist, none of it racist. 

But notice that back in the 60s, the use of this word was considered fine in a children's annual, admittedly not put in the Doctor's mouth.  Perhaps a realistic depiction of Ben would have included this word, but it still jars, since it still feels fundamentally wrong for a character in this series who's supposed to be the hero.

That's the 60s annuals for you.

The 231163 Diaries:
Doctor Who preview from the Liverpool Echo.

TV Here is the preview published in the television pages of the Liverpool Echo on the 23rd November 1963.  Notice how even at this stage, an over-arching title was being utilised for the group of stories and also that it previews The Mutants aka The Daleks without actually mentioning them.

The 231163 Diaries:
Katharine Graham.

Journalism Katharine Meyer "Kay" Graham (June 16, 1917 – July 17, 2001) was an American publisher. She led her family's newspaper, The Washington Post, for more than two decades, overseeing its most famous period: the Watergate coverage that eventually led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Her memoir, Personal History, won the Pulitzer Prize in 1998.  She's played by Meryl Streep in The Post.

The following extract from her memoir offers an alternative account to a meeting that Arthur Schlesinger outlines in his diary from someone who was connected more to the incoming administration than to that which had been destroyed.  I've included material both the 22nd and 23rd to show the contrast and also because it all feels of a piece.

Notice how there are a couple of minor differences.  Schelsinger remembers then rushing to a radio - Graham thinks it was a TV.  Perhaps it was both.  Graham also offers some detail of the reporting, with a quote which confirms that the President is dead.  It's also interesting to note the crowds on the streets unaware of the situation, no iPhones or Androids then, no news alerts.  Perhaps that was better.

On November 22, 1963, I had invited my old friend Arthur Schlesinger and Ken Galbraith to have lunch with the editors of Newsweek to discuss their views of the "Back of the Book" section of the magazine.  I stopped by the White House to pick up Arthur, who was working there at the time, and we flew to New York and assembled for lunch with Ken, Fritz, and all the top editors and other concerned.  We were having drinks when someone came flying down the hall, stuck his head in, and said, "The president has been shot."

Our reaction was disbelief -- either there was a mistake or it would be all right -- yet we were panic-stricken.  We rushed to a television set, and the reports quickly made it apparent that the situation was very serious.  A Secret Service man, Clint Hill, who had accompanied Jackie to India when Ken was ambassador there, was quoted as saying that he thought the president had been fatally wounded.  Ken said, "If that comes from Clint Hill, it has to be taken seriously."  When the horrifying news came that the president was dead, we moved quickly to get to the airport and return to Washington.  Ken later recalled the contrast between the total crushing feeling in the car and the still-exuberant noonday crowds, who hadn't yet heard what had happened.

When we got back to Washington, we went together to the White House.  I was reluctant to go, since I was much less close to the Kennedys than either Ken or Arthur, but they both insisted I come with them, so I did.  We went into a room full of people in which Ted Sorensen was giving orders.  After we'd been there a short time, he looked up impatiently and asked everyone who didn't have a specific job to do and a right to be there to clear the room, at which point I departed, certain the remark aimed at me, even though a great many other people left, too.

Our sense of loss was enormous -- for the country and for so many of us personally.  Isaiah Berlin summed it up best when he later said, "I feel less safe."  Bill Walton remembered that, after helping make plans for the funeral, he returned to his house, shattered, and my mother phoned him crying.  According to Bill, she was just so straightforward.  She said: "We're nothing but a goddamned banana republic," and hung up.

The day after the assassination, I went back to the East Room of the White House, where President Kennedy's casket was lying in state, and then went to call on Lady Bird. who had invited me to tea. (Liz Carpenter, who became Lady Bird's press secretary, later said that President Johnson suggested that she talk to me.)  Like all of us, the Johnsons were in shock at the loss of Jack Kennedy.  At the same time they were having to take on the enormous responsibilities as president and first lady, and to take them on with such heavy feelings.  As Liz Carpenter explained, "If you only knew how awful we all felt after the assassination.  Not only because we'd lost this golden president, but because it happened in Texas.  It was just a hell of a burden to bear."  Lady Bird described it this way: "They look at the loving and with for the dead."

She has also spoken about what it was like for her to become first lady: "I feel like I've walked on stage for a part I've never rehearsed."  Although this was an apt description for my own new role in life, I felt at a total loss to be of any help to her.  We were all so much in shock that it was hard to imagine any other administration and any other people in the roles of president and first lady.  I admit that I didn't appreciate at the time that Lady Bird Johnson would do things very well her own way.

Liz Carpenter also later talked with me on the phone about what kind of programme would be right for Lady Bird to undertake, bringing up the idea of "beautification" as one possibility.  Because I had worked for so long on the District's severe social problems, I worried that beautification was too superficial.  Liz wisely said that Lady Bird had to choose something on which she could have a real impact.  Liz was right, and the beautification program was a triumph.  Happily for me, Lady Bird ask me to be a member of her Beautification Committee, and I was delighted to serve.

