Archive for the ‘fun facts’ Tag

07/31/2022 Chicken Facts   Leave a comment

Living in Maine is always interesting. Maine is a large state with a very small population and most of the state is covered in forests with a population that consists of many rural folks. After moving here, I noticed that a great many people raise chickens. Every other yard has a chicken coop and a few birds roaming around the property. I always thought it was primarily the eggs everyone wanted but there are a couple of other reasons to have chickens I never considered. They are an easy way to remove bugs and ticks from your property and it’s also a very helpful way to help feed the many hawks, coyotes, and foxes that seem to be everywhere. They have to eat too you know. It’s not at all unusual for a homeowner to initially purchase six chickens and then be forced to replace a few every so often due to missing birds.

You would think these rural folks would be familiar with the many superstitions that surround chicken ownership. My better-half has tried numerous times to convince me to become a chicken owner but I’ve refused. I love eating them but after learning about all of these superstitions . . . no thank you. Here are a few things any potential chicken owner needs to know . . .

  • If a hen roosts at noonday that’s a sign that someone in the family will soon die.
  • Anyone who has the blood of the chickens spilled on their clothes will die an unnatural death.
  • The clucking of a hen near a patient’s head is a sign of death.
  • Watch out for mean gossip about you if you see two hens fighting.
  • If you see hens laying eggs, you will have good luck.
  • If you tie an old tough hen to a fig tree, the hen’s meat will become tender.

  • In Korea it’s unlucky if you hear a rooster crow at sunset and a hen cluck at night.
  • In Africa it’s unlucky for a rooster to crow before midnight.
  • In Germany it is believed that when a rooster crows when a guest is leaving – even if it’s at daybreak – that guest will soon die.
  • If a rooster crows in your cellar door – even at daybreak – it’s a sign of a speedy marriage.
  • If a rooster crows all day, expect rain.
  • If a rooster comes into your home, it’s a sign strangers will soon visit.

I hope that knowing all of these potential issues with chickens will help those of you who are on the fence about chicken ownership. I guess you could call this post a PSA, that’s Public Service Announcement for you chicken owners out there.

CLUCK. . .CLUCK. . .CLUCK

05/01/2022 Trivial Trivia   Leave a comment

As most of you already know I am a lover of trivia. I’ve been collecting trivia and books on trivia for as long as I can remember. Most trivia are fun and interesting and humorous but not today. Today’s trivia is a little more scary than usual but trivia, nonetheless. I thought mixing it up a bit might catch your interest quicker than just another ‘trivial trivia list’. Let’s get started . . .

FOODS

  • Peanut allergies afflict an estimated 4 million Americans and can be life-threatening. Almost half of annual emergency room visits and two thirds of deaths due to anaphylaxis are the result of peanut allergies.
  • A medium fruit-and-yogurt smoothie at Dunkin’ Donuts contains four times as much sugar as a chocolate frosted cake donut.
  • One in five office coffee mugs contains fecal bacteria and E. coli, which can cause diarrhea, food poisoning, and infections.
  • Almost 99% of imported food is never inspected by the FDA or the USDA, two agencies responsible for protecting Americans from tainted products.
  • Long a staple of the American diet and the US economy, corn is a high-carbohydrate, high-glycemic food that fattens up cattle and does the same to humans who consume it in excess.

DRUGS

  • The United States has only 4% of the world’s population but consumes 65% of its supply of hard drugs.
  • About 14 million Americans fit the criteria for alcoholism or alcohol abuse.
  • Smoking causes acute myeloid leukemia, as well as cancer in other areas of the body, including the bladder, mouth, larynx, cervix, kidneys, lungs, esophagus, pancreas, and stomach.
  • Among women, cigarette use correlates with level of education. Smoking estimates are highest for women without traditional high school diplomas and lowest for women with college degrees.
  • Caffeine is more addictive than marijuana.

