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Breeya Shay
05-25-2008, 01:27 AM
Ok, so I am new to the site and one of things my friends and I did for our mentorship program was start a discussion board of fun random facts just to lighten the mood.
So here is a couple:

Napoleon made it illegal in France to name pigs Napoleon.

Donald Duck comics were banned from Finland because he doesn't wear pants.

The very first bomb dropped by the Allies on Berlin during World War II killed the only elephant in the Berlin Zoo.

Elvis did not flip his collar for a fashion statement...he flipped it because he that that his neck was too short, and so he flipped it to make it look longer!!!

In ancient England a person couldn't have sex unless you had consent of the King (unless you were in the Royal Family). When anyone wanted to have a baby, they got consent of the King, the King gave them a placard that they hung on their door while they were having sex. The placard had F.*.*.*. (Fornication Under Consent of the King) on it.

The Emperor Caracalla--a tyrant remembered for slaying his brother and building the extravagant Baths of Caracalla--was murdered by his own guards while he was relieving himself. That may be where the phrase "caught with your pants down" comes from.

On average, 12 newborns will be given to the wrong parents daily!



The names of the continents all end with the same letter with which they start.

In Scotland, a new game was invented. It was entitled Gentlemen Only Ladies Forbidden.... and thus the word GOLF entered into the English language.

Smoke houses for smoking meat and outhouses were very similar so outhouses had half moons carved in them (for ventilation and light) but mainly so at night you could feel which one was the outhouse so you didn't do something bad in the smokehouse.

There are more plastic flamingos in the world than real ones

Banging your head against the wall will burn 150 calories in an hour

No piece of paper can be folded in half more than seven times

It is impossible to lick your elbow.

Einstein couldn't speak fluently when he was nine, so his parents thought he might have been retarded


Women end up digesting most of the lipstick they apply.

72% of Americans sign their pets names on cards.

Every time you lick a stamp, you're consuming 1/10 of a calorie.

In English pubs, ale is ordered by pints and quarts. So in old England, when customers got unruly, the bartender would yell at them mind their own pints and quarts and settle down. It's where we get the phrase "mind your P's and Q's"

Starfish don't have brains.

The saying sleep tight dont let the bed bugs bit, come from around 1800, when pioneers were sleeping in rope beds. Each night they would have to tighten thier ropes before bed (sleep tight) and they slept on straw matresses which attracted bugs (dont let the bed bugs bit)!!

The Earth gets 100 tons heavier every day due to falling space dust.

Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning.


The person who invented earmuffs froze their ears off while skating

If you write out the numbers zero to nine-hundred-ninety-nine - u never use the letter "a"

A giraffe's tongue is black


203 million dollars is spent on barbed wire each year in the U.S.

The man who invented the bra was a German scientist and opera lover named Otto Titzling


The longest recorded flight of a chicken is 13 seconds

Around 1500 your barber was also your doctor and dentist. The red and white polls on the barber shop came from the bloody and clean towels that the barber would hang outside to dry. They would get entangled and thus red and white spiral sign. The signs with the Blue in them, were made in the US and they just wanted their barber shop signs to be red, white and blue.

Racecar is Racecar backwards

Strawberries have more vitamin C than oranges

A donkey can swallow five gallons of water in two minutes....



Joseph Stalin was training to be a priest before he got turned onto Marxism.

A donkey was the symbol that was first linked to the Democratic party in 1870 through a cartoon by Thomas Nast.

Polar bears have black skin

Porcupines can float!

Olinda is Southern Ontarios only ghost town

A cloud can weigh more than a million pounds

Butterflies taste with their feet.

Samuel L Jackson was a stand in for Bill Cosby on the Cobsy Show

Human birth control pills work on gorillas.

The first toilet ever seen on television was on "Leave It To Beaver".

It is believed that Shakespeare was 46 around the time that the King James Version of the Bible was written. In Psalms 46, the 46th word from the first word is shake and the 46th word from the last word is spear.


The Teddy Bear was named after Teddy Roosevelt after he refused to kill a defenseless bear cub while on a hunting trip in Mississippi.

The turkey was named for what was wrongly thought to be its country of origin.

By the way - I'm studying to be a historian and my fellow mentors are as well so there is a lot of random history facts:D
Hope other people have some to add:D
Cheers,

Matera the Mad
05-25-2008, 01:55 AM
LOL I had forgotten that Donald Duck went around bottomless! :roll:

Thanks for the tidbits, and welcome and all that stuff.

