Posts Tagged ‘country’

Did You Know? – Another Round Of Fabulous Facts!

Posted: August 12, 2014 in Factoids, Unusual
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Another random bunch of facts for you today.

I think I prefer the final one the best because of its irony and the fact that it illustrates that people can sometimes delude and convince themselves into believing they saw what the really didn’t.

Anyway, here they are, so choose your own favorite, but whatever you do….

Enjoy.

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facts 02

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The US Constitution contains many

spelling and grammatical errors.

american-constitution

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The term ‘Lunatic’ is derived from the Latin word ‘luna’ meaning ‘moon’.

It originated from the belief that insanity is caused by changes in the moon.

Lunatic

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Thirty-three light years away there is an

exoplanet completely covered in burning ice.

burning ice

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James Stephen “Steve” Fossett was an American businessman,

and a record-setting aviator, sailor, and adventurer

who, in 2002, became the first person to

fly solo nonstop around the world in a balloon.

Steve Fossett

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At its peak the Roman Empire

stretched for 2.51 million square miles,

but it was only the 19th largest empire in history.

Roman_Empire_Map

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Throughout the 1800s people were buried alive so often

that coffins included mechanisms to allow those people

to ring a bell in the graveyard.

people were buried alive so often that coffins included mechanisms to allow those people to ring a bell in the graveyard

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Homer and Langley Collyer, two compulsive hoarders,

were found buried beneath a collapsed pile of

the things they had stored in their house over the years.

Homer and Langley Collyer house

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The last time a cavalry charge was used on the battlefield

was during WWII when a Mongolian cavalry division

charged a German infantry division.

Two thousand Mongolians were killed

and not a single German died.

Mongolian cavalry division

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In ancient Egypt some servants were covered in honey

to attract flies away from the pharaoh.

(I suppose it’s better than the alternative!)

servants were covered in honey to attract flies away from the pharaoh

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June 28, 2014 was the 100 year anniversary of the assassination

of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria,

heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne,

who was killed in Sarajevo along with his wife Duchess Sophie

by Bosnian Serb Gavrilo Princip.

This was the incident that led to the Great War,

also now known as World War I.

assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria

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Although several notable people died on the toilet,

one of the most famous is probably Elvis Presley.

Doctors attributed his death to too many prescription drugs.

elvis-presley-s-toilet

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When pizza deliveryman Brian Wells

was stopped by the police in the middle of a bank robbery

no one believed his story that he had been forced to do it

by some people he had delivered pizza to.

He kept on pleading with the officers saying that

the necklace he was wearing was a bomb.

Unfortunately for him though,

the bomb squad didn’t show up early enough.

pizza deliveryman Brian Wells

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Almost one-seventh (840) of all the languages on Earth

are spoken in one country…

Papua New Guinea.

map_of_papua-new-guinea

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When it was first built,

Disney’s Tomorrowland

was supposed to represent

the far off future year of 1986.

Tomorrowland_Disneyland

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A famous proponent of healthy eating and organic farming,

Jerome Irving Rodale died of a heart attack

while being interviewed on the Dick Cavett Show in 1971.

Some of his last words were that [he] would

“live to 100, unless [he was] run down by a a sugar-crazy taxi driver”.

Appearing fast asleep during the show, Dick Cavett joked

“Are we boring you, Mr. Rodale?”

before discovering that his 72-year-old guest had indeed died.

Many people are convinced they saw this on TV

but the incident was never aired.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Welcome to another Quiz Day on the fasab blog.

I hope you are ready to try these challenging questions.

As usual if you get stuck you can find the answers waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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Quiz3

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Q  1:  We’ve all eaten M&Ms, but what do the two Ms stand for?

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Q  2: On the back of a $1 bill, what is in the center?

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Q  3: Who wrote ‘High Adventure’, about a spectacular mountain climb?

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Q  4: During World War II American factories produced approximately how many military aircraft?

           a)  200,000          b)  300,000          c)  400,000          d)  500,000

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Q  5: Captain Cook discovered which island in the pacific in 1777?

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Q  6: Who was assassinated at Memphis, Tennessee, in 1968?

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Q  7: What is the name of Elvis Presley’s home and where is it located? (A point for each correct answer.)

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Q  8: What name is given to a flat stretch of land within a river valley, which is the remnant of an earlier flood plain, when the river was at a higher level?

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Q  9: What is the name of the new TV series, starring John Malkovich, about the pirate Blackbeard?

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Q  10: What war ended with the fall of Saigon and in what year did it end? (A point for each correct answer.)

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Q  11: Which country lies to the north of Austria and the south of Poland?

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Q  12: Plus or minus 30 minutes, what was the Concorde’s record flight time from New York to London?

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Q  13: Who was responsible for the Green Car Crash in 1963?

