– Entomologists estimate that insects destroy or harvest approximately one-third of all grass grown in the United States. Chomp.
– Latest tabulation I could find (2016): 15 of our states permit corporal punishment (paddling) in public schools.
– Overheard comment from a local sage: “Eating broccoli is like dying – I do not want to do it.”
– Theodore Roosevelt flew in an airplane in 1910. However, he was not president at that time. It was 1943 before a president in office (Franklin D. Roosevelt) became a plane passenger. FDR rode in a Boeing 314 Clipper Flying Boat and traveled to Casablanca to meet with Winston Churchill. I do not know if Rick (Humphrey Bogart) had already left town. The movie Casablanca was shot in 1942.
– During the 1200’s A.D., the cat population in Europe decreased dramatically after Pope Gregory IX damned cats as agents of Satan. Cats were slaughtered by the thousands. Black ones were especially targeted. Historians generally agree that one consequence stemming from the dearth of felines was an increase in rat populations across the continent. During the following century, rats played a significant role in spreading the devastating bubonic plague. This Black Death resulted in the demise of millions of people.
– Now scientists claim that diamonds also rain down on the surface of Uranus. Use caution when pronouncing “Uranus.”
– The tennis racket used by Billie Jean King to defeat Bobby Riggs at the Battle of the Sexes in 1973 recently sold at auction for $125,000.
– It is a matter of record that famous frontiersman David Crockett preferred to be called Davy. However, all known documents bearing the man’s signature are signed David Crockett.
– It was in the 1500’s when Xmas was first used to represent Christmas. “Xmas” was not intended to be an insult, but rather the occasion wherein Greeks were using the letter chi in their word for Christ.
– The Chinese Lunar New Year begins on February 16. Traditionally in China a large portion of the populace participates in trips returning to hometowns in order to be with family for celebrations. In 2017, an estimated 3 billion trips were made to join in various gaieties.
– History is replete with instances of irony. An example: In 1853, a contractor named John Coffee was hired to build a jail for Dundalk, Ireland. Near the end of construction, John went bankrupt and became the very first prisoner to be housed in the new facility. DOH!
– Well, eat broccoli only should you desire to do so – and have a great week.
James White is a retired mathematics teacher who enjoys sharing fascinating trivia. He can be reached at email@example.com.