Monday, December 04, 2006

10 things I didn't know until last week

1. In European club football, the waving of white handkerchiefs by the fans is the traditional sign that they want the manager to be sacked.
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2. The Mormon Church, or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has two orders of priesthood - Melchisedek, dealing with religious matters and Aaronic, dealing with temporal matters.
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3. Jerry cans are called so because they were first used by the Germans. British soldiers referred to the Germans as Jerries during the First World War - the term probably derived from ‘German’.
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4. The Big Bang theory - first proposed by George Le Maitre - was derogatorily named so by Fred Hoyle, who proposed the rival ‘Steady State Theory.’ Far from the ridiculing the theory, the name stuck and was adopted enthusiastically both by Le Maitre’s supporters and the scientific community at large.
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5. During prototyping, the Porsche 911 was provisionally named Porsche 901. The name had to be changed before its release because by then Peugeot had acquired the the exclusive European rights to all 3 digit car names with ‘0’ as the middle digit - rights they retain till today.
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6. Bob Dylan was nominated for Nobel Prize for Literature in 1997 (and almost every year since) for the 500 odd songs he has written. The only book he has written is a collection of poems and free-form fiction titled “Tarantula,” penned in 1966 when he was just 25.
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7. Seres - meaning ‘silk’ or ‘land where silk comes from’ - was the ancient Roman name for China.
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8. Although Charlie Chaplin won two honorary Oscars, the only competitive Oscar he won was for Best Music in an Original Dramatic Score for the 1952 film ‘Limelight’. Interestingly, he received the Oscar in 1973 because the criterion for entry to Oscars - a one-week theatrical arrangement in Los Angeles - was fulfilled only in 1972.
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9. Each earthworm has ten hearts.
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10. Bruce Lee played the role of sidekick Hayashi Kato in the TV Series ‘The Green Hornet’ based on the comic hero of the same name. The show was the crucial stepping stone to his first starring role  (even though he had started acting at an early age) and was even aired as ‘The Kato Show’ in Hong Kong and Asia.
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