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Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Albert Einstein Goes Drinking In Japan

What we have here, is the opposite of a failure to communicate.

A shoeless Albert Einstein is seen here beside his second-wife Elsa Einstein, toasting whatever the heck there is to toast, some sake at a Japanese restaurant.

I’m pretty sure the women in the photo are NOT geisha, with their face all painted in white make-up, and it’s simply just a host of hostesses paying their homage to one of the greatest minds of the 20th century, as he toured Japan in 1922.

It was part of a “global” tour celebrating his being awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1921.

Elsa, besides being the smartypants’ second wife, was also a first cousin. Their mothers were sister. And if that’s not weird enough, their fathers were first cousins.

And, to save time, Elsa’s family name before marriage was also Einstein.

Elsa was born on January 18, 1876 in Hechingen, Germany, and was married to Max Löwenthal from 1896 until their divorce in 1908.  As such, it was during her marriage that she “lost” her family name of Einstein.

Despite the divorce,, she maintained the Löwenthal surname. I guess the Germans of that era did things differently… or maybe this was common… I have no idea.

She had three children with Max Löwenthal: two daughters, and a son who died just shortly after birth.

As a divorcee, Elsa began a relationship mit cousin Albert in April of 1912… so at least she wasn’t cheating on her husband to screw her cousin… which would be weird in any decade, I think.

By the way… marrying one’s first cousin wasn’t the norm, but it wasn’t abnormal either. Did you know that Charles Darwin and his first cousin, Emma Wedgwood. Their respective siblings Caroline Darwin and Josiah Wedgwood III also married. In addition, their grandparents, Sarah Wedgwood and Josiah Wedgwood, were third cousins.

Apparently keeping it in the family like this wasn’t going to mess up Darwin’s theory on evolution even though it could dilute the bloodline if all the negative traits come through.

And, since this is about Japan (I know, I forget sometimes), Kishi Nobusuke (surname first), former Japanese statesman, and his first cousin, Kishi Yoshiko (surname first). He was the Prime Minister of Japan from February 25, 1957 to July 19, 1960.

Known for his brutal rule of the Japanese puppet state Manchukuo in Northeast China, Kishi was called Shōwa no yōkai (昭和の妖怪) which translates in English to: "the Shōwa era monster/devil"—I wonder if that nickname was bestowed upon him by the Japanese or the post-war Allies.

After World War II, Kishi was imprisoned for three years as a Class A war crime suspect. Class A is the worst kind...

However, the U.S. government released him as they determined that Kishi would be the best man to lead a post-war Japan in a pro-American direction. As such, he has been called "America's Favorite War Criminal.” I'm pretty sure this nickname was bestowed upon him by the Allies.

He went on to consolidate the Japanese conservative camp against perceived threats from the Japan Socialist Party in the 1950s, and is credited with being a key player in the initiation of the 1955 System (55年体制, gojūgonen taisei)... a term used for the party system in Japan from 1955 until I left in 1993 - it's not because of me... that's just a coincidence)... it was also the period during which the Liberal Democratic Party was the overwhelmingly dominant political party in Japan.

Oh… and Kishi is/was also the paternal grandfather to current Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo (surname first), who seems to be a relatively good boy lately.

Back to Albert Einstein

Of course, in 1912, Albert was still married to HIS first wife, the mathematician and physicist and of Serbian background, Mileva Marić.

Albert… that sly boots… well Mileva was a student where Albert schooled at the Polytechnic in Zurich… the only female in the class to graduate.

They had a daughter named Lierseri in 1902… but she died in 1903, just before Albert and Mileva got married. Still, they had two boys together afterwards, Hans Albert (May 14-1904, Bern Switzerland - July 26, 1973 in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, US: an engineer and educator, he was a professor of hydraulic engineering at the University of California, Berkley); and Eduard (July 28, Bern, Switzerland - October 25, 1965, Zurich, Switzerland… diagnosed as an adult with schizophrenia, the cures of drugs and elctroconvulsive therapy messed up his cognitive and memory skills… before becoming diagnosed at the age of 20, he was studying medicine to become a psychiatrist).

As for Einstein’s kissing cousin Elsa, she and Albert did not have any kids of their own, but he did care for her daughters Lise and Margot from her first marriage, and all four were close.

Because Albert Einstein could be easily distracted, if bothered, Elsa’s job was to intercept any would-be callers, keeping away any and all who might try and take advantage of him.

In 1933, Albert and Elsa moved to Princeton, New Jersey, US… but by 1935 she became ill with heart and kidney problems, dying on December 20, 1936, causing the great genius to cry for the first time as an adult.

In the photo above, you can tell he is contemplating the formation of his unified theory that he hoped would prove that electromagnetism and gravity are different manifestations of a single fundamental field.

Magnets, they attract,
Andrew Joseph

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