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Q  14: What team thrashed Brazil by 7 goals to 1 in this year’s soccer World Cup semi-finals?

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Q  15: Who wrote about a fictional, diminutive, humanoid race called ‘Hobbits’ who inhabit the lands of Middle-earth?

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Q  16: The normal wing beat frequency of the annoying mosquito is what?

    a)  6 beats per sec.    b) 60 beats per sec.    c) 600 beats per sec.    d) 6,000 beats per sec.

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Q  17: ‘Cebuano’, ‘Fula’, ‘Gujarati’ and ‘Kannada’ are all examples of what?

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Q  18: What Oscar winning movie is based on the trials and tribulations of Harold Abraham and Eric Liddell?

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Q  19: Now a chance for some mega points. There are 13 official countries in the world which have a capital city beginning and ending with the same letter. (I don’t expect anyone to get them all, but have a point for each one you can name correctly. (names in the English language)).

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Q  20: Who said you could “call me Al” in 1986?

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ANSWERS

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Q  1:  We’ve all eaten M&Ms, but what do the two Ms stand for?

A  1:  The two Ms in M&Ms stand for Mars & Murrie’s, named after Forrest Mars and Bruce Murrie who started producing M&M’s exclusively for the military during WWII.

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Q  2: On the back of a $1 bill, what is in the center?

A  2: ONE.

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Q  3: Who wrote ‘High Adventure’, about a spectacular mountain climb?

A  3: Sir Edmund Hilary, the first man to climb Mount Everest.

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Q  4: During World War II American factories produced approximately how many military aircraft?

           a)  200,000          b)  300,000          c)  400,000          d)  500,000

A  4: The correct answer is b), American factories produced approximately 300,000 military aircraft during WWII.

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Q  5: Captain Cook discovered which island in the pacific in 1777?

A  5: Christmas Island.

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Q  6: Who was assassinated at Memphis, Tennessee, in 1968?

A  6: Martin Luther King jnr.

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Q  7: What is the name of Elvis Presley’s home and where is it located? (A point for each correct answer.)

A  7: The name of Elvis Presley’s home is Graceland and it is located in Memphis, Tennessee (3764 Elvis Presley Boulevard to be precise.)

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Q  8: What name is given to a flat stretch of land within a river valley, which is the remnant of an earlier flood plain, when the river was at a higher level?

A  8: It is called a River Terrace.

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Q  9: What is the name of the new TV series, starring John Malkovich, about the pirate Blackbeard?

A  9: Crossbones.

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Q  10: What war ended with the fall of Saigon and in what year did it end? (A point for each correct answer.)

A  10: The Vietnam War ended with the fall of Saigon. on 30 April 1975.

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Q  11: 4. Which country lies to the north of Austria and the south of Poland?

A  11: The Czech Republic.

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Q  12: Plus or minus 30 minutes, what was the Concorde’s record flight time from New York to London?

A  12: 2 hours. 55 minutes. 15 seconds.

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Q  13: Who was responsible for the Green Car Crash in 1963?

A  13: The Green Car Crash is Andy Warhol’s most famous painting. It was sold at auction on May 16, 2007 for $71.7m (£42.3m).

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Q  14: What team thrashed Brazil by 7 goals to 1 in this year’s soccer World Cup semi-finals?

A  14: Germany, who went on to win the competition.

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Q  15: Who wrote about a fictional, diminutive, humanoid race called ‘Hobbits’ who inhabit the lands of Middle-earth?

A  15: J. R. R. Tolkien.

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Q  16: The normal wing beat frequency of the annoying mosquito is what?

    a)  6 beats per sec.    b) 60 beats per sec.    c) 600 beats per sec.    d) 6,000 beats per sec.

A  16: The correct answer is c) 600 beats per sec.

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Q  17: ‘Cebuano’, ‘Fula’, ‘Gujarati’ and ‘Kannada’ are all examples of what?

A  17: They are all examples of languages. Cebuano is from the Philippines; Fula from Cameroon and Nigeria;  Gujarati from India and Pakistan; and Kannada from India.

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Q  18: What Oscar winning movie is based on the trials and tribulations of Harold Abraham and Eric Liddell?

A  18: ‘Chariots of Fire’ which tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs to overcome prejudice.

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Q  19: Now a chance for some mega points. There are 13 official countries in the world which have a capital city beginning and ending with the same letter. (I don’t expect anyone to get them all, but have a point for each one you can name correctly. (names in the English language)).

A  19: They are: Abuja (Nigeria), Accra (Ghana), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Andorra la Vella (Andorra), Ankara (Turkey), Apia (Samoa), Asmara (Eritrea), Astana (Kazakstan), Oslo (Norway), St. George’s (Grenada), St. John’s (Antigua and Barbuda), Tashkent (Uzbekistan) and Warsaw (Poland).

