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Greg's Useless Trivia #46 (1 Viewer)


A collection of mostly useless but sometimes interesting things I've come across.

Links to previous Useless Trivia:

#1   #2   #3   #4   #5
#6   #7   #8   #9   #10
   #12   #13   #14   #15
#16   #17   #18   #19   #20
#21   #22   #23   #24   #25
#26   #27   #28   #29   #30
   #32   #33   #34   #35
#36   #37   #38   #39   #40
   #42   #43   #44   #45

1) True or False. Kyoto, Japan was saved from being nuked because of a politician's honeymoon.

True. In the 1920s, Henry Stimson, then the governor-general of the Philippines, went on his honeymoon with his wife to Kyoto. While there, Henry Stimson fell in love with the city. In the 1940s, he served as secretary of war and privy to potential targets for the bomb. Number one on that list was Kyoto, the old capital of Japan and the center of historical and artistic treasures. It would have been absolutely demoralizing for Japan, making it the perfect choice. But Henry Stimson sent another memo to President Truman to protest the choice. Stimson could not let the United States destroy the city where he and his wife had honeymooned. Truman acquiesced, and Kyoto’s citizens and irreplaceable cultural treasures were saved.

2) What do the following 10 people have in common?

Alexis Flores
Yaser Abdel Said
Luis Macedo
Bhadreshkumar Chetanbhai Patel
Jason Derek Brown
Willim Bradford Bishop, Jr.
Robert William Fisher
Eduardo Ravelo
Walter Yovany Gomez
Robert Francis Van Wisse

They comprise (as of 9/6/2017) the FBI's Ten Most Wanted list. Three (Macedo, Gomze and Van Wisse) have been captured. Since its inception in 1950, 514 fugitives have been on the list, and 483 have been apprehended or located. Two were apprehended as a result of visitors on an FBI tour. A reward of up to $100,000 is offered for the information which directly leads to a fugive's arrest.
3) True or False. The British tried to feminize Adolph Hitler by sneaking estrogen into his food.

True. The British had spies with access to his food supply, but did not think poison could be snuck past food tasters. Instead they had carrots in his food laced with estrogen. It is not clear how it ended, but it did not seem to work. Unless the invasion of Russia was the result of a very confused man dealig with hormones on his transition to womanhood.

4) This alcoholic cocktail came into being because of the fight against malaria.

Gin and tonic. British soldiers fighting in the Indies were constantly dealing with malaria. The British at the time had tonic water that contained a compound called quinine, which was extremely effective at fighting malaria. The only problem was that tonic water tasted pretty much as awful as anything can, so the British soldiers mixed their gin with it to make it palatable. After the war, many British men ordered it upon returning home and a famous cocktail was born.
5) True or False. Abraham Lincoln suffered from suicidal depression and did not carry a knife for fear he might kill himself.

True. Lincoln did suffer from depression and told another member of the Illinois legislature he was afraid he'd hurt himself if he carried a knife. He once jumped from a window during an Illinois legislative session, though that one wasn't a suicide attempt but it is an interesting story of its own. Lincoln and his party were about to lose a vote that would have forced the State Bank to make payments it couldn’t afford, and Lincoln knew the bank would go bankrupt if they didn’t stop the vote. There was a loophole that could keep it from happening. If they had one less Whig in the building, Lincoln realized, the vote technically wouldn’t be valid. So he made sure there was one less Whig. He threw himself out the window.
6) The most recent invasion of US mainland territory was the Japanese invading and briefly holding some Alaskan islands during World War II. Before that, what was the next most recent invasion?

Pancho Villa's 1916 invasion attacking Columbus, New Mexico, during the Border War portion of the Mexican Revolution. Villa's forces were repulsed, and the US army launched an expedition into Mexico, engaging Villista rebels and killing his two top lieutenants, though Villa himself escaped and would live another 7 years before being assassinated by riflemen.
7) True or False. The Hindenburg crash almost doomed Marvel Comics.

True. In 1937, Martin Goodman and Jean Davis had just finished their honeymoon in Europe and wanted to return to New York on the Hindenburg. There were tickets available, but none next to each other so the couple instead flew back on a plane. The Hindenburg ended up a flaming ball of gas. The couple went on that year to found Timely Comics, the precursor to Marvel Comics. Jean Davis's 17-year-old cousin, Stanley Martin Leiber, was later hired by Goodman to do proofreading. In 1941, Stanley would write his first story under the pseudonym Stan Lee.
8) True or False. Oneida Limited, the nation's largest manufacturer of stainless steel cutlery, had its origin in a commune where every man was married to every woman, children were raised communally, and young members were introduced to pleasures of the flesh by older members.

True. In 1848, John Humphrey Noyes left Vermont after being accused of adultery. He established his own Oneida Community based on the religious belief of Perfectionism, which he adopted while studying at Yale Divinity School. Ultimately, those outside the community—called “The World” by the Oneida Community—accused the members of immorality. In 1881, the commune dissolved. The transition from religious commune to successful corporation remains poorly documented, but there is no question as to the origins of Oneida Ltd. It is the only flatware maker with a factory in the United States, leaving an untarnished legacy in the wake of its utopian experiment.
9) Who fought the Great Emu War of 1932?

It was fought between the Australian government... and a bunch of emus. Farmers in Western Australia were struggling to stay afloat during the Great Depression. It didn't help that their attempts to grow wheat had coincided with the migration of 20,000 emus who liked eating wheat. The Minister of Defense heard of their plight and sent soldiers armed with machine guns after each emu sighting. The military strategy of the emus outstripped that of the Australian army, as they scattered into small groups that were tough to attack. The Australian army eventually conceded defeat, put down their machine guns, and went home. The government refused further calls to fight off the birds in 1934, 1943, and 1948.
10) True or False. "The Tale of Two Lovers" is a book full of erotic descriptions and imagery, written by the King of England in 1444.

False. It was indeed a book full of erotic descriptions and imagery. And it was written in 1444. But it was written by Pope Pius II. But before he became pope.


Aerial Assault

6/10 bolstered by the True/False.  #1 is, although morbid, fascinating to me and I lucked out there knowing that going in.  In a future edition maybe you could include something about Kokura.  

Never heard of the Great Emu War.  

Oh, and "untarnished" legacy :lol:

Thanks, Greg!  

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True or False:  All of your true/false answers were True.

(answer is true)

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Mrs. Rannous

We're questioning the Hindenburg story.  No one gets "seats" on the Hindenburg.  There were only cabins.  Maybe it means adjoining cabins.  But when was commercial airservice available?  Or did they charter a plane?  I guess the devil is in the details.



We're questioning the Hindenburg story.  No one gets "seats" on the Hindenburg.  There were only cabins.  Maybe it means adjoining cabins.  But when was commercial airservice available?  Or did they charter a plane?  I guess the devil is in the details.
There were multiple tellings of the story when I had first searched to confirm it. Which of course doesn't mean they aren't all based on a myth.

But, googling the Hindenburg finds the passenger cabins were double berths, each about 7 1/2 by 6 1/2 feet so not very big. So it could have meant that they would have been stuck in different cabins, and sharing each with someone else.


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