FAREWELL 2014

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Hi folks,

Last day of this year and time for my recollections of 2014’s main events.

As always this is by no means meant to be a complete coverage of all the events that happened during 2014, just a personal blog post about some of the things I remember, and a few that I had forgotten until I started to compile this list.

I hope you enjoy.

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farewell 2014

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The Weather

We will start off with the weather since so many of us seem to be obsessed with it.

  • In the United States there were weather extremes. In California, for example, January was the warmest and driest on record in San Francisco, San Jose and Los Angeles. Only four other Januaries since 1878 had been completely dry in Los Angeles until January 2014. Alaskans experienced their third warmest January in 96 years of record, according to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.

California drought 2014

  • In many parts of the Midwest, on the other hand, 2014 was the coldest winter since the late 1970s or early 1980s. And some southern states of the US became the victims of, firstly, winter storm Kronos which brought a rare blanket of snow as far south as Louisiana, and sleet as far south as Harlingen, Texas and Pensacola, Fla. in late January, and then, just days later, a second winter storm, Leon, hit many of the same areas causing commuter chaos in both Birmingham, Ala. and Atlanta. Leon also spread ice and sleet to the Gulf Coast, including the Florida Panhandle, and the Low country of South Carolina.
  • And worse was on the way. Winter Storm Pax deposited an inch or more of ice in a swath from east-central Georgia into South Carolina, including Augusta, Ga. and Aiken, S.C. Pax was the second heaviest ice storm dating to 1947 in Wilmington, N.C. The accumulation of ice from Pax claimed the famed “Eisenhower tree” at the Augusta National Golf Club. Pax marked the first time since January 1940 that Columbia, S.C. saw snowfall for three straight days.

Winter Storm Pax Washington

  • In complete contrast, the week after Pax, Columbia, S.C. tied its all-time February high of 84 degrees. Augusta, Ga. warmed into the 80s two straight days on Feb. 19-20.
  • Elsewhere in the world, severe Atlantic winter storms took their toll on many parts of England which in 2014 experienced storms and rain not seen since the late 19th century.

Atlantic winter storms Cornwall England

  • In Tokyo, Japan, which usually averages only about 4 inches of snow each year, there were also severe snow storms. In February, snow blanketed the city with 11 inches of snow in less than a week, the heaviest snowfall in 45 years for Tokyo and in 60 years for the city of Kumagaya, northwest of Tokyo. The following weekend, parts of eastern Japan, including parts of the Tokyo metro area, received another round of snow. Some smaller communities were isolated by more than 3 feet of snow.
  • And in the southern hemisphere, Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology reported that more than 10 percent of Queensland and almost 15 percent of New South Wales experienced their record hottest day on Jan. 3. A second heat wave hit parts of southern Australia in mid-January, with temperatures peaking above 41 degrees Celsius (just under 106 degrees Fahrenheit) for four straight days from Jan. 14-17, and reaching a sizzling 43.9 degrees C (111 degrees F) on both Jan. 16 and 17.

australia heat wave 2014

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Business and Technology

  • In the world of business and technology 2014 was the year the Obama administration decided to stop inversion deals, where US companies bought foreign domiciled businesses and moved their profit centers to a much more tax friendly location.
  • In technology buys, one of the largest was Facebook’s purchase of smartphone application WhatsApp for $19 Billion.

14.02.19-Facebook-WhatsApp

  • In other sectors 2014 saw world oil price plunge to around $50 per barrel, good news for consumers, not so good for producers.
  • Under pressure from the fall in oil and gas prices, along with the economic sanctions imposed by the west because of the ongoing situation in the Ukraine, the Russian Ruble went into free fall in December.

APphoto_Russia Economy

  • Also in 2014, in March, the United Nations International Court of Justice ruled that Japan’s Antarctic whaling program was not scientific but commercial and refused to grant further permits.
  • With Quantitative Easing having been ended in the US (for the moment anyway) Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced plans for a new $29 billion fresh stimulus, including subsidies and job-creating programs, to help pull the world’s third-largest economy out of recession.

Quantitative Easing cartoon

  • After their embarrassing foul up last Christmas, this year both FedEx and UPS managed to deliver more than 99 percent of express packages as promised on Dec. 22 and Dec. 23, according to shipment tracker ShipMatrix.
  • South Korean prosecutors arrested a government official who allegedly leaked information about an investigation into former Korean Air Lines executive Cho Hyun-ah, who forced a flight to return over a bag of macadamia nuts. Most of the rest of the world tends to think that the idiot executive should suffer the consequences of her stupidity, not the whistleblower.

korean-air-lines-macademia-nut-scandal Cho Hyun-ah

  • And finally, after their embarrassing hack attack and cringe-worthy capitulation to what amounted to a terrorist cyber attack which was rightly criticized publicly by President Obama, Sony finally decided to release its movie ‘The Interview’.

Rogan Franco The-Interview

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Conflicts, Wars & Terrorism

Unfortunately 2014 saw many conflicts and acts of terrorism.

  • In April an estimated 276 girls and women were abducted and held hostage from a school in Nigeria. The following month, Boko Haram militants killed approximately 300 people in a night attack on Gamboru Ngala and terrorists in Nigeria detonated bombs at Jos, killing 118 people.

Boko Haram militants killed approximately 300 people Gamboru Ngala

  • June saw the emergence of a Sunni militant group called the ‘Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant’ (also known as the ‘ISIS’ or ‘ISIL’). It began an offensive throughout northern Iraq, with the aim of eventually capturing the Iraqi capital city of Baghdad and overthrowing the Shiite government led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. The group has been responsible for beheading of hundreds of people including several from the United States.

Sunni militant group called the ‘Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant’

  • In July and August tensions between Israel and Hamas grew following the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June and the revenge killing of a Palestinian teenager in July. Israel launched ‘Operation Protective Edge’ on the Palestinian Gaza Strip starting with numerous missile strikes, followed by a ground invasion a week later. In 7 weeks of fighting, 2,100 Palestinians and 71 Israelis were killed.
  • Also in July, Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, a Boeing 777, crashed in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 souls on board. There are conflicting claims as to who was responsible, some blaming pro Russian forces for a missile strike and others blaming Ukrainian forces.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17

  • In August and September the United States military began an air campaign in northern Iraq to stem the influx of ISIS militants and the following month the United States and several Arab partners began an airstrike campaign in Syria.

Expect more on these stories during 2015.

Departures

During 2014 we said farewell to many well know people from various walks of life. Here is just my selection of those I remember.

From Literature

Sue Townsend

British novelist and playwright (b. 1946)

SueTownsend

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P. D. James

British writer and life peer

(b. 1920)

P. D. James

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From Movies & TV

Roger Lloyd-Pack

British actor

(b. 1944)

Roger Lloyd-Pack

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Maximilian Schell

Austrian-Swiss actor

(b. 1930)

Maximilian Schell

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Philip Seymour Hoffman

American actor

(b. 1967)

Philip Seymour Hoffman

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Shirley Temple

American actress and diplomat

(b. 1928)

shirley_temple

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Sid Caesar

American actor

(b. 1922)

Sid Caesar

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Harold Ramis

American film director,

writer, and actor

(b. 1944)

Harold Ramis

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Mickey Rooney

American actor

(b. 1920)

Mickey Rooney

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Bob Hoskins

British actor

(b. 1942)

Bob Hoskins

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Efrem Zimbalist, Jr.

American actor

(b. 1918)

Efrem Zimbalist, Jr

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Rik Mayall

British comedian,

writer and actor

(b. 1958)

Rik Mayall

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Casey Kasem

American radio host

and voice actor

(b. 1932)

Casey Kasem

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Eli Wallach

American actor

(b. 1915)

Eli Wallach

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Elaine Stritch

American actress and singer

(b. 1925)

Elaine Stritch

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James Garner

American actor

(b. 1928)

James Garner

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Menahem Golan

Israeli filmmaker

(b. 1929)

Menahem Golan

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Robin Williams

American actor and comedian

(b. 1951)

Robin Williams

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Lauren Bacall

American actress

(b. 1924)

Lauren Bacall

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Richard Attenborough

British actor and film director

(b. 1923)

Richard Attenborough

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Joan Rivers

American comedian, actress,

and television host

(b. 1933)

Joan Rivers

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Richard Kiel

American actor (b. 1939)

Richard Kiel

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Polly Bergen

American actress

(b. 1930)

Polly Bergen

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Ken Takakura

Japanese actor

(b. 1931)

Ken Takakura

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Warren Clarke

English actor

(b. 1947)

Warren-Clarke

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Glen A. Larson

American television producer

and writer

(b. 1937)

Glen A. Larson

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Virna Lisi

Italian actress

(b. 1936)

Virna Lisi

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Billie Whitelaw

English actress

(b. 1932)

Billie Whitelaw

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Luise Rainer

Golden Age actress

“The Great Ziegfeld”

(b. 1910)

Luise Rainer with oscars

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From Music

Pete Seeger

American singer, songwriter,

musician, and activist

(b. 1919)

Pete Seeger

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Johnny Winter

American singer and guitarist

(b. 1944)

Johnny Winter

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Glenn Cornick

British bass guitarist

(b. 1947)

Glenn Cornick

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Jack Bruce

British rock bassist

(b. 1943)