CACTUSWENDY
05-25-2008, 03:48 AM
Welcome to Aw. lol.....Nice tibits.

How do you like your popcorn?

Rolling Thunder
05-25-2008, 04:40 AM
These are some nice research tidbits so I'm going to move this thread to another forum where it might prove to be useful.

And welcome to AW, Breeya. :)

sheadakota
05-25-2008, 05:19 AM
I have some more random facts for you;

In victorian times people were often thought to be dead when they were only in a coma, some were buried alive-Coffins were commonly dug up to be re-used and nail marks were sometimes found on the inside lid,

To prevent thier loved ones from being buried alive the family would lay them out for three days and see if they would "wake' up- hence the term "A wake"

Then just to be sure a string would be threaded through the lid and tied to the 'corpses' hand to a bell above ground on the grave, some one would sit in the graveyard waiting to hear a bell and dig up the person- this is where the terms "Saved by the bell" and "The Graveyard Shift" come from.

Breeya Shay
05-25-2008, 05:55 AM
wow thats kind of creepy - being buried alive is the ultimate worst - i would think lol.
Im glad you guys like the random facts - personally I find them to be a fun icebreaker:D
Thanks and cheers,

Zodiea
05-25-2008, 06:43 PM
Anybody watch Mythbusters on the Discovery Channel? They do all kinds of stuff like this! I did see one episode with the 7-folded paper myth. It's mostly true with letter paper, but they made a piece of paper the size of a foolball field and were able to fold it eleven times. Here's the link to the Wiki page:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MythBusters_(season_5)#Seven_Folds

For some fun check out the other ones they did. They have episodes on ninjas, pirates, movies, and many more topics that are easy to get ideas from.

AncientEagle
05-26-2008, 12:21 AM
These are fun, but they aren't necessarily all facts. The bit about the string, the bell, and the "graveyard shift" is highly suspect. As for bugs being attracted by the straw in straw mattresses, that may be true, but BEDbugs are attracted by the human body and are much more inclined to nest in cracks and crevasses of a wooden bed frame than in straw.

As for the reason for the half-moon traditionally carved in the outhouse door, believe me, there were simpler methods for distinguishing it from the smokehouse. For one thing, no sane person would build the smokehouse next door to a smelly outhouse. They were more likely to be in opposite directions. So if the user had no better sense of direction than to confuse one for the other, he was likely too drunk to identify the half-moon.

I just think we need to be careful. A lot of this stuff is farmed around the Internet as facts and accepted, and perpetuated, without further thought. That's dangerous.

And, yes, I'm old enough to have been bitten by bedbugs and to have used outhouses. And never once confused one with the smokehouse.

Breeya Shay
05-26-2008, 12:28 AM
Yes, they are fun facts but the smokehouse thing is known from Fort Malden - my friend and I volunteered there for a while and we know that the outhouse/smokehouse thing was a problem - at least in the Navy Yard lol.
And facts or myth - they are still fun:D

Quentin Nokov
05-27-2008, 01:23 AM
Wow O.o some of those are . . . weird Lol. Especially the F... one xD *shakes head* Some of those I knew and some of them I'm like 'Cool I learned something' Here's some random facts from http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~bingbin/

f you have 3 quarters, 4 dimes, and 4 pennies, you have $1.19. You also have the largest amount of money in coins without being able to make change for a dollar.

The numbers '172' can be found on the back of the U.S. $5 dollar bill in the bushes at the base of the Lincoln Memorial.

President Kennedy was the fastest random speaker in the world with upwards of 350 words per minute.

In the average lifetime, a person will walk the equivalent of 5 times around the equator.

Odontophobia is the fear of teeth.

The 57 on Heinz ketchup bottles represents the number of varieties of pickles the company once had.

In the early days of the telephone, operators would pick up a call and use the phrase, "Well, are you there?". It wasn't until 1895 that someone suggested answering the phone with the phrase "number please?"

The surface area of an average-sized brick is 79 cm squared.

According to suicide statistics, Monday is the favored day for self-destruction.

Cats sleep 16 to 18 hours per day.

The most common name in the world is Mohammed.

Karoke means "empty orchestra" in Japanese.

The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one mile in every five must be straight. These straight sections are usable as airstrips in times of war or other emergencies.

The first known contraceptive was crocodile dung, used by Egyptians in 2000 B.C.

