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"Tell me something I don't know" Trivia & Fact thread

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2 hours ago, Sandman87 said:

"Meowcenaries."

I suspect you have been waiting years for that precise opportunity to fall your way in order to crack that joke!

Sounds rather "impawsable" to me, but still, have a "like", ha!

Edited by Zola
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21 hours ago, Zola said:

I suspect you have been waiting years for that precise opportunity to fall your way in order to crack that joke!

No, that one was strictly spur of the moment. I do have puns that I save up for the right moments, but that's not one of them.

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The original definition of 'companion' meant someone whom one broke bread with. Breaking bread has always been a hallmark of a close bond almost as long as bread's been around!

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11 hours ago, Blergh said:

The original definition of 'companion' meant someone whom one broke bread with. Breaking bread has always been a hallmark of a close bond almost as long as bread's been around!

Come on, it's supposed to be "tell me something I don't know"! Anyone who studied Latin knows that :)

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All this talk of birthdays in February has got me thinking about those special people born on the 29th.  And here's some interesting snip-its:-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-17203353 

and

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A person born on February 29 may be called a "leapling", a "leaper", or a "leap-year baby". In non-leap years, some leaplings celebrate their birthday on either February 28 or March 1, while others only observe birthdays on the authentic intercalary date, February 29.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/February_29

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6 hours ago, Zola said:

 

All this talk of birthdays in February has got me thinking about those special people born on the 29th.  And here's some interesting snip-its:-

 

I missed by a few hours, 5 PM on 2/28 of a leap year.  I could have legitimately skipped my birthday this year. 

Edited by JTMacc99
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Someone on Houzz by username Bearcubus wrote this:

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Bearcubus

I'm so grateful for these Houzz posts looking at Minnesota homes, because that's one of the places where I understand, when we're looking at a home on, for example, Lake Excelsior, that what we're looking at in design on Houzz is usually the standards of *extremely* wealthy Americans--not the mere top 1% of income, but the people who live with the top .01% of wealth. That incredibly rarefied level of class wealth is the precondition for the production of an all-over, integrated-design new build or renovation. That said, there are 1,800+ billionaires in the world (.00002% of the world human population), and 4% of Americans have net assets over $1 million. Of those Americans, $2.5 million homes such as are found lakeside in Lake Excelsior, Minnesota, represent 13% of the owner's wealth (CFA 2017); the rest is in stocks, bonds and mutual funds, and business assets. So you would have to own a little over $19 million in wealth to afford the design standards on offer here. Or, if you're part of Houzz's professional audience, tapping into the $19M set is your career holy grail

 

I like that this person lifted the veil on how unattainable all the aspirational material on this website is for most people.  It’s true for so many things on the internet these days.

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So out of sheer boredom and nostalgia, I watched "Pretty Woman" on TV again for the umpteenth time. Goddamned if it ain't cheesy and dated as Hell---just goes to show you how much times have changed that it was such a huge hit back in 1990. And it's so wild that Julia Roberts was only 21 when she filmed it; she was so oddly mature-looking and sexy, yet coltish and cute all at once.

Anyways, it shocked me to learn about the actors who were up for Richard Gere's role in it---Daniel Day Lewis and Sam Neil among others, the most shocking choice being Al Pacino(!!) who even went so far as to do a line reading with Julia Roberts, could you imagine?! Julia obviously wasn't the first choice either and actresses offered the part included Diane Lane, Michelle Pfeiffer, Molly Ringwald and Darryl Hannah. Winona Ryder and Jennifer Connolly also read for her part but were considered too young.

In the end it was Julia's random chemistry with a very reluctant Richard Gere((supposedly Julia later begged him to accept the role)) in their screen tests that won them both the parts.

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Didn't someone produce a movie entitled "Whore" as a protest response to Pretty Woman?  After all, Julia's character was a prostitute.  The men who produced this film obviously were smitten with the "hooker with a heart of gold" theme.

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4 minutes ago, annzeepark914 said:

Didn't someone produce a movie entitled "Whore" as a protest response to Pretty Woman?  After all, Julia's character was a prostitute.  The men who produced this film obviously were smitten with the "hooker with a heart of gold" theme.

Yes, it stars Theresa Russell. The initial script for Pretty Woman, entitled 3000 was a lot darker and Vivian was a drug addict.

