• It was Samuel West, the founder and curator of Sweden’s Museum of Failure (which showcases disasters in design and innovation), who made the following sage observation: “Each failure is uniquely spectacular, while success is nauseatingly repetitive.”
• Those who study such things say that the earth is more flattened at the South Pole than the North Pole. The weight of all that ice is to blame.
• Clams can live for more than 200 years.
• You know what a mortgage is, but do you know how the word came to the English language? The “mort” should give you a clue. The roots trace all the way back to a Latin term meaning “death pledge.”
• The reason for the correlation is not clear, but some studies suggest that hay fever is more common among people who are shy.
• Judge Roy Bean was a justice of the peace in Texas in the 1800s — he called himself “The Law West of the Pecos.” It’s interesting to note, though, that his earlier endeavors included rustling cattle in Mexico.
• A famous and oft-quoted line from Sherlock Holmes is “How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?” However, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle didn’t come up with that one himself; he took it from a story by Edgar Allan Poe, another pioneer of the detective genre.
• According to historians, basic training in the legions of ancient Rome could take three or four years.
• If you know someone who, for some reason, is overly fond of sneezing, your friend is a steruphiliac.
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Thought for the Day: “There is a fatality about all good resolutions. They are invariable made too soon.” — Oscar Wilde
(c) 2019 King Features Syndicate, Inc.