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Old 18 February 2014, 01:07 PM
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Ponder 10 bizarre facts about Russia you probably didnít know

Here are 10 bizarre facts about the country of Russia that you probably did not know.

http://dailycaller.com/2014/02/17/10...now-slideshow/

I have posted this as a sort of Snopester treasure hunt, as several of these sound rather ULish to me. I have confirmed the 'larger surface than Pluto' one, although there can be some doubt about the actual difference in size, since with Pluto's non-sphericity, the surface area may be greater than a similarly-massive sphere would otherwise be.
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Old 18 February 2014, 01:41 PM
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I've heard that one about the submarines and Pepsi before - although it may not have been Pepsi that time, I can't remember. (It may not have been Russia either...) They were supposedly surplus that the country was trying to use to pay off a debt, but the claimed value wasn't accepted and so the offer was rejected, or something.

(Obviously I'm not offering my vague recollections as proof - although I'm sure you'd all accept them as such anyway - but it does contribute to the UL-like nature of this).

(eta) That last one is the plot of Doctor Strangelove, surely?
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Old 18 February 2014, 01:43 PM
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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verkhoyansk#Climate

I decided to check up on the average temperature of Verkoyansk

Quote:
Verkoyansk, Russia has a population of 1,311 people and an average temperature of -50 degrees Fahrenheit. Livestock and horses in the town were attacked by a pack of 400 wolves in 2011. The sun currently rises at 2 p.m. and sets at 3:30 pm.
Although it is cold, the average low for only one month is -50F. The average mean temperature for the year is just 6F.

But the average temperature is far from -50F.
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Old 18 February 2014, 01:45 PM
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I wasn't sure whether that one was even meant to be a bizarre fact, or just background to something. The sun "currently" rises and sets at those times? So this fact would be current for what, two days a year? And how is that any more bizarre than anywhere else at a latitude sufficiently far north or south?
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Old 18 February 2014, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
I wasn't sure whether that one was even meant to be a bizarre fact, or just background to something. The sun "currently" rises and sets at those times? So this fact would be current for what, two days a year? And how is that any more bizarre than anywhere else at a latitude sufficiently far north or south?
At the North pole, the sun won't rise for another 46 days!
Wooooohhh!!! Bizarre!
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Old 18 February 2014, 04:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
I wasn't sure whether that one was even meant to be a bizarre fact, or just background to something. The sun "currently" rises and sets at those times? So this fact would be current for what, two days a year? And how is that any more bizarre than anywhere else at a latitude sufficiently far north or south?
Not too many people live at those latitudes.
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Old 18 February 2014, 04:43 PM
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Not that far south, certainly - but it's not outstandingly far north. Obviously there aren't many places as far north as that, but it's not even in the Arctic Circle. ((eta) Sorry, yes it is.) It doesn't even make the table in Wikipedia as far as northernmost towns go, and there are plenty of places further north in Russia. Even Murmansk is further north, which is a sizeable city.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northe...ties_and_towns

I wouldn't say that was a "bizarre fact" about it. Maybe the bizarre fact was about the wolves, and a mis-statement of how cold it was.
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Old 18 February 2014, 04:45 PM
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There was a NYTImes article from 1989 about the submarines, but I can't get it to open (google pepsi russia submarine). There is another LA Times article about Pepsi trading Pepsi to Russia for 10 ships (and vodka) in 1990.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:02 PM
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Well, on the men:women ratio, according to the CIA world fact book, the number of women exceeds the number of men in Russia by about 10.5 million. Over 7 million of that is in the >65 range.

Vodka, Communism and WWII was obviously hard on the older crowd.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:10 PM
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...nderpants.html

I never would have suspected Boris Yeltsin of doing this while drunk.

Although, I can see why. I drank some Boris Yeltsin brand vodka when I was in Lebanon and it nearly knocked me on my behind.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:14 PM
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http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/weird-n...iffing-1771007

http://flightaware.com/squawks/view/...viation%20fuel

It appears the Russian bears addicted to fuel is true. Although, I can only find it involving brown bears, not polar bears.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:42 PM
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Is it just me who was completely unaware that Boris Yeltsin was dead? What a bizarre fact about Russia that I didn't know.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:53 PM
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I don't know whether I knew he was dead, or whether it did not shock me he was dead when I looked him up in Wikipedia recently.
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Old 18 February 2014, 05:55 PM
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Yeah, I remember he died the same day as David Halberstam, an American reporter. And no, I don't know why that sticks out in my memory.
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Old 18 February 2014, 06:17 PM
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I think I must have known once but forgotten.

He was already dead even when I visited Yekaterinburg, though. I would have thought I'd remember he was dead from that trip but I don't. I associate him with the visit because he featured in a mural on the ceiling of the railway station, next to the one of Gary Powers crashing to Earth like a fallen angel. (Yeltsin is from nearby and his name begins with the same letter, which is why I decided to stick with the Yekaterinburg transliteration rather than Ekaterinburg, although Yekaterinburg seems to be standard everywhere now).
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  #16  
Old 19 February 2014, 11:58 PM
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Wolf

I'm a bit skeptical about the "pack of 400 wolves" claim. That's awfully large for a wolf pack.
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Old 20 February 2014, 12:46 AM
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Wolf

Quote:
Originally Posted by moonfall View Post
I'm a bit skeptical about the "pack of 400 wolves" claim. That's awfully large for a wolf pack.
Yes, I watched a documentary recently where David Attenborough commented on the size of a wolf pack. I can't remember the exact number but it looked like about 20 or 30, and he said that was very unusual.
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