Jack Bruce

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Acker Bilk

British jazz clarinetist

(b. 1929)

Acker Bilk

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Joe Cocker

English singer

(b. 1944)

Joe Cocker

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From Politics

Zbigniew Messner

9th Prime Minister of the

People’s Republic of Poland

(b. 1929)

Zbigniew Messner

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Ariel Sharon

11th Prime Minister of Israel

(b. 1928)

Ariel Sharon

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Tony Benn

British politician and diarist

(b. 1925)

Tony Benn

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Adolfo Suárez

138th Prime Minister of Spain

(b. 1932)

Adolfo Suárez

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James R. Schlesinger

American economist and politician

(b. 1929)

James R. Schlesinger

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A. N. R. Robinson

3rd President of Trinidad and Tobago

(b. 1926)

A. N. R. Robinson

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Howard Baker

American politician and diplomat

(b. 1925)

Howard Baker

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Eduard Shevardnadze

2nd President of Georgia

(b. 1928)

Eduard Shevardnadze

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Albert Reynolds

Irish Taoiseach (prime minister)

(b. 1932)

Albert Reynolds

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Ian Paisley

British politician and

First Minister of Northern Ireland

(b. 1926)

Ian Paisley

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Nicholas Romanov

Prince of Russia

(b. 1922)

Nicholas Romanov

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Jean-Claude Duvalier

41st President of Haiti

(b. 1951)

Jean-Claude Duvalier

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John Spencer-Churchill

11th Duke of Marlborough,

British peer and educator

(b. 1926)

John Spencer-Churchill, 11th Duke of Marlborough

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Gough Whitlam

21st Prime Minister of Australia

(b. 1916)

Gough Whitlam

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From Space Exploration

Valeri Kubasov

Soviet cosmonaut

(b. 1935)

Valeri Kubasov

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Wubbo Ockels

Dutch astronaut and physicist

(b. 1946)

Wubbo Ockels

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Henry Hartsfield

American colonel and astronaut

(b. 1933)

Henry Hartsfield

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Anatoly Berezovoy

Soviet cosmonaut

(b. 1942)

Anatoly Berezovoy

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From Sport

Eusébio

Portuguese footballer

(b. 1942)

Eusébio

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Mae Young

American professional wrestler

(b. 1923)

Mae Young

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Louise Brough

American tennis player

(b. 1923)

Louise Brough

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Tom Finney

English footballer

(b. 1922)

Tom Finney

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Nelson Frazier, Jr.

American professional wrestler

(b. 1971)

Nelson Frazier, Jr

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Jimmy Ellis

American boxer

(b. 1940)

Jimmy_Ellis

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Jack Brabham

Australian race car driver

(b. 1926)

Jack Brabham

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Malcolm Glazer

American businessman,

owner of Manchester United

(b. 1928)

Malcolm Glazer

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Valentin Mankin

Ukrainian sailor, Olympic triple champion

and silver medalist

(b. 1938)

Valentin Mankin

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Fernandão

Brazilian footballer and manager

(b. 1978)

Fernandão

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Alfredo Di Stéfano

Argentine-Spanish footballer

(b. 1926)

Alfredo-Di-Stefano-Dies-at-Age-88

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Andriy Bal

Ukrainian football player and coach

(b. 1958)

Andriy Bal

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Björn Waldegård

Swedish rally driver

(b. 1943)

Björn Waldegård

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Andrea de Cesaris

Italian race car driver

(b. 1959)

Andrea de Cesaris

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Health

  • The big health scare of 2014 that dominated the headlines was the of the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa in February, that initially infected over 19,000 people and killing at least 7,000, the most severe both in terms of numbers of infections and casualties.

ebola_map Africa

  • In other news, also in February, Belgium became the first country in the world to legalize euthanasia for terminally ill patients of any age.

Politics

  • On January 1, Latvia officially adopted the Euro as its currency and became the 18th member of the Eurozone.
  • In February, the Ukrainian parliament voted to remove President Viktor Yanukovych from office, replacing him with Oleksandr Turchynov, after days of civil unrest that left around 100 people dead in Kiev. The pro-Russian unrest lead to the annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation and an insurgency in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

President Viktor Yanukovych

  • In March, Nicolás Maduro, the President of Venezuela, severed diplomatic and political ties with Panama, accusing it of being involved in a conspiracy against the Venezuelan government.
  • Also in March, an emergency meeting, involving the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy, Germany, France, Japan, and Canada temporarily suspended Russia from the G8.
  • In April, also in response to the Crimean crisis, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) passed a resolution temporarily stripping Russia of its voting rights; its rights to be represented in the Bureau of the Assembly, the PACE Presidential Committee, and the PACE Standing Committee; and its right to participate in election-observation missions.
  • The same month, United States President Barack Obama began new economic sanctions against Russia, targeting companies and individuals close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Putin Obama

  • In May the Royal Thai Army overthrew the caretaker government of Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan after a failure to resolve the political unrest in Thailand.
  • Back in Europe, in June, King Juan Carlos I of Spain abdicated in favor of his son, who ascended the Spanish throne as King Felipe VI.
  • And the political year ended on a positive note, with U.S. President Barack Obama announcing the resumption of normal relations between the U.S. and Cuba after more than half a century.

normal relations between the U.S. and Cuba

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Space

  • The major space event of 2014 happened in November when the European Space Agency’s Rosetta Philae probe successfully landed on Comet 67P, the first time in history that a spacecraft has landed on such an object.

Rosetta Philae

Sport

  • The two major world sporting events of 2014 were the XXII Olympic Winter Games, held in Sochi, Russia in February, and the 2014 FIFA World Cup held in Brazil, and won by Germany, during June and July.

world-cup-2014-champions-germany-trophy

  • In American sport the Super Bowl was won by the Seattle Seahawks, the MLB World Series  winners were the San Francisco Giants and in basketball the San Antonio Spurs came out on top.
  • Ice Hockey had three champions in 2014, Canada becoming Olympic champions, Russia world champions and in the NHL the Los Angeles Kings were the victors.
  • In tennis at the world famous Wimbledon Tournament in England Novak Djokovic became Men’s Singles Champion and Petra Kvitova Ladies Singles Champion, while the men’s and women’s winners of the US Open were Marin Čilić  and Serena Williams respectively.

novak-djokovic-with-wimbledon-crown

  • In Soccer, as noted above, Germany won the 2014 World Cup. The European Champions League winners were Real Madrid and the English Premiership was won by Manchester City.
  • The Formula 1 motor racing champion for 2014 was British driver Lewis Hamilton, who also picked up the award of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
  • In golf’s major championships, the Masters Tournament, held in April, was won by Bubba Watson by three strokes. It was his second Masters championship.
  • May saw the BMW PGA Championship where young Northern Ireland man Rory McIlroy birdied the 18th hole to win by one stroke over Irishman Shane Lowry, who also birdied the 18th hole.
  • In June, U.S. Open winner was Martin Kaymer who won by eight strokes to become the first German player to win the U.S. Open, and the first player to win the Players Championship and the U.S. Open in the same year.
  • In July, the Open Championship Northern Ireland man Rory McIlroy, was on top again winning by two strokes over Rickie Fowler and Sergio García. It was his third career major championship, and his first Open Championship. With the win, he became the fourth player ever of 25 years old or under to have won at least three majors.
  • In August, McIlroy was back, winning the PGA Championship by one stroke over Phil Mickelson. He was having quite a year, it was his fourth career major and his second PGA Championship.PGA Champion Rory McIlroy
  • Then in September, in the Ryder Cup, Team Europe (also including McIlroy) defeated Team USA by a score of 16½ – 11½. It was the third consecutive Ryder Cup victory for Europe, and also Europe’s fifth consecutive home victory in the Ryder Cup.

Tragedies

  • In March Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, a Boeing 777 airliner en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, disappears over the Gulf of Thailand with 239 people on board. The aircraft is presumed to have crashed into the Indian Ocean.
  • In April Korean ferry MV Sewol capsized and sunk after an unmanageable cargo shift. More than 290 people were killed, mostly high school students.

south-korea-ferry MV Sewol

  • In May hundreds of workers were killed in mining accident in Turkey.
  • In July, Air Algérie Flight 5017 crashed in Mali, killing all 116 people on board.
  • And just a few days ago AirAsia flight QZ8501 crashed, wreckage has been found off the coast of Indonesia’s Kalimantan coast.

indonesia-airplane AirAsia flight flight QZ8501 airport notice board

 

Perfectly Timed Photos

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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More photos for this weekend.

Nothing beats a perfectly taken photo except perhaps a perfectly timed photo.

You will find a selection of the latter variety below.

Enjoy.

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ptp army squiral

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ptp arrows

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ptp asskid

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ptp bagpuss

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ptp basketball

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ptp Big Legged Baby

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ptp bongingkevin

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ptp bull

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ptp cheshirecat

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ptp Cocka Cola

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ptp dawg2

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ptp dog

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ptp doggy-breakdance

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ptp dogstand

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ptp don't lose your head

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Ten 10

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Welcome to another significant number factoid Friday.

Today’s significant number is Ten, one of the most important and widely used of all the numbers.

This is just a small selection of what Ten gets up to, but there’s still a lot of stuff in here so brace yourselves for a long read.

Enjoy.

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The Number Ten 10

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10.