Rhode Island is the smallest state with the longest name. The official name, used on all state documents, is "Rhode Island and Providence Plantations."

When you die your hair still grows for a couple of months.

There are two credit cards for every person in the United States.

Isaac Asimov is the only author to have a book in every Dewey-decimal category.

The newspaper serving Frostbite Falls, Minnesota, the home of Rocky and Bullwinkle, is the Picayune Intelligence.

It would take 11 Empire State Buildings, stacked one on top of the other, to measure the Gulf of Mexico at its deepest point.

The first person selected as the Time Magazine Man of the Year - Charles Lindbergh in 1927.

The most money ever paid for a cow in an auction was $1.3 million.

It took Leo Tolstoy six years to write "War & Peace".

The Neanderthal's brain was bigger than yours is.

On the new hundred dollar bill the time on the clock tower of Independence Hall is 4:10.

Each of the suits on a deck of cards represents the four major pillars of the economy in the middle ages: heart represented the Church, spades represented the military, clubs represented agriculture, and diamonds represented the merchant class.

The names of the two stone lions in front of the New York Public Library are Patience and Fortitude. They were named by then-mayor Fiorello LaGuardia.

The Main Library at Indiana University sinks over an inch every year because when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.

The sound of E.T. walking was made by someone squishing her hands in jelly.

Lucy and Linus (who where brother and sister) had another little brother named Rerun. (He sometimes played left-field on Charlie Brown's baseball team, [when he could find it!]).

The pancreas produces Insulin.

1 in 5,000 north Atlantic lobsters are born bright blue.

There are 10 human body parts that are only 3 letters long (eye hip arm leg ear toe jaw rib lip gum).

A skunk's smell can be detected by a human a mile away.

The word "lethologica" describes the state of not being able to remember the word you want.

The king of hearts is the only king without a mustache.

Henry Ford produced the model T only in black because the black paint available at the time was the fastest to dry.

Mario, of Super Mario Bros. fame, appeared in the 1981 arcade game, Donkey Kong. His original name was Jumpman, but was changed to Mario to honor the Nintendo of America's landlord, Mario Segali.

The three best-known western names in China: Jesus Christ, Richard Nixon, and Elvis Presley.

Every year about 98% of the atoms in your body are replaced.

Elephants are the only mammals that can't jump.

The international telephone dialing code for Antarctica is 672.

World Tourist day is observed on September 27.

Women are 37% more likely to go to a psychiatrist than men are.

The human heart creates enough pressure to squirt blood 30 feet (9 m).

Diet Coke was only invented in 1982.

There are more than 1,700 references to gems and precious stones in the King James translation of the Bible.

When snakes are born with two heads, they fight each other for food.

American car horns beep in the tone of F.

Turning a clock's hands counterclockwise while setting it is not necessarily harmful. It is only damaging when the timepiece contains a chiming mechanism.

There are twice as many kangaroos in Australia as there are people. The kangaroo population is estimated at about 40 million.

Police dogs are trained to react to commands in a foreign language; commonly German but more recently Hungarian.

The Australian $5 to $100 notes are made of plastic.

St. Stephen is the patron saint of bricklayers.

The average person makes about 1,140 telephone calls each year.

Stressed is Desserts spelled backwards.

If you had enough water to fill one million goldfish bowls, you could fill an entire stadium.

Mary Stuart became Queen of Scotland when she was only six days old.

Charlie Brown's father was a barber.

Flying from London to New York by Concord, due to the time zones crossed, you can arrive 2 hours before you leave.

Dentists have recommended that a toothbrush be kept at least 6 feet (2 m) away from a toilet to avoid airborne particles resulting from the flush.

You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching TV.

A lion's roar can be heard from five miles away.

The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929; "7" was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces. "UP" indicated the direction of the bubbles.

Canadian researchers have found that Einstein's brain was 15% wider than normal.

The average person spends about 2 years on the phone in a lifetime.

The fist product to have a bar code was Wrigleys gum.

The largest number of children born to one woman is recorded at 69. From 1725-1765, a Russian peasant woman gave birth to 16 sets of twins, 7 sets of triplets, and 4 sets of quadruplets.

Beatrix Potter created the first of her legendary "Peter Rabbit" children's stories in 1902.

In ancient Rome, it was considered a sign of leadership to be born with a crooked nose.

The word "nerd" was first coined by Dr. Seuss in "If I Ran the Zoo."

