Showing posts from September, 2006

Interesting Food # 25 - Curry

Feeding children curries may protect them from cancer. Scientists believe that turmeric, the spice which turns curry dishes yellow, stops the growth of leukaemia cells and seems to protect against damage from cigarette smoke and some processed food.

(An even better way to protect against such damage is not to smoke or eat processed food. Besides what happens if you feed your children processed curry?)

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Interesting Fact - Chinese Girl

Chinese Girl, a painting by Vladimir Tretchikoff, who died last week, is believed to have sold more in print form than the Mona Lisa or Van Gogh's Sunflowers. Dressed in a gold-collared robe, her skin is a strange blue-green colour.

(Of course critics dismissed it as kitsch, but, if kitsch sells, who are they to criticise?

Apologies if you were sent here when searching for a dating site.)

Interesting Places # 38 - The Arctic

In the Arctic, between 2004 and 2006, an area the size of Pakistan or Turkey melted.

(According to records Arctic sea ice cover between 2004 and 2005 declined by 14%. The UK Met Office says that 2005 was the warmest year on record for the Northern Hemisphere. Everybody get your swimming trunks out!)

Interesting Fact # 380 - British stamps

Some Royal Mail stamps, which of course carry the Queen's image, are printed in Holland.

(Made in Britain doesn't mean much any more.)

Interesting Fact # 379 - Lips

88% of couples in long and happy relationships have lips of similar size, according to research by the University of Leicester.

(I always knew kissing was important.)

Interesting Fact # 378 - Cost of Education in the UK

Everyday school expenses in the UK - such as uniforms - cost families an average £1,300 a year.

(And they say we have a free education system.)

Interesting Animals - Cows

Do cows have regional accents? Well a professor of phonetics, John Wells', attention was drawn to this phenomenon by a Somerset farmer, Mr Lloyd Green, who claims that his bovine charges moo with a distinct Somerset drawl.

To read more on the Professor's response - look at the comments.

(Does that mean that they go mooh arr? And in Scotland do they go "Och aye the moo"?

BTW - "Ooh arr" is West Country speak for "Oh yes," and "Och aye the noo" is part of the Doric dialect in Scotland which I believe means "Oh yes, just now".)

Interesting Fact # 377 - UK Population

There are 300,000 people aged 90 or over in the UK.

(According to my MySpace profile I am one of them. LOL)

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Interesting Fact # 376 - Guitars

A million guitars were sold in the UK last year, more than double the number sold five years ago.

(There are a lot of X factor wannabes nowadays.)


We celebrate the first ever "One Web Day".

Susan Crawford, the founder of OneWebDay, said she wants people to reflect on how the web has changed their lives.

I'll second that!

Interesting Fact # 375 - Tea

Cups of tea can be healthier than water, according to some nutritionists.

(I keep telling everyone, but will they listen?)


The 65-year-old Italian nun shot dead in Somalia on 17th September, was buried in neighbouring Kenya.

Sister Leonella Sgorbati was killed, along with her bodyguard, outside the Mogadishu hospital where she worked.

I have great respect for people who try to help people in other countries, regardless of the risks.

Interesting Place # 37 - Brazil

There are two million cars and trucks in Brazil which run on alcohol.

(There are a few million Brits who do the same.)

Interesting Fact # 374 - Temperature of the sun

The surface or the sun is about 5,500 Celsius -- about as hot as it is at the center of the earth.

(The sun's surface is mostly hydrogen gas, now that's a lot of hot gas.)

Interesting Animals # 53 - Ants

Trap-jaw ants have been recorded closing their jaws at 66 mph, the fastest known speed for an animal moving its body parts.

(Well you wouldn't want a love bit from one of these guys. As for the fastest moving body part, I don't know, have you seen Beyonce's latest video?)

Today - Car Seat Laws

A new law has come into force in the UK to further regulate the use of child car seats. All children under the age of 12 will have to use some form of child car seat, unless they are taller than 135cm (4ft 5in).

(Failure to comply could lead to a £30 on-the-spot fine for drivers, or £500 for a court conviction. There are a lot of very annoyed children who think it's childish to sit on a booster seat.))

Today - UK's Most Wanted

A list of the UK's top 130 crime barons has been compiled, the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca).

(Luckily I'm not on it for crimes against blogging.)

Interesting Food # 24 - Cheddar Cheese

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There is only one cheddar cheese maker in Cheddar, even though cheddar is the most popular hard cheese in the English-speaking world.

(He or she must be very busy keeping up with demand. Actually, Cheddar is too widely produced to have a 'protected designated origin' (that didn't stop Parma ham of course, but that's the EU for you) and according to Wiki, the Slow Food Movement, has recently created a 'cheddar presidia'. This states that only three cheeses can truly be called Cheddar. They require that Cheddar be made in Somerset, and with traditional methods, such as using raw milk, traditional animal rennet, and a cloth wrapping. It all sounds very cheesy to me.)


