Fast Facts

Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, June 8, 2005

taken daily with a grain of salt

  • Sound travels 15 times more swiftly through steel than through air.

  • All of the gold in the world would fit into a single block measuring 18 cubic yards.

  • Anurag Kashyap, 13, of Poway, Calif., won this year's National Spelling Bee by correctly spelling "Appoggiatura," a type of musical note.

  • One hundred ninety-eight convicted sex offenders in New York State have been reimbursed by Medicaid for Viagra since 2001. This number is similar to those of Texas and Florida.

  • Colonel George Washington of the Virginia Militia was denied a commission in the regular British army in 1754. He resigned his militia commission and became a Virginia planter at Mount Vernon. His resentment of the British over this rejection helped lose George III his colonies.

  • The Crusaders were able to conquer Acre, a coastal town 80 miles north of Jerusalem, in July 1191, after 100,000 on both sides had been killed.

  • Alexander Graham Bell was working to improve the telegraph when he invented the telephone.

  • Internal combustion engines lose efficiency at the rate of more than 2 percent for every 1,000 feet of altitude. At Lake Titicaca, at 12,500 feet in the Andes, motorcars and powered boats lose about 30 percent of their rated horsepower.

  • A study of 72 factories in 1881 in Russia revealed that some workers worked 18-20 hour shifts and they often lost most of their wages in fines levied by employers.

  • Except for five votes in the U.S. Senate, the Panama Canal would have been built in Nicaragua.

  • Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, the fathers of communism, wrote 500 articles for the New York Tribune, from 1851 to 1862.

  • Having survived a barrel ride over Niagara Falls that broke "nearly every bone" in his body in 1911, Bobby Leech embarked on a lecture tour around the world. In New Zealand, he slipped on a banana peel and died of complications from the fall.