A 41-gun salute is the traditional salute to a royal birth in Great Britain.

The bagpipe was originally made from the whole skin of a dead sheep.

The roar that we hear when we place a seashell next to our ear is not the ocean, but rather the sound of blood surging through the veins in the ear. Any cup-shaped object placed over the ear produces the same effect.

Revolvers cannot be silenced because of all the noisy gasses which escape the cylinder gap at the rear of the barrel.

Liberace Museum has a mirror-plated Rolls Royce; jewel-encrusted capes, and the largest rhinestone in the world, weighing 59 pounds and almost a foot in diameter.

A car that shifts manually gets 2 miles more per gallon of gas than a car with automatic shift.

Cats can hear ultrasound.

Dueling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are registered blood donors.

The highest point in Pennsylvania is lower than the lowest point in Colorado.

The United States has never lost a war in which mules were used.

Children grow faster in the springtime.

On average, there are 178 sesame seeds on each McDonalds BigMac bun.

Paul Revere rode on a horse that belonged to Deacon Larkin.

The Baby Ruth candy bar was actually named after Grover Cleveland's baby daughter, Ruth.

Minus 40 degrees Celsius is exactly the same as minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Clans of long ago that wanted to get rid of unwanted people without killing them used to burn their houses down -- hence the expression "to get fired"

Nobody knows who built the Taj Mahal. The names of the architects, masons, and designers that have come down to us have all proved to be latter-day inventions, and there is no evidence to indicate who the real creators were.

Every human spent about half an hour as a single cell.

7.5 million toothpicks can be created from a cord of wood.

The plastic things on the end of shoelaces are called aglets.

The earliest recorded case of a man giving up smoking was on April 5, 1679, when Johan Katsu, Sheriff of Turku, Finland, wrote in his diary "I quit smoking tobacco." He died one month later.

"Goodbye" came from "God bye" which came from "God be with you."

February is Black History Month.

Jane Barbie was the woman who did the voice recordings for the Bell System.

The first drive-in service station in the United States was opened by Gulf Oil Company - on December 1, 1913, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The elephant is the only animal with 4 knees.

Kansas state law requires pedestrians crossing the highways at night to wear tail lights.

sheadakota
05-27-2008, 02:44 AM
These are fun, but they aren't necessarily all facts. The bit about the string, the bell, and the "graveyard shift" is highly suspect. As for bugs being attracted by the straw in straw mattresses, that may be true, but BEDbugs are attracted by the human body and are much more inclined to nest in cracks and crevasses of a wooden bed frame than in straw.

As for the reason for the half-moon traditionally carved in the outhouse door, believe me, there were simpler methods for distinguishing it from the smokehouse. For one thing, no sane person would build the smokehouse next door to a smelly outhouse. They were more likely to be in opposite directions. So if the user had no better sense of direction than to confuse one for the other, he was likely too drunk to identify the half-moon.

I just think we need to be careful. A lot of this stuff is farmed around the Internet as facts and accepted, and perpetuated, without further thought. That's dangerous.

And, yes, I'm old enough to have been bitten by bedbugs and to have used outhouses. And never once confused one with the smokehouse.

History Of Sayings, Saved By The Bell, Dead Ringer And Graveyard Shift

0 points


Buried alive. Anyone's worst nightmare. For some people in England (http://www.xomba.com/history_of_sayings_saved_by_the_bell_dead_ringer_a nd_graveyard_shift#) in the 1500's, that nightmare became a reality.
When England began to run out of room to bury recently deceased people, they dug up the coffins of people who had long been deceased, removing their bones from the coffins and placing them in a bone house and re-using the gravesite.
When opening the coffins of long ago buried bodies, they noticed that 1 out of every 25 coffins had scratch marks on the inside. The town folks had been burying people while they were still alive.
To avoid anymore people being buring alive, a string would be tied to the wrist of each corpse, threaded through the coffin,up through the ground, and tied to a bell.
Someone would have to sit in the graveyard all night and listen for the bell to ring (http://www.xomba.com/history_of_sayings_saved_by_the_bell_dead_ringer_a nd_graveyard_shift#), just in case the corpse was not really a corpse.
Hence the sayings: Saved by the bell, Dead ringer and Graveyard shift.

Athough I do admitt this is hardly fact- but it is creepy if its true!