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Q  20: Who said you could “call me Al” in 1986?

A  20: Paul Simon.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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No, sorry, no points if you said it was Quiz Day, even though you are right.

Twenty more challenging questions for you to ponder over.

So get a pot of coffee going and try you hand at these.

As usual, if you get stuck, you can find the answers waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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Quiz 07

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Q.  1:  You’ve heard of tasers, you’ve probably seen videos of them on TV or YouTube, but what do the letters ‘T-A-S-E-R’ stand for?

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Q.  2:  Out of the 40,000 men who served on U-boats during World War II, approximately how many returned safely?

            a) 100%            b) 75%            c) 50%            d) 25%            e) 15%

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Q.  3:  When did the Cold War end?

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Q.  4:  On which side of a venetian blind is the cord that adjusts the opening between the slats?

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Q.  5:  To which country do the Galapagos Islands belong?

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Q.  6:  What member of Britain’s Royal Family was assassinated whilst sailing from Mullaghmore in Ireland in 1979?

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Q.  7:  Harry Potter is a very famous and successful series of seven fantasy novels, who wrote them?

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Q.  8:  Does a merry-go-round turn clockwise or counter-clockwise?

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Q.  9:  Which popular dried fruit is named after a port city in Greece?

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Q. 10:  Currently the highest priced painting in the world with a sales price equivalent to something in the region of $300 million, ‘The Card Players’ was painted by whom?

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Q. 11:  The old name for this island country stems from the Latin word for beautiful, what is it called today?

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Q. 12:  Complete the title of each of the following Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales. (And yes, you get a point for each correct answer.)

           a) The Red …..    b) The Emperor’s …  …….    C) The Steadfast …  …….

           d) The Princess And …  …    and,  e) The Wild …..

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Q. 13:  Some wills are strange, which very famous man left his wife his second best bed?

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Q. 14:  It’s the name of a dessert, the largest city in North Carolina, USA, and the wife of King George III – what is it?

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Q. 15:  Which of the following was NOT the name of a Chinese dynasty?

            a) Qing     b) Xin     c) Ming     d) Jin      e) Ching     or, e)  Tang

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Q. 16:  What huge sporting tournament begins June 14th this year?

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Q. 17:  Who was the first US President to have electricity in the White House?

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Q. 18:  What are very small clouds that look like they have been broken off of bigger clouds called?

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Q. 19:  He was the mythical founder of the city of Rome and the slayer of his twin brother. His name was also used for a war-like race of aliens in the series Star Trek. What was his name? (And a bonus point on offer if you can also correctly name his twin brother.)

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Q. 20:  It was the end of Napoleon’s career and the start of ABBA’s, what was it?

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ANSWERS

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Q.  1:  You’ve heard of tasers, you’ve probably seen videos of them on TV or YouTube, but what do the letters ‘T-A-S-E-R’ stand for?

A.  1:  ‘Taser’ – Stands for ‘Thomas A Swift Electric Rifle’.

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Q.  2:  Out of the 40,000 men who served on U-boats during World War II, approximately how many returned safely?

            a) 100%            b) 75%            c) 50%            d) 25%            e) 15%

A.  2:  The correct answer is d) 25%. Out of the 40,000 men who served on U-boats during WWII, only approximately 10,000 returned safely.

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Q.  3:  When did the Cold War end?

A.  3:  This year (2014) is the 25th anniversary of the end of the Cold War, so take a point if you said ‘1989’.

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Q.  4:  On which side of a venetian blind is the cord that adjusts the opening between the slats?

A.  4:  It’s on the left.  

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Q.  5:  To which country do the Galapagos Islands belong?

A.  5:  Ecuador.

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Q.  6:  What member of Britain’s Royal Family was assassinated whilst sailing from Mullaghmore in Ireland in 1979?

A.  6:  Earl Mountbatten.

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Q.  7:  Harry Potter is a very famous and successful series of seven fantasy novels, who wrote them?

A.  7:  The Harry Potter series was written by the British author J. K. Rowling.

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Q.  8:  Does a merry-go-round turn clockwise or counter-clockwise?

A.  8:  Counter-clockwise.

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Q.  9:  Which popular dried fruit is named after a port city in Greece?

A.  9:  Corinthians (after the port city Corinth).

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Q. 10:  Currently the highest priced painting in the world with a sales price equivalent to something in the region of $300 million, ‘The Card Players’ was painted by whom?

A. 10:  Paul Cézanne.

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Q. 11:  The old name for this island country stems from the Latin word for beautiful, what is it called today?

A. 11:  The old name was ‘Formosa’, but the island nation is now known as Taiwan or officially the Republic of China.

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Q. 12:  Complete the title of each of the following Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales. (And yes, you get a point for each correct answer.)

           a) The Red …..    b) The Emperor’s …  …….    C) The Steadfast …  …….

           d) The Princess And …  …    and,  e) The Wild …..

