Our Pages

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Just the facts, ma'am.


Hi there. 
Long time no blog. 
I’d like to say I’ve been off doing amazing things like touring the Vatican or Egypt’s pyramids or hiking the Serengeti.

I’ve been teaching middle-schoolers. 
Do you see that glint in her pretty brown eyes? Wickedness on the loose.

If you don’t have one of these at home, you may not realize they’re as dangerous as any predatory cat, but I assure you, this crowd will eat your heart.  
Predatory with a capital KITTY.

Anyway, as a fact loving fool, where better to spread my frivolous information than to hungry little minds? Not that I gave them anything useful, but I started each morning with a fun fact. We’d gossip and giggle over it until the homeroom bell rang and it was time to learn something for real.

Hmm, I see some wide eyes in the crowd as those of you who follow me on Twitter know I find some, uh, interesting facts. Not to worry—I kept them all kosher.
The facts, not the kids. 
Definitely not kosher.

Some of their favorites were:

~Before toilet paper was invented, French royalty wiped their bottoms with fine linen. Not sure why, but this tickled the kids. Probably because it gave them the opportunity to giggle about butts.

~A polar bear's skin is black and its fur is actually clear, not white. Also all polar bears are left handed. Yes, they asked me if I was left-handed. No, I am not. 

And I've been culled from the Sleuth (group of bears) because of it.
~An airplane mechanic invented the Slinky while he was playing with engine parts and realized the possible secondary use for the springs.

~Real diamonds can be made from peanut butter.  Errrrr (screeching tires, ya'll), back up.


Someone fetch me the Jif!


~The average four year-old child asks over four hundred questions a day. Totally unrelated, children laugh 400 times per day, while adults laugh on average 15 times. Couldn’t possibly be because they’re laughing at the psychoses those 400 questions put on their mother. 

If I hold this throbbing vein, my head won't explode. Right? RIGHT?!

~The word 'News' is actually an acronym standing for the 4 cardinal compass points - North, East, West, and South!

~In Cleveland, Ohio it is illegal to catch mice without a hunting license.

Pardon me, Eagle Eye, have you any cheese?


Yep. Fascinating stuff, huh? These are the lessons I taught your kids. Who needs the three R’s when I’m teaching history, zoology, diamond mining and domesticity?

Got any useless information to share?

33 comments:

  1. Andris ~ I'm on morning 4 of getting up before dawn with my high schooler. My mind is too foggy to come up with anything useless or useful for that matter.

    I can tell you that teenage boys are grumpy in the morning. But I'm pretty sure everyone already knows that.

    I can tell you that the line at Starbucks didn't move for 10 minutes this morning, and every second that passed by WITHOUT me getting my coffee made me *that* much more likely to kill the next person who spoke to me. ;)

    Not sure if any of this is useless, but they are both facts. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Get a Keurig. Seriously. You can get yummy flavors of coffee, you can get yummy flavored creamers that make them taste a lot like a Starbucks, and it only takes about 15 seconds to brew your cuppa Joe in the morning. No ten-minutes-without-moving lines.

      Delete
    2. :( But I like someone else to make my coffee for me. LOL

      Delete
    3. Ava, Ha! You without coffee sounds like a bad, bad thing. And having grown up with two younger brothers, I am well aware of what a grump boys can be. Mine is following in those same footsteps and he's only six! Can't imagine what teen years will bring. Eek!
      Catharine, Oh girl, if I could get a Keurig, I would never leave my house. Just brew coffee all day!!! ;}

      Delete
    4. But Ava, the Keurig does all the work. LOL.

      Andris, you'll have to come over sometime and try mine. I love it. Use it every day.

      Delete
  2. Andris,
    How did I not know you were a teacher??? That's a fun fact right there! Okay, here's one for you. Did you know mosquitos can fly backwards, upside down, & sideways?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I so did not need to know that! No wonder they're so hard to kill. ;)

      Delete
    2. Samantha, I'm not a teacher--just a sub, which to me, is the best of both worlds. :) I like subbing, but teaching full time would probably put me in the ground. ;} And I agree with Cynthia~no wonder you can't kill the little boogers! Eck!

      Delete
  3. Andris I didn't know that about N E W S - so cool. See now I've learned something today. I also didn't know you were a middle school teacher - just shoot me now! Those were the WORST 3 years ever! I it were up to me, I'd get rid of middle school altogether. Don't know how I'd divie it up, or maybe all middle school aged kids should have to go to boarding school or better yet, a boarding military school. Truly the only answer. Useless facts --- well, from watching Shark Week, I learned that Great Whites follow a migratory path in the Pacific traveling thousands of miles! Who new? And that the Great Whites off South Africa jump so high they come completely out of the water and they look like they are practically flying! (shudders!) I prefer the Pacific Great Whites, personally. Oh, and the sharks (forget their name) of NC at all the shipwrecks where I want to dive feed at night. I'm gathering from that that it's okay to dive out there as long as the day is bright and sunny!! ;D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cynthia ~ You have just made certain I will have nightmares for - like - ever now. Flying sharks (or practically flying sharks). I'm seriously shaking and I'm on the 4th floor of an office building, nowhere near the beach. ;) LOL

      Delete
    2. LOL Ava, does that mean you won't be wreck diving with me?? NC coast is known as the graveyard of the Atlantic. Lots of great diving especially if you like to dive with sharks :)

      Delete
    3. Cynthia, Oh my Lord, I would never in a million years go in the water--day or night--if I knew sharks fed there! Eek! Take pictures for me of wrecks because I do find that fascinating, but no way in Hades would I go diving to see them up close and personal. Like those facts though! :)

      Delete
    4. Cynthia ~ I'll send my son with you. He's SCUBA certified and very brave and...I'm not. ;)

      Delete
  4. Hi Andris!

