Social Question

TheProfoundPorcupine's avatar

What is your daily useless piece of knowledge?

Asked by TheProfoundPorcupine (2512 points ) October 11th, 2012

We all know little things about how something works, why something has the name that it does or other little snippets of information that may be interesting, but ultimately useless to know as it does not improve your life.

Just to give an example from myself. In England the police have the nickname Bobbies and this is due to the politician Robert Peel who introduced the Police Act and really set them up as a force. They are therefore called Bobbies due to it being a nickname for someone called Robert.

So what useless piece of information would you like to share with the masses?

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35 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

That is not useless but interesting to some of us who are interested in the origin of words.

I consider all my knowledge useful. For example, I love that the indentation between the upper lip and the bottom of the nose is called a philtrum.

Shippy's avatar

I only have useful bits of knowledge loll.

deni's avatar

This is not useless, but extremely interesting. There is no dark side of the moon, all sides get sunlight, (duh), and people only think there is a permanently dark side because of Pink Floyd!!!

Seek's avatar

One man from Davis, California bought 12,500 cups of Healthy Choice chocolate pudding, which granted him 1.25 million frequent flyer miles and a lifelong membership to the American Airlines AAdvantage Gold Club for a total cost of about $3,000.

gailcalled's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr : But did he then have to pay for the extra seat due to his weight gain?

Seek's avatar

Ha ha… He actually donated all the pudding to local food kitchens.

deni's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr Thats so smart! Woah

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

A] In absence of flea powder sprinkle flour or corn starch on the animal, it cause the fur to become too slick for the fleas to hang on. (unverified of course)

B] In a blind test done at a major college where drivers could not see what speed they drove at, the majority was most comfortable driving at 80mph on the freeway.

C] When at a stadium or auditorium, etc. it is useless using a flash over 7ft. Bu the time the light from the flash reaches the subject more than 7ft away it has scattered too much to make a difference. What it has a chance of doing is striking something in the path of your subject like the top of someone’s hat causing your exposure to change and all you get is an overexposed hat or head and your subject forever washed out in the glare.

D] The fluid that goes into your actuating cylinder for your clutch is the same as brake fluid, they just package it in a smaller container and charge you more for it.

@gailcalled Thanks for pointing out the “break, brake” problem, don’t want to confuse anyone ;-)

downtide's avatar

The Automobile Association (a UK motor breakdown company) was originally founded in 1906 not to help broken-down motorists, but to warn them about police speed-traps. Members would put the club badge on the front of their car and the patrol would salute you, only if the road ahead was clear. No salute meant slow down!

flutherother's avatar

The Romans didn’t have soap or potatoes.

YARNLADY's avatar

My blog host company is switching to an online sales site and will no longer host blogs. This is the third time I have had to move my blog.

ucme's avatar

Marilyn Monroe would often wear shoes with different heel lengths in order to accentuate her famous, sexy, hip waggling walk.

Brian1946's avatar

When writing at Fluther, if you bracket your text with @ symbols, the resultant font will make an upper-case I distinguishable from a lower case l. E.g., if one were to start a sentence with the word illogical: Illogical vs. Illogical.

gailcalled's avatar

Well, isn’t that interesting?

flutherother's avatar

Just testing. Wow that’s great. Thanks @Brian1946

Brian1946's avatar

@flutherother

You’re welcome, although this means my attempt to post something useless has failed. ;-)

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

I was reading a medical chart the other day on a male patient with a chronic UTI which was not responding to regular antibiotic therapy. The nurse noted that the meatus was inflamed. But, evidently, she couldn’t remember the term meatus, so she described the location of the inflammation at the “opening at the distal end of the Penile Corona.” How endearing. I checked and this is actually a 19th century term for the head of the penis and was obviously considered a very regal part of the anatomy at the time. I now look upon mine in a whole new light. Each man a king in his own right, right?

El_Cadejo's avatar

The lighter was invented before the match.

The first diesel engine ran on hemp oil.

mangeons's avatar

The people of Pompeii had no word for volcano because they didn’t know what one was, hence why many of them didn’t flee while Mt. Vesuvius was erupting. They weren’t stupid, they just had no idea what was going on! Even more interesting to me is the fact that people live around Mt. Vesuvius in the present day. I’d be far too scared to even consider living there!

WyCnet's avatar

There are far more male movie directors in Hollywood than female ones.

flutherother's avatar

@mangeons I am just back from a visit to Italy and more than a million people now live in the vicinity of Mount Vesuvius and an eruption is overdue. We visited Pompeii and Herculaneum. Absolutely fascinating.

rojo's avatar

It costs more to buy a new car today in the United States than it cost Christopher Columbus to equip and undertake three voyages to and from the New World.

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

Iridium is very rare in the Earth’s crust, gold is 40 times more abundant, but common in meteors. Scientists suspect Earth once had plenty, but it sunk down to the core.

cliofaye's avatar

It has been studied and proven that if you tear the label off of bottles absentmindedly you are sexually frustrated.

mangeons's avatar

@flutherother According to the video we watched in my Latin class earlier this week, an eruption of that magnitude only occurs every 2,000 years. Seeing as the eruption that decimated Pompeii occurred in 79 BCE (or AD, if you prefer), and it’s only 2012, we theoretically have about 67 years until it would erupt like that again. Even so, you wouldn’t catch me living anywhere near Mt. Vesuvius, that’s for sure!

Blondesjon's avatar

Mr. Peanut was modeled after horribly disfigured Italian/American WWI hero, Pistachio Almondzi.

gailcalled's avatar

^^^He also said “Cashew” once too often in the trenches and triggered the “Gesundheit” response from the Germans.

dxs's avatar

Cows cannot be guided down stairs.

Adagio's avatar

A mother can be seduced into joining Facebook simply in order to keep in contact with her daughter.

Bellatrix's avatar

Apparently there is a correlation between the number of Nobel Laureates a country produces and that country’s per capita chocolate consumption.

rojo's avatar

The five most stolen items in a drugstore are batteries, cosmetics, film, sunglasses and….................... Preparation H.

NuclearWessels's avatar

All the blinking in one day equates to having your eyes closed for about 30 minutes.

The original working title of the show “The Big Bang Theory” was “Lenny, Penny, and Kenny.”

Leanne1986's avatar

Today I learnt that the air trapped in an iceberg can be thousands of years old.

Mariah's avatar

Pileated woodpeckers, like most woodpeckers, make their nests in cavities they drill into trees. The fun fact is that if they attempt to make one in too small of a tree, they can actually peck the tree right in half.

El_Cadejo's avatar

The Carboniferous period (359.2–299 MYA) during the Paleozoic era is subdivided into two smaller periods, the Mississippian (359 to 318 MYA) and Pennsylvanian (318 to 299 MYA).

I just find it odd that there is are two time periods of ancient Earth history named after US states.

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