In religion

  • The number 10 is used 244 times in the Bible.
  • The 10th word of the King James Version of Genesis is “earth”
  • The number ten signifies perfection; it is the combination of the number seven which embraces all created things, and the trinity of the Creator.
  • The Bible records 10 generations between Adam and Noah, and 10 generations between Noah and Abraham.
  • The 10th Book of Enoch Archangel Uriel warns Noah about Flood.
  • Noah waited 10 months for the water to recede after the Flood.
  • The Ten Commandments of Exodus and Deuteronomy are considered a cornerstone of Judaism and Christianity.

The 10 Comandments

  • Ten Plagues were inflicted on Egypt in Exodus 7-12, sent by God by the intermediary of Moses: the water changed into blood, there were plagues of frogs, midges, big flies, then a plague on the animals, an epidemic of ulcer and tumours, hail and thunder, grasshoppers, three days of darkness, and finally the death of the firstborn in each Egyptian family.
  • People traditionally tithed one-tenth of their produce. The practice of tithing is still common in Christian churches today, though it is disputed in some circles as to whether or not it is required of Christians.
  • In Deuteronomy 26:12, the Torah commands Jews to give one-tenth of their produce to the poor (Maaser Ani). From this verse and from an earlier verse (Deut. 14:22) there derives a practice for Jews to give one-tenth of all earnings to the poor.
  • There are said to be Ten Lost Tribes of Israel (those other than Judah and Benjamin).
  • The Beast of the Revelation has ten horns each with ten diadems. (Rv 13, 1)
  • There were ten nations whose hostility towards Israel was constant. (Ps 83,7-9)
  • God moved back the shadow on the sundial of Ahaz by ten degrees as a sign that He was going to deliver Hezekiah from his mortal sickness and the city where he was. (Is 38,1-8)
  • Christ’s parable of the 10 virgins (5 wise & 5 foolish) in Matthew 25.1-13 symbolizes our 5 inner & outer senses.
  • Christ healed 10 lepers in a village, but only one turned back to thank him and with a loud voice glorified God. (Luke 17.12)
  • The Holy Spirit descended on the apostles ten days after the Ascension of Jesus.
  • Jews observe the annual Ten Days of Repentance beginning on Rosh Hashanah and ending on Yom Kippur.
  • In Judaism, ten men are the required quorum, called a minyan, for prayer services.

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In mathematics

  • 10 Squared equals 100
  • 10 Cubed equals 1000
  • 10 Factorial or 10! equals 1 x 2 x 3 x 4 x 5 x 6 x 7 x 8 x 9 x 10 = 3,628,800
  • A Decagon is a polygon of 10 sides.
  • 10 is the base of the decimal system.
  • Ten is the sum of the first three prime numbers, of the four first numbers (1 + 2 + 3 + 4), of the square of the two first odd numbers and also of the first four factorials (0! + 1! + 2! + 3!).
  • Magic square of 10:

1 4 2 3
2 3 1 4
3 2 4 1
4 1 3 2

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In science

  • 10 is the Atomic Number of Neon (Ne).
  • There are 10 hydrogen atoms in butane, a hydrocarbon.
  • Primates have 10 fingers.
  • The human foot has 10 toes.
  • There are 10 spacetime dimensions in some superstring theories.

superstring theory

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In space

  • Messier object M10, a magnitude 6.4 globular cluster in the constellation Ophiuchus.

Messier object M10

  • The New General Catalogue object NGC 10, a magnitude 12.5 spiral galaxy in the constellation Sculptor.

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  • Apollo 10 was the fourth manned mission in the United States Apollo space program. It was an F type mission, its purpose being a “dry run” for the Apollo 11 mission, testing all of the procedures and components of a Moon landing without actually landing on the Moon itself.
  • The mission included the second crew to orbit the Moon and an all-up test of the lunar module (LM) in lunar orbit. The LM came to within 8.4 nautical miles (15.6 km) of the lunar surface during practice maneuvers.

Apollo-10 logo

  • According to the 2002 Guinness World Records, Apollo 10 set the record for the highest speed attained by a manned vehicle at 39,897 km/h (11.08 km/s or 24,791 mph) during the return from the Moon on May 26, 1969.
  • Due to the use of their names as call signs, the Peanuts characters Charlie Brown and Snoopy became semi-official mascots for the mission. Peanuts creator Charles Schulz also drew some special mission-related artwork for NASA.

Charles Schulz NASA

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In politics

  • John Tyler (March 29, 1790 – January 18, 1862) was the tenth President of the United States (1841–1845). A native of Virginia, Tyler served as a state legislator, governor, U.S. representative, and U.S. senator before being elected Vice President in 1840. 
  • He was the first to succeed to the office of President on the death of the incumbent, succeeding William Henry Harrison. 
  • Tyler’s opposition to federalism and emphatic support of states’ rights endeared him to his fellow Virginians but alienated him from most of the political allies that brought him to power in Washington. 
  • His presidency was crippled by opposition from both parties, and near the end of his life he would side with the South in its secession from the United States.

John Tyler 10th President of the United States of America

  • Virginia is the tenth state in the Union.
  • Canada is made up of 10 Provinces:  Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, and Saskatchewan. There are also three territories, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Yukon. (The major difference between a Canadian province and a territory is that provinces are jurisdictions that receive their power and authority directly from the Constitution Act, 1867, whereas territories derive their mandates and powers from the federal government.)

Canada political regions

  • Number 10 Downing Street is the official residence of the British Prime Minister.

10 Downing Street

  • The tenth French department is Aube.
  • There are 10 regions in Ghana.

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In sport

  • In the Olympics, 10 is the highest score for a gymnastic event, attained by Nadia Comaneci in 1976, and Mary Lou Retton in 1984.
  • The Decathlon is a 10-event athletic contest consisting of 100-meter, 400-meter, and 1500-meter runs, 110-meter high hurdles, javelin & discus throws, shot put, pole vault, high jump, and long jump.
  • In ten-pin bowling, 10 pins are arranged in a triangular pattern and there are 10 frames per game.

10 pin Bowling

  • In American football, the end zones are 10 yards deep.
  • In baseball, 10 is the minimum number of players on the field at any given time during play (including the batter).
  • In basketball the top of the rim is 10 feet from the floor.
  • In standard full-court basketball, there are 10 players on the court (5 on each team).
  • In cricket, 10 is the number of wickets required to be taken by the bowling side for the batting side to be bowled out.
  • In gridiron football, 10 is the number of yards the offense must advance to maintain possession in a single set of downs—four in American and three in Canadian.
  • In rugby union, the starting fly-half wears the 10 shirt.

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  • The jersey number 10 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball by the Chicago Cubs for Hall of Famer Ron Santo; the Cincinnati Reds for Hall of Fame manager Sparky Anderson; the Kansas City Royals for manager Dick Howser; the Minnesota Twins for manager Tom Kelly; the Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals) first for Rusty Staub and later for Hall of Famer Andre Dawson; the New York Yankees for Hall of Famer Phil Rizzuto; the St. Louis Cardinals for manager Tony La Russa; the Atlanta Braves have announced they will retire the number for Chipper Jones on June 28, 2013.
chipper-jones-atlanta-braves-batting-autographed-photograph
Chipper Jones Atlanta Braves batting autographed photograph
  • In the NBA the Boston Celtics for Jo Jo White; the Chicago Bulls for Bob Love; the Detroit Pistons for Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman; the Miami Heat for Tim Hardaway; the New York Knicks for Hall of Famer Walt Frazier; the Philadelphia 76ers for Maurice Cheeks; the Seattle SuperSonics (now the Oklahoma City Thunder) for Nate McMillan; the Washington Wizards for Hall of Famer Earl Monroe, who played for the team in its past incarnation as the Baltimore Bullets.
Dennis Rodman
Dennis Rodman
  • In the NFL the Atlanta Falcons for Steve Bartkowski; the Minnesota Vikings for Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton.
  • In the NHL the Carolina Hurricanes for Hall of Famer Ron Francis; the Detroit Red Wings for Hall of Famer Alex Delvecchio; the Montreal Canadiens for Hall of Famer Guy Lafleur; the first NHL incarnation of the Winnipeg Jets for Hall of Famer Dale Hawerchuk. 

 

Dale Hawerchuk
Dale Hawerchuk

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In books, music, TV and movies

  • Ten has appeared in the titles of many songs including
  • “Ten Long Years” by B.B. King and Eric Clapton; 
  • “Perfect Ten” by The Beautiful South; 
  • “Ten Cent Pistol” by The Black Keys; 
  • “Clock Strikes Ten” by Cheap Trick; 
  • “Eight By Ten” by Ken Dodd; 
  • “Ten Years Gone” by Led Zeppelin; 
  • “Ten Ton Hammer” by Machine Head; 
  • “Ten Cents A Dance” Richard Rodgers performed perhaps most famously by Ella Fitzgerald; 
  • “Force Ten” by Rush; 
  • “Ten with a Two” Willie Nelson; 
  • “Ten Foot Pole” by ZZ Top; 
  • “Ten Green Bottles” Traditional British children’s song, very much similar in theme to the US “99 Bottles Of Beer”
  • and “Ten Feet Tall” by XTC.
  • “Ten lords a-leaping” is the gift on the tenth day of Christmas in the carol “The Twelve Days of Christmas”

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  • On TV there have been:
  • A series on HBO entitled “1st & Ten” which aired between December 1984 and January 1991.
  • A series on ESPN and ESPN2 entitled 1st and 10 which launched on ESPN in October 2003 to 2008 and moved to ESPN2 from 2008 to present.
  • A 1977 short documentary film “Powers of Ten” depicts the relative scale of the Universe in factors of ten (orders of magnitude).
  • A game show on CBS called “Power of 10”, where the player’s prize goes up and down by either the previous or next power of ten.
  • and, “Ten Chances” is one the pricing games on “The Price is Right”.