A. 12:  The five answers are     a) The Red SHOES    b) The Emperor’s NEW CLOTHES

           c) The Steadfast TIN SOLDIER   d) The Princess And THE PEA    e) The Wild SWANS

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Q. 13:  Some wills are strange, which very famous man left his wife his second best bed?

A. 13:  There was a clue in the question, the answer is Will Shakespeare.

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Q. 14:  It’s the name of a dessert, the largest city in North Carolina, USA, and the wife of King George III – what is it?

A. 14:  Charlotte.

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Q. 15:  Which of the following was NOT the name of a Chinese dynasty?

            a) Qing     b) Xin     c) Ming     d) Jin      e) Ching     or, e)  Tang

A. 15:  They are all the names of Chinese dynasties except for e) Ching which I just made up! Take a point if you answered e).

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Q. 16:  What huge sporting tournament begins June 14th this year?

A. 16:  The football (soccer) World Cup.

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Q. 17:  Who was the first US President to have electricity in the White House?

A. 17:  Benjamin Harrison was the first president to have electricity in the White House. However, he was so scared of getting electrocuted that he would never touch the light switches himself.

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Q. 18:  What are very small clouds that look like they have been broken off of bigger clouds called?

A. 18:  Very small clouds that look like they have been broken off of bigger clouds are called ‘scuds’.

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Q. 19:  He was the mythical founder of the city of Rome and the slayer of his twin brother. His name was also used for a war-like race of aliens in the series Star Trek. What was his name? (And a bonus point on offer if you can also correctly name his twin brother.)

A. 19:  His name was ‘Romulus’. His twin brother’s name was ‘Remus’.

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Q. 20:  It was the end of Napoleon’s career and the start of ABBA’s, what was it?

A. 20:  Waterloo.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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This is a bit Donald Rumsfeld, but it is certainly true that the more of these facts I see, the more I know I don’t know, except I would know if I could remember them all.

But enough of that.

Let’s get on with today’s lot.

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did you know3

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The official state vegetable of Oklahoma

is the watermelon.

watermelon, official state vegetable of Oklahoma

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Horses cannot breathe through their mouths.

Horse's mouth

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The word ‘Hazard’ comes from the Arabic ‘al zahr’ which means ‘the dice’.

The term came to be associated with dice during the Crusades

and eventually took on a negative connotation because

games of dice were associated with gambling.

Hazard sign

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If you eat a teaspoon of sugar after eating something spicy,

it will completely neutralize the heat.

teaspoon of sugar

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When the oldest person on Earth was born,

there was a completely different set of people on the planet.

oldest person on Earth

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The last veteran of the American Civil War died in 1956,

long enough to see the atomic bomb dropped in Japan.

Albert_Woolson_(ca._1953)

Albert Henry Woolson, last surviving Civil War veteran on either side whose status is undisputed.

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A “butt load” is an actual unit of measurement,

equivalent to 126 gallons.

butt load - giant_ass_in_seat

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The word ‘posh’, which denotes luxurious rooms or accommodations,

originated when ticket agents in England

marked the tickets of travelers going by ship to the Orient.

Since there was no air conditioning in those days,

it was always better to have a cabin on the shady side of the ship

as it passed through the Mediterranean and Suez area.

Since the sun is in the south, those with money paid extra

to get cabins on the left, or port, traveling to the Asia,

and on the right, or starboard, when returning to Europe.

Hence their tickets were marked with the initials for

Port Outbound Starboard Homebound, or POSH.

POSH logo black_full

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Nepal is the only country without a rectangular flag,

it looks like two pennants glued one on top of the other.

Nepal-Flag

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Dr Seuss wrote “Green Eggs And Ham”

to win a bet against his publisher

who thought that Seuss could not complete

a book using only 50 words.

Green Eggs And Ham Dr Seuss

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Crocodiles are more closely related to birds than to lizards.

american-crocodile

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Not only was James Garfield ambidextrous,

he could write Latin with one hand

and Greek with the other at the same time.

James Garfield ambidextrous

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Shakespeare and Pocahontas

were alive at the same time.

Shakespeare and Pocahontas

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Kiribati is the first country in the world

that will be entirely lost due to rising sea levels.

They are already planning the complete and

permanent evacuation of the population.

Kiribati

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Duddley Do Right’s Horses name was “Horse.”

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Welcome to the start of another week and to another quiz.

Quite a tough selection this time, I think, but if you enjoy a challenge give them a go.

No point if they were all too easy :)

As always if you get stuck you can find the answers waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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quiz7

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Q.  1:  Which is farther south, New York City or Rome, Italy?

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Q.  2:  What is the ball on top of a flagpole called?