Pup
05-27-2008, 03:38 AM
By the way - I'm studying to be a historian and my fellow mentors are as well so there is a lot of random history facts

Are you really presenting those as facts from a history student rather than humor? Or is it also part of the joke that you're not really studying to be a historian and you're making fun of how gullible historians are? Not sure what's satire and what isn't.

If you're actually studying to be a historian, you might want to develop a bit more skepticism, or at least a sense of the difference between "facts" that can be backed up with solid documentation like primary sources, and amusing but wrong trivia culled from the internet.

Historians are generally expected to have documentation to back up what they present as fact. You really don't want me to ask for that on those, do you? Golf? Fornication? "Tight" rope beds?

Old Hack
05-27-2008, 11:42 AM
The longest recorded flight of a chicken is 13 seconds

Pah. Try telling that to one of my silver-spangled Appenzeller Spitzhaubens.

As others have all ready pointed out, these might be fun but many are just plain wrong. Quote with caution.

Breeya Shay
05-28-2008, 07:44 AM
wow thats awesome! I am also studying to be a historian and or group of mentors thinks its fun to start off our break-outs the same way. It lightens the mood. I'll have to use some of those facts on them;) thanks:D

Breeya Shay
05-28-2008, 07:48 AM
Are you really presenting those as facts from a history student rather than humor? Or is it also part of the joke that you're not really studying to be a historian and you're making fun of how gullible historians are? Not sure what's satire and what isn't.

If you're actually studying to be a historian, you might want to develop a bit more skepticism, or at least a sense of the difference between "facts" that can be backed up with solid documentation like primary sources, and amusing but wrong trivia culled from the internet.

Historians are generally expected to have documentation to back up what they present as fact. You really don't want me to ask for that on those, do you? Golf? Fornication? "Tight" rope beds?

Yes, I am actually studying to be a historian. It's just a fun icebreaker we do in our discussion boards - random facts - some of them may be true and others not. It's things you've heard or read somewhere that you remember - but most of them have been proven. Don't you ever do fun icebreakers like that? Its a good way to start an online discussion board, which is what we had to do for class as we all had to get to know each other since starting in September we will be mentors to first year university students. It releases the tension, makes you laugh - one of those myths or skepticisms or whatever it is you want to call it but things that people wonder - how did that come about? It's just fun. Historians can't be dull and serious all the time - at least none that i know lol ;)

benbradley
05-28-2008, 09:02 AM
Hi and :welcome:!

Ok, so I am new to the site and one of things my friends and I did for our mentorship program was start a discussion board of fun random facts just to lighten the mood.
So here is a couple:
Well, technically and pedantically, that's more than a couple. :)

The turkey was named for what was wrongly thought to be its country of origin.
I heard that Benjamin Franklin wanted the Turkey to be the official bird of the United States. (!)

By the way - I'm studying to be a historian and my fellow mentors are as well so there is a lot of random history facts
Hope other people have some to add
Cheers,
Yeah, the Franklin thing, and I read a little of someone else's long response , which reminds me - I recently read some blog entry (maybe pointed to by someone on AW? Or maybe slashdot...I don't qualify for Internet Anonymous, do I? Twelve hours a day, that's not that much, is it...) telling of the Dr. Seus origin of nerd, and it also discussed the word geek, and how the connotations of these two words changed over the decades.

I find etymology fascinating. If I had been a little more motivated to learn more in that direction, I might have ended up writing dictionaries...

discoantfarm
05-28-2008, 09:50 AM
yep, lots of non-facts in the list. FUCK as an acronym has been a staple in fraternity houses for centuries, but no one really knows where it came from. Imagine a world in which you had to have permission to have sex. Not likely is it?

Hey, isn't the Wikipedia article on the word 'fact' just someone's opinion? What if it's wrong?

Here are a couple of 'facts'

A fat chance and a slim chance are the same thing.
You don't have a lap when you're standing up.
It takes a bachelor's degree to teach sex education.

Yawn.

discoantfarm
05-28-2008, 09:51 AM
PS. I can never remember the difference between etymology and entomology - that's why words bug me.

benbradley
05-28-2008, 08:51 PM
Wow - <where's that Mod Squad theme song> - the last time I pushed the envelope, I was working at Office Depot!

slcboston
05-28-2008, 09:03 PM
Hmm... lots of these fall under the "urban legend" category. Amusing, but not particularly "facts." A few of the others also play on commonly held misconceptions (like the "size" of your brain).

Fun to know, but don't count on them to help you clean up at "Jeopardy."