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3 hours ago, biakbiak said:

Yes, it stars Theresa Russell. The initial script for Pretty Woman, entitled 3000 was a lot darker and Vivian was a drug addict.

That sounds more realistic than the fairy tale movie that was produced.

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My girlfriend asked me a very pertinent question earlier this morning, wanting to know why we close our eyes when we kiss?

I have often pondered that question when watching peeps kiss on TV or film, and doing a Google this morning it would seem the consensus is this...

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Most people can’t focus on anything as close as a face at kissing distance so closing your eyes saves them from looking at a distracting blur or the strain of trying to focus.

Kissing can also make us feel vulnerable or self-conscious and closing your eyes is a way of making yourself more relaxed. It’s like turning out the light before having sex, but in miniature.

We put that to the test a short while ago and tried to kiss with both pairs of eyes open. We managed the kiss, but it felt so awkward, clumsy and even brought on a touch of dizziness. So perhaps its just as well we switch off the vision and let our other senses take over for that brief period.

 

http://www.sciencefocus.com/qa/why-do-we-close-our-eyes-when-we-kiss

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On 3/18/2018 at 10:48 AM, Zola said:

My girlfriend asked me a very pertinent question earlier this morning, wanting to know why we close our eyes when we kiss?

I thought it was to keep from getting poked in the eye by your partner's nose...

;-)

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9 hours ago, Moose135 said:

I thought it was to keep from getting poked in the eye by your partner's nose...

;-)

I do recall poking someone in the eye with my hooter while up close and personal. But in mitigation either I or my partner, was drunk or dancing, or dancing while drunk, and we kinda missed mouths.

Shame you don't see that kind of thing in films, especially the old classics like Casablanca-  imagine Humphrey Bogart poking Lauren Becall in the eye while in mid-smooch, lol

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Zola,

 

 I don't claim expertise in this but FWIW, I always thought that romantic kissers have kept eyes closed to help highlight the intimacy of the moment.

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2 hours ago, Blergh said:

Zola,

 

 I don't claim expertise in this but FWIW, I always thought that romantic kissers have kept eyes closed to help highlight the intimacy of the moment.

Very true, although to be honest I have closed my eyes in the past and imagined I was kissing someone like Jodie Foster, Sigourney Weaver, Emma Watson or Natalie Portman - which makes me a very bad person I guess

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3 minutes ago, riley702 said:

Bad? I'd say normal. A lot of us have done it.

True! But I always feel a little guilty that I'm not giving 100% to my interlocutor, but rather pretending she was someone else

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4 hours ago, Zola said:

imagined I was kissing someone like Jodie Foster, Sigourney Weaver, Emma Watson or Natalie Portman

Me too...

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Here's a bit of food trivia. Back in 1683, the Turks besieged the city of Vienna- the capital of the Holy Roman and Austrian Empires and they thought they'd make a final push to conquer the city (and all its territory) by staging a sneak attack in the dead of night. What they didn't count on was the fact that all the city's citizens from street sweepers to the Emperor himself loved fresh   bread for breakfast and the bakers would bake  late into the night to have a large supply at the ready. These alert bakers happened to notice the Turkish army ready to swarm over the walls and wasted no time in sounding the alarms to wake the soldiers to not only prevent that particular assault but also were soon able to turn the tide of the war to save the Empire itself!

  Anyway, to show gratitude for their role in having saved the city and empire, the Emperor decreed that the city bakers' guild from that point on would carry the Turkish Crescent Moon to commemorate their valor. And, the bakers wasted no time in creating a special pastry to celebrate this honor (and give patrons the means to imagine literally consuming their former adversaries ): the croissant (which   later got brought to Paris and became part of that city's cuisine via either Marie Antoinette or Napoleon's 2nd wife Marie Louise [M A's niece]).

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If you sometimes find a typical day is dragging ever-so-slowly, that's because the Earth is actually slowing down!

Its daily rotation is slowing by 1.7 milliseconds every 100 years, This is due to tidal forces between the Earth and the Moon (the latter of which is slowly moving away from us, and will eventually leave our gravitational orbit completely in the next couple of billion years. Which could mean the ocean's tides will no longer be as powerful as they are now. It will also mean the moon will appear smaller and smaller in the night sky as it slowly drifts out into the Solar System)

Earth's annual orbit of the Sun may also be slowing down. But currently, we are travelling around the Sun at around 67,000 mph (very slow in astronomy terms) 

The Earth, Sun and the other members of the Solar System, belong to the Milky Way - a relatively moderate-size galaxy some 100,000 light years across. The Earth and Solar system are travelling around it at a fairly cumbersome 510,000 mph. However, it takes almost 229 million years to complete one orbit of this galaxy!

