Dark Bilious Vapors

But how could I deny that I possess these hands and this body, and withal escape being classed with persons in a state of insanity, whose brains are so disordered and clouded by dark bilious vapors....
--Rene Descartes, Meditations on First Philosophy: Meditation I

Home » Archives » January 2005 » Trivia answers....

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01/31/2005: Trivia answers....

1) Only one person has ever declined the Nobel Peace Prize. Who?
Le Duc Tho. In 1973 the Nobel Peace Laureates were U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho (a senior official of the North Vietnamese Communist Party), who were awarded the Prize for negotiating the 1973 Paris Peace Accords. Le turned down the prize on the grounds that the accords did not in fact bring peace to Vietnam.

2) Bill Gottlieb of New York found an interesting, if puzzling, way to propose to his girlfriend in 1997. How?
Via the New York Times crossword puzzle. He somehow convinced NYT puzzle editor Will Shortz to create a crossword to be solved by his crossword addict girlfriend; the answers thereto made up his proposal.

3) Scottish nobleman and part-time mathematician John Napier came up with an exponential improvement in calculation methods, and an important point as well. What are they?
Logarithms (which are basically a way of doing multiplication and division by adding and subtracting exponents), and the decimal notation for fractions (or as some writers put it, Napier invented the decimal point).

4) On March 30, 1999, the male model/actor Fabio was taking the inaugural ride on the "Apollo's Chariot" roller coaster at Busch Gardens, Williamsburg, Virginia, when something very unusual happened. What was that?
Fabio was hit in the face by a goose who flew in the path of his roller coaster car while it was coasting down one of the "hills" of the coaster at approximately 73 mph. Fabio wound up with a bloody nose and a gash on his face. The goose died.

5) In 1997, the county council of Kleberg County, Texas, passed a resolution against the use of the greeting "hello". Why, and what did they adopt as a replacement?
Of course, "hello" contains a reference to "hell". Therefore the county council mandated the offically approved greeting of Kleberg County would be "heaveno".

Len on 01.31.05 @ 08:56 PM CST

January 2005

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