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  • Movies with “10” in their titles include, 
  • “10”
  • “10 Things I Hate About You”
  • “10 to Midnight”
  • “The Whole Ten Yards”
  • “10 Items or Less”
  • “Ten Little Indians”
  • “10 Rillington Place”
  • “The 10th Victim”
  • “3:10 to Yuma”
  • “The Ten”
  • and, “The Ten Commandments”

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In militaria

  • To reduce something by one-tenth is to decimate. (In ancient Rome, the killing of one in ten soldiers in a cohort was the punishment for cowardice or mutiny; or, one-tenth of the able-bodied men in a village as a form of retribution, thus causing a labor shortage and threat of starvation in agrarian societies.)

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  • USS Annapolis (PG-10)
  • The first USS Annapolis (PG-10/IX-1) was a gunboat in the United States Navy. She was named for Annapolis, Maryland.
  • She took part in the Spanish-American War and later was sent to the Far East and then central American waters.

 

USS Annapolis 1896
USS Annapolis 1896

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  • USS Maine (BB-10)
  • USS Maine (BB-10), the lead ship of her class of battleships, was the second ship of the United States Navy to be named in honor of the 23rd state.
  • She was launched on 27 July 1901 and during WWI operated along the east coast where she trained engineers, armed guard crews, and midshipmen.
  • Later Maine operated with ships of the Atlantic Fleet until 15 May 1920, when she decommissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard.
USS Maine BB-10 1902
USS Maine BB-10 1902

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  • USS Bridgeport (AD-10/ID-3009)
  • The USS Bridgeport (AD-10/ID-3009) was a destroyer tender used by the United States Navy during World War I and the years after. 
  • Originally she had been built in 1901 at Vegesack, Germany as SS Breslau of the North German Lloyd lines as a steel-hulled passenger and cargo steamship.
  • Interned at New Orleans, Louisiana at the outbreak of World War I, Breslau was seized in 1917 by the United States after her entry into the war and commissioned into the Navy as USS Bridgeport. 
  • Originally slated to be a repair ship, she was reclassified as a destroyer tender the following year. Bridgeport completed several transatlantic convoy crossings before she was stationed at Brest, France, where she remained in a support role after the end of World War I. After returning to the United States in November 1919, she spent the next five years along the East Coast and in the Caribbean tending destroyers and conducting training missions.
  • She was decommissioned in November 1924 and placed in reserve at the Boston Navy Yard.
USS Bridgeport (AD-10)
USS Bridgeport (AD-10)

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  • USS L-10 (SS-50)
  • The USS L-10 (SS-50) was an L-class submarine of the United States Navy. She was assigned to the Atlantic Submarine Flotilla and operated along the United States East Coast until April 1917 developing new techniques or undersea warfare.
  • Following the United States’s entry into World War I, she was used to protect Allied shipping lanes to Europe.
  • She was decommissioned at Philadelphia on 5 May 1922
USS L-10 (SS-50)
USS L-10 (SS-50)

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  • USS Barnegat (AVP-10)
  • The second USS Barnegat (AVP-10), operated from 1941 to 1946, was the lead ship of her class of small seaplane tenders built for the United States Navy just before and during World War II. 
  • First operating in the North Atlantic she provided not only tender services but salvage and logistic support as well. 
  • Later she participated in Operation Torch, the Allied landings in French North Africa.
  • From June 1943–May 1944 she transferred to the South Atlantic, reporting for duty with Fleet Air Wing (FAW) 16. Her arrival coincided with the opening shots of a local German submarine “blitz” against coastal shipping; the day before, the German U-boat U-513 had torpedoed the steamer SS Venetia.
  • She was decommissioned on 17 May 1946.
USS Barnegat (AVP-10)
USS Barnegat (AVP-10)

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  • USS Yorktown (CV-10)
  • The USS Yorktown (CV/CVA/CVS-10) is one of 24 Essex-class aircraft carriers built during World War II for the United States Navy. She is named after the Battle of Yorktown of the American Revolutionary War, and is the fourth U.S. Navy ship to bear the name. Initially to have been named Bon Homme Richard, she was renamed Yorktown while under construction to commemorate USS Yorktown (CV-5), lost at the Battle of Midway in June 1942.
  • Yorktown was commissioned in April 1943, and participated in several campaigns in the Pacific Theater of Operations, earning 11 battle stars and the Presidential Unit Citation.
  • Decommissioned shortly after the end of the war, she was modernized and recommissioned in the early 1950s as an attack carrier (CVA), and then eventually became an antisubmarine carrier (CVS). She was recommissioned too late to participate in the Korean War but served for many years in the Pacific, including duty in the Vietnam War, in which she earned five battle stars. 
  • Late in her career she served as a recovery ship for the Apollo 8 space mission, was used in the movie Tora! Tora! Tora! which recreated the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and in the science fiction film The Philadelphia Experiment.
  • Yorktown was decommissioned in 1970 and in 1975 became a museum ship at Patriot’s Point, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. 
  • She is a National Historic Landmark.

 

CVS-10 USS Yorktown
CVS-10 USS Yorktown

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  • USNS Bridge (T-AOE-10)
  • USNS Bridge is the fourth ship in the Supply class of fast combat support ships and the second ship in the Navy named after Commodore Horatio Bridge.
USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10)
USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10)

  • USS Sampson (DDG-10)
  • The USS Sampson (DDG-10), named for Admiral William T. Sampson USN (1840–1902), was a Charles F. Adams-class guided missile destroyer launched on 21 May 1960 commissioned on 24 June 1961.
  • She was tasked with operations in the Atlantic and Caribbean and the Mediterranean. 
  • Sampson was decommissioned on 24 June 1991 exactly 30 years after commissioning.
USS Sampson DDG-10
USS Sampson DDG-10

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  • USS Tripoli (LPH-10)
  • The USS Tripoli (LPH-10), is an Iwo Jima-class amphibious assault ship launched on 31 July 1965. She was named for the Battle of Tripoli Harbor.
  • She took part in three tours during the Vietnam war and has more recently operated in the Middle East. 
  • She was decommissioned in 1995.
USS Tripoli LPH10
USS Tripoli LPH10

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  • USS Juneau (LPD-10)
  • The USS Juneau (LPD-10) is an Austin-class amphibious transport dock, and the third ship of the United States Navy to be named for the capital of Alaska. 
  • The ship entered service on 12 July 1969, and participated in the Vietnam War, was command ship for the response to the Exxon Valdez oil spill, transported troops to the Persian Gulf for Operation Desert Storm, and was part of the attempted US response to Cyclone Nargis. 
  • Juneau was decommissioned in 2008, and is part of the National Defense Reserve Fleet.
USS JUNEAU LPD-10 P
USS JUNEAU LPD-10 P

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  • USS Warrior (MCM-10)
  • The USS Warrior (MCM-10) is an Avenger-class mine countermeasures ship launched on 8 December 1990, and was commissioned on 7 April 1993. 
  • The Avenger-class ships were designed to have very low acoustic and magnetic signatures to avoid detonating mines. While most modern warships have steel hulls, the Avengers have wooden hulls with an external coating of fiberglass. They are equipped with sophisticated mine-hunting and classification sonar as well as remotely-operated mine neutralization and disposal systems.
  • On 26 February 2013, 7th Fleet announced that the USS Warrior would be transferred from 5th Fleet in Bahrain to 7th Fleet in Sasebo Japan to replace the USS Guardian, which had recently been decommissioned after running aground in the Philippines.
USS Warrior MCM 10
USS Warrior MCM 10

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  • USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS-10)
  • The USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS-10) which is currently being built by Austal USA, is scheduled to be completed and delivered to the Navy in August of 2015 and will be an Independence-class littoral combat ship of the United States Navy. 
  • The ship is named after former United States Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot along with eighteen other people during the 2011 shooting in Tucson, Arizona.
  • Gabrielle Giffords will be the 15th U.S. naval ship to be named for a woman by the United States Navy. But the name choice has been controversial, with two retired U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps officers criticizing the trend of naming ships for political reasons.