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Q.  3:  Which are there more of in the United States of America, public libraries or McDonald’s fast food outlets?

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Q.  4:  Apart from wanting to be US President what did all three major 1996 Presidential candidates, Clinton, Dole and Perot, have in common.

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Q.  5:  Where was chocolate milk was invented?

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Q.  6:  If you’re in Detroit and you walk south, what is the first country you’ll enter?

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Q.  7:  Where did the ever popular trousers called ‘Jeans’ get their name?

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Q.  8:  And what was the origin of ‘Denim’ the material that jeans are made from?

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Q.  9:  What is the most filmed story of all time? (Bonus points if you can name second and third aswell.)

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Q. 10:  When ocean tides are at their highest, they are called ‘spring tides’. What are they called when they are at their lowest?

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Q. 11:  Which of these kills the most humans on average every year?

            a) crocodiles          b) hippopotamus            c) mosquitos            d) tigers

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Q. 12:  What do you call a scholar who studies the works of the Marquis de Sade?

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Q. 13:  What are ‘second unit’ movie shots?

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Q. 14:  Which well known American writer was born on a day in 1835 when Haley’s Comet came into view and died on a day in 1910 when Haley’s Comet came into view again? (Will accept either his real name or pen name, a bonus point if you know both.)

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Q. 15:  Which of these is the oldest?

            a) The Aztec Empire          b) The Inca Empire          c) Cambridge University

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Q. 16:  What is the only state of the USA whose name is just one syllable? (Hint: the answer is not California.)

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Q. 17:  You’ve seen it many times and on lots of things, but what does the name ‘NABISCO’ mean?

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Q. 18:  Which side of a woman’s blouse are the buttons on?

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Q. 19:  He was a Spanish hero who, before he was 20, led a Spanish force against the Moors and drove them out of Spain. He is celebrated in poem and romance. Who was he?

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Q. 20:  In 1972 who didn’t want Ruby to take her love to town?

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ANSWERS

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Q.  1:  Which is farther south, New York City or Rome, Italy?

A.  1:  New York City is further south than Rome, Italy.

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Q.  2:  What is the ball on top of a flagpole called?

A.  2:  The ball on top of a flagpole is called the truck.

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Q.  3:  Which are there more of in the United States of America, public libraries or McDonald’s fast food outlets?

A.  3:  There are more public libraries than McDonald’s in the U.S.

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Q.  4:  Apart from wanting to be US President what did all three major 1996 Presidential candidates, Clinton, Dole and Perot, have in common.

A.  4:  All three major 1996 Presidential candidates, Clinton, Dole and Perot, are left-handed.

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Q.  5:  Where was chocolate milk was invented?

A.  5:  Chocolate milk was invented in Ireland.

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Q.  6:  If you’re in Detroit and you walk south, what is the first country you’ll enter?

A.  6:  Understandable if you said Mexico, but If you’re in Detroit and you walk south, the first country you’ll enter will be Canada.

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Q.  7:  Where did the ever popular trousers called ‘Jeans’ get their name?

A.  7:  ‘Jeans’ were named after their place of origin, Genoa, Italy.

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Q.  8:  And what was the origin of ‘Denim’ the material that jeans are made from?

A.  8:  ‘Denim’ also takes its name from its place of origin, Nimes, in France. It was originally called ‘serge de Nimes’ or ‘fabric from Nimes’. The ‘serge’ soon disappeared and left us with ‘de Nimes’ or ‘denim’.

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Q.  9:  What is the most filmed story of all time? (Bonus points if you can name second and third aswell.)

A.  9:  Dracula is the most filmed story of all time, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is second and Oliver Twist is third.

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Q. 10:  When ocean tides are at their highest, they are called ‘spring tides’. What are they called when they are at their lowest?

A. 10:  When ocean tides are at their lowest, they are call ‘neep tides’.

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Q. 11:  Which of these kills the most humans on average every year?

            a) crocodiles          b) hippopotamus            c) mosquitos            d) tigers

A. 11:  The correct answer is c) Mosquitos. They kill as many as 1,000,000 people per year from Malaria. Although it appears quite docile, the Hippopotamus is considered the most dangerous animal in Africa, killing 3,000 people per year. Crocodiles kill between 1500 and 2500 people per year. And Tigers are estimated to kill around 100 humans per year.

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Q. 12:  What do you call a scholar who studies the works of the Marquis de Sade?

A. 12:  A scholar who studies the works of the Marquis de Sade is called a ‘Sadian’, not a ‘Sadist’.

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Q. 13:  What are ‘second unit’ movie shots?

A. 13:  ‘Second unit’ movie shots do not require the presence of actors.

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Q. 14:  Which well known American writer was born on a day in 1835 when Haley’s Comet came into view and died on a day in 1910 when Haley’s Comet came into view again? (Will accept either his real name or pen name, a bonus point if you know both.)

