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Showing posts from December 30, 2007

Don't mess with Genghis!

I just read in Mental Floss magazine that when Genghis Khan died, those in charge of the burial went to great lengths to preserve the secret of his resting place. Apparently, Genghis’ funeral procession included 2,500 followers and a mounted bodyguard of 400 soldiers. Anyone who happened to stumble upon the procession was immediately put to death by the soldiers. When the procession finally arrived at its destination, 40 virgins were killed to provide Genghis the appropriate pleasures in the afterlife. Then, at the end of the funeral ceremony, the soldiers killed all 2,500 members of the procession. Upon their return to the capital, all 400 soldiers were all immediately put to death by another group of soldiers. I hope that they do that for me when I go!

Things that I now know thanks to the BBC

Here are some of the more interesting things that I learned over the past year, with thanks to the BBC News Magazine ! [Click on the link to read more] Adding milk to tea negates the health-giving effects of a hot cup. Dishcloths can be purged of 99 percent of their bacteria from just two minutes in a microwave. About half of China's population can’t speak the national language, Mandarin. There are approximately 30,000 wild parakeets currently living in London. You can get mobile phone coverage from the summit of Mount Everest. As part of their performance reviews, female civil servants in India are questioned about their menstrual cycle. The true secret to happiness is learning to accept misery. Until the late 1990s, the nuclear warheads of the Royal Air Force could be activated using a easily obtained bicycle lock key. Cats can be police constables in the UK. Chickens can be diagnosed with depression. In Iceland, 96% of women go on to some form of higher ed

The International Year of the Potato

It's about time. I've long argued that they should have their own country. "The UN wants to see the humble potato used to combat poverty and provide food security." The ABC tells me that about 400,000 tonnes of potatoes are grown in Tasmania each year, and Jennifer, Henry and I eat maybe a third of that. I like this quote from the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association: "There's such a variety of ways of preparing them for the table you know, you can boil them, you can bake them, you can make them into chips." Well said that man. All hail the mighty spud! HOORAH!

Quotes of the Year

Alright, here they are, with my favourite left until last: “The Committee found that both players had been drunk in public, behaved anti-socially and inappropriately handled quokkas.” – Rugby WA misconduct committee finds two Western Force players guilty of breaching team protocol on Rottnest Island. "I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because, um, some people out there in our nation don't have maps and, uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as, uh, South Africa and, uh, the Iraq and everywhere like such as, and I believe that they should, uh, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future." – Miss Teen South Carolina, Lauren Caitlin Upton, after being asked why one-fifth of Americans cannot locate the US on a world map. "It had to do with Cuba and missiles, I'm pretty sure." – White House P