Around the world, people have been holding protests, prayer meetings and vigils urging Sudan to allow a UN force into Darfur.

(All we are saying is give peace a chance:-

For future reference:-

Please note that the President is both the chief of state and the head of government:

Chief of state: President Umar Hassan Ahmad al-BASHIR (since 16 October 1993)
First Vice President Salva KIIR (since 4 August 2005)
Vice President Ali Osman TAHA (since 20 September 2005)

The council of Ministers is appointed by the president and the National Congress Party or NCP (formerly the National Islamic Front or NIF) dominates al-BASHIR's cabinet.)

Interesting Fact # 373 - Earth's core temperature

The inner core of the earth is about 6,400 kilometers below the surface, interestingly no one really knows exactly how hot it is. But estimates range from 5000°C to around 7000°C.

(Earth's core is mostly iron, what you might call a hot iron.)

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Interesting Fact # 372 - Plasma Screen TVs

Televisions with plasma screens can consume four times as much electricity as cathode ray tube televisions.

(Not if you don't switch them on they don't.)

Interesting Place # 36 - Barga

The town of Barga in Tuscany claims to be "the most Scottish in Italy".

(I guess by saying "the most Scottish in Italy" they're not likely to be exagerating, are they? Seemingly they hold a Scottish festival every year in August. I love culture swaps.)

Interesting Fact # 371 - iPods

There are 32,000 workers living on-site at the production centre in China where iPods are manufactured.

(Seemingly a 60 hour working week has now been put into place. How generous.)

Interesting Fact # 370 - Moon Landing

The original film footage of the first Apollo XI moon landing has been lost.

(Oh this is going to have all the conspiracy theorists slavering at the mouth.)

Interesting Fact # 369 - Give away DVDs

Newspapers in the UK have given away 54 million DVDs this year, about the same number as have been sold by retailers.

(Of course what they're not telling you is what titles they've given away: Carry on Camping, Carry on Doctor, Carry on Up the Kyber ... Shall I carry on?)

Interesting Fact # 368 - Shakespeare's Plays

Some of Shakespeare's most famous lines changed from one performance of his plays to another.

(For instance Hamlet's famous line, "To be, or not to be, that is the question" had earlier been, "To be, or not to be, I there's the point".)

Interesting Fact # 367 - Toys

Barbie has five sisters, called Skipper, Tutti, Stacie, Kelly and Krissy.

(None of them have the ludicrous measurements that Barbie has. In fact poor old Barbie is under pressure. Bratz, a new style of doll based on street fashion, are now outselling the 44-year-old, who had been queen of dolls ever since sales were first monitored a decade ago.)

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Interesting Fact - Allotments

Allotment plots in the UK come in the standard measure of 10 poles - a pole is the length of the back of the plough to the nose of the ox.

(An allotment is a small parcel of land let out at a nominal yearly rent by local government or independent allotment associations, for individuals to grow their own food.)

Interesting Word # 46 - Coprolalia

Involuntary bad language, a symptom affecting about one in 10 people with Tourette's syndrome, is called "coprolalia".

(Of course this has been in the news recently as the winner of Big Brother has this condition. Seemingly it made for interesting viewing.)

Interesting Fact # 365 - Shoes

One in two women in the UK owns more than 30 pairs of shoes - with 8% having more than 100 pairs in their wardrobe.(How many pairs of feet do these women have? Are they millipedes maybe? This could be linked to Interesting Fact # 349)

Interesting Fact # 364 - Water

In the UK water leaks waste the equivalent of 200 litres of water a day per household.

(According to the Consumer Council for Water's web site, there are no set time limits for companies to find and repair leaks. Although they do say that in the interests of good customer service they would expect the company to try and identify the source of the leak and repair those for which they are responsible as quickly as possible. - Well that's working isn't it?)

Interesting Fact # 363 - Landfill

Disposable nappies cost £67m in landfill use per year.

(That's a lot of poop.)

Interesting Fact # 362 - Oleander

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The oleander (Nerium oleander) plant is perhaps the most lethal plant in the British Isles today - one small portion of leaf could knock you out.

(Ingestion of even small amounts can kill. All animals can be affected. The entire plant is toxic. And we plant it in our gardens!)

Interesting Fact # 361 - Confetti

It's illegal to make confetti out of euro bank notes.

(Silly really, because pound for pound it would probably be cheaper.)

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Interesting Fact # 360 - British Drivers

British motorists are the most uptight in Europe, with 87% sometimes very annoyed by other drivers.

(No, I mean it - really really annoyed.)