A. 14:  Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain was born on a day in 1835 when Haley’s Comet came into view and died on a day in 1910 when Haley’s Comet came into view again.

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Q. 15:  Which of these is the oldest?

            a) The Aztec Empire          b) The Inca Empire          c) Cambridge University

A. 15:  The correct answer is c) Cambridge University in England is older than both the Aztec and Inca empires.

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Q. 16:  What is the only state of the USA whose name is just one syllable? (Hint: the answer is not California.)

A. 16:  Maine is the only state whose name is just one syllable.

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Q. 17:  You’ve seen it many times and on lots of things, but what does the name ‘NABISCO’ mean?

A. 17:  ‘NABISCO’ simply means NAtional BIScuit COmpany.

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Q. 18:  Which side of a woman’s blouse are the buttons on?

A. 18:  The left.

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Q. 19:  He was a Spanish hero who, before he was 20, led a Spanish force against the Moors and drove them out of Spain. He is celebrated in poem and romance. Who was he?

A. 19:  El Cid.

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Q. 20:  In 1972 who didn’t want Ruby to take her love to town?

A. 20:  Kenny Rogers. Here it is….

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Talk about random. Today’s selection certainly lives up to that description.

Hope you can find at least a few facts in this lot that you like.

Enjoy.

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did you know2

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The Swiss flag is square.

Swiss Flag

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All of the cobble stones that used to line the streets in New York

were originally weighting stones

put in the hulls of Belgian ships to keep an even keel.

Manhattan, New York cobblestone street

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There are only thirteen blimps in the world.

Nine of the thirteen blimps are in the United States.

The existing biggest blimp is the Fuji Film blimp.

Fuji Film blimp

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If you come from Manchester,

you are a Mancunian.

Mancunian

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The most remote inhabited place on Earth,  Tristan de Cunha,

a small archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean

thousands of miles from both South Africa and South America,

has a population of only  271 people and mail only arrives a few times per year.

Tristan de Cunha from Sea

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At the last official census,

the hottest constantly inhabited region in the world

is Dallol in Ethiopia.

Dallol in Ethiopia

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The German Kaiser Wilhelm II had a withered arm

and often hid the fact by posing with his hand

resting on a sword, or by holding gloves.

German Kaiser Wilhelm II

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A kind of tortoise in the Galapagos Islands

has an upturned shell at its neck

so it can reach its head up to eat cactus branches.

tortoise in the Galapagos Islands

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The 1957 Milwaukee Braves were the first baseball team

to win the World Series after being relocated.

1957 Milwaukee Braves

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The slogan on New Hampshire license plates is ‘Live Free or Die’.

Ironically these license plates are manufactured

by prisoners in the state prison in Concord.

New Hampshire license plates

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The common goldfish is the only animal that can

see both infra-red and ultra-violet light.

The common goldfish

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If you stretch a standard Slinky out flat

it measures 87 feet long.

Slinky

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Camel’s milk does not curdle.

camel milk

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A person from the country of Nauru is called a Nauruan;

this is the only palindromic nationality.

Nauruan

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Hang On Sloopy

is the official rock song of Ohio.

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Many Happy Returns Webby!

Posted: May 10, 2014 in bankers, Business, Computers, Current Events
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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World-Wide-Web

The World Wide Web, created by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, turned 25 years old this year, 2014.

There has never been anything like it before, certainly not as regards the impact it has made on society and the way we live our lives. Many of those changes are good, many are not so good and a few are downright annoying.

Here’s my take on some of them.

To concentrate on the good parts first, the one thing the www has done, for those who can use it effectively, is to give access to information that was previously only available to the elite few who managed to claw their way into the lofty heights of academia, or who worked in places where information was readily available. Now the same information is accessible at the touch of a button to anyone and everyone with a smart phone, tablet or computer.

Another benefit, in my view anyway, is that is has sent a massive wake-up call to telephone providers world wide, many of whom were fast asleep, content to rake in healthy profits from antiquated systems. No longer do we have to settle for slow and temperamental data transfer lines. Nowadays, particularly in the last few years, people are demanding systems that can cope with download streams in the gigabyte range. If you are old enough to remember the first modems you will know you wasted too much of your life trying to download at 12Kb/sec., sometimes less.

Freedom is also a welcome by-product of the World Wide Web.

The freedom to work in any country in the world, from virtually any country in the world is one big plus – it is for me anyhow. Another one I particularly like is the freedom to watch TV programs that I like, when I like, no longer tied to the schedules of some brainless bean-counter working for a broadcasting company. And the freedom to have your say on things as and when the mood takes you – they call that blogging don’t you know! – is also a great advantage to the ordinary person.

www words

As is the freedom to disseminate information across the globe instantly, as Mr Snowden ably demonstrated, although I would hazard a guess that the powers that be would not agree with me on that one.

