Wednesday, February 16, 2011


A snake's stomach is located in the front one-fifth portion of its body

Mexico banned imported films that depicted Mexicans as villains in 1926. The ban was ignored by Hollywood, but the effect on exports south of the border was sufficiently serious for the Hays Office to order no more Mexican heavies in 1930. Film censors let it be understood that it would be quite acceptable for the stock foreign undesirable to be portrayed as Russian, in retaliation for Soviet restrictions on Hollywood imports

The world's first television weather chart was broadcast in Britain on November 11, 1936

Enough energy is released in ten minutes of one hurricane to match the nuclear stockpiles of the world 

During menstruation, the sensitivity of a woman's middle finger is reduced

When written in Roman numerals, the year 1666 is the only date in history that is written from the highest to the lowest value, MDCLXVI (1000 + 500 + 100 + 50 + 10 + 5 + 1)

More than half a billion yo-yos have been sold in just the United States since Donald F. Duncan introduced the toy in 1930 (Pictured below are vintage yo-yos from 1935 through 1945) 

Lightning strikes the Earth 1,800 times at any moment

The planet Jupiter is named after the supreme god of the Romans. He was the god of the sky, the bringer of light, hurling lightning bolts down on the world when displeased

Melting ice absorbs almost as much energy in changing to liquid water as is needed to heat the water from freezing to boiling

Very unusual for carnivores, hyena clans are dominated by females

Monkeys will not eat red meat or butter

A dragonfly flaps its wings 20 to 40 times a second, bees and houseflies 200 times, some mosquitoes 600 times, and a tiny gnat 1,000 times

On the Chinese written language, the ideograph that stands for "trouble" represents two women under one roof

When a piece of glass cracks, the crack travels faster than 3,000 miles per hour

The oldest piano still in existence was built in 1720

The word "gazelle" comes from the Arabian term for "affectionate," and it is believed to be inspired by the creature's large, gentle eyes

It seems to biologists that, unlike their humpback whale relatives whose underwater song evolves from year to year, killer whales retain individual dialects unchanged over long periods, possibly even for life

Each square inch of human skin consists of 19 million cells, 60 hairs, 90 oil glands, 19 feet of blood vessels, 625 sweat glands, and 19,000 sensory cells

Henri NestlĂ© was originally a baby food manufacturer. His work and research with condensed milk aided Swiss chocolatier Daniel Peter in inventing a method to successfully combine chocolate and milk in a solid form — the first milk chocolate — in 1875

The United States Congress passed a law prohibiting American vessels from supplying slaves to other countries on March 22, 1794  
One of New York City's (midtown Manhattan's) favorite meet-up spots, according to an October report in the New York Times, is Colombian artist Fernando Botero's 12-foot-tall "Adam" statue at Time Warner Center. However, since Adam is nude and the statue is so pedestrian-friendly, maintaining it has become a problem, according to the center's general manager. As the Times described it, "Most of Adam is deep dark brown," but the easily-accessible penis "is worn golden from extensive handling." (The Times also noted that "[a]t the Botero" is a less-popular meet-up suggestion than "[u]nderneath the penis.") 

Sheriff's deputies in Manatee County, Florida, arrested two men in 2010 October after a traffic stop when, following a thorough search of the car's trunk, they found marijuana. In fact, the search of the messy trunk was so thorough that they also turned up a bong, which driver Mark Fiasco said he had lost and been looking for for seven years 

Britain's National Health Service acknowledged in November 2010 that, because of a shortage of healthy lungs and other organs available for transplant, it was offering those on waiting lists the option of receiving them from former smokers, drug addicts, cancer patients, and the elderly. "You have to say," said an official with the NHS's Blood and Transplant unit, "do you get a lung with more risk, or do you get no lung [at all]?"         

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