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT

  • 10% of the U.S. states now spend as much money or more on corrections than on higher education.
  • Misidentified eyewitness testimony was a factor in 77% of DNA exoneration cases, making it the leading cause of wrongful convictions in the United States. In 40% of the cases, cross-racial identification was a factor. Studies show that people are less likely to recognize faces of a different race, making race a factor in wrongful convictions.
  • By law, all citizens must take a bath at least once a year in Kentucky.

I’ll be following up on this list within the next couple of weeks because I have an abundance of interesting trivia about just any topic you can think of. I promise to pass along as much as I can as soon as I can.

ENJOY YOUR MAYDAY WEEKEND

02/12/2022 Odd Bits   Leave a comment

I decided to do a little trivia today but in a different way. Normally my trivia lists pertain to the same subject such as the human body, accidental deaths, or just about anything you can think of. Today’s list is a scattering of trivia facts and information that are hard to categorize so I’ll just throw them out there and you can read and enjoy them. Here they are . . .

  • The upside-down catsup bottle was invented by Paul Brown, who spent years developing a valve that would open when inverted and then close automatically without leaking. Now Brown’s patented valve is used by NASA (so that astronauts cups don’t spill) and by baby food and shampoo manufacturers.
  • “Brain Freeze” happens when something cold, such as ice cream, touches the roof of your mouth and causes blood vessels in your head to dilate.
  • Each year Americans spend $9 billion on candy and consume more than 25 pounds per person.
  • Women have played basketball from the sport’s earliest days; the first intercollegiate women’s basketball game, between Stanford and UC Berkeley, was played in 1896. Stanford won.
  • Beyond his weight, President Taft is remembered for being the first US president to throw out a pitch on the opening day of baseball season. Since then, every president except Jimmy Carter has followed suit.
  • The word “dictionary” was coined by the English in 1220. John of Garland wrote a book called Dictionarius to help readers master Latin diction. The first dictionaries were English language glossaries of French or Latin words with their English equivalents.
  • “The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep is sick” is said to be the toughest tongue twister in the English language.
  • In 2012, a Florida man died after winning a cockroach eating contest at a reptile store. It wasn’t the cockroach that killed him; they are edible and frequently consumed in some cultures. Instead, the likely cause of his death was a rare allergic reaction to cockroach dandruff.
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has sold more books then J.K. Rowling and J.R.R. Tolkien combined.
  • The Twinkie was invented in 1930 in Chicago. Its creator, James Dewar, noticed that the machines used to produce Strawberry Filled shortcakes were idle for half the year when strawberries were out of season. His original recipe included a banana cream filling. The name was inspired by “Twinkle Toe Shoes.

Well, there are your ten little tidbits of trivia for today. More are sure to follow.

11/19/2021 Presidential Trivia   2 comments

While I don’t fully respect most politicians, I do respect the office of the Presidency, regardless of party. It doesn’t change my opinion that most if not all politicians are underprepared for the responsibility of the office. Here are some facts concerning past presidents you might find interesting even if the individuals weren’t.