Indeed, this is the one aspect of the www that really bothers big brother.

China for example is one country where access is controlled by the state. Coincidentally this year also marks the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, you’ll find articles about that if you do a search, but probably not in China. They get away with it because they are not a democracy and do not pretend to be one.

In other countries, like the good old Land Of The (Not So) Free (Anymore)), the powers still like to con their people into believing that they are living in a democratic nation and that the people have the power to vote for this or that. But think for a moment, when was the last time you got to vote on whether to start a war, or whether to give $billions of your money to the greedy banksters to pay themselves huge bonuses and gamble away the rest?

It is because they need to keep the pretence of democracy going, that they do not yet have the confidence to start overtly censoring the internet. But they do all they can to snoop on what people are reading, or writing, or looking at.

This is where the freedom the www and associated technology provides can also be a negative, when it is used by governments to surveil us and record every piece of data they can. If they were doing this selectively and targeting terrorists and criminals no one would be too worried. But they are doing it to all of us, guilty and innocent alike.

big brother is watching

They are also doing everything they can think of to impose taxes on internet commerce – of course they have to coz they’re stoney broke.

The www has revolutionized business practices and created all sorts of new commerce opportunities, Amazon perhaps being the best example of a company that has gone from nothing to a multi-billion dollar business in just a few years.

Communication and social interaction are also areas where the www has liberated the ordinary person – first with email and more recently with social media. In the near future expect to see social media expanding to become much more than individual platforms such as Facebook or Twitter. We are already seeing many new applications that are allowing people to communicate more widely, more easily and more often.

social media

Another negative is that the World Wide Web has unwittingly facilitated the proliferation of pornography and violence, and is teaching a generation of morons all the wrong things. Things that will ensure they become a burden on society, not an asset.

And it has also opened a whole new environment in which criminals can operate. Millions of dollars are being stolen every day through scams, confidence tricks and outright theft.

You could say (and I frequently do) that people dumb enough to fall for these scams deserve all they get, or all they lose, is perhaps a better way of putting it. You know, the idiots who believe they really have won a lottery they didn’t buy a ticket for, or who think that Dr Umbungo Watanga from Nigeria is being truthful when he tells them that someone they never heard of has left them $25 million and all they need to do is send all their personal details and a few thousand dollars to unlock the fortune that awaits them. There really is one born every minute it seems!

All that said, and twenty-five years on, the www is still in its infancy. We have come a long way in the past 25 years, but we have really only scratched the surface as regards what the web has the potential to do to further improve our daily lives.

Where the vision to develop the www will come from in anyone’s guess. The only thing we know for sure is that the initiative won’t come from governments or their bureaucratic servants, simply because the people we elect to those positions do not have the required intelligence.

So its up to you. If you have any great ideas you want to share, send me an email.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the man who created the World Wide Web.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Hi, and welcome to another quiz for Monday.

A random mixture of general knowledge, history, geography, politics, sport, movies, etc., all designed to get you thinking.

As usual, if you get stuck, the answers can be found waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay down below, but please NO cheating!

Enjoy and good luck.

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quiz 8

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Q.  1:  Name the only boxer to knock out Mohammed Ali?

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Q.  2:  In what Clint Eastwood movie did Gene Hackman appear as the President of the United States?

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Q.  3:  When Steve Jobs set up the Apple computer company in 1976 who was his partner?

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Q.  4:  What phrase was used to describe the German empire under Hitler?

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Q.  5:  Which Shakespearean character, haunted by the ghost of his murdered father, shares his name with a small settlement of people?

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Q.  6:  Which group was made up of a cowboy, an Indian, a policeman, a biker, a GI and a builder?

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Q.  7:  Which war drama, first seen on British Television in October 1972, depicted life in a German castle used for prisoners of war?

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Q.  8:  Who murdered the well known singer Marvin Gay?

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Q.  9:  What is the Spanish word for ‘Conqueror’?

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Q. 10:  The term “Expletive Deleted” came into fashion as a result of the publication of the transcript of what?

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Q. 11:  Which notorious gang were involved in the famous gunfight against the Earp brothers and Doc Holliday at the O.K Corral?

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Q. 12:  How did David kill Goliath?

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Q. 13:  Which island volcano is west of Java, unless in the movie where it is east of Java, and erupted in 1883 causing 36,000 deaths?

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Q. 14:  Who published ‘Centuries’ in 1555, a book of rhyming prophesies going up to the year 3797?

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Q. 15:  The Clayton Bulwer Treaty signed in 1850 concerned the construction of what?

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Q. 16:  In which year was the first Afro-American elected to the US Congress?

            a) 1870,           b) 1906,           c) 1928           d) 1960

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Q. 17:  Who is the only US president to have never been elected?

