November 1, 2005
• A nine-month old child, Yixian Feng, is believed by Buddhist monks to be the youngest living bodhisattva
• A multi-kiloton explosion in Halifax Harbour was the largest blast in pre-atomic history. A flaming armory drifted towards shore as fascinated spectators gathered, Christmas Day, 1916.
• The adventures of Herge's reporter "Tin Tin" were allegedly based on the real-life exploits of Edouard Feleffin, 1873-1946.
• The first electronic VCR filled a room and weighed nearly 7 tons.
• Merle Travis originally titled his much loved song "Sixteen Tons Older."
November 8, 2005
• With just one twentieth of the world's population, the United States consumes nearly a billion gallons (20M Bbl) of oil each day, a quarter of the world's production.
• Wooden zippers have been found in Celtic gravesites in Brittany.
• The element Ytterbium (Yb 70) is among the least useful of those found naturally. Very closely related on the periodic table of elements, Erbium is used lend color to plasma screens.
• Leonardo Da Vinci envisioned the concept for rudimentary credit cards in 1504.
• Mason Thomas Moore, creator of the original design for the Lincoln penny, opted to be paid one one-thousandth of a cent for each coin bearing his design. By his death in 1921 he had earned over $250,000 from the penny alone.
November 10, 2005
• The average mustache is 8.2 centimeters in width.
• A nautical light year is 1.15 times longer than a statue light year.
• To save energy, small coffee bean growers dry out their beans in the sun. As a result, the average ten pound bag of "indie" coffee contains around three teaspoons of insect matter and bird droppings.
• A northern hemisphere creature has a 0.08 percent greater chance of cellular mutation in the southern hemisphere because DNA naturally curls the opposite direction.
• The horizontal line HTML element (<hr>) has been copyrighted in Portugal.
November 12, 2005
• The word "ulcer" was originally spelled without vowels.
• One study showed that nearly 54 percent of all statistics on the internet have no scientific basis.
• Surpassed only by the Permian Mass Extinction and the Senonian Retreat, scientists rank the rise of humanity is the third most cataclysmic event in the history of life on earth.
• A small Indiana company has applied for a license to market small, legal tasting samples of human flesh, which is reputedly similar in flavor, color and texture to pork.
• By 2000, the United States was spending as much on its military as the rest of the world's nations combined.
November 14, 2005
• Pies were considered taboo during World War I because popular belief held that pie tins could be better used by the war effort.
• Sony designed but never released an in-dash car stereo that played MP3s recorded on high-capacity 2.88MB floppy discs. The device could hold 4 minutes of music at 96Kbps.
• Most domesticated cat breeds of today have traces of badger DNA. Other species that trended closer to the badger include the civet.
• Pope Nicholas I (820-867 AD) openly claimed to have invented steam.
• Francisco Coronado's 1540 North American expedition included a man known to historians by the nickname "Burrito." He was charged with classifying and consuming unknown plant and animal specimens before being consumed by the rest of the group. Ironically, despite many ills during the voyage, he choked to death on stale bread sailing back to Spain.
November 16, 2005
• The popular computer game Minesweeper was based on a live-action game played by by GIs with grenades and coconuts in the Pacific Theater of World War II.
• The button was invented about 850 AD, four centuries before the discovery of the buttonhole in 1242.
• On any given Friday night, there is a one in two chance that a randomly selected American college student is under the influence of at least one substance.
• The first known dessert was a sweet cake made in the Middle East nearly five thousand years ago.
• According to a recent gallop poll, ballpoint pens are the highest reported personal item stolen in the United States.
November 18, 2005
• The average novel takes twice as long to write as it does to edit.
• The cheapest items sold at Ikea are wooden spatulas.
• There have been 58 insurgency campaigns in the world over the past century; all of them have been successful.
• Google's legal department is expected to grow three fold in the next five years to deal with copyright cases.
• People without a "w" sound in their language are half as likely to use the internet as those that do.
November 20, 2005
• There are more public libraries in the world than McDonalds.
• Researchers at Northern Ohio University have found that posting a sign in a classroom that says "No Eating" is only likely to decrease eating in that room by 2.6 percent.
• An average college student only reads 44 percent of their assigned reading.
• Standard coat hangers are rated to safely hold only up to 14 pounds.
• The hook on a hammer used for removing nails is called a parin.
November 22, 2005
• Artichokes contain phytochemicals that cause hair to grow slower.
• On average, a women's sense of smell is 15.7 percent stronger than men's.
• Nixon was buried with a croquet mallet at his side. Croquet was his free time passion.
• Americans with more than $100,000 in life insurance have an average life expectancy 2.1 years shorter than those with none.
• Trumpet player Dizzy Gillespie could produce 31 psi with his mouth--enough to inflate a car tire.
November 24, 2005
• Over the course of its four-month life span, the average commercially bred domestic turkey is fed two pounds of antibiotics, sedatives and other growth enhancing drugs.
• As the name suggests, marshmallows were originally made from the roots of the Marsh Mallow; in 1934, A. Doumak created the first synthetic marshmallow from propane and corn syrup.
• Under USDA guidelines, it is illegal to pass off yams as sweet potatoes.
• In the hundred years of intermittent contact before the first Thanksgiving, European diseases reduced native populations by 85 percent.
• In 1909, President Taft's lavish thanksgiving banquet featured a roasted horse, stuffed with an ewe, stuffed with a goat, stuffed with a swan, stuffed with a piglet, stuffed with a capon, stuffed with a grouse, stuffed with a squib, stuffed with a pâté of field thrushes.
November 25, 2005
• The word "pixel" originally referred to the colored pegs in the Hasbro Lite-Brite.
• Arthur Granjean, the inventor of the Etch-a-Sketch, claimed to have been inspired by his experience as an artillery gunner in World War II.
• Stone yo-yos remain the ceremonial weapon of choice among certain tribes in the highlands of Papau New Guinea.
• Before 1954, each Burnt Sienna Crayola Crayon contained approximately 1 microgram of LSD.
• Erector sets are now classified as a weapons-grade munition and are illegal to export.
November 27, 2005
• 78 percent of glass beer bottles are created by same manufacturer.
• Despite the general perception of greater security, introducing a computer using Apple's MAC OS X, opens the entire network up to 16 security additional vulnerabilities.
• From when it is purchased, to when it is thrown away, a flower vase will hold $243 worth of flowers.
• Recently, a University of Arizona study concluded that there is virtually no correlation between the cost of a golf club and the performance of a golfer.
• At any given moment, 93 percent of the Rubik's cubes in existence are in an unsolved sate.
November 28, 2005
• A childhood accident left actress Laura Dern with nine toes--six on her left foot and three on her right.
• Marlon Brando was discovered while performing as a street mime.
• Audie Murphy and 50Cent share the distinction of having suffered more gunshot wounds than any other film actors.
• Will Rogers was well known for never having met a man he didn't like, except "that smug bastard Jimmy Stewart."
• Before her 1968 breakout performance in "Rosemary's Baby" and subsequent divorce from singer Frank Sinatra, Mia Farrow spent a full year in an iron lung to dramatize the plight of polio victims.