  • Our first president was George Washington. He is portrayed along with three other American presidents carved into Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota. His birthday is the first federal holiday to honor an American citizen and was implemented by an act of Congress in 1879. He stood 6’2″ tall, weighed 200 pounds, and wore size 13 shoes. He is the only president who didn’t live in Washington during his presidency.
  • Eight presidents were born British subjects: Washington, J. Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, J.Q. Adams, Jackson, and W. Harrison.
  • Eight presidents never attended college: Washington, Jackson, Van Buren, Taylor, Fillmore, Lincoln, A. Johnson, and Cleveland.
  • The college that has the most presidents as alumni (seven in total) is Harvard: J. Adams, J.Q. Adams, T. Roosevelt, F. Roosevelt, Rutherford B. Hayes, John F. Kennedy, and George W. Bush.
  • Presidents who would be considered “Washington outsiders” (i.e., the 18 presidents who never served in Congress) are: Adams, Jefferson, Taylor, Grant, Arthur, Cleveland, T. Roosevelt, Taft, Wilson, Coolidge, Hoover, F. Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, Trump, and G.W. Bush.
  • The most common religious affiliation among presidents has been Episcopalian, followed by Presbyterian.
  • The ancestry of all 46 presidents is limited to the following heritages, or some combination thereof: Dutch, English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Swiss, German, and African.
  • The oldest president inaugurated was Joe Biden (age 78); the youngest was Kennedy (age 43). Theodore Roosevelt, however, was the youngest man to become president – he was 42 when he succeeded McKinley, who had been assassinated.
  • The tallest president was Abraham Lincoln at 6’4″, Madison was the shortest.
  • Fifteen presidents served as vice presidents: J. Adams, Jefferson, Van Buren, Tyler, Fillmore, A. Johnson, Arthur, T. Roosevelt, Coolidge, Truman, Nixon, L.B. Johnson, Ford, George Bush, and Joe Biden.
  • For two years the nation was run by a president and a vice president who were not elected by the people. After VP Spiro T. Agnew resigned in 1973, President Nixon appointed Gerald Ford as vice president. Nixon resigned the following year, which left Ford as president, and Ford’s appointed, Nelson Rockefeller, as second in line.
  • James Buchanan was the only president never to marry. Five presidents remarried after the death of their first wives – two of whom, Tyler and Wilson, remarried while in the White House. Reagan was the only divorced president. Six presidents had no children. Tyler – father of 15 – had the most.
  • Presidents Lincoln, Garfield, McKinley, and Kennedy were assassinated in office.
  • Assassination attempts were made on the lives of Jackson, T. Roosevelt, F. Roosevelt, Truman, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton, and G.W. Bush.
  • Eight presidents died in office: W. Harrison (after having served only one month), Taylor, Lincoln, Garfield, McKinley, Harding, F. Roosevelt, and Kennedy.
  • Presidents Adams, Jefferson, and Monroe all died on the Fourth of July; Coolidge was born on that day.
  • Kennedy and Taft are the only presidents buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

There you have todays trivia. Can’t wait to see what odd facts Joe Biden will leave for us. For sure he won’t be a candidate for Mt. Rushmore. Hollywood has the Walk of Fame with hundreds of gold stars on their sidewalks. We should institute a Walk of Shame around Bill Clintons presidential library with gold 🚽’s instead of stars. The first three recipients could and should be Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and Donald Trump. Coming up fast on the outside is Joe Biden looking for his spot. Actually I think I’ll just nominate him right now to avoid the rush later.

HAIL TO THE CHIEF

09/24/2021 More Useless Yet Interesting Trivia   3 comments

I’m just sitting here looking out the window and it’s raining, it’s humid, and I am bored out of my mind. These days between seasons leave much to be desired. When I get this bored I fall back to something that I enjoy doing. If you don’t know by now that means diving in to my archives for useless bits of semi-interesting trivia items. The 10 I’ve listed below are interesting and a little unusual, my favorite kinds. Maybe by sharing them with you it will take the edge off my boredom before I scream out loud. Enjoy!

  • A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.
  • According to Genesis 1:2022 the chicken came before the egg.
  • Chop Suey is not a native Chinese dish, it was crafted in California by Chinese immigrants.
  • Chrysler built B-29’s that bombed Japan. Mitsubishi built the zeros that tried to shoot them down. Both companies now build cars in a joint plant called Diamond Star.
  • Due to gravitational effects, you weigh slightly less when the moon is directly overhead.
  • Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.
  • The dragonfly has a life span of 24 hours.
  • The goldfish has a memory span of 3 seconds.
  • The characters Bert and Ernie on Sesame Street were named after Bert the cop and Ernie the taxi driver in Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life.
  • Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

There’s your trivia for today. I thought I’d throw in a little something extra for you because who doesn’t love a good limerick? I have in my archives hundreds and hundreds of limericks of all categories. I have family limericks, children’s limericks, animal limericks, sporty limericks, and on and on and on. I even have naughty limericks and a category of limericks that goes three steps beyond naughty but I’ll save those for another time. Here’s one that’s rather tame but I like it.