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Q. 18:  Which company owned most of what is now called Canada in the early colonial days?

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Q. 19:  Which country has the world’s oldest flag?

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Q. 20:  Which famous actor sang ‘We Are Ready’ at the end of the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games?

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ANSWERS

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Q.  1:  Name the only boxer to knock out Mohammed Ali?

A.  1:  Larry Holmes, in 1980.

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Q.  2:  In what Clint Eastwood movie did Gene Hackman appear as the President of the United States?

A.  2:  Absolute Power.

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Q.  3:  When Steve Jobs set up the Apple computer company in 1976 who was his partner?

A.  3:  Stephen Wozniak.

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Q.  4:  What phrase was used to describe the German empire under Hitler?

A.  4:  It was known as the ‘Third Reich’.

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Q.  5:  Which Shakespearean character, haunted by the ghost of his murdered father, shares his name with a small settlement of people?

A.  5:  Hamlet.

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Q.  6:  Which group was made up of a cowboy, an Indian, a policeman, a biker, a GI and a builder?

A.  6:  Village People.

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Q.  7:  Which war drama, first seen on British Television in October 1972, depicted life in a German castle used for prisoners of war?

A.  7:  Colditz.

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Q.  8:  Who murdered the well known singer Marvin Gay?

A.  8:  His father.

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Q.  9:  What is the Spanish word for ‘Conqueror’?

A.  9:  Conquistador.

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Q. 10:  The term “Expletive Deleted” came into fashion as a result of the publication of the transcript of what?

A. 10:  The Watergate Tapes.

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Q. 11:  Which notorious gang were involved in the famous gunfight against the Earp brothers and Doc Holliday at the O.K Corral?

A. 11:  The Clantons.

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Q. 12:  How did David kill Goliath?

A. 12:  With a stone from a sling.

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Q. 13:  Which island volcano is west of Java, unless in the movie where it is east of Java, and erupted in 1883 causing 36,000 deaths?

A. 13:  Krakatoa.

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Q. 14:  Who published ‘Centuries’ in 1555, a book of rhyming prophesies going up to the year 3797?

A. 14:  Nostradamus.

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Q. 15:  The Clayton Bulwer Treaty signed in 1850 concerned the construction of what?

A. 15:  Panama Canal.

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Q. 16:  In which year was the first Afro-American elected to the US Congress?

            a) 1870,           b) 1906,           c) 1928           d) 1960

A. 16:  a) 1870.

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Q. 17:  Who is the only US president to have never been elected?

A. 17:  Gerald Ford.

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Q. 18:  Which company owned most of what is now called Canada in the early colonial days?

A. 18:  The Hudson Bay Company.

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Q. 19:  Which country has the world’s oldest flag?

A. 19:  Denmark. (Maybe we should have a whip round and buy them a new one?)

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Q. 20:  Which famous actor sang ‘We Are Ready’ at the end of the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games?

A. 20:  Jackie Chan.

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“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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A foolish fact filled Tuesday?

I don’t know about that, but it is April Fool’s Day so anything is possible.

Nevertheless I hope there are at least a few things of interest in this lot.

Enjoy.

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did you know3

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Will Smith is now older than Uncle Phil

was at the beginning of “The Fresh Prince.”

will-smith-the-fresh-prince-of-bel-air

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There are more than 1,700 references to gems and

precious stones in the King James translation of the Bible.

precious stones

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Turning a clock’s hands counterclockwise

while setting it is not necessarily harmful.

It is only damaging when the timepiece

contains a chiming mechanism.

turning a clock's hands counterclockwise

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Cleopatra lived closer to the building

of Pizza Hut than the pyramids.

cleopatra

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Dentists have recommended that a toothbrush

be kept at least 6 feet (2 m) away from a toilet

to avoid airborne particles resulting from the flush.

Toothbrush and toilet

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South Africa has 11 official languages

– the most for a single country.

South Africa official languages

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The US has no official language.

(Comprende?)

us_language_melting_pot

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The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929;

“7” was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces.

“UP” indicated the direction of the bubbles.

7_up

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The highest point in Pennsylvania

is lower than the lowest point in Colorado.

colorado

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France was still executing people by guillotine

when Star Wars came out.

guillotine Star Wars

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The earliest recorded case

of a man giving up smoking was on April 5, 1679,

when Johan Katsu, Sheriff of Turku, Finland, wrote in his diary

“I quit smoking tobacco.”

He died one month later.

giving up smoking

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“Goodbye” came from “God bye”

which came from “God be with you.”

god_be_with_you

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Charlie Brown’s father was a barber.

Charlie-Browns-Dad-Was-A-Barber

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Every continent begins and ends in the same letter.

(I bet you never noticed that.)

Continents

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Every continent has a city called Rome.

(I bet you never noticed that either.)

Rome_title_card

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