Mullet Over


Carefully select names for your offspring

james k whiteIn 1954 the NBA’s Lakers won their 3rd consecutive title. Only in 1954, it was the Minneapolis Lakers. You see, the team derived its name from being surrounded by the thousands of lakes in Minnesota and kept the same moniker when the franchise moved to Los Angeles. Lagniappe: in 1954 round steak was 65 cents per pound and bread was 17 cents for one loaf.

Noticeable progress has been accomplished in the field of genetics. Ten years ago, completely sequencing the DNA of an individual would have cost approximately $900 million. In 2010, the same process cost $10,000.

Scientists have long been fascinated by possibilities involving the skin colors of dinosaurs. Birds and reptiles living today are often arrayed with a variety of brilliant hues. It seemed reasonable that the hundreds of known dinosaur species might have displayed dazzling reds, blues, etc. This pigment conjecture was recently supported when a paleontologist from the University of Bristol (England) discovered dinosaur remains that indicate the animal’s skin was chestnut with bold white stripes.

The nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945 had several lingering effects never previously observed. Amongst these was that tomato plants suddenly thrived in the region. Prior to the blast, local gardeners had experienced much difficulty raising the tasty fruit. Botanists speculate that intense heat from the atomic blast destroyed a fungus that had hindered healthy tomato plant growth.

A new 3 inch long 2 ounce location device is available for $200. The electronic wonder can be placed in a car, plane, purse, etc. and can be tracked almost anywhere in the world through GPS using a smart phone or computer. One battery charge lasts a month. I am dazzled.

For you history buffs: Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin were born in the same year and in the same state: 1793 and Virginia. They apparently never met until they were both adults in Texas.

Until 1970 French citizens had been quite restricted when selecting names for their children. The Ministry of the Interior maintained lists of approved names for both genders. All legally recognized names were to be chosen from the officially approved registry.  Since 1970 more creative appellations may be used, though some are still disallowed for “poor taste or cruelty to a defenseless subject.”

Our famous pilgrims (Mayflower, 1620) apparently did not know that they were pilgrims. It was not until 1669 that someone (William Bradford) first referred to the intrepid group as “pilgrims.” Well, carefully select names for your offspring and do have a great week.

James White is a retired mathematics teacher who enjoys sharing fascinating trivia. He can be reached at

GBA banner

Adult Truths

1. Sometimes I'll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.
2. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.
3. I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.
4. There is great need for a sarcasm font.
5. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?
6. Was learning cursive really necessary?
7. Map Quest really needs to start their directions on # 5. I'm pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.
8. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.
9. I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.
10. Bad decisions make good stories.
11. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren't going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.
12. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after Blue Ray? I don't want to have to restart my collection ... again.
13. I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page technical report that I swear I did not make any changes to.
14. I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.
15. I think the freezer deserves a light as well.
16. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lite than Kay.
17. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.
18. How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod and smile because you still didn't hear or understand a word they said?
20. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars team up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters!
21. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.
22. Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, finding their cell phone, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey - but I'd bet everyone can find and push the snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time, every time.
23. The first testicular guard, the "Cup," was used in Hockey in 1874 and the first helmet was used in 1974. That means it only took 100 years for men to realize their brain is also important. 

The search to determine the author revealed just under 35 million results. None I pursued gave proper attribution. We will publish the author’s name if we are informed. Send to