Fast Facts

? If the population of China began walking past you in single file, the line would never end because of the country’s rate of reproduction.

  • Queen Victoria was the first woman to use chloroform during childbirth.
  • Burt Reynolds now lives in what was once the Florida holiday home of gangster Al Capone.
  • James Joyce ended “”Ulysses”” with the word “”yes”” because he thought it the strongest word in the English language. He ended his next novel with “”the”” because it was the weakest.
  • Jamaica’s main export is bauxite, which is used to make aluminum.
  • Studies indicate that the rate of heart disease is lower among men who donate blood frequently.
  • James Brown’s 1967 song “”Cold Sweat”” is often considered the first funk record.
  • The seven hills of Rome are Palatine, Capitoline, Quirinal, Viminal, Esquiline, Caelian and Aventine.
  • Mark Twain never graduated from elementary school.
  • In Japan, Christmas Eve is a time to eat strawberry shortcake and fried chicken.
  • Rembrandt’s last name was van Ryn.
  • English speakers adopted the phrase “”Pardon my French”” after it appeared in Harper’s magazine in 1895. It referred to the fact that culture in France was more permissive and even risqué.
  • A teaspoonful of neutron star material would weigh about 110 million tons.
  • The term “”red-letter day”” goes back to the ancient custom of using red ink to indicate holy days on the calendar.
  • The 1925 film “”The Lost World”” was the first in-flight film shown on a commercial aircraft.