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Greg's Useless Trivia #19 (1 Viewer)


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) Scientists using Google Earth have discovered that cows share an unusual behavior with honeybees, fruit flies, zebrafish, bats, foxes, and some rodents. What is it?

They found that cows prefer to align their bodies in a magnetic north-south direction when at rest.

2) In the 1700s, there was an occurence where most of the citizens of a country who went to bed on Sept 2 did not wake until Sept 14. Which country, and what was the cause?

England in 1752. This was the month during which England shifted from the Roman Julian Calendar to the Gregorian Calendar which most of Europe had been using for some time. An 11 day correction needed to be made to sync back up with the rest of Europe. So the King of England ordered 11 days - Sept 3rd through 13th - to be wiped off the calendar. Brits who went to bed on Sept 2 woke on Sept 14th.

3) This lake near Webster, MA has the longest name of a location in the United States.

Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg. Full credit for "Char-something".

4) What video game system's name was inspired by a term from the game Go for when a chain of stones has only one move remaining?


5) The Arctic tern is a bird which holds the record for the world's longest ______.

Migration. It makes a 44,000 mile round trip each year. It spends summer in the Arctic and then flies halfway around the world for a second summer in Antarctica.

6) Who was the first US president to travel abroad while in office?

Teddy Roosevelt. He visited the Panama Canal in 1906.

7) Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. How much is a peck?

A peck is equivalent to 2 gallons or 8 dry quarts or 1/4 of a bushel.

8) True or False:  While Cinco de Mayo has become popular in the United States as a day for drinking, in actuality it is Mexico's Independence Day.

False. Mexico's Independence Day is Sept 16. Cinco de Mayo celebrates the defeat of a French army during the Battle of Puebla (Batalla de Puebla) in Mexico on May 5, 1862.

9) Which planet has the longest day (time it takes to spin once on its axis)?

Venus. A Venusian day lasts about 243 Earth days. Venus orbits the sun in only 225 Earth days, so a Venusian day is actually longer than a Venusian year.

When it comes to our solar system, "prograde" motion means spinning or orbiting in the same direction the Sun spins, while retrograde would mean spinning or orbiting in the opposite direction as the Sun turns.

10)  How many planets turn on their axis in a retrograde motion?

2, Venus and Uranus. The Sun would be seen to rise in the West and set in the East on these planets.

11) How many planets orbit about the sun in a retrograde motion?

None. All of the planets orbit the same direction as the Sun spins.

12) "The Bloop" was an ultra-low frequency, extremely powerful sound heard on NOAA hydrophones in the Pacific Ocean in 1997, on some stationed as much as 5000 km apart. People on the internet still debate the kind of animal that might have made it, though scientists are certain it was caused by this.

Cracking of the Antartic ice shelf. The sound was triangulated to the tip of Antartica, and similar sounds have been observed as being due to ice. According to Robert Dziak at NOAA, the hypothesis it was an animal wasn't ever really a serious one. "What has led to a lot of the misperception of the animal origin sound of the Bloop is how the sound is played back. Typically, it is played at 16 times normal speed, which makes it sounds like an animal vocalisation of some sort. However, when the sound is played in real-time it has more of a 'quake' sound to it, similar to thunder."

13) True or False:  Naturally occuring mint lowers the temperature of your mouth by about 5 degrees, though with processing it can lower it 10 degrees or more.

False. Mint might make your mouth feel cooler, but the feeling is a thermal illusion that happens when sensory receptors get fooled.

At the heart of the matter is a protein called TRPM8. TRPM8 is an ion channel, a type of protein that regulates the movement of ions across the membranes of cells. Only certain stimulants can open the ion channel and access the cell. TRPM8 opens in the presence of cold temperatures and allows Na+ and Ca2+ ions to enter the cell, resulting in a sensation we interpret as coldness. However, it also activates in the presence of menthol which is found in mint oils..
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John Bender


Used to eat a restaurant there at least 3 times a month (Point Breeze)

Lake Chargogaggamuchahuagabacachaugamaug (sp?)
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Just a sec, giving problems with the spoiler boxes.

Ok, fixed now.

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