Did you know…?

‘Stewardesses’ is the longest word typed with only the left hand.

‘Lollipop’ is the longest word typed with your right hand.

No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver or purple.
(However, in Scots you can have ‘hirple’.)

‘Dreamt’ is the only English word that ends in the letters ‘mt’.

Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing.

The words ‘racecar’, ‘kayak’, and ‘level’ are the same whether you read them left to right or right to left (palindromes).

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: ‘abstemious’ and ‘facetious’.

‘Typewriter’ is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.

A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.

A ‘jiffy’ is an actual unit of time for 1/100th of a second.

A snail can sleep for three years.

Almonds are a member of the peach family.

An ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain.

Babies are born without kneecaps. They don’t appear until the child reaches 2 to 6 years of age.

If the population of China walked past you, 8 abreast, the line would never end because of the rate of reproduction.

Leonardo da Vinci invented the scissors.

Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

The average person’s left hand does 56% of the typing.

The cruise liner QE2 moves only 6 inches for each gallon of diesel that it burns.

The winter of 1932 was so cold that Niagara Falls froze completely solid.

There are more chickens than people in the world.

Winston Churchill was born in a ladies’ room during a dance.

Women blink nearly twice as much as men.

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8 thoughts on “Did you know…?

  1. Playing with the “Moby” word-list (as included in the Fedora Linux distribution, which has a lot of odd words) shows:

    There are twenty-two words of twelve letters or more typed with the left hand only, including “reverberated”, “desegregated”, “aftercataract”,
    “devertebrated”, and “tesseradecade”. The last three, with thirteen letters, are longer than “stewardesses”.

    “Polyphony” is typed only with the right hand and is longer than “lollipop”. The longest right-hand-only word in this word list is “phyllophyllin”.

    Obviously, words like daydreamt also end in “mt”.

    Other interesting palindromes include “deified”, “repaper”, “rotator”, and the name of the Malayalam language.

    The “Moby” word-list includes about 240 words with all five vowels in order *if* one is allowed other vowels between them (e.g. sacrilegious has a e i o u in that order, even
    though there’s an extra “i” in there). If one is restricted to only one of each, I get
    abstemious
    abstemiously
    abstentious
    acheilous
    acheirous
    acleistous
    Aegiochus
    affectious
    aleikoum
    anemious
    annelidous
    Areithous
    arsenious
    arterious
    bacterious
    caesious
    facetious
    facetiously
    fracedinous
    majestious
    parecious
    pareciously
    tragedious
    of which abstemiously, facetiously and pareciously include *all* the
    vowels including “y”.

    There are three eleven-letter words from the
    top row of the Qwerty keyboard:
    proprietory
    proterotype
    rupturewort
    and one word with nine letters from the home row of the keyboard, the
    Jewish word “haggadahs”.

    And if the entire population of China walked past eight abreast, the world population would start to fall dramatically. I mean, how are they supposed to find partners and have sex like that, poor things?

  2. Speaking of words that don’t rhyme: a colleague once alleged (in a footnote to an academic article, no less) that a Cambridge fellowship awaits the first person who can complete the limerick:

    There was a young fellow from Samothrace
    Who put all he had on a mammoth-race…

  3. To have come up with that list of trivia, I assume that you are snowed up and anything you actually had to do today has been cancelled?

  4. An interesting lot of facts … can I pinch some for my magazine?
    Just one amendment. The QE2 no longer ‘moves’ at all. She has retired to sunny Dubai ;-(

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