A surgeon of some imprecision,

Decided on self-circumcision;

A slip of the knife –

“Oh, dear,” said his wife,

“Our sex-life will need some revision.”

Well there’s your limerick for today. I thought I’d stick to the medical profession for this limerick because I know how much they love off-color humor. Mostly the nurses but especially the retired ones.

HAVE A WONDERFUL RAINY AND BORING DAY

07-23-2013   Leave a comment

Here’s my second installment of Beer Trivia that I faithfully promised my better-half I would post in order to get my butt out of the dog house.  I’m hoping this will be sufficient to put me back into her good graces.  I  know, I’m so whipped I can hardly stand it. I feel my manhood slowly slipping away until nothing will be left but a screaming little girl with five o’clock shadow.

I hope all of you beer lovers out there  find these tidbits interesting.  I may never understand it because I’m really not a beer lover.  I’m not even a beer liker.  Here, goes.

  • In the past English  pub crawlers had a whistle baked into the rim of their ceramic cups. When they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get some service. "Wet your whistle" is the phrase inspired by this practice.
  • In the Czech Republic, beer is cheaper than Coke. A half liter at a local pub costs just 30 cents while a half liter of Coke costs 85 cents. Beer is a little more expensive than club soda (which costs 29 cents, for a half liter).
  • A labeorphilist is a collector of beer bottles.
  • A tegestologist is a collector of beer mats.
  • A flood of beer swept through the streets of St. Giles, England, on 17 October 1814. Caused by a rupture in a brewery tank containing 3500 barrels of beer, the tidal wave killed nine people and demolished two houses.
  • The first six-pack of beer was produced by the Pabst Brewery in the 1940s. The brewery conducted numerous studies, which found six cans were the ideal weight for the average housewife to carry home from the store.
  • In eleventh-century England, a bride would distribute ale to her wedding guests in exchange for donations to the newlyweds. This brew, known as Bride Ale, is the origin of the word ‘bridal’.
  • One method of checking a beer’s quality is the way in which the foam adheres to the side of the glass after each sip. Beer connoisseurs call this “Brussels lace.”
  • 1888: Citizens of Munich took to the streets and rioted after a beer price increase was announced.
  • Czechs drink the most beer in the world per capita – an average of 160 liters a year per person.
  • In old England,  inns paid a government tax known as a ‘scot’ for serving beer. Beer lovers who left town to drink at rural pubs were said to be drinking ‘scot free’.
  • Beer recipes have been found on Babylonian clay tablets from over 6000 years ago.
  • Guinness sells an average of 7 million glasses a day worldwide.
  • The British Army supplied its men with a cash allowance for beer, considered a vital nutritional staple on long overseas missions. With this allowance of one penny, soldiers enjoyed six pints of ale every day.
  • In ancient Egypt, two containers of beer were the minimum wage for a day’s labour.
  • A barrel contains 31 gallons of beer. What Americans commonly refer to as a keg is actually 15.5 gallons, or a half-barrel.
  • A 12 oz. of a typical American pale lager actually has fewer calories than 2 percent milk or apple juice.
  • The world’s strongest beer is ‘Samuel Adams’ Triple Bock, which has reached 17% alcohol by volume. To obtain this level, however, they had to use a champagne yeast.
  • The ’33’ on a bottle of Rolling Rock was originally a printer’s error. It refers to the 33 words in the original slogan. It has generated enough mystery over the years that the company left it in the label.

That finishes my penance for writing a lengthy posting on female breasts.  I’m not saying this kind of circumstance won’t happen again but I promise to do do my best to behave. I haven’t had much success with that since about the age of  three but I’ll continue to try.

