Mike’s Musings- Stuff you don’t need to know

June 21, 2013

Michael Wilcox, Publisher/Editor

I’m a self-admitted trivia buff. When I take my 11-year-old son out to lunch, we always end up at a restaurant that has Buzztime; and we will sit for an hour or two, playing the popular trivia game. Here’s a few useless bits of trivia I’ve picked up through the years:

-Eric Torpy admired NBA legend Larry Bird so much that when he was sentenced to 30 years in prison for armed robbery and attempted murder in 2005, he asked the judge to make the sentence 33 years instead (33 was Bird’s uniform number). The judge granted Torpy’s request.

-Cleveland Indians pitcher Bob Feller and Minnesota Twins outfielder Denard Span have something in common. Both hit their mothers in the stands with a foul ball. Feller hit his mom in 1939 and broke her collarbone. Span hit his mother during a game in 2010.

-The longest tenure for an editor belongs to (no, not me-but I’m working on it) goes to John Heiskell, who edited the Arkansas Gazette for 70 years. From 1902 to 1972 he ran the editorial side of the daily newspaper. He only stopped because he died. He was 100.

-Did you know an active ingredient in many allergy shots is cat dander (dead skin that clings to fur). Pet groomers sell the dead fur for as much as $110 per pound to pharmaceutical companies.

-In 1976 Keith Redman asked his girlfriend, Beverly to marry him. She said no, the first of 8801 rejections (a world record). In 1999 she finally tied the knot after Redman had proposed at the rate of one per day for 23 years (talk about never giving up!).

-Tourism officials trying to promote the City of Detroit, launched a new public relations campaign in 2011 in an effort to stop drug use. After placing posters all over the City, some wiseguy pointed out the font that was used create the “Believe in Detroit, logo was called “crackhouse.”

-Michigan election officials had to reprint 180,000 ballots that were being sent out to early voters in 2006. Why? Instead of having the word “public” written, the ballot read “pubic.” Several thousand of the ballots had already been mailed. Funny thing, the Secretary of State had employed a professional proofreader to make sure this mistake would never happen.

-Best selling cookie in the United States is Oreos. At least that is the case the last three-quarters of the year. From January thru March, girl scout cookies, in particular, Thin Mints, hold the number one title.

-Biggest gaff in sports. Trivia experts point to the NCAA title game in 1993. Trailing by only two points with 30 seconds to go, Chris Webber of Michigan grabbed a rebound when a North Carolina player missed a free throw. He hustled the ball down to Michigan’s end of the court and called a time out. Unfortunately for Michigan, they had no timeouts left. They were assessed a technical, and North Carolina won the game.

-Here are four school names (yes, they are real) that will make you shake your head. 1, Butts Road Primary School; 2, Goodenough College; 3, University de Moron; 4, Pansy Kidd Middle School.

-Did you know that McDonalds uses an insect attractant in their cilantro lime and orange glaze dressings? It is considered safe for human consumption in small doses…but it’s actually illegal to use in cat food because the FDA doesn’t think it’s safe for cats. The same ingredient is also used in bug traps because it both attracts and traps beetles.

-Charles Vlll of France, who became king, at the age of 13, in 1483, had a small frame but huge head. The head kept growing, while his body did not. At the age of 28, he was escorting his wife to a tennis match, down a long corridor, when he banged his head against a low wooden beam. He died of a skull fracture nine hours later.

-Need to find a job? Maybe you can become an ant hunter. Selected people spend their days sticking straws into the top of ant hills and blowing in to them until ants- 5000 to 50,000 at a time- swarm out. They capture the agitated insects in a tin scoop, then quickly transfer them to mason jar and move on to the next ant hill. Why? Ant Farms. Millions of ant farms are sold each year, mostly at Christmas time.

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