USS-Gabrielle-e1329332883208

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  • Lockheed Model 10 Electra
  • The Lockheed Model 10 Electra was a twin-engine, all-metal monoplane airliner developed by the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation in the 1930s to compete with the Boeing 247 and Douglas DC-2. 
  • It was used both in civilian and military roles.
  • The aircraft gained considerable worldwide notoriety when a highly modified version was flown by Amelia Earhart on her ill-fated around-the-world expedition in 1937.
Lockheed Martin model-10 Electra
Lockheed Martin model-10 Electra

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  • McDonnell Douglas DC-10
  • The McDonnell Douglas DC-10 is a three-engine widebody jet airliner, capable of carrying a maximum 380 passengers, and used for medium to long-haul flights. Its most distinguishing feature is the two turbofan engines mounted on underwing pylons and a third engine at the base of the vertical stabilizer. 
  • The model was a successor to McDonnell Douglas’s DC-8 for long-range operations, and competed in the same markets as the Lockheed L-1011 Tristar, which has a similar layout to the DC-10.
  • The DC-10 has had an eventful existence, as of January 2012, it has been involved in 56 aviation occurrences, including 32 hull-loss accidents, with 1,262 occupant fatalities. It has been involved in nine hijackings and criminal events resulting in 171 occupant fatalities.
  • But despite its troubled beginnings in the 1970s, which gave it an unfavorable reputation, the DC-10 has proved a reliable aircraft, it’s initially poor safety record continuously improved as design flaws were rectified and fleet hours increased. The DC-10’s lifetime safety record is comparable to similar second-generation passenger jets as of 2008.
McDonnell Douglas DC10
McDonnell Douglas DC10

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  • Douglas F-10 Skyknight
  • The Douglas F-10 Skyknight was a United States twin-engine, mid-wing jet fighter aircraft manufactured by the Douglas Aircraft Company in El Segundo, California.
  • It was designed as a carrier-based all-weather aircraft and saw service with the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps.
  • While it never achieved the fame of the North American F-86 Sabre, it did down several Soviet-built MiG-15s as a night fighter over Korea with only one air-to-air loss of its own against a Chinese MiG-15.
  • The Skyknight was the only Korean war fighter that also flew in Vietnam (as also did the Douglas A-1 Skyraider attack aircraft). EF-10Bs served in the electronic countermeasures role during the Vietnam War until 1969. The U.S. Marine Corps retired its last EF-10Bs in 1970. Some aircraft continued flying as testbeds for Raytheon until the 1980s.
F-10B Skyknight (F3D-2)
F-10B Skyknight (F3D-2)

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  • Jianjiji-10 Fighter Aircraft
  • The Jianjiji-10 Fighter Aircraft 10 (J-10) “Vigorous Dragon” was part of the development of an indigenous Chinese multi-role fighter equivalent to the Mirage 2000 operated by Taiwan. It is a replacement for the obsolescent Q-5 and J-7 and armed with much improved weapons.
  • The J-10 is reportedly similar to the American F-16 and a cancelled Israeli fighter based on the F-16 called the Lavi. Although Israel denies transferring any unauthorized technology, it is known Israeli companies supplied assistance in J-10 development.
  • Pakistan also reportedly provided one of its F-16s to China for study, and several Russian engineers who worked on the J-10 indicated a Lavi prototype was located in Chengdu’s facilities.
  • The resulting design, very similar to the Lavi externally, features a delta wing with canards mounted just aft of the cockpit.
Jianjiji-10 Fighter Aircraft
Jianjiji-10 Fighter Aircraft

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  • Smith & Wesson Model 10
  • The Smith & Wesson Model 10, previously known as the Smith & Wesson .38 Hand Ejector Model of 1899, the Smith & Wesson Military & Police or the Smith & Wesson Victory Model, is a revolver of worldwide popularity. 
  • It was the successor to the Smith & Wesson .32 Hand Ejector Model of 1896 and was the first Smith & Wesson revolver to feature a cylinder release latch on the left side of the frame like the Colt M1889. 
  • In production since 1899, it is a six-shot double-action revolver with fixed sights. Over its long production run it has been available with barrel lengths of 2 in (51 mm), 3 in (76 mm), 4 in (100 mm), 5 in (130 mm), and 6 in (150 mm). Barrels of 2.5 inches (64 mm) are also known to have been made for special contracts.
  • Some 6,000,000 of the type have been produced over the years, making it the most popular centerfire revolver of the 20th century.
Smith and Wesson model 10
Smith and Wesson model 10

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  • Colt model 10 Double Eagle
  • The Colt Double Eagle is a double-action / single action, semi-automatic pistol manufactured between 1989 and 1997. It was available in standard full-size, as well as in more compact versions, features a decocking lever, and was chambered for several calibers. The family of models was known as the Series 90.
  • The design of the Double Eagle was based on the Colt M1911 pistol. Magazines are single stack and are identical to magazines shipped with the M1911. Most of the Double Eagle models were available in stainless steel only, however the “Lightweight” Officer’s had an alloy frame and blued slide.
  • The Double Eagle was chambered for several calibers but the most common are 10mm Auto asn well as the standard .45 ACP and 10mm Auto.

Colt 10mm Double Eagle

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Other stuff

  • Deca- means 10 (Latin, Greek: deka).
  • Decade is a period of 10 years.
  • U.S. currency: One dime = 10 cents.
  • Tin wedding anniversary celebrates 10 years of marriage.
  • X is the Roman numeral for 10.
  • The Passion Flower (Passiflora) has 10 petals.

PassifloraCaerulea_Bluete_von_oben

  • Each of the thirty six parts of the astrological Zodiacs is divides into ten degrees.
  • In a standard deck of playing cards there are 10, numbered 1 thru 10, of all four suits.
  • Counting from one to ten before speaking is often done in order to cool one’s temper.
  • There are ten official inkblots in the Rorschach inkblot test.
  • The traditional Snellen chart uses 10 different letters.
  • Number of dots in a tetractys.
tetractys
tetractys

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Further Fabulously Fascinating Facts From Fasab!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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I don’t know what it is about the letter ‘F’ but it seems to lend itself better to alliteration than any of the others – if your blog is called Fasab, that is 🙂 

Anyhow, here we go with another selection of those fabulously fascinating facts.

Enjoy.

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To manufacture a new car approximately 148,000 liters of water is needed.

 Car Manufacture

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In 1985, a pregnant women was falsely accused of shoplifting a basketball

pregnant

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The study of twins is known as gemellology

 the-study-of-twins-is-known-as-gemellology-fact

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Dalmatian puppies do not have any spots on them when they are born.

They actually develop them as they get older

dalmatian puppies

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At the equator the Earth spins at about 1,038 miles per hour

speed of earth

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In World War II, the German submarine U-1206 was sunk by a malfunctioning toilet

WWII-german-u-boat

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As a defense mechanism, the North American Opossum closes its eyes and becomes totally limp.

Basically it plays dead, hence the term ‘playing possum’.

cartoon possum

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Approximately 18 billion disposable diapers end up in landfills each year.

These diapers can takes as long as 500 years to finally decompose

disposable diapers

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Only one out of every three people wash their hands when leaving a public bathroom

washing hands in toilet

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The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one mile in every five must be straight.

These straight sections are usable as airstrips in times of war or other emergencies.

 Eisenhower interstate system

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Two objects have struck the earth with enough force to destroy a whole city.

Each object, one in 1908 and again in 1947, struck regions of Siberia.

Not one human being was hurt either time

Tunguska asteroid strike 1908
Tunguska asteroid strike 1908

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When Scott Paper Co. first started manufacturing toilet paper

they did not put their name on the product because of embarrassment

scott-toilet-paper

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Ian Fleming named his character “James Bond” after real-life ornithologist and author

Bond+birds+book

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A Canadian, Troy Hurtubise, spent $100,000 and almost went bankrupt

building a RoboCop style suit so that he could withstand a bear attack

Troy Hurtubise bear suit

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The big toe is the foot reflexology pressure point for the head

reflexology-ftchart

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In November 1999, two women were killed by a lightning bolt.

The underwire located in their bras acted as a electrical conductors,

and when the lightning bolt hit the bra they left burn marks on their chest

 Lightning

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Average life span of a major league baseball: 7 pitches.

a worn out baseball

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Every U.S. bill regardless of denomination costs just 4 cents to make

100000-Dollar-Bill

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The average day is actually 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.09 seconds.

We have a leap year every four years to make up for this shortfall

day_night

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Approximately 10.5 gallons of water is used in a dishwasher.

Washing the dishes by hand can use up to 20 gallons of water

dishwasher

====================

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Twenty-One 21

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today a number that many people like and hold to be ‘lucky’.

The Number 21

21

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In religion

  • Number of the perfection by excellence, 3 x 7, according to the Bible.
  • 21 represents the harmony of the creation.
  • Mary, mother of Jesus, lived 21 years after the death Jesus
  • There were 21 years between the presentation of Jesus to the Temple at 12 years old and his death at 33 years old.
  • In the same day, Jesus appears in 21 different places in Palestine to confirm in His Resurrection.
  • The word angel is pronounced 21 times by Jesus, always to the plural.
  • The words Flood and star are used 21 times in the Bible.
  • In the Revelation, the word “capacity” (capacity of decision or to act, by opposition to “power”) is used 21 times.

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In mathematics

21 is a Triangular, Octagonal, Fibonacci, and Motzkin Number.

