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  #21  
Old 30 December 2014, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by snopes View Post
9. France was still executing people with a guillotine when the first Star Wars film came out.
Just barely (September 1977), and it was the last one (I actually have a book about this).

Wasn't Humpty Dumpty supposed to be a riddle? That is, you were supposed to guess what he was? In my mind, that would explain why the nursery rhyme doesn't mention he's an egg.

Seaboe
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  #22  
Old 15 March 2015, 10:29 PM
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Here's some more;

1.) Cleopatra lived closer to the building of Pizza Hut than the pyramids.
The Great Pyramid was built cerca 2560 BC, while Cleopatra lived around 30 BC. The first Pizza Hut opened in 1958, which is about 500 years closer.

2.) The first pyramids were built while the woolly mammoth was still alive.
While most mammoths died out long before civilizations arose, a small populations survived until 1650 BC. By that point, Egypt was halfway through its empire, and the Giza Pyramids were already 1000 years old.

3.) The fax machine was invented the same year people were traveling the Oregon Trail. The first fax machine was developed by Alexander Bain in 1843, meanwhile The Great Migration began across America.

4.) Humans never fully experience the "present" - we're always living in the past. Every human being is living at least 80 milliseconds in the past. David Eagleman believes that our consciousness lags behind actual events and that when you think an event occurs, it has already happened before your brain has a chance to create a cohesive picture of the world.
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  #23  
Old 15 March 2015, 10:36 PM
urbanlegendfanatic urbanlegendfanatic is offline
 
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaboe Muffinchucker View Post
Just barely (September 1977), and it was the last one (I actually have a book about this).

Wasn't Humpty Dumpty supposed to be a riddle? That is, you were supposed to guess what he was? In my mind, that would explain why the nursery rhyme doesn't mention he's an egg.

Seaboe
The egg was a picture added by Lewis Caroll in "Through the Looking Glass". It has nothing to do with the original rhyme. The rhyme itself is much older and no one knows what Humpty Dumpty represents. The term goes back to the 1500's and was slang for a large, clumsy person. It's possible "Humpty Dumpty" refers to the type of cannon used in the English Civil War in the 1600's but there's no concrete proof of that. It's also possible "Humpty Dumpty" was Charles I who had a great fall when he was overthrown.
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  #24  
Old 03 October 2015, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by snopes View Post
19. Alaska — it’s simultaneously the most northern, the most western, and the most eastern state in the U.S.
I'm afraid I want to disagree with Alaska being the most eastern state in the US. That would be Maine.
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  #25  
Old 03 October 2015, 11:00 AM
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Attu Station in Alaska has the coordinates of:

52°51'11.3"N 173°06'18.7"E

It is in the eastern hemisphere of the world. So, using that coordinate system, Alaska is indeed the eastern most US state in the world.

(I'll tell you some time the argument I had about the shortest route to Korea with a colleague of mine. You can't argue coordinate systems with a surveyor like me. )
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  #26  
Old 03 October 2015, 11:01 AM
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Not if you go by the 180th Meridian. Some of the Aleutian Islands are west of it, which puts them in the Eastern Hemisphere.
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  #27  
Old 03 October 2015, 03:49 PM
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If you go far enough west, you're east again.

ETA: See also the saying "America's day begins in Guam." Guam, a US territory, is an island in the Pacific.
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  #28  
Old 03 October 2015, 04:55 PM
Singing in the Drizzle Singing in the Drizzle is offline
 
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The problem with Easter most or any farthest in one direction is that you must always consider where you are starting from. Is it Eastern most from the center (how ever you determine it) of the US or Eastern from zero longitude on the earth. It could be someone asking the Eastern most state from the starting point of Moscow USSR.
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  #29  
Old 03 October 2015, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaboe Muffinchucker View Post
Wasn't Humpty Dumpty supposed to be a riddle? That is, you were supposed to guess what he was? In my mind, that would explain why the nursery rhyme doesn't mention he's an egg.

Seaboe
Correct. It is one of those rhyming riddles, but the solution is now so well-known (as it has been since Tudor times) that the riddle part is now omitted and it exists only as a nursery rhyme. (See Iona and Peter Opie, The Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes, Oxford University Press)
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  #30  
Old 03 October 2015, 06:12 PM
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So Humpty Dumpty was one generations Rosebud?
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  #31  
Old 03 October 2015, 08:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Singing in the Drizzle View Post
The problem with Easter most or any farthest in one direction is that you must always consider where you are starting from. Is it Eastern most from the center (how ever you determine it) of the US or Eastern from zero longitude on the earth. It could be someone asking the Eastern most state from the starting point of Moscow USSR.
Alaska is the easternmost US state by latitude, which is constant.
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  #32  
Old 03 October 2015, 10:20 PM
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XKCD, always relevant:
https://xkcd.com/503/
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  #33  
Old 04 October 2015, 07:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esprise Me View Post
XKCD, always relevant:
https://xkcd.com/503/
The terms 'occidental' (western) and 'oriental' (eastern) predate the colonisation of the US. They make a lot more sense from a European perspective where the Orient really is to the east.
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  #34  
Old 04 October 2015, 11:17 PM
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But the use of the word "Western" in that sense is only a little older than its use to mean a typical story about the American West.
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  #35  
Old 05 October 2015, 02:43 AM
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A pound of goose down is heavier than a pound of gold.
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  #36  
Old 05 October 2015, 04:33 AM
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That's why it's not called up.
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  #37  
Old 05 October 2015, 06:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganzfeld View Post
But the use of the word "Western" in that sense is only a little older than its use to mean a typical story about the American West.
Relatedly, as a child growing up in California, I was a little peeved to discover that "Westerns" were set in a part of the U.S. that was to the east of me.
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  #38  
Old 05 October 2015, 06:21 AM
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Quote:
12. The unicorn is the national animal of Scotland.
Not quite. It's the heraldic animal of Scotland (as seen in the Royal Coat of Arms):



It's not the national animal in the sense that the white-tailed deer is the state animal of Illinois.
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  #39  
Old 15 October 2015, 06:46 AM
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Some species of Kangaroo have 3 vaginas. This is because these species will have one joey in the pouch, and another that lies dormant. The males have access to one of the three depending on how many joeys she has already.
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