Monday, August 24, 2009


Humans use over 200 muscles to take one step

Facial hair, especially beards, are the fastest growing hairs on the human body (Pogonophobia: fear of beards)

The only two places on Earth where men outlive women: South Asia, and Iran

Over 10 million Indonesians are current or former Boy Scouts

Charlie Chaplin placed third in a Charlie Chaplin Look-a-Like contest -- Dolly Parton didn't place at all in a contest seeking her resemblance

Since 1950 in the United States, the average functional vocabulary of an 8th grader has declined steadily from about 25,000 words to about 10,000 words

In 1992, Lee Harvey Oswald's (the man alleged to have assassinated President John F. Kennedy) cadaver tag sold at auction for $6,600

A person who can speak two languages fluently is commonly known as bilingual, but is technically a diglot

Percent of Americans who claim to fall asleep with the television on: 20%

Percentage of Americans claim to have never smoked marijuana: 20%

New York City has the highest population of people who commit suicide by jumping off buildings

Human population is predicted to reach 7 billion by 2011

An olive tree can live up to 1,500 years

Nylon is made from coal and petroleum

Technically speaking, the banana tree is not a true fruit but is a giant herb, and the banana is actually a berry

Beans have historically been a symbol of the embryo and growth in most societies -- the ancient Egyptians called the place where the souls of the dead awaited reincarnation Ka, which means "the bean field"

The average weight of a newborn baby in the United States is 8 pounds, while 30 years ago the average weight of a newborn was 6 pounds

  • In South Africa, red is the color of mourning
  • In China, red is the color of good luck and is used as a holiday and wedding color -- Chinese babies are given their names are at a red-egg ceremony
  • Red is the most common color on national flags
  • Only national flag that is a solid color: Libya (green)
  • In Iran, blue is the color of mourning
  • In Thailand, a widow wears purple to symbolize her grief and mourning
  • In Egypt and Burma, yellow signifies mourning
  • In the Middle Ages in Europe, actors portraying the dead wore yellow
  • In China and Japan, white symbolizes mourning
  • The colors yellow, orange and red are widely used in fast-food chains around the world -- these colors stimulate hunger and impulsiveness in humans
9 out of 10 blind people live in developing countries

Before Briton Hadden and Henry Luce decided to call their new magazine Time, they were torn between calling it either Chance or Destiny

The foreskin from one circumcision can be grown to a size that, when unfolded, could cover a football field

The only U.S. president to have once been the leader of a labor union: Ronald Reagan (former leader of SAG- the Screen Actors Guild)

"Goosebumps" on human flesh are caused by stimulation of the arrector pilli, which sense various forms of irritation, ranging from the feeling of fear to the sensation of cold, and raise the skin involuntarily -- scientists believe this was a feature that helped humans appear larger in the presence of danger by raising the hair on the arms and body, and helped humans stay warmer by also raising the hairs on the body

FBI statistics show that driving while drunk in the U.S. is most commonly a crime committed by whites -- after adjusting for differing percentages of total U.S. population, about 10 times more whites are arrested for DWI than African-Americans, and nearly 25 times more likely than all other racial groups

Homer Hickman's book "Rocket Boys" was later made into a film entitled "October Sky" -- the titles are each an anagram of the other

"Drag" - referring to male cross-dressing - first appeared in the English dictionaries in 1870 and was the term to describe male theater actors portraying women characters who wore elaborate gowns that dragged on the floor -- these roles were referred to as "drag" parts in the show

In Switzerland, you can be fined for slamming your car door

More than 220 million tons of discarded computers and other technological hardware (known as e-waste) are trashed in the United States each year -- only about 11% of computers are recycled and less than 10% of televisions

The U.S. Bill of Rights originally contained 12 rights, but only 10 were passed

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