Off Campus

15 February 2005

Little-Known Facts

We're taking the week off, and now so can you!

This week Off Campus takes a moment to give back to the kids. You have been spending quality time reading our comics and blog online after all, telling your friends, sending money, all while your mom thinks you're doing actual "research" online. We know you don't have time to do all your homework and still shoot dice, so let us help you out, courtesey of our sometimes fill-in, the Auto-responder.

We've painstakingly taken the time (well, not us personally, but rather this dusty mass of silicon chips and diodes on the corner of the desk, buried under some junk mail, catalogs and candybar wrappers) to amass some fun and interesting useful facts you can incorporate into your papers or party conversations, proper definitions to words that you think you know, but aren't 100% sure, and so on.

(If, by the way, any of the following is found to be inaccurate, don't come crying to us. That's what you get for not doing the legwork, knowing full well we didn't do it either.)

Real bone-a-fide factoids:

- Tom Carvel invented the soft-serve ice cream machine.

- The United States produces about 650 million pounds of cherries each year.

- 80 feet of wire is in a metal Slinky.

- Nearly one out of every 10 people who get diphtheria will die from it.

- More than five million people participated in Hands Across America.

- Marshmallow Circus Peanuts were invented in the 1800's.

- The average person in Denmark eats 36 pounds of candy per year.

- The word "bung" is not dirty. Look it up.

- Sponges can't fart.

- There are 675 km of unpaved roads on Guam.

- Most goats are seasonal breeders.

- "Frankie" was the 540th most popular male baby name in 1993.

- William Lear designed both the Lear Jet and the 8-track tape.

Stuff I made up:

- George Lazenby, while best know for being the least-known James Bond, also wrestled horses in a Bolivian side-show in the mid-1950's.

- If you dip your feet in a bucket of cork, they'll shine like the Hope Diamond.

- The correct usage of the word "chortle" requires the ringing of a brass bell, somewhere within 50 feet of the person using the word. Failure to do so may result in copyright infringement.

- GONE WITH THE WIND features the greatest number of actual on-screen deaths ever committed in a non-Danish film. (37)

- Yellow crayons are made of a secret combination of mustard and concrete.

- It is often believed that foxes cheat at cards. This is not true. Foxes can't play cards. Beavers are the ones to watch out for.

- While viewed as an unpleasant subject in the US, urination is often celebrated publicly in the lower Andes, with parades and musical theatre devoted to the subject.

- Birds don't really fly south for the winter. They fly south for the tan.

- There once WAS a man from Nantucket. And he could, you know.

- Billy Joel prefers Motts over Ocean Spray.

- The song "Wind Beneath My Wings", when played backwards, sounds slightly better.

- It is physically impossible to touch the back of your head with your tongue. Try it.

- Yellow Dye No. 5 isn't an essential ingredient in everything, it just has strong union representaion.

- When exposed to light, ferns smile.

- Cats always land on their feet, unless there is a piece of buttered toast on its back.