From North America
by Peary Perry
months ago, I started writing a series of columns called Ponder Points, which
were these little bits of information you might want to try and work into some
conversation. Not that they would necessarily do you any good, but then you just
never know, do you? Anyway, I recently had several people ask me to write something
along these lines for one reason or another. Who knows, perhaps they're planning
some big Memorial Day trivia contest.
Betcha didn't know all of this stuff.
So, if you were buying a Super Bowl ad in the first game in 1967…what would you
have paid? About $85,000 for a full minute…now it's over $1,000,000 for each ½
So did you ever actually count and see for yourself that there
were 28 tiles in a game of dominoes? There are.
Before 1908 the Olympic
Marathon was 26 miles….why did it change? 385 yards were added to the race so
that it would finish in front of King Edward VII's royal box in London. He must
have had some pull.
Where'd we get the term….."Red herring"? From the sport
of fox hunting….anti-hunting activist used to drag herrings across the path of
the dogs to throw them off the scent of the fox…..Is this new? Nope, started back
in the 17th century….folks still up in arms about it aren't they?
CinemaScope? Can you tell me what film was the first to be made in it? "The Robe"
back in 1953.
Come on think about this…what's the most often printed warning
in the history of the printed word? "Close cover before striking" Used on match
book covers…….did you get it?
What industry was the first to adopt the
5-day, 40-hour workweek? The steel industry in 1923.
Tough job, but someone
had to do it…..In 1811 DeWitt Clinton managed to serve as a senator for the state
of New York, Mayor of New York City and the Lt. Governor for the State of New
York. So what you ask? Well, he did all three at the same time.
you knew that heavyweight champion Gene Tunney was a teacher on Shakespeare at
Yale. You knew that.
John Paul Jones, the great American naval hero, was
from Scotland. His real name was just plain old John Paul. Changed it after he
killed another sailor involved in a mutiny. Fled to this country to avoid going
to trial. Won fame during the Revolutionary War…..You remember those famous words
he spoke during this battle……"Sirs, I have not yet begun to fight…"
you want life insurance…don't call Lloyds of London…they don't sell life insurance.
Back in the Middle Ages it was thought that men had one less rib than women…the
story was the result of the story of Adam and Eve in the Bible.
last week, I mentioned something about moths and caterpillars….anyway to keep
you up to date I thought I'd pass along the fact that there isn't any clear cut
evidence that cedar chests or cedar closets actually repels moths…..
rabbits that run wild in Australia….eat millions of dollars worth of agriculture…well,
they are the direct descendants of 6 common bunnies that were turned loose in
the middle 1800's.
The Emperors of China during the Manchu empire (1644-1912)
made slaves wear pigtails so they could be identified easily.
to note that Panama was selected to be the site of the canal rather than Nicaragua
due to the fact that a letter was written to members of Congress using a stamp
showing a belching volcano erupting in Nicaragua. Congress was afraid the volcano
would destroy the canal.
King Louis XII ordered all of the trash removed
from outside of the walls of Paris in 1512. Was he concerned for the health of
the citizens? Nope, he was afraid invaders would be able to climb the garbage
and gain entrance to the city.
Speaking of Kings…King Edward VIII of England
was the King for 11 months (January - December 1936) before he abdicated to marry
Mrs. Simpson. You knew that.
Correction!!!!! A few weeks ago I wrote about
Wild Bill Hickok sleeping with newspapers crumpled up around his bed…said it would
alert him if anyone walked on them. In error I said …."He died in bed"….That's
incorrect…what I meant to say was.."It must have worked since he didn't die in
bed." Rack it up to small keys and large fingers.
So, if you get a card
from a friend in Japan and it has a lot of dragonflies on it…what does that mean?
It would indicate that someone is wishing you good luck.
Fellow by the
name of James Hetherington of England got himself arrested in 1797 for wearing
what? A top hat….seems the powers that be decided that it was unsightly and calculated
to disturb timid people. Times have changed, haven't they?
Have a good
week and a safe weekend….
© Peary Perry
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