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Fast facts


Photo
Illustration by Holly Randall
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday, September 7, 2004
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Things you always never wanted to know

  • A mosquito has 47 teeth.

  • If the Nile River were stretched across the United States, it would run almost from New York to Los Angeles.

  • A space vehicle must move at a rate of seven miles per second to escape the earth's gravitational pull. This is equivalent to going from New York to Philadelphia in about 20 seconds.

  • Douglas MacArthur's mother used to send fawning letters to his army superiors suggesting that it was time for her son to be promoted to general.

  • Ladies in Europe took to wearing lightning rods on their hats and trailing a ground wire - a fad that began after Benjamin Franklin published instructions on how to make them in Poor Richard Improved, in 1753.

  • A volcano has greater power than does the greatest hurricane, tsunami or earthquake.

  • Isaac Newton's only recorded utterance while he was a member of Parliament was a request to open the window.

  • Kernels of popcorn were found in the graves of pre-Colombian Indians.

  • To make a one-pound comb of honey, bees must collect nectar from about 2 million flowers.

  • At the St. Louis World's Fair in 1904, Richard Blechynden, an Englishman, had a tea concession. On a very hot day, none of the fairgoers were interested in hot tea. In a desperate attempt for business, Blechynden served the tea cold - and invented iced tea.

  • Most healthy adults can go without eating anything for a month or longer, but they must drink at least two quarts of water a day.

  • Snails produce a colorless, sticky discharge that forms a protective carpet under them as they travel along. The discharge is so effective that snails can crawl along the edge of a razor without cutting themselves.

  • A fully loaded supertanker traveling at its normal speed of 16 knots needs at least 20 minutes in order to stop. In the absence of lateral leeway, a collision would be inevitable if an immobile object loomed up as much as three miles away.

  • Until there was a pay raise in 1814, U.S. Congressmen were paid $6 per diem when Congress was in session.


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