[Source:  GRAHAM, Katharine.  2002.  Personal History.  W&N; New Ed edition.]
A clean version of the Vodaphone advert starring the Doctor and Agent Cooper has been uploaded to YouTube by VHS Video Vault:

The 231163 Diaries:
Harold Macmillan.

Politics Harold Macmillan was UK Prime Minister between 10 January 1957 – 19 October 1963 and so worked directly with JFK as he mentions in this entry.

The President spoke to him daily during the Cuban missile crisis and negotiated the purchase of Polaris missiles under the Nassau agreement in December 1962.

William Cavendish, Marquess of Hartington, the nephew of his wife Lady Dorothy Cavendish, married Kennedy's sister Kathleen.

26 November

All Saturday and Sunday; the Press, the Radio, and the TV has been devoted to the details of this terrible event. It has been a staggering blow. To the causes which he and I tried to work for, it is a grievous blow. For Jack Kennedy's acceptance - of Test Ban and of policy of detente with Russia were really his own - I mean, were not shared for any except his most intimate advisers. He took great risks for them - as he did with the policy of ending negro inferiority. I was pestered all the week-end to appear on Radio or TV but refused. It seemed to me better to speak in the HofCommons, wh. I did yesterday. I motored from Petworth to London; lunched with Katie Macmillan; spoke for 5 minutes (after the 3 official spokesman - Barber, Gordon Walker, Wade) and motored back to B.G. I was very exhausted but I got through without a break-down. Of course, the whole thing only 1/2 hour, wh. made it easier. The Press today is very complimentary about my speech and I have heard that Ambassador Bruce and his colleagues at the Embassy were very pleased ...

... I was represented at the funeral by Andrew Devonshire. It must have been a wonderful gathering in Washington. The loss to the Anglo-American system is enormous. Poor David Gore will now no longer have the priveleged position wh. he has enjoyed so long and used so well.

[Source: MACMILLAN, Harold. 1973. At the End of the Day 1961-1963 (Volume 6 of Memoirs). MacMillan Co.; 1st Ed.]
Detailed analysis of the sound editing in Olivier Assayas's Personal Shopper:
"The most effective tool in Assayas’ gilded box are the noises of indiscernible origin ginned up by his foley team. While most of the e-ink related to this film has been understandably spilt over the much-ballyhooed sequence in which KStew gets cyber-bullied over the course of one working afternoon, the most crucial scenes come a bit earlier, when she spends the night in Lewis’ former home. Here Assayas inserts sounds while only suggesting their point of origin to force us into surrogacy with Maureen as she futilely grasps at understanding. The hand of a director can be as light as any ghost—to the point of imperceptibility." [The AV Club]
Jessica Chastain hosted Saturday Night Live last night and although for the most part the material didn't live up to her commitment, this sketch pretty much captures how we're all feeling:

The 231163 Diaries:
Violet Bonham Carter.

Politics Violet Bonham Carter, Baroness Asquith of Yarnbury was a British politician and diarist. She was the daughter of H. H. Asquith, Prime Minister from 1908–1916, and later became active in Liberal politics herself, being a leading opponent of appeasement, standing for Parliament and being made a life peer. She was also involved in arts and literature.  She was Sir Winston Churchill's closest female friend, apart from his wife, and her grandchildren include the actress Helena Bonham Carter.

Here is a photograph of the Requiem Mass she attended but what's of most interest is that she offers an opinion of that night's programmes.  The Kennedy documentary isn't listed on the BBC Genome's schedule so either it was broadcast on the other side or the schedule was changed.  This Independent article from 2003 is ambiguous on the point.  Please do let me know if you have any information.  This is the listing for the episode of That Was The Week That Was she's referring to.

Diary - Saturday 23 November - 21 Hyde Park Square, W.2

I went with Raymond & Elena to the Requiem Mass in Westminster Cathedral at 12.30. It was most moving - the vast Cathedral packed with people - mostly poor & humble bringing their children with them.  As Elena said to me 'C'est la base du peuple.'  They had a Communion Service with unaccompanied singing - no organ music until the end when the organ suddenly peeled out the 'Star-Spangled Banner' .... 'God Save the Queen' followed - rather flatly - then Beethoven's Funeral March.  Ray & Elena came back at 7.30 & we watched a Kennedy T.V. programme - not as good as yesterday's - & a late 'News-Extra' with rather touching man-in-the-street remarks.  Then, as I was about to switch off, a half-hour of T.W.T.W. which I did not feel in the mood for, but which was surprisingly good & had no single lapse of taste (the only flaw a sentimental poem about Jackie recited by Sybil Thorndike).  One good point made was that Death does not make all men equal.  On the news we had heard of the death of 60 poor old people burnt in an Old People's Home, which they were too crippled to get out of.  I was aware how stonily I took this tragedy compared with Kennedy's death.

[Source: POTTLE, Dr Mark. 2000. Daring to Hope - The Diaries and Letters of Violet Bonham Carter - 1946-1969. Orion; 1st Edition edition.]