You see,as much as some people hate to be taught and trained, there are few of us who can resist learning something interesting. It’s in our blood. The need to know.
As a way to keep my young man’s interest alive, I spent the rest of that course trawling up as many interesting and credibility-busting facts as I could. Even if I had to stretch their relevance to the subject of my course.
And it’s a trick you can keep up your sleeve too. Just make a file on your computer called “Strange Facts” and put in it any fascinating facts that you come across while surfing or training.
Here are 50 outstanding ones to start you off…
1. If you are struck by lightning, your skin will be heated to 28,000 degrees Centigrade, hotter than the surface of the Sun.
2. If you trace your family tree back 25 generations, you will have 33,554,432 direct ancestors – assuming no incest was involved.
3. The average distance between the stars in the sky is 20 million miles.
4. It would take a modern spaceship 70,000 years to get to the nearest star to earth.
5. An asteroid wiped out every single dinosaur in the world, but not a single species of toad or salamander was affected. No one knows why, nor why the crocodiles and tortoises survived.
6. If you dug a well to the centre of the Earth, and dropped a brick in it, it would take 45 minutes to get to the bottom – 4,000 miles down.
7. Your body sheds 10 billion flakes of skin every day.
8. The Earth weighs 6,500 million million million tons.
9. Honey is the only food consumed by humans that doesn’t go off.
10. The Hawaiian alphabet has only 12 letters.
11. A donkey can sink into quicksand but a mule can’t.
12. Every time you sneeze your heart stops a second.
13. There are 22 miles more canals in Birmingham UK than in Venice.
14. Potato crisps were invented by a Mr Crumm.
15. Facetious and abstemious contain all the vowels in their correct order.
16. Eskimoes have hundreds of words for snow but none for hello.
17. The word “set” has the most definitions in the English language.
18. The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating its letters is uncopyrightable.
19. Windmills always turn counter-clockwise.
20. The “Sixth Sick Sheik’s Sixth Sheep’s Sick” is the hardest tongue-twister.
21. The longest English word without a vowel is twyndyllyngs which means "twins".
22. 1 x 8 + 1 = 9; 12 x 8 + 2 = 98; 123 x 8 + 3 = 987; 1234 x 8 + 4 = 9876; 12345 x 8 + 5 = 98765; 123456 x 8 + 6 = 987654; 1234567 x 8 + 7 = 9876543; 12345678 x 8 + 8 = 98765432; 123456789 x 8 + 9 = 987654321
23. The word "dreamt" is the only common word in the English language that ends in "mt".
24. Albert Einstein never wore any socks.
25. The average human will eat 8 spiders while asleep in their lifetime.
26. In space, astronauts cannot cry because there is no gravity.
27. Hummingbirds are the only creatures that can fly backwards.
28. An ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain.
29. Cockroaches can live 9 days without their heads before they starve to death.
30. A flamingo can eat only when its head is upside down.
31. The lighter was invented before the match.
32. The average left-handed person lives 7 years LESS than a right-handed person.
33. The average person has over 1,460 dreams a year!
34. Scientists with high-speed cameras have discovered that rain drops are not tear shaped but rather look like hamburger buns.
35. The first Internet domain name ever registered was Symbolics.com on March 15, 1985.
36. When Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone back in 1876, only six phones were sold in the first month.
37. Approximately 7.5% of all office documents get lost.
38. Business.com is currently the most expensive domain name sold: for $7.5 million.
39. In 2001, the five most valuable brand names in order were Coca-Cola, Microsoft, IBM, GE, and Nokia.
40. In Canada, the most productive day of the working week is Tuesday.
41. In a study by the University of Chicago in 1907, it was concluded that the easiest colour to spot is yellow. This is why John Hertz, who is the founder of the Yellow Cab Company picked cabs to be yellow.
42. It takes about 63,000 trees to make the newsprint for the average Sunday edition of The New York Times.
43. On average a business document is copied 19 times.
44. The largest employer in the world is the Indian railway system in India, employing over 1.6 million people.
45. Warner Chappel Music owns the copyright to the song "Happy Birthday." They make over $1 million in royalties every year from the commercial use of the song.
46. All babies are colour-blind when they are born.
47. Children grow faster in the springtime than any other season during the year.
48. Each nostril of a human being registers smells in a different way. Smells that are made from the right nostril are more pleasant than the left. However, smells can be detected more accurately when made by the left nostril.
49. Humans are born with 350 bones in their body, however when a person reaches adulthood they only have 206 bones. This occurs because many of them join together to make a single bone.
50. May babies are on average 200 grams heavier than babies born in other months.