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In science & technology

  • The Chemical Element Scandium has an atomic number of 21.
  • There are 21 amino-acids.
  • 21 is the standard TCP/IP port number for FTP connections

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In space and aviation

  • Messier 21 or M21
  • Messier 21 or M21 (also designated NGC 6531) is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Sagittarius. It was discovered and catalogued by Charles Messier on June 5, 1764.
  •  It is tightly packed but contains about 57 stars. A few blue giant stars have been identified in the cluster, but Messier 21 is composed mainly of small dim stars. With a magnitude of 6.5, M21 is not visible to the naked eye; however, with the smallest binoculars it can be easily spotted on a dark night.

 trifid nebula messier 21

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  • Expedition 21
  • Expedition 21 was the 21st long-duration mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The expedition began on 30 September 2009, with Frank de Winne becoming the first ESA astronaut to command a space mission.

expedition 21 insignia

  • The handover between Expedition 20 and Expedition 21 required three Soyuz vehicles being docked to the station at the same time, the first time this has occurred.
  • Soyuz TMA-16 brought the final members of Expedition 21 to the ISS, along with space tourist Guy Laliberté. Laliberté returned to Earth on Soyuz TMA-14 with two members of Expedition 20 on 11 October 2009.
  • Nicole P. Stott was the last ISS expedition crew member to fly on the Space Shuttle. She returned to Earth aboard STS-129 in November 2009.
Expedition 21
Expedition 21 crew portrait (from the left) are Flight Engineers Nicole Stott, Frank De Winne and Roman Romanenko. Pictured on the back row (from the left) are Flight Engineer Maxim Suraev, Commander Jeffrey Williams and Flight Engineer Robert Thirsk. Image credit: NASA

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  • Luna 21
  • Luna 21 (Ye-8 series) was an unmanned space mission of the Luna program, also called Lunik 21. The spacecraft landed on the Moon and deployed the second Soviet lunar rover (Lunokhod 2). The primary objectives of the mission were to collect images of the lunar surface, examine ambient light levels to determine the feasibility of astronomical observations from the Moon, perform laser ranging experiments from Earth, observe solar X-rays, measure local magnetic fields, and study mechanical properties of the lunar surface material.

V Pennant Luna 21

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  • Number 21
  • Number 21 is the name of the plane alleged flown by Gustave Whitehead two years before the Wright brothers’ flight

 

 

In politics

  • 21st President of the United States
  • Chester Alan Arthur (October 5, 1829 – November 18, 1886) was the 21st President of the United States (1881–85). He became President after the assassination of President James A. Garfield.
  • Born in Fairfield, Vermont, Arthur grew up in upstate New York and practiced law in New York City. He devoted much of his time to Republican politics and quickly rose in the political machine run by New York Senator Roscoe Conkling.
  • Appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to the lucrative and politically powerful post of Collector of the Port of New York in 1871, Arthur was an important supporter of Conkling and the Stalwart faction of the Republican Party.
  • In 1878 the new president, Rutherford B. Hayes, fired Arthur as part of a plan to reform the federal patronage system in New York. When James Garfield won the Republican nomination for President in 1880, Arthur was nominated for Vice President to balance the ticket by adding an eastern Stalwart to it.
  • After just half a year as vice president, Garfield was assassinated and Arthur unexpectedly became the 21st President of the united states.
  • To the surprise of reformers, Arthur took up the reform cause that had once led to his expulsion from office. He signed the Pendleton Act into law, and enforced its provisions vigorously.
  • Suffering from poor health, Arthur made only a limited effort to secure renomination in 1884; he retired at the close of his term. As journalist Alexander McClure would later write, “No man ever entered the Presidency so profoundly and widely distrusted as Chester Alan Arthur, and no one ever retired … more generally respected, alike by political friend and foe.”
Chester A Arthur
Chester A Arthur, 21st President of the United States of America

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  • 21st Amendment
  • The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, thereby ending Prohibition.

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  • 21st State
  • Illinois – the ‘Land of Lincoln’ – was the 21st state to join the United States.
  • Abraham Lincoln moved to Illinois when he was 21 and he met his future wife – Mary Todd – in Springfield when she was 21.
  • Illinois currently has 21 electoral votes in the US Presidential Election.

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  • Canada – Pier 21
  • Pier 21 was, from 1928 to 1971, was the place where immigrants entered Canada. It was called the “Gateway to Canada.”

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  • France – King Louis XVI
  • 21 was a significant number in the life of French King Louis XVI
  • On January 21, 1770, Louis XVI became engaged;
  • On June 21, 1770, he got married;
  • On January 21, 1782, he promulgated the suspension of a tax;
  • On January 21, 1784 an enormous obelisk of snow was raised for him on the place Louis XV;
  • On June 21, 1791,  Louis XVI was arrested;  and,
  • On January 21, 1793, he goes up to the scaffold.
  • Finally, the 5 letters of his first name added to XVI gives 21.

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  • Japan-China
  • The Twenty-One Demands were a set of demands which were sent to the Chinese government by the Japanese government of Okuma Shigenobu in 1915.

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  • Poland
  • The 21 Demands of MKS led to the foundation of Solidarity in Poland.

solidarity-logo

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In folklore, legends and mythology

  • The Mayan Calendar
  • December 21st 2012, according to some interpretations of the Mayan calendar was the predicted date of an apocalyptic event: ‘The planets are aligned the sun will activate, let the deluge come’.
  • It turned out to be bollocks though (see also this post)

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  • Ghost Ship 21
  • A ghost ship, also known as a phantom ship, is a ship with no living crew aboard. It may be a ghostly vessel in folklore or fiction, such as the Flying Dutchman, or a real derelict found adrift with its crew missing or dead, like the Mary Celeste. The term is sometimes also used for ships that have been decommissioned but not yet scrapped.
  • There have been many examples throughout history, for example,
  • Undated: The Caleuche is a mythical ghost ship which, according to local folklore and Chilota mythology, sails the seas around Chiloé Island, Chile, at night.
  • 1738 onwards: The Palatine Light, a ship who lost half her crew running aground off Rhode Island, possibly being lured there and pillaged by the locals. Said to appear every December.
  • 1748 onwards: The Lady Lovibond is said to have been deliberately wrecked on Goodwin Sands on 13 February and to reappear off the Kent coast every fifty years.
  • 1786 onwards: The Ghost Ship of Northumberland Strait, a burning ship seen regularly between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
  • 1795 onwards: The Flying Dutchman, a ship manned by a captain condemned to eternally sail the seas, has long been the principal ghost ship legend among mariners and has inspired several works.
  • 1813 onwards: After the American schooner Young Teazer was sunk in an explosion during the War of 1812, a burning apparition known as the “Teazer Light” has been reported off Maine.
  • 1858 onwards: The Eliza Battle, a paddle steamer that burned in 1858 on the Tombigbee River in Alabama, is purported to reappear, fully aflame, on cold and windy winter nights to foretell of impending disaster.
  • 1878 onwards: An apparition has been reported where the HMS Eurydice sank off the Isle of Wight. Witnesses include a Royal Navy submarine in the 1930s and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, in 1998.
  • 1872 or 1882: The Iron Mountain riverboat, according to legend, mysteriously disappeared while travelling the Mississippi River and left the barges it was towing adrift. In reality, the ship sank in 1882 near Vicksburg after running aground, and its fate was never mysterious.
  • 1928: The København was last heard from on December 28, 1928. For two years following its disappearance sightings of a mysterious five-masted ship fitting its description were reported in the Pacific Ocean.
  • Historically attested
  • 1855: HMS Resolute was discovered drifting off the coast of Baffin Island. It had been one of four vessels from Edward Belcher’s search expedition for John Franklin that had been abandoned the previous year when it was trapped in pack ice in Viscount Melville Sound. The ship drifted some 1,200 miles (1,900 km) before it was found, freed from the ice.
  • 1872: Amazon (later renamed Mary Celeste). In 1872 the Mary Celeste, perhaps the most historically famous derelict, was found abandoned between mainland Portugal and the Azores archipelago. It was devoid of all crew, but largely intact and under sail, heading toward the Strait of Gibraltar. While Arthur Conan Doyle’s story “J. Habakuk Jephson’s Statement” based on this ship added some strange phenomena to the tale (such as that the tea found in the mess hall was still hot), the fact remained that the last log entry was 11 days prior to the discovery of the ship.
  • 1884: In 1884 the Resolven was found abandoned between Baccalieu Island and Catalina, Newfoundland and Labrador, with its lifeboat missing. Other than a broken yard, it had suffered minimal damage. A large iceberg was sighted nearby. It has been claimed that none of the seven crew members or four passengers were accustomed to northern waters and it was suggested that they panicked when the ship was damaged by ice,[9] launched the lifeboat, and swamped, though no bodies were found. Three years later, Resolven was wrecked while returning to Newfoundland from Nova Scotia with a load of lumber.
  • 1917: Zebrina, a sailing barge, departed Falmouth, England, with a cargo of Swansea coal bound for Saint-Brieuc, France. Two days later she was discovered aground on Rozel Point, south of Cherbourg, without damage except for some disarrangement of her rigging, but with her crew missing.
  • 1921: The Carroll A. Deering, a five-masted cargo schooner, was found stranded on a beach on Diamond Shoals, North Carolina. The ship’s final voyage had been the subject of much debate and controversy, and was investigated by six departments of the US government, largely because it was one of dozens of ships that sank or went missing within a relatively short period of time. While paranormal explanations have been advanced, the theories of mutiny or piracy are considered more likely.
  • 1931: The Baychimo was abandoned in the Arctic Ocean when it became trapped in pack ice and was thought doomed to sink, but remained afloat and was sighted numerous times over the next 38 years without ever being salvaged.
  • 1933: A lifeboat from the 1906 wreck of the passenger steamship SS Valencia off the southwest coast of Vancouver Island was found floating in the area in remarkably good condition 27 years after the sinking. Sailors have also reported seeing the ship itself in the area in the years following the sinking, often as an apparition that followed down the coast.
  • 1955: The MV Joyita was discovered abandoned in the Pacific. A subsequent inquiry found the vessel was in a poor state of repair, but determined the fate of passengers and crew to be “inexplicable on the evidence submitted at the inquiry”.
  • 1959: A ghost submarine was found floating without a crew in the Bay of Biscay off northern Spain. It was later discovered that the empty sub was being towed by another vessel and the chain had snapped.
  • 1969: The Teignmouth Electron was found adrift and unoccupied in the Atlantic Ocean. Investigation led to the conclusion that its sole crewmember, Donald Crowhurst, had suffered a psychiatric breakdown while competing in a solo around-the-world race and committed suicide by jumping overboard.
  • 2003: The High Aim 6 was found drifting in Australian waters, 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) east of Rowley Shoals, with its crew missing. The derelict was subsequently scuttled.
  • 2006: The tanker Jian Seng was found off the coast of Weipa, Queensland Australia in March. Its origin or owner could not be determined, and its engines had been inoperable for some time.
  • 2006: In August the “Bel Amica” was discovered off the coast of Sardinia. The Coast Guard crew that discovered the ship found half eaten Egyptian meals, French maps of North African seas, and a flag of Luxembourg on board.
  • 2007: A 12-metre catamaran, the Kaz II, was discovered unmanned off the coast of Queensland, northeast Australia in April.[18] The yacht, which had left Airlie Beach on Sunday 15 April, was spotted about 80 nautical miles (150 km) off Townsville, near the outer Great Barrier Reef on the following Wednesday. When boarded on Friday, the engine was running, a laptop was running, the radio and GPS were working and a meal was set to eat, but the three-man crew were not on board. All the sails were up but one was badly shredded, while three life jackets and survival equipment, including an emergency beacon, were found on board. A search for the crew was abandoned on Sunday 22nd as it was considered unlikely that anyone could have survived for that period of time.
  • 2008: The abandoned 50 ton Taiwanese fishing vessel Tai Ching 21 was found drifting near Kiribati on 9 November. The ship had suffered a fire several days previously, and its lifeboat and three life rafts were missing. No mayday call was received, and the ship had last been heard from on 28 October. A search of 21,000 square miles (54,000 square km) of the Pacific Ocean north of Fiji by a US Air Force C-130 Hercules and a New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion found no trace of the Taiwanese captain or crew (18 Chinese, 6 Indonesians, and 4 Filipinos).
  • 2012: The Ryou-Un Maru, a Japanese fishing vessel swept away by the March 2011 tsunami, was found floating adrift towards Canada after nearly a year at sea, no crew believed to be on board. The vessel was sunk on April 5, 2012 by the United States Coast Guard.