    When our sons started school we would ask them "what did you do in school today" and would get a blank stare and no answer! Sound familiar?

    We always ate dinner at the dining room table so we decided to "trick" the information out of them! We started asking them "Tell me something I don't know"!

    If anyone else out there is having a problem with having their children really talk to them about school or just life in general they may just want to ask them "Tell me something I don't know"!

    Each night they would have to come up with something they did that day or a "fun fact" that no one else at the table knew! The older they got the more they tried to outdo the other! When they were teenagers any friends that came to visit also had to "participate"! One thing we were amazed about besides some of their answers was how few of them ate dinner together as a family.

    One of the best results of our dinner "fun time" was my younger son went and graduated from The Citadel in Charleston, SC. As a "Nob" (freshman) at lunch time one of the rituals was they had to tell the upper class men at their table "something they didn't know"! Needless to say my son had not problem coming up with unusual facts!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jeanne, I love this too! What a great idea! We always ask the kids what their favorite and least favorite part about the day was. Sometimes they don't share much, and other times we can't hush them up. ;} Love the idea of them telling us something no one else knows--mine would definitely try to one up the others. Thank you for sharing!

      Delete
  5. Andris, I'm full of useless Texas trivia. LOL.

    At any time they so choose, the state of Texas can choose to split into five separate states. It's written into the state constitution, and it was ratified by the US!

    Most people know about the song "The Yellow Rose of Texas." What most people DON'T know is that the actual Yellow Rose of Texas has nothing to do with roses, and everything to do with a high-dollar prostitute who was commissioned to service General Santa Ana at the Battle of San Jacinto, so that he would be otherwise occupied when the "Texicans" as they called themselves at the time, began their attack. It worked. The Texicans won. Texas became an independent country.

    Also, most people know about the Six Flags theme parks. At most of their locations, there's not a real reason why it should be called "Six Flags over XXX," other than the fact that it is the company name, but there is a very good reason why it is called Six Flags Over Texas. Six countries have ruled over the land that is currently Texas over the course of history: Spain, France, Mexico, the Republic of Texas, the United States, and the Confederate States of America. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL... Catherine - being a Texan myself, I knew all of these. ;)

      Delete
    2. Catharine, LOVE these! Being a Hoosier (Indiana), I'd never heard these facts before. I'm thinking I might have to add these to my tweet collection--especially the prostitute song. Ha!

      Delete
    3. Texans are very proud of Texas...and all the little things involved with it. Texas History is a required course for all students. We learn all sorts of fun things about the state. Many forget...but some, like Ava and I, tend to remember them. :)

      Delete
  6. Andris,
    The fact about the average four year old asking four hundred questions a day cracked me up. My five year old can sometimes drive me crazy with the amount of questions he will ask me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It makes me wonder if the number of questions continues to rise with age for a while, before dropping off. Kind of like height. It continues to increase as you age, until you reach a certain age, when you start to shrink...

      Delete
    2. Julie, Oh yes, I know those four hundred questions. Luckily, mine don't ask so many questions, but they still chatter nonstop. All. The. Time. Arrgghh! ;}

      Delete
  7. What a great teacher you must be!! I love how you get their attention with these fun facts. I know all sorts of trivia which will probably not ever help me but...since Cynthia mentioned sharks, I heard once that they never sleep and never stop moving which is why they are so grumpy. Regarding right/left hand people, right handed people live on the average nine years longer than left handed people. I want a recount...
    AFter Woodrow Wilson's first wife died he was utterly heartbroken but eventually went on a date with a woman named Edith Galt. The Washington Post reported on their date but instead of saying that he entertained Mrs. Galt they reported that "the President spent most of the evening entering Mrs. Galt". And this was before they could blame autocorrect. She may have been the first woman president as rumors were after his stroke she basically handled all correspondence which is ironic as she and Woodrow Wilson were totally against women being given the right to vote. I find historical trivia interesting and love the new show "10 things you didn't know about etc.."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, thank you, Marcia! I love subbing for my 5th graders. They're my favorite grade because they're old enough to be self-sufficient, but not old enough to give me attitude. Perfect! ;}
      Yikes! No sleep would definitely make me grumpy too. Heck, I'm grumpy with a full night's rest. :) I did know the fact about right handers living 9 years longer--something I like to hold above my left handed husband. Heh. Never heard the Wilson/Galt fact though! That's too funny! Thank you for sharing them with me, Marcia. :)

      Delete
  8. Weird fact: The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows...when I first heard that, I had to go check!

    I think you would rock as a sub, Andris!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Deb! I did know The Mona Lisa had no eyebrows--and isn't it weird that we don't notice that until someone mentions it? I'd notice it right away someone walking down the street!

      Delete
  9. Peanut butter diamond, huh? Guess they're a lot less messy than blood diamonds.

    As always, your posts crack me up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lilly, less messy and a fabulous income! Now, if I could just figure out how to do it, I'd be drowning in luxury! Ha! Thank you for stopping by, Lilly! :)

      Delete
  10. It is a fact that no matter how quiet and how much my kids were ignoring me before I get on the phone, once I start talking, so do they! Mommy, mommy, mommy, mmmoooooooooooommmmmyyyyyy.
    What?!
    I dunno?

    ACK!
    ;p

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Lawd, me too! Is it ingrained in their DNA?! Why must they do this?! Ack! I've actually growled at they when they approach and I'm on the phone. They give me a wide-eyed, innocent look as if they can't fathom why I'm upset. Rotten. :)

      Delete
  11. It is physically impossible to lick your own elbow. Go ahead. Try it. HAHAHAHA.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bhaha! Yeah, I've told that to my kids before and both LBM and Diva try to prove me wrong. Frighteningly, Diva comes very close. ;}

      Delete