Saturday, April 10, 2010

Terrific but trivial tidbits

3/24/10 Chatterbox
Betty Kaiser

Okay folks, it’s time once again to lighten up my email box and share some of its accumulated trivia with you. By the way, I looked up the word trivia and all dictionaries seem to agree that its definition boils down to mean “something of small importance.” One source read “details and pieces of information that are not important.”

Well, I love that sort of information. So, the following questions and facts may not be important but since they inspired the game “Trivial Pursuit” we’ll check out this recent batch of facts and situations. Believe me, they will have you scratching your head and saying, “That can’t be true!”

This first one is a common occurrence at our house:

Why do we press harder and harder when trying to operate a remote control when we know that batteries are almost dead? Why don’t we just change the batteries?

Why do we believe it when scientists say there are four billion stars but have to check it out when a sign says “Wet Paint.”

Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they already know there is not enough money?

Why does Superman stop bullets with his chest but he ducks when someone throws a revolver at him?

Why did Kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

If people evolved from apes, why are there still apes?

Why doesn’t Tarzan have a beard?

Whose idea was it to put an ‘S’ in the word ‘lisp’?

Is there ever a day when mattresses are not on sale?

Why do people constantly open the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialized since their last look-see?

Why is it that no plastic bag will open from the end on your first try?

How do those dead bugs get into those enclosed light fixtures?

Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that’s falling off the table, you always manage to knock something else over?

Why do we keep the house as warm in winter as it was in summer when we complained it was too hot?

Why are we more polite to others than we are to our own family? When we are in the supermarket and someone runs over our toe with a shopping cart, we say, “It’s all right.” Well, it isn’t all right. So why don’t we say, ‘That really hurt. Why don’t you watch where you’re going?’ That’s what we’d say to our kids.

Okay, we’re moving on now to a different variety of trivia statements to ponder and see if you agree or disagree:

Babies are born without kneecaps. They don’t appear until the child reaches 2-6 years of age.

If the population of China walked past you eight abreast, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction. (Scary.)

Winston Churchill was born in a ladies’ room during a dance.

Women blink nearly twice as much as men. (Flirting?)

In the last 4,000 years, no new animals have been domesticated.

There are more chickens than people in the world.

A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.

A goldfish has a memory span of three seconds. (That long?)

A shark is the only fish that can blink with both eyes. (Shark blink?)

A snail can sleep for three years. (And then what?)

An ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain. (Hmm.)

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: ‘abstemious’ and ‘facetious.’ (Okay, go ahead and admit it. You went back and read ‘A E I O U,’ out loud, didn’t you?)

“Typewriter” is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard. (Go ahead and test it. I’ll wait.)

Stewardesses’ is the longest word typed with only the left hand.

“Lollipop” is the longest word typed with your right hand. (That seems kind of short to me. Anyone have another word?)

The famous typing sentence “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog,” uses every letter of the alphabet. (I know you’re going to try this one out for accuracy.)

No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver or purple.

‘”Dreamt” is the only English word that ends in the letters ‘mt.’ (This sounds reasonable. What do you think?)

The words ‘racecar,’ ‘kayak’ and ‘level’ are palindromes. They are the same whether they are read left to right or vice-versa.

There are only four words in the English language that end in ‘dous’: tremendous, horrendous, stupendous and hazardous.

Our eyes are the same size throughout our lifetime but our nose and ears never stop growing. (That’s interesting.)

And finally, my personal favorite trivia question of the year is: Why do people keep running over a thread a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner; then reach down, pick it up, examine it and then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance? (And yes, I’ll admit that at times I’ve been guilty of this.)

And that’s the end of today’s trivia tidbits. Hopefully you found something trivial to pursue and laugh about; and gained some new information to astound your friends.

Thanks for keeping me informed and keep those emails coming.
Have a good week, everyone!

Betty Kaiser’s Chatterbox is about people, places, family, and other matters of the heart.
Read her weekly columns in the Cottage Grove Sentinel.

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