ghost ship 21

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In sports

  • The jersey number 21 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Cleveland Indians, for Hall of Famer Bob Lemon, the Milwaukee Braves, for Hall of Famer Warren Spahn (the number continues to be honored by the team in its current home of Atlanta);  the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente (following his death in a plane crash while attempting to deliver humanitarian aid to victims of an earthquake in Nicaragua);

bob lemon

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  • In the NBA: the Atlanta Hawks, for Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins; the Boston Celtics, for Hall of Famer Bill Sharman; the Detroit Pistons, for Hall of Famer Dave Bing; the Sacramento Kings, for Vlade Divac; the Minnesota Timberwolves have not retired the number, but have not issued it since Kevin Garnett was traded from the team in 2007.

mayor dave bing detroit pistons 21

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  • In the NHL: the Chicago Blackhawks, for Hall of Famer Stan Mikita; the Colorado Avalanche, for likely future Hall of Famer Peter Forsberg; the Pittsburgh Penguins, for Michel Brière; the Toronto Maple Leafs have a policy of not retiring numbers unless the player honored either died or suffered a career-ending incident while a member of the team. Other players whose numbers would otherwise be retired instead have their numbers enshrined by the team as “Honored Numbers”, which remain in circulation for future players. The number 21 is currently honored for Hall of Famer Börje Salming.

stan mikita

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  • No NFL team has retired the number 21.

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  • In basketball: 21 is a variation of street basketball, in which each player, of which there can be any number, plays for himself only (i.e. not part of a team); the name comes from the requisite number of baskets.
  • In 3×3, a formalized version of three-on-three half-court basketball, the game ends by rule once either team has scored 21 points in regulation. Scoring is significantly different from traditional basketball rules, with free throws and baskets made from inside the three-point arc worth 1 point, and baskets made from outside the arc worth 2 points.
  • In badminton, and table tennis (before 2001), 21 points are required to win a game.
  • Eyeshield 21 is a Japanese anime about football.
  • In the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series the number 21 has long been the car number for Wood Brothers Racing

Wood Brothers car 21

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In books, music, tv and movies

  • 21 is the sophomore album from British singer-songwriter Adele, recently acclaimed for her title song for the Bond movie Skyfall.
  • Century 21 Television (producers of Sylvia and Gerry Anderson Supermarionation shows like Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons).
  • Cinema 21 is an independently-owned movie theatre in Portland, Oregon featuring art house films. Cinema 21, 616 NW 21st Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97209 USA
  • Cinema 21, is also the name of the largest cinema chain in Indonesia, established in the entertainment industry in 1987.
  • “21” is the fact-based story about six MIT students who were trained to become experts in card counting and subsequently took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings.
  • Wedding In Las Vegas is a docu-drama about a group of students who, using a wedding as a cover story, also defeat the casino’s Blackjack tables using card counting techniques.

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In militaria

  • Mig-21
  • The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 is a supersonic jet fighter aircraft, designed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau in the Soviet Union. It was popularly nicknamed “balalaika”, from the aircraft’s planform-view resemblance to the Russian stringed musical instrument or olówek (English: pencil) by Polish pilots due to the shape of its fuselage.
  • Early versions are considered second-generation jet fighters, while later versions are considered to be third-generation jet fighters.
  • Some 50 countries over four continents have flown the MiG-21, and it still serves many nations a half-century after its maiden flight. The fighter made aviation records. At least by name, it is the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft in aviation history and the most-produced combat aircraft since the Korean War, and it had the longest production run of a combat aircraft (1959 to 1985 over all variants).

Mig_21_MF_b

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  • IAI Kfir F-21
  • The Israel Aircraft Industries Kfir F-21 is an Israeli-built all-weather, multirole combat aircraft based on a modified French Dassault Mirage 5 airframe, with Israeli avionics and an Israeli-made version of the General Electric J79 turbojet engine.
  • The Kfir entered service with the IAF in 1975, the first units being assigned to the 101st “First Fighter” Squadron. Over the following years, several other squadrons were also equipped with the new aircraft. The role of the Kfir as the IAF’s primary air superiority asset was short-lived, as the first F-15 Eagle fighters from the United States were delivered to Israel in 1976.
  • The Kfir’s first recorded combat action took place on November 9, 1977, during an Israeli air strike on a training camp at Tel Azia, in Lebanon. The only air victory claimed by a Kfir during its service with the IAF occurred on June 27, 1979 when a Kfir C.2 shot down a Syrian MiG-21.
  • Twenty-five modified Kfir C.1s were leased to the US Navy and the US Marine Corps from 1985 to 1989, to act as adversary aircraft in dissimilar air combat training (DACT). These aircraft, designated F-21A Kfir, had narrow-span canard foreplanes and a single small rectangular strake on either side of the nose which considerably improved the aircraft’s maneuverability and handling at low speeds.

Kfir F-21

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  • Blücher 21 cm/45 (8.27″) SK L/45
  • Used afloat only on the Armored Cruiser Blücher which was sunk at the World War I battle of Dogger Bank.  After her sinking, four reserve guns were given to the German Army.
  • During World War II these guns were used as coastal artillery.  They were then supplied with a better ballistically shaped shell and with a larger propellant charge for increased range.
  • Constructed of a tube, two layers of hoops and a jacket.  Used the Krupp horizontal sliding wedge breech block.  About 16 guns were made.

Blucher

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  • 21-K
  • The 45 mm anti-aircraft gun (21-K) was a Soviet design adapted from the 45 mm anti-tank gun M1937 (53-K). This was a copy of a 3.7 cm (1.5 in) German weapon designed by Rheinmetall that was sold to the Soviets before Hitler came to power in 1933 that had been enlarged to 45 mm (1.8 in) in increase its penetrating power.
  • It was used by the Soviet Navy to equip almost all of their ships from 1934 as its primary light anti-aircraft gun until replaced by the fully automatic 37 mm 70-K gun from 1942 to 1943.
  • It was used in World War II and during the Cold War as the Soviets exported their World War II-era ships to their friends and allies.
  • However it was not very effective as its slow rate of fire and lack of a time fuze required a direct hit to damage targets.