07-19-2013   Leave a comment

I think I’m in the proverbial dog house after yesterdays posting on female breasts.  My better-half was not too pleased with that posting so I’ve got to be punished.  It’s something that happens between us every time I step out of line which occurs more often than I care to admit.

I’ve been thinking of possible ways to calm the waters but my choices are somewhat limited.  I finally realized that the thing she loves most in this world (after me I hope) is beer.  What could I possibly write about beer to make her happy.  Besides giving her a case of cold beer wrapped in a ribbon I actually considered having a tap installed on the kitchen sink.  Hot water, cold water, and beer at the ready for quick access.  I decided that was a little more than she actually deserved after putting me on the defensive like this.

My solution is the beer trivia collection that follows.  I found so many interesting beer facts that this will be Beer List #1.  I’ll follow with the second half of the list  in a week or so.  Hopefully this will end the cold shoulder treatment and get me back into her good graces.  We shall see.

  • According to The Code of Hammurabi of ancient Babylonia (c. 1750 B.C.) a merchant could be put to death for diluting beer.
  • 1810: Munich establishes Oktoberfest as an official celebration.
  • A beer lover or enthusiast is called a cerevisaphile.
  • After consuming buckets of aul (or ale), the Vikings would head fearlessly into battle, often without armor or even shirts. In fact, "berserk" means "bare shirt" in Norse, and eventually took on the meaning of their wild battles.
  • Historians report that during the Middle Ages, when monks were brewing their beer in their monasteries, each monk was allowed to drink 5 quarts of beer a day.
  • A beer a day… Beer was used to treat over 100 illnesses in Egypt, 1600 BC.
  • In the 13th century, King Wenceslas convinced the Pope to revoke an order banning the brewing of beer in Czech territories (no wonder he was known as ‘Good King Wenceslas).
  • In 1116 BC, Chinese imperial edict stated that heaven required people to drink beer.
  • In English pubs, unruly customers were told to mind their own pints and quarts and settle down – and so began the phrase "mind your P’s and Q’s.
  • Before thermometers were invented, brewers would dip a thumb into the mix to find the right temperature for adding yeast. Too cold and the yeast wouldn’t grow; too hot and the yeast would die. This ancient practice is where we get the phrase ‘rule of thumb’.
  • Cenosillicaphobia is the fear of an empty glass.
  • In a Czech beer house, the bartender will refill your glass every time you empty it until you place your coaster on top of your glass, signaling that you have had enough.
  • The first brewery in America was built in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1642.
    Germany serves beer ice cream in popsicle form. Its alcoholic content is less than that found in "classic" beer.
  • Saint Arnold, a bishop born in 580, is considered the patron saint of beer. He encouraged people to drink beer instead of water during the Plague.
  • Anheuser-Busch is the largest brewery in the US.
  • If you collect beer bottles you’re a labeorphilist.
  • The most expensive beer in the world? It’s called “Tutankhamen” and is prepared according to the recipe recovered by a group of University of Cambridge archaeologists in Queen Nefertiti’s Temple of the Sun in Egypt. It costs US $52 a bottle, and is produced in limited and numbered edition.
  • The pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock because they ran out of beer. Although they planned to continue down the east coast, the Mayflower’s log explains the passengers "were hasted ashore and made to drink water that the seamen might have the more beer".
  • The music for "The Star Spangled Banner" was derived from a British drinking song called "Anacreon".
  • Assyrian tablets from 2000 BC stated that Noah was carrying beer aboard the ark.
  • The United States two-dollar bill features three brewers: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Samuel Adams. In fact, George Washington installed a brew house on his grounds at Mount Vernon.
  • The longest bar in the world is the 684 foot long New Bulldog in Rock Island, IL.

There you are my darling.  A partial list of beer related facts and lore that should stop this madness.  Please welcome me back into the fold with a big wet sloppy kiss and a huge hug.  I promise to try harder to be the boring and uninteresting person you’re looking for.  How’s that for a half-assed apology.

On top of everything else, I really hate beer.

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