Archive for the ‘Trivia’ Category

Happy Thanksgiving 2017!

November 23, 2017

Did you know that Turkey Trots are the most popular races in America?  Did you also know that eating that large Thanksgiving Day meal can cause you to gain a full pound in one day and consume more than 4,000 calories?  Here’s an infographic to show you how long you would have to run to burn off some of these calories.  Enjoy!



Fun Fact Friday, Number Fifty!

November 17, 2017

Today’s real facts (courtesy of are all about the left hand.  Did you know that . . .

  • about 11% of the people in the world are left-handed? (Real Fact #52)
  • ancient Egyptians believed the “vein of love” ran from the third finger on the left hand to the heart? (Real Fact #309)
  • twins have a very high occurrence of left-handedness?  (Real Fact #729)
  • left-handed people tend to chew food on the left side? (Real Fact #834)
  • all of the major candidates in the 1992, 1996, and 2008 U.S. Presidential elections were left-handed? (Real Facts #985)
  • six of the last twelve U.S. Presidents have been left-handed, far greater than the national average of lefties?  (Real Fact #1178)


Fun Fact Friday, Number Forty-Nine!

November 10, 2017

The category for today’s trivial imponderable is “slang.”  Do you know what the slang phrase “blowing the grampus” means?

It originates from a naval tradition of throwing a bucket of cold water on a sailor who has been caught asleep while on watch.

Source: Sorry, Wrong Answer: Trivia Questions That Even Know-It-Alls Get Wrong, by Dr. Rod L. Evans.

Fun Fact Friday, Number Forty-Eight!

November 3, 2017

Today’s real facts (courtesy of are all about porcupines.  Did you know that . . .

  • all porcupines float in water? (Real Fact #15)
  • porcupines each have 30,000 quills? (Real Fact #220)
  • a group of porcupines is called a prickle? (Real Fact #1000)


Happy Halloween 2017!

October 31, 2017

If 2016 can serve as an indicator of popularity, 2017 should be no exception (here are some fun facts from 2016).  Of course, for all of you who enjoy the occasional Halloween-themed movie (not all of these are “scary”), here is a list of movies you may wish to watch again (I should have thought to post this earlier in the month so that you could have watched one of them each day for the month of October, but alas . . . ).

My favorite is the original Halloween (1978) and they have a whole website dedicated to the fans of this movie (and its numerous sequels).

If you are brave enough to venture out tonight . . . be safe.

As We Continue to Age . . . !

October 28, 2017

Happy Saturday.  My apologies for the tardiness of this post (I probably should have shared this earlier in the school year).  Every year, Beloit College publishes a “mind-set list” which is intended to help faculty members understand the mind-set of the incoming freshman class, especially with regard to cultural references that older generations take for granted.  Here are a few examples:

This year’s freshmen . . .

  • represent the last class born in the 1900s (the very last Millenials)
  • have never used or heard the high pitched whine of a dial-up modem
  • by the time they entered school laptops were outselling desktops
  • have always been able to get green ketchup
  • have been able to find a blog on any subject
  • they are the first generation to grow up with Watson outperforming Sherlock

Check out this link for the full list.

This year a new list evolved (courtesy of Robert Scherrer) that provides a guide to what the “college years” looked like (mind-set) for the typical 50-something college professor.

Some examples from this list:

  • spell check was a dictionary
  • high-tech students owned an electric typewriter
  • if a student wasn’t in their room, you couldn’t reach them on the phone
  • a year at college cost less than a new car

Source: both lists were discovered on

Fun Fact Friday, Number Forty-Seven!

October 27, 2017

The category for today’s trivial imponderable is “physics.”  Do you know why a person would put a teaspoon in the neck of an opened bottle of champagne?

Contrary to any actual scientific or empirical evidence, people believe (erroneously) that this will help the champagne retain its carbonation.

Source: Sorry, Wrong Answer: Trivia Questions That Even Know-It-Alls Get Wrong, by Dr. Rod L. Evans.

A Mule is Born!

October 26, 2017

Today marks the day that the first mule was born in the United States (1785).

In addition, October 26th represents the day for several other “firsts,” such as the first . . .

  • Jewish weekly newspaper in English  (The Jew [monthly], New York, NY, 1849)
  • washing machine (Hamilton Erastus Smith, Philadelphia, PA, 1858)
  • steeplechase (American Jockey Club, Jerome Park, Westchester County, NY, 1869)
  • Army pilot to fly solo in an airplane (2nd Lieutenant Frederic Erastus Humphreys, College Park, MD, 1909)

Source: Famous First Facts, by Joseph Nathan Kane, Steven Anzovin, and Janet Podell

Fun Fact Friday, Number Forty-Six!

October 20, 2017

Today’s real facts (courtesy of are all about mosquitoes.  Did you know that . . .

  • mosquitoes are attracted to people who just ate a banana? (Real Fact #10)
  • mosquitoes have 478 teeth? (Real Fact #50)
  • only female mosquitoes bite?  (Real Fact #725)


Fun Fact Friday, Number Forty-Five!

October 13, 2017

The category for today’s trivial imponderable is “botany.”  When thinking about the following fruit: blackberries, strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, which are true berries?

Only the blueberries are the true berries.  All of the others are considered aggregate drupes.  Drupes are fleshy fruits containing a single stone or pit; they are aggregate because each individual fruit is atually a cluster of miniature drupes.

Source: Sorry, Wrong Answer: Trivia Questions That Even Know-It-Alls Get Wrong, by Dr. Rod L. Evans.