The Milky Way Galaxy, is also travelling through space at around 1.2 million mph, heading inexorably towards its galactic neighbour - the far larger Andromeda Galaxy. It is estimated both galaxies will collide with each other in about 4.2 billion years time

So in essence we are all travelling through space at 1.2 million miles per hour! But that won't make a slow, boring day become any quicker

Edited by Zola
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4 hours ago, Zola said:

So in essence we are all travelling through space at 1.2 million miles per hour!

Honest, officer, I wasn't speeding, it was the galaxy!

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The old house in Paris that was covered with vines was apparently inspired by the author's mom's boarding school.  

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10 hours ago, ratgirlagogo said:

And (the author) Ludwig Bemelman's wife's name was  - you guessed it, Madeline.

Was she a redhead (and took a lot of risks)?

Edited by PRgal

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On 1/27/2018 at 3:57 PM, auntlada said:

Some people are going to have to go without a rat. I intend to have a rat army.

"Ben, the two of us need look no more............

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The shortest war on record was the war between the UK and the Zanzibar Sultanate on August 27th, 1896. It lasted between 38 and 45 minutes. Casualties (not including a few that resulted from looting by enterprising locals) were about 500 Zanzibaris and 1 British sailor. Notable damage included the Zanzibari royal yacht, two smaller ships, and the flag on top of the sultan's palace.

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The landlocked nation of Andorra (in the Pyrenees Mountains between France and Spain) has an army of 12 men yet has not actually fought a war in 700 years and for many years the entire military budget was $5 to buy a bullet to fire a blank cartridge. Oh, despite this, Andorra technically fought in the First World War until September 25,1939 when it signed a treaty with Germany due to Andorra having been completely forgotten in the Treaty of Versailles  .  While it didn't have any real involvement in WWII, it did serve as a major smuggling stop between Fascist Spain and Vicky France during that time!

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39 minutes ago, Blergh said:

The landlocked nation of Andorra...

Your post got me to looking things up on Wikipedia. Turns out that the county which I live in has more land area than 33 of the world's nations.

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Ducks do the necrophilia thing too.

More bird oddness:

The male Palm Cockatoo will bang on a hollow tree trunk with a stick to attract a mate.

Kelp Gulls will attack Right Whales at the surface of the water in order to rip chunks of flesh and blubber from them.

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The Ford Edsel is commonly thought of as a failure, but in fact it had the second largest first year sales for any new car up to that point. It just failed to sell as many units as Ford had projected.

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OK, here's something to consider re birds: virtually all chirps, songs,etc. are made to proclaim their territory and NOT to celebrate spring,etc. Also, shortly before severe storms occur, the chirps and songs will suddenly stop- as if the birds realize that they've got to SURVIVE those impending disasters so who owns what is rather incidental until the danger's over!

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Because her namesake mother died of Bright's disease when she was just two days old, no one in Alice Roosevelt Longworth's family called her by her first name. Instead they called her 'Baby Lee' (her middle name and her mother's maiden name) and then as soon as her father remarried and had more children with her stepmother, she was termed 'Sister' and wound up become 'Aunt Sister' to her half-nieces and nephews. Also, Mrs. Longworth said despite the fact that President Theodore Roosevelt would survive until she was 37, not even ONCE did he talk to her about her late mother. 

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9 hours ago, DeLurker said:

A butt is a real unit of measurement for a cask of wine. A buttload is about 108 Imperial gallons.

Butt is also an archery term.

A somewhat larger barrel of wine is the tun, which holds 252 gallons.

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1900 was the only year of Olympic games that featured croquet as an event. French athletes won all of the medals because they were the only ones who entered the competition.

The 1908 Summer Olympics featured a pistol dueling event where the competitors shot at each other using wax bullets.

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On 8/10/2018 at 5:49 PM, walnutqueen said:

So, when I say I drink a buttload of wine, I'm actually being accurate?  ;-D

I suppose so if you were describing a year's worth of drinking since I doubt anyone could drink 108 Imperial gallons at one sitting- even if one had tubes in unpleasant places.

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