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Apr 12

And the answers are…

Posted on Thursday, April 12, 2007 in Something to think about

Ok smartarses.  Here are your answers.


1.Is there really much Iron in a pint of Guinness?
A: If you are drinking it to raise your iron levels you will need an awful lot!  The RDA of iron for men is 11mg and for women 14mg; the iron content of a pint of Guinness is  0.3mg! 2 Weetabix= 4.5mg; 1 lamb chop= 1.9mg; 1 egg= 1.1mg.

3. Is it true that Oliver Cromwell once cancelled Christmas?
A. Grandad Cromwell was a big believer in solemnity and hated all the partying that went along with Christmas.  He believed that the day should be acknowledged only by sermons and prayer services.  To this end, the British Parliament officially abolished the celebration of Christmas in 1643.  Apparently nobody paid a lot of attention to this as Cromwell had another go at banning the yuletide festival in 1649 when he outlawed Christmas carols!  The Puritans in America also tried to take the fun out of Christmas and promoted Thanksgiving Day as the major annual festival.

4. Who is the richest person in the world?
A. There really is no contest.  Bill Gates is the world’s richest person by a considerable margin.  He was the world’s first $100 billion man and, if his wealth continues to grow at the 61% compoud annual rate it has enjoyed so far, he will become the world’s first trillionaire, worth $1,000,000,000,000.  Apart from his 21% stake in Microsoft he owns several other companies and is the major shareholder in a $9 billion satellite venture.  Bill Gates’s personal fortune now exceeds the economic output of all but the 18 wealthiest nations and is likely to overtake the gross national product of the UK.  And, don’t forget, this is the guy who dropped out of Harvard!

5. What’s the appendix for?
A. It used to be believed that the appendix had no function and was an evolutionary relic but it is now thought to play a part in the immune system.  It contains a large amount of lymphoid tissue, which protects against local infection.  It is also believed that it exposes circulating immune cells to antigens from the bacteria and other organisms living in your gut.  This helps your immune system to tell friend from foe and stops it from launching damaging attacks on bacteria that happily co-exist with you.  However, you can live quite healthily without an appendix and for this reason it can be a useful ‘spare part’; it is often used in reconstructive surgery of the bladder without the risk of refection that would be triggered by using tissue from another person.

6. Do dogs laugh?
A. Researchers in America have recorded ‘breathy exhalations’, different from standard doggy panting, which could be the canine version of a laugh.  This particular sound can trigger playfulness in other dogs and is never observed during aggressive behaviour.

7. What is the difference between beer and lager?
A. (See Brianf’s answer in the last post… it’s better than mine!!)

8. Is it possible to loop-the-loop or roll a jumbo jet?
A. Nobody has been foolish enough to try!  Apparently a Boeing test pilot did barrel roll a 707 in a reckless moment and the general consensus is that a 747 could do the same, but it is an expensive piece of kit to be playing with.  As to a loop, there is doubt as to whether a 747 could achieve enough forward speed to achieve the extra lift that a loop requires.  Don’t try it at home anyway!

9. Can you get twin chickens?
A. Although you might occasionally crack a double-yolk egg into your breakfast pan, fertilised double-yolk eggs are extremely rare and twin chicks almost never both survive.  In a normal, single-yolk egg, the chick has to move around and get its head up to the air cell (the round end).  If there are two chicks they will fight each other and usually both die.  In a few, rare cases an egg has been deliberately opened at the right time and twin chicks have survived.

10. Can animals be homosexual?
A.  Some species of animals do form long-term same-sex relationships.  Bottlenose dolphins, which are not known to form heterosexual pair bonds, often form life-long homosexual pairings.  Animals which maintain ‘bachelor groups’, such as bison, gazelle and antelope, commonly form same sex pairs, which last until one of the pair leaves to breed.  Homosexuality has also been observed in gorillas, orang-utans, chimpanzees, and elephants. 

11. If someone looks like a horse you might descrive them as equine; likewise cow features, bovine or cat-like, feline.  If someone looks like a rat, how would you describe them?
A.  You could call them unfortunate but the correct term is murine.  And here are a few more gems which you might like to add to your animal lexicon:

 bluebird – turdine
 frog     – bufotenine
 kangaroo – macropodine
 magpie   – garruline
 ostrich  – struthious
 pig      – porcine
 reptile  – reptilian or serpentine
 skunk    – mephitine
 wombat   – phascolomian

11. If one synchronised swimmer drowns, do they all have to?
A.  NO!  Silly…

Bring on the comments

  1. People don’t drink Guinness for its iron content??
    Christ, it tastes like shite. Why else would you drink it?

    (and yes, I know, the alcohol …)

  2. K8 says:

    People DO drink guinness for its iron content!! The Blood Transfusion people give you free guinness after you’ve donated! My granny in law drinks a glass of guinness every day, and she’s 157. She’s well pickled.

    Guinness tastes lovely… Jameson tastes like shite.

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