21-K-KrasnyyKavkaz1

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  • GAU-21 (M3M)
  • The M3M was designated by the U.S. Navy as the GAU-21 in 2004 and is currently used by all services within the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).
  • An evolution of the M3 .50-caliber heavy machine gun, it produces a blistering 1,100 rounds per minute cyclic rate of fire through the use of open-bolt operation and a dual recoil buffer system. Operating independent of either electrical or hydraulic power sources, the M3M/GAU-21’s unique soft mount system enhances weapon accuracy and minimizes the firing vibration transmitted to the airframe.
  • FN Herstal has been awarded a solesource U.S. Navy contract to produce the M3M .50 caliber machine guns under the Gun, Aircraft, Unit-21 (GAU-21) designation for Navy and Marine Corps rotary-wing assault aircraft.
  • The FN GAU-21 (M3M) is a .50 caliber (12.7x99mm) single barrel rapid-fire machine gun suitable for rotary-wing aircraft applications providing defensive firepower ranging out to nearly 2000 meters.

gau_21_main

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  • BRNO 21
  • BRNO is neither German nor Austrian (although it was once located in the Austro-Hungarian Empire), but they produced the BRNO model designation 21 and 22 as post-War sporting rifles.

BRNO Model 21

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  • GLOCK 21
  • Almpst an American icon, the Glock 21 is a .45 caliber pistol. Countless law enforcement units swear by this superior pistol for more than just its above-average magazine capacity of 13 rounds.

Glock-21

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  • SIG SAUER® P210®
  • The SIG SAUER® P210®, the timeless pistol of the Swiss Army, is once again in production by SIG SAUER GmbH in Germany. This historic gun features the same precision and reliability as its ancestors, but also offers a number of modern improvements.
  • The return of the SIG SAUER P210 Legend will now ensure that many more shooters will be able to enjoy one of the world’s most accurate and legendary firearms.

sig_p210_b

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  • 21st Century Commander
  • Internally, the 21st Century Commander is classic Colt. The stainless 4.25-inch barrel is rifled in the standard 1:16-inch left-hand twist. Each 21st Century Commander is serialized with a unique number that contains the letters “WC” for Wiley Clapp.

Colt 21st Century Commander

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  • 21 Series Beretta
  • The 21 Series Beretta pocket pistol (Bobcat) has the same dedication to advanced design, uncompromising quality and strict quality control that make the 92F, Cougar and Cheetah such international standouts.
  • It has a user-friendly design, exclusive tip-up barrel allowing the user to easily load a round directly into the chamber or assisting in the safe clearing of the pistol by allowing a live round to be easily removed from the chamber and the bore quickly checked. Jamming and stovepiping problems are virtually eliminated by the open slide design shared by all small frame Berettas.
  • Chambered for .22LR or .25ACP (6.35 mm), this compact, rugged small frame measures just 4.9 inches (125 mm) overall and weighs only 11.5 ounces (325 grams). It features a lightweight, alloy frame, blued steel slide, tip-up barrel, and double/single action. The Bobcat comes with a 7-round magazine for .22LR ammunition, or an 8 round magazine for .25 (6.35 mm)caliber cartridges.

Beretta Mod 21A

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  • Twenty-one Gun Salute
  • Legend has it that Twenty-one guns are fired in U.S. national military salutes because the digits in 1776 add up to 21. However, despite the fact that the year 1776 is deeply significant to Americans and the total of its digits does add up to 21, the legend is untrue because the custom of the 21-gun salute antedates the American Revolution by at least several decades.
  • Also interesting is the fact that, although we now view weaponry salutes as honors proudly bestowed by fighting men upon those of high rank or great achievement, saluting in days long ago was an act of submission; a tangible way of demonstrating that the one performing the action was voluntarily placing himself in the power of the one being saluted. Guns would be emptied a ritual number of times, or sails would be lowered, or spears would be pointed towards the ground, the significance being that those carrying out the act were saying “I yield to your authority, and as proof I’ve just rendered my weapon incapable of being used against you.”
  • Over time the practice evolved into a custom honorary and ceremonial as well as practical. Today’s salute is far more a mark of respect than an act of submission.
  • Cannons became part of weaponry salutes in the 14th century.  A just-emptied cannon was a useless piece of ordnance and so made a fine visible display of the lack of hostile intent. Warships took to firing honorary seven-gun salutes, with that number likely chosen for its astrological and biblical significance. Because those crewing cannons on land had access to far greater supplies of powder, they were able to fire three guns (a number chosen for its mystical significance) for every shot fired afloat, making the honorary salute by shore batteries 21 guns.
  • Eventually, an understanding was reached that the international salute should be established as 21 guns.
  • Today, the national salute of 21 guns is fired in honor of a national flag, the sovereign or chief of state of a foreign nation, a member of a reigning royal family, and the President, ex-President, and President-elect of the United States. It is also fired at noon of the day of the funeral of a President, ex-President, or President-elect; Washington’s Birthday; Presidents’ Day; and the Fourth of July. On Memorial Day, a salute of 21 minute guns (i.e., guns discharged at one-minute intervals) is fired at noon while the flag is flown at half staff.

21-gun-salute

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In other stuff

  • We are currently living in the 21st Century, which spans the years from 2001 to 2100;
  • There are 21 letters in the Italian alphabet;
  • 21 is the number representing the maturity and the responsibility for an individual;
  • In most USA states 21 is the drinking age;
  • In some countries 21 is the voting age;
  • Cities on latitude 21 North include:  Aguascalientes, Cancún, and León, in Mexico; Jeddah, and Mecca in Saudi Arabia; Honolulu, Hawaii; Nagpur, Maharashtra, India; and Hanoi, Vietnam.
  • Cities on latitude 21 South include: Francistown, Botswana; and Nuku’Alofa, Tonga.
  • Cities on longitude 21 West include: Reykjavík, Iceland.
  • Cities on longitude 21 East include: Warsaw, Poland; Pristina, Kosovo; and Skopje, Macedonia.21 is a card game, also called vingt-et-un (French for “twenty-one”), pontoon, or blackjack;
  • Twenty One, was the name of a TV quiz show that ran from 1956 to 1958, most remembered for the scandal that the wins were fixed – it was remade in 2000;
  • There are 21 spots on a standard cubical (six-sided) die (1+2+3+4+5+6);
  • There are 21 trump cards of the tarot deck if one does not consider The Fool to be a proper trump card;
  • In Israel, the number is associated with the profile 21 (the military profile designation granting an exemption from the military service);
  • 21 grams is the weight of the soul, according to research by Duncan MacDougall;
  • 21 is the designation of a US Highway connecting Wytheville, Virginia and Beaufort, South Carolina, a truncation of a route that once connected Cleveland, Ohio and Jacksonville, Florida, among other highways past and present;
  • 21 is the number of the French department Côte-d’Or;
  • In France XXI is a journal devoted to long-form journalism;
  • ’21’ is a landmark New York restaurant perfectly positioned in midtown Manhattan;
  • Forever 21 is an American chain of clothing retailers with branches in major cities in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East that offers trendy clothing and accessories for young women, men, and girls at low, affordable prices.

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Dumb Dumb Dumb – Yes, More Quiz Show Answers

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

Dumb was about the only word that could describe today’s lot of quiz show contestants, but even that wasn’t enough so I said it three times (and that went along with the video at the end, who was it said, I like it when a plan comes together).

So here you are.

Hope you find something to make you smile this Monday. I’m away to count me toes.

Enjoy!

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Q:  Which American actor is married to Nicole Kidman

A:  Forrest Gump.

Q:  On which street did Sherlock Holmes live?

A:  Er . . .

Q:  He makes bread .. .

A:  Er . . .

Q:  He makes cakes .. .

A:  Kipling Street?

Q:  Which of these is a city in Germany: Hanoi, Hanover or Hangover?

A:  Hanoi.

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Q:  In what year was President Kennedy assassinated?

A:  Erm .. .

Q: Well, let’s put it this way – he didn’t see 1964.

A:  1965?

Q:  What’s the Prince of Wales’s Christian name?

A:  Err . . .

Q:  Here’s a clue: he was married to Diana.

A:  Err . . .

Q:  It begins with a ‘C’.

A:  No idea.

Q:  What was the name of Tony Blair’s chief spin-doctor who resigned last year?

A:  Iain Duncan Smith.

Q:  Arrange these two groups of letters to form a word – CHED and PIT.

A: Chedpit.

Q:  How many toes would three people have in total?

A:  23.

Q:  I’m looking for an island in the Atlantic whose name includes the letter ‘e’.

A:  Ghana.

Q:  No, listen. It’s an island in the Atlantic Ocean.

A:  New Zealand.

Q:  What is the world’s largest continent?

A:  The Pacific

Q:  Name a film starring Bob Hoskins that is also the name of a famous painting by Leonardo Da Vinci.

A:  Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Q:  In which European city was the first opera house opened in 1637?

A:  Sydney.

Q:  What was signed to bring World War I to an end in 1918?

A:  Magna Carta.

Q:  What international brand shares its name with the Greek goddess of victory?

A: (after long deliberation): Erm, Kellogg’s?

Q:  Name a book written by Jane Austen.

A:  Charlotte Bronte.

Q:  What is the name of the French-speaking Canadian state?

A:  America? 

A:  Portugal? 

A:  Canada? 

A:  Mexico? 

A:  Italy? 

A:  Spain? 

Q:  How many days in a leap year?

A:  253.

Q:  What is the county town of Kent?

A:  Kentish Town?

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Q:  Who wrote Lord of the Rings?

A:  Enid Blyton

Q:  In which European country are there people called Walloons?

A:  Wales.

Q:  Dizzy Gillespie is famous for playing . .. what?

A:  Basketball.

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