Sunday, September 27, 2015

Some Sunday Trivia and Fun Information


Cockroaches release more methane in relation to their body weight than any other creature. The American cockroach can give off up to 35g a year of methane; more than 43 times their average body weight. Cockroaches, along with other insects such as centipedes and beetles, are all major producers of methane. 


From QI:

Q: Why did the Haslemere Home for the Elderly close down? 

A: Because of a series of bizarre endings for its inhabitants... 

In September 1960, a male inhabitant of the Haslemere Home for the Elderly in Great Yarmouth died of a cardiac arrest after fellow resident, 81-year-old Gladys Elton, performed a striptease. 

Five more of the inmates were consequently treated for shock. 

In 1961, there were three more deaths at the Haslemere Home after one of the other patients, 87-year-old Harry Meadows, dressed up as the Grim Reaper and peered through the window brandishing a scythe. 

This second incident closed down the home. 


64-year-old artist Stan Herd transformed a field on the Eagan, Minnesota, Thomson Reuters campus into Van Gogh’s 1889 Painting “Olive Trees.” Herd’s first ‘earthwork’ was created in 1981; this latest project took six months, covers 1.2 acres, and involved weeks of mowing, digging, and planting. It was sponsored by the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and can be seen from the air near the Minneapolis airport.

“It’s an iteration of Van Gogh’s painting writ large in native plants and materials,” Herd told Star Media. “It never looks like I want it to…I bit off a lot here, to try to pull this off. A few of the plants were eaten by deer, and a few were blown over. But that’s the dance of nature,” he added in a separate interview with MPRNews.


Pocahontas (1595-1617) was a native American female, daughter of a powerful chief, who: 

  • was captured by the British in 1613 during hostilities; 
  • converted to Christianity;
  • assisted the settlers in Jamestown, Virginia;
  • saved the life of John Smith;
  • married tobacco planter John Rolfe and had two sons by him;
  • was feted by English society as a “civilised savage”; 
  • died at the beginning of the return trip. 

She has also been the heroine of a couple of Disney films:

The name Pocahontas was, however, nickname, her real name being Matoaka. Pocahontas means “little slut” and it was allegedly given to her because of her nature around men of the tribe. Later writers have disputed this and said that it meant “playful one”, not wanton, and that it was given to her as a child.

Yesterday and Today was the ninth Capitol Records album release by the Beatles and the eleventh overall American release. It was issued only in the United States, Canada and, in the 1970s, Japan. The album is remembered primarily for the controversy surrounding its original cover image, the "butcher cover" featuring the band dressed in white smocks and covered with decapitated baby dolls and pieces of meat. The album's title is based on the song "Yesterday". 

Although not originally intended as an album cover, the Beatles submitted photographs from the session for their promotional materials. According to a 2002 interview published in Mojo magazine, former Capitol president Alan W. Livingston stated that it was Paul McCartney who pushed strongly for the photo's inclusion as the album cover, and that McCartney reportedly described it as "our comment on the [Vietnam] war". Lennon supported McCartney but George Harrison later said that he thought the idea”was gross, and I also thought it was stupid. Sometimes we all did stupid things thinking it was cool and hip when it was na├»ve and dumb; and that was one of them.”

After shipping the albums to distributors, there was immediate adverse criticism, leading to both a recall and an attempt to save the covers by gluing a replacement cover over the offending front. Today the original cover still in its plastic seal can fetch prices of $40,000 or more. They are known as “first state covers”. The covers with the glued replacement are “second state” covers and the next most valuable. Least valuable are the “third state” covers, those where the glued page has been removed. Attempts were so poor that professionals came into the picture and offered to remove the glued-on page professionally:

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