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Greg's Useless Trivia #16 (1 Viewer)


New one.  Also #15 kind of got buried coming out the day before the board upgrade if anyone missed it.

A collection of mostly useless but sometimes interesting things I've come across. There are bugs with opening a lot of spoiler boxes at once. Easiest to avoid if you close each box again once you read the answer. If that doesn't work, just reload the thread and they should work again.

Links to previous useless trivia:







1) Which actor or actress has received the most Oscar nominations for Best Actor or Best Actress?

Meryl Streep has been nominated 16 times. Second most is Katharine Hepburn with 12 nominations, and Hepburn has the most wins with 4.

2) When it comes to our Solar System, what is Theia?

Theia is part of a hypothesis of how the Moon formed due to a collision. According to the hypothesis, Theia was about the size of Mars and would have collided with the early Earth around 4.5 billion years ago, with the debris from the impact ending up forming our Moon.

3) What is the largest dolphin?

The orca, or killer whale. Orca are part of the dolphin Family Delphinidae.

4) Russian Valentina Vassilyeva holds the record for the most of these, with 69.  What are they?

Children that she birthed. She gave birth to a total of 69 children – sixteen pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets – between 1725 and 1765, in a total of 27 births.  Her husband Feodor also had six sets of twins and two sets of triplets with a second wife, for another 18 children in eight births. He fathered a total of 87 children.

5) When their eyes were adjusted to the dark, astronauts in space reported seeing these an average of about once every 3 minutes. What did they see?

Flashes of light, or phosphenes, which are believed to be caused by cosmic rays passing through some part of their eyes, optic nerves, or possibly the brain. The earth's magnetosphere blocks most of these for those of us who are not flying Apollo spacecraft.

6) Which 2 US states ban self service gasoline?

New Jersey and Oregon.

7) What popular holiday was originally associated with the color blue, until that gradually changed to the current color scheme starting around the 1790s?

St. Patrick's day was originally associated with a shade of blue called St. Patrick blue. Green became the dominant color to highlight Irish nationalism against British rule.

8) While most people are familiar with this phrase, they probably would guess wrong as to who coined it. The phrase actually originated with English philosopher, biologist, anthropologist, and sociologist Herbert Spencer in a comparison between economics and biology. What phrase?

"Survival of the fittest", which most people probably would attribute to Charles Darwin. Spencer used the phrase comparing his economic theories to Darwin's biological ones.

9) True or false, the same chemical that causes the taste of stale beer is also responsible for "old person smell".

True. The chemical is known as 2-nonenal. Shout out to "Elementary" for sharing that fact.

10) The Moon always shows one side towards the Earth. The front side of the Moon has dark spots that many people think resemble a face we call the Man in the Moon. Probes that orbited the Moon returned our first images of the back side, which scientists were surprised to see was completely light with almost no dark spots. Why do we think there are no dark spots on the back side?

Because the moon's crust is 30 miles thicker on the back side than it is on the side nearest to the Earth. The dark patches are basalt flows, much like those around Hawaiian volcanoes, likely from where falling meteors broke through the crust. With the crust on the back side so much thicker, meteors likely did not break through in the same way.

One theory for this difference in the crust is that after the impact with Theia, the Earth was so hot from the impact that minerals on the near side would vaporize and later rain back to the ground on the cooler side away from the Earth. Another is that the impact spawned two moons that eventually combined into one, but rather than a spectacular impact one slowly glommed onto the other like smooshing a smaller ball of play dough onto a baseball, and thickening the crust in that spot as a result.

11) As of October 2015 according to some website I had never heard of, who was the only musician, singer or song writer whose net worth had topped 1 billion dollars?   Hint: It is not a rapper and it is not a member of the Beatles.

Andrew Lloyd Weber

12) True or False: the popular image of Santa Claus – chubby, bearded, in red and white clothes – was invented by Coca-Cola for an ad campaign.

False. Santa was portrayed like that for decades before Coke got involved.

13) Everyone can be classified as either a Shellback or a Pollywog.  What is the difference between them?

Sailors in many navies have Crossing the Line ceremonies for the first time crossing the equator. Shellbacks or Sons of Neptune are nicknames for those who have previously crossed the equator and Pollywogs are those who have not.

14) Which fingernail grows the fastest?

According to Cutex, the nail on the middle finger grows the fastest while the thumbnail grows the slowest.

15) A 2002 study found that the average person does this 2 to 3 times in a ten-minute conversation.

The average person lies 2 to 3 times in a ten-minute conversation.

16) Which nation has the most tornadoes relative to its land area?

The United Kingdom, according to NOAA. Fortunately most UK tornadoes are relatively weak.

17) True or false: Some plants follow the sun, leaning towards it, while the Eiffel Tower does the opposite and leans away from it.

True. The side nearest the sun is warmer and so expands more, effectively pushing the Tower the other direction by as much as 7 inches.

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