Interesting trivia you may need to know

Published 6:46 pm Tuesday, May 3, 2022

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As a journalist, I often use the Internet (well, the most reliable sites) to seek out additional information pertaining to a story I’m working on.

Say, for instance, if I’m putting together a story about an individual suffering from a rare medical disorder, I’ll look up that ailment online in order to learn more about it and share that info with those who will later read the article.

Despite some naysayers, the Internet is a great source of information. The key is to link to the sites that have proven themselves, time and again, as reliable sources.

On occasion, I’ll search random sites to obtain equally random information….those tiny morsels of knowledge one can store in the back of their brains. You never know when you might wind-up on a game show one day and need such trivia to win a million dollars.

The following represents my version of “stuff you need to know:”

Who were the first couple to be shown in bed together on prime time TV? I thought it was Lucy and Desi Arnaz. But it was actually Fred and Wilma Flintstone.

Every day, more money is printed for Monopoly than the U.S. Treasury.

Men can read smaller print than women can, but women can hear better.

Coca-Cola was originally green.

Little brown bats sleep more than any other mammal on earth.

It is impossible to lick your elbow.

The state with the highest percentage of people who walk to work: Alaska.

The longest tennis rally took place on June 11, 2017 and involved Italian athletes Simone Frediani and Daniele Pecci. They the world record by hitting for more than 12 and a half hours straight—from 6:23 a.m. to 7 p.m. The two took a total of 51,283 uninterrupted strokes, sipping from water-filled backpacks to hydrate without having to stop play.

The cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of eleven: $16,400.

Armadillos swallow air to become buoyant when they swim.

The very first TV commercial aired on July 1, 1941 during a Major League Baseball game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Philadelphia Phillies.

There are an average of 9,728 commercial airplanes in the sky at any given time.

The first pieces of gold at Fort Knox arrived by mail in 1937.

Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair.

On Mars, sunsets are blue.

A cow-bison hybrid is called a “beefalo.”

The first novel ever written on a typewriter: Tom Sawyer.

The world record for the tallest stack of doughnuts totaled 3,100.

Each king in a deck of playing cards represents a great king from history: Spades – King David; Hearts – Charlemagne; Clubs – Alexander the Great and Diamonds – Julius Caesar.

Only two national flags contain the color purple: Dominica and Nicaragua.

If a statue in the park of a person on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle. If the horse has one front leg in the air, the person died because of wounds received in battle. If the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes.

The smallest unit of measurement in the universe is the Planck length.

Only two people signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776…John Hancock and Charles Thomson. Most of the rest signed on August 2, but the last signature wasn’t added until five years later.

Lightning can heat the air it passes through to 50,000 degrees.

Male seahorses bear their young.

A blue whale’s tongue weighs as much as an elephant.

Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of what? Their birthplace.

Chihuahuas have the biggest brains in the canine world.

If you were to spell out numbers, how far would you have to go until you would find the letter ‘A’? One thousand.

What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers and laser printers have in common? All were invented by women.

What is the only food that doesn’t spoil? Honey.

Fleas can jump up to 100 times their body length.

The space between your eyebrows is called the glabella.

Jellyfish can sting even when they’re dead.

In Shakespeare’s time, mattresses were secured on bed frames by ropes. When you pulled on the ropes, the mattress tightened, making the bed firmer to sleep on. Hence the phrase….’Goodnight, sleep tight.’

It was the accepted practice in Babylon 4,000 years ago that for a month after the wedding, the bride’s father would supply his son-in-law with all the mead he could drink.

Mead is a honey wine and because their calendar was lunar based, this period was called the honey month, which we know today as the honeymoon.

Many years ago in England, pub frequenters had a whistle baked into the rim, or handle, of their ceramic cups. When they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get some service. ‘Wet your whistle’ is the phrase inspired by this practice.

England is hit with more tornadoes per square mile than any other country in the world.

Dating back to 859 A.D., the world’s oldest operating library is in Morocco.

And finally, did you know that at least 75 percent of people who read this will try to lick their elbow. I tried it and failed!

Cal Bryant is the Editor of Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact him at or 252-332-7207.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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