Monday, June 6, 2011


Filled with water, gas, electric, telephone, cable, steam, and sewer lines, Manhattan (New York City) is the most dense underground site in the United States

Doctors perform more sex-change operations in Iran than in any other country - and because of the medical system in Iran, the government pays for about half of the procedure

People in Uganda are suffering (and dying) from malaria. Spraying incesticide would help, but it’s been protested by the organic cotton farmers - Primary buyers of that cotton: Nike, H&M, Wal-Mart and Baby George clothing
There are sand dunes in Arcachon, France that are 350 feet high

The liver stretches across almost the width of the body, occupying a space about the size of a football. It weighs more than 3 lbs
A male peacock becomes fully feathered when he is three years old, but can mate earlier

Formally called Kiritimati, Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean is 52 square miles

Potatoes were banned in Burgundy in 1910 because it was said, "frequent use caused leprosy"

All the world's main alphabets have developed from an alphabet invented 3,600 years ago in the Middle East and known as the North Semitic Alphabet 

Table tennis was originally played with balls made from champagne corks and paddles made from cigar-box lids. It was created in the 1880s by James Gibb, a British engineer who wanted an invigorating game he could play indoors when it was raining. Named "Gossima," the game was first marketed with celluloid balls, which replaced Gibb's corks. After the equipment manufacturer renamed the game "Ping-Pong" in 1901, it gained popularity  (Pictured is an early version of the manufactured game of table tennis that came as a kit in early-20th century England)

A lion in the wild usually makes no more than 20 kills a year

In the Middle Ages in Europe, chicken soup was believed to be an aphrodisiac

After his death in 896, the body of Pope Formosus was dug up and tried for various crimes

“Villi”, finger-like projections on the small intestine (their purpose is to increase the surface area for water and nutrient absorption) are four-hundredths of an inch long

Norwegian Roald Amundsen led the first group to reach the South Pole. Although his expedition set out before Amundsen's, Robert Falcon Scott and his men reached the South Pole a month later. Tragically, Scott and his men froze to death only a few miles from safety on the trip back. Had they jettisoned the heavy load of scientific samples collected on their journey, they might have reached shelter before being struck by the bad weather which stranded them
The electric organs in an electric eel make up four-fifths of its body - despite its name, it is not an eel but a knifefish, and is found in parts of South America
When World War II began, the U.S. government declared platinum as a strategic metal and its use in non-military applications, including jewelry was disallowed. To appease consumers who preferred platinum's white luster, gold was substituted in platinum's absence

6,000 new computer virus's are released every month  
Cadillac was named after the 18th century French explorer Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac, founder of Detroit, Michigan. Cadillac is a small town in the South of France

The ear has a "G-spot," explained the Santa Clara, Calif., ear-nose-and-throat surgeon, and thus the moans of ecstasy that Vietnamese "ear pickers" reportedly elicit from their clients might well be justified. A San Jose Mercury News reporter, dispatched to Ho Chi Minh City in January 2011 to check it out, learned that barber
shop technicians could sometimes coax "eargasms" (as they removed wax) by tickling a certain spot next to the ear drum served by multiple nerve endings and paper-thin skin. Said one female client, "Everybody is afraid the first time, but after, it's, 'Oh my God!'" Said one Vietnamese man, returning home after a trip
abroad, and who went immediately from the airport to a "hot toc" parlor for a picking, "[This] brings a lot of happiness." 

Disabled wheelchair user Jim Starr, 36, of Dorchester, England, was recently ordered off of public roads because his "chair" is too big. Authorities told him that his custom-made, motorized chair with caterpillar treads instead of wheels, which moves like a tank, would have to be licensed like one ("Category H" vehicle, one
category higher than a "road roller"). Starr said his chair was the only way he could play at the beach with his kids 

In December 2010, J.P. Morgan Chase abruptly ended a program that had allowed military personnel to defer paying on Chase-owned student loans while on active duty.  Three weeks later, NBC News reported that Chase's mortgage division had long been ignoring a federal military protection law by charging 4,000 active-duty personnel higher mortgage-interest rates than permitted (and improperly foreclosing on 14 of them).  That same week, Chase was found to be advertising (through an agent) a foreclosed-on, five-year-old house in Rexburg, Idaho, without adequate notice that it was infested with "thousands" of garter snakes. (In February, Chase reinstated the student-loan deferments and apologized for ignoring the federal law.)

A 21-year-old man was stabbed to death at a party in Bristol, Connecticut in January 2011 (and three others wounded), apparently because they had been making derisive comments about another man's flatulence. The allegedly gaseous Marc Higgins, 21, was charged with the crimes  

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