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Greg's Useless Trivia #54 (1 Viewer)

GregR

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

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1)  True or False. The Manhattant is a species of ant which only lives in a few blocks of road median in New York City.

True. New York already has its own unique centipede, sweet bee and white-footed mouse with small ears. Cut off from their kind in isolated patches of urban green, these creatures slowly evolved into new versions of their original, stranded relatives, scientists postulate. As of 2012 articles the ant had not yet been given a scientific name, but it lives in Broadway medians at 63rd and 76th streets.
 
 
 
2) When taking a photograph using a flash, people's eyes may end up looking red. As far as the human body goes, what is the primary source of this red color?

Blood. The flash happens too fast for the pupil to close, so most of the bright light passes through the pupil and reflects off the back of the eye and back out. The main cause of the red color is the ample amount of blood nourishing the back of the eye. Some photostable pigments in the eye also play a role by absorbing other wavelengths, but less than the light reflecting off the blood. Give yourself credit if you said the back of the eye, or whatever it's actual anatomical name is, though the reason it is red is because of the blood there.
 
 
 
 
3) The five oldest companies in the world were founded before 800 CE, and all are in what country?

Japan. The Kongo Gumi construction firm dates back 578. The next four oldest companies were founded in the 700s. According to a study by the Bank of Korea in 2008 investigating 41 countries, there were 5,586 companies older than 200 years. Of these, 3146 are in Japan. In addition to being an old country with an old economy, the Japanese practice of primogeniture likely contributes to the number of old companies, as the eldest son inherited all of a patriarch's wealth, allowing entire companies to be passed on to a single member of the family.  The oldest company in the US?  Shirley Planation, a farm founded in 1613.
 
 
 
4) The British Directorate of Military Intelligence section known as MI5 deals with counter-espionage and threats inside Great Britain, while MI6 deals with external threats (cue the James Bond music).  But what did MI7 deal with?

a) Signals interception and codes
b) Aerial photography
c) Scientific intelligence
d) Censorship and propaganda
e) Prisoner of war interrogation

d) MI7 dealt with propaganda and press censorship. There were 19 different numbered sections during World War II, though most have been subsumed into other areas and the names MI5 and MI6 remain in common use in large part due to spy fiction. The other answers (in order) were the focus of MI8, MI15, MI16, and MI19.
  
  
 
5) True or False.  The Japanese bonsai tree species is not actually a tree, but is instead a fern.

False. Trick question as bonsai is not a species, but is instead the name of the Japanese art form of making planter trees look miniature. Various types of trees or shrubs may be used in bonsai.
 
 
 
6) From 1958 to 2014 there were 439 fatalities worldwide from shark attacks in the wild.  In that same span how many fatalities were there from killer whale attacks in the wild?

a) 0
b) 14
c) 55
d) 283

a) 0. Though orcas have tried to swamp boats, capsize ice flows with people on them, and have also bitten people, there have been no recorded fatalities in the wild. There have been 4 fatalities from attacks by captive killer whales, however.
 
 
 
7) Snakes that have "king" in their name, such as the kingsnake or the king cobra, share this trait.

It means the snake preys on other snakes.
 
 
 
8) True or False. The United States and the Soviet Union had an informal agreement to assist each other against alien invasion.
 

True. Or close enough. During the 1985 Geneva Summit, Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev took a break from negotiations to take a walk. Only their private interpreters were present and for years, the details of what they talked about were kept secret from the public. But during a 2009 interview, Gorbachev revealed that Reagan had asked, if the United States was attacked by someone from outer space, would the Societ Union help? After Gorbachev replied, "No doubt about it," Reagan affirmed the US would help the Soviets in such a situation too.
 
 
 
9) The sword-billed variety of this well-known type of bird is the only bird to have a beak longer than its body.

Hummingbird.  The sword-billed hummingbird lives in the Andes, and evolved in conjunction with a flower with nectar at the bottom of a long corolla tube. The bill can be over 10cm long. And you know what they say about birds with long bills? That's right... long tongues too. Their tongues can span the length of the tube-shaped bill.   https://download.ams.birds.cornell.edu/api/v1/asset/51045921/large
 
 
 
10) Graffiti artist David Choe was hired to paint murals in a company's first headquarters. For payment he was offered a choice between cash "in the thousands of dollars", or company stock. He chose stock, and that stock is now worth $200 million.  What company?

Facebook. The $200 million was based on the 2012 stock price.





 
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Borden

Footballguy
@GregR I thought that blood was blue until it was exposed to air. So is the blood in the eye being exposed to air (but obviously not leaking out)? Or is the blue blood thing just a myth?

 

GregR

Footballguy
@GregR I thought that blood was blue until it was exposed to air. So is the blood in the eye being exposed to air (but obviously not leaking out)? Or is the blue blood thing just a myth?
I think that's probably a myth.  Guessing people might see veins appearing blue through their skin and so think it means their blood is blue?

Here:

Myth #1: Is my blood blue?

From your skin’s surface, the veins in your body may appear deep blue or even purple. But that’s not an indication of the color of the blood inside your veins. Your blood is actually red. The blue hue of your veins has more to do with how your eyes absorb and see color than the color of the blood itself.

The level of oxygen in your blood cells determines the brightness of the red color. Blood pumped directly from the heart is oxygen rich and bright red. As the blood circulates the body and oxygen is removed by tissue, the blood grows darker. For that reason, blood returning to the heart and lungs often has a dark red appearance. But it’s never blue.


Blood is always red, actually. Veins look blue because light has to penetrate the skin to illuminate them, blue and red light (being of different wavelengths) penetrate with different degrees of success. What makes it back to your eye is the blue light.

 

GregR

Footballguy
I don't know.  Havent lifted weights in about about 10 years.  Son challenged me to a push up contest.  He conceeded after I pumped out 40 in a minute.  I weigh 290.
Push ups are not the cause of red eyes.  Unless you're doing them really really wrong... ;)

 

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