Tell us an interesting random fact you stumbled across

Since the USSR broke up in 1989:

The World has gained 52% in population.

Russia has lost 2% of its population.

Latvia has lost 30% of its population.
Lithuania has lost 27% of its population.
Georgia has lost 26% of its population.
Ukraine has lost 19% of its population.
Armenia has lost 15% of its population.
Estonia has lost 15% of its population.
Moldova has lost 10% of its population.
Belarus has lost 8% of its population.
Tajikistan has gained 90% in population.
Uzbekistan has gained 70% in population.
Turkmenistan has gained 69% in population.
Kyrgyzstan has gained 55% in population.
Azerbaijan has gained 44% in population.
Kazakhstan has gained 15% in population.

Its only for the rest of his sentence as part of being released early. Which now that I think about it, will expire fairly soon, he got 20 years.

Mercury is the closest planet to earth.

Probably. (It’s complicated).

About Jesus having been born in a manger: I always assumed a manger was a structure like a barn or a stable. Not so. According to the Free Dictionary, a manger is “a trough or an open box in which feed for livestock is placed.” So he probably wasn’t born in a manger, but placed there as in a cradle.

Who knew?


And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. – Luke 2:7

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid! Listen carefully, for I proclaim to you good news that brings great joy to all the people: Today your Savior is born in the city of David. He is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.” – Luke 2:10-12

One of those things that commonly get confused in Sunday school. I blame the translators choosing “manger” instead of “trough”. Not even farmers use the word “manger” any more, at least where I grew up.

Doesn’t the root of manger mean “to eat”?

I don’t know the etymology of the English word, but yes, “manger” means “to eat” in French.

I didn’t realise that Abe Lincoln had malaria twice as a young man (and probably mercury poisoning as an adult). Americans probably learn that in school, though.

Nope. I didn’t learn it.

I’m fascinated by the number of cases of both malaria and yellow fever in the United States in colonial times and up through the 19th century. You don’t think about either of those diseases occurring in the US.

Mange (an infestation of mites that chew up an animal) and “manible” (a part of an animal’s facial anatomy involved in eating/biting/chewing) all share common etymology with “manger.”

Two important news items that I haven’t seen on the TV news or even most news websites:

1.) Chernobyl acting up again
Well, this isn’t good. Chernobyl reactor number 4 decides to remind us it’s still alive.

just like charcoal can reignite in a barbeque, so can nuclear materials that have once been ignited. He as well as a handful of nuclear chemists have mentioned previously the possibility of the uranium from Chernobyl to reignite, but the scientists from Ukraine that are responsible for managing the nuclear activity within the vicinity never really listened, until now…

Recently… sensors have detected a constant increase in the level of radioactivity. It seems that this radioactivity is coming from an unreachable chamber from underneath reactor 4 that has been blocked since the night of the explosion on the 26th of April, 1986.

The explosion at Chernobyl in 1986 brought down walls and sealed off many rooms and corridors. Tonnes of fissile material from the interior of a reactor were strewn throughout the facility and the heat it generated melted sand from the reactor walls with concrete and steel to form lava-like and intensely radioactive substances that oozed into lower floors.

One chamber, known as subreactor room 305/2, is thought to contain large amounts of this material, but it is inaccessible and hasn’t been seen by human or robotic eyes since the disaster.

Now, researchers have seen a spike in neutron emissions from the room, with levels increasing around 40 per cent since the start of 2016. This points to a growing nuclear fission reaction, so researchers are trying to determine if this surge will fizzle out, as previous spikes in other parts of the ruins have done, or whether they will need to find a way to access the room and intervene.

Sleep well tonight.

2.) Volcanic Eruption in the Canary Islands wiping out houses and forcing evacuations

Yes, and I cited one from CNN. It hasn’t been completely absent from the news, but this is the first I heard of it.

The similar case in Hawaii recently seemed to be on the news every night.

Not to mention that wicked case of Lead Poisoning right at the end.

Isn’t this the first scene from a standard Sci-Fi thriller?

Isn’t ANYone getting prepared for giant, mutated Eurasian Jerboas? Or maybe those are only the pets of the forgotten scientist, abandoned underneath Reactor Four since the 80s, plotting his revenge as he fed off the radioactivity…

I’ve known this for a long time but I want to play too.

Radio>Comics>Film>TV masked crimefighter Britt Reid was the son of Dan Reid, Jr., the nephew of John Reid. The Lone Ranger was the Green Hornet’s Grand-Uncle.

You know the red, plastic lenses that protect your brake lights on your car or truck? It’s obvious that they’re designed so that some of the light from the light bulbs goes through the lenses and to the driver’s eyes in the vehicle behind you. What I’m guessing a lot of people don’t realize is that the lenses are also reflectors. When you drive down a street at night, you will see a reflection from the brake light lenses for cars that are parked along the street; the light from your vehicle’s headlights is reflecting off of them. This is by design, and is (I believe) a DOT requirement.

I think that’s the reason that a car parked on the wrong side of the street (i.e., facing oncoming traffic) is much less visible at night than one parked properly.

Hippos can’t swim. They can’t even float. They just walk on the river bottom until they get to shallow water.

Where they still walk on the bottom. :wink: