Sushi Myth?

“Sushi means raw fish.”

False. Erroneous translation.

Though sometimes also translated as ‘vinegared rice’, sushi means ‘sour rice’ and does not always feature fish. Nowadays, sushi is first and foremost a rice dish, which can include vegetables, cooked fish, raw fish, poultry, or other proteins.

See other: Mythconceptions?

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In the summer of 2013, male train drivers in Sweden circumvented a ban on shorts by wearing skirts to work in hot weather. Because of Swedish anti-sexist laws, men and women are allowed to wear the same clothes to work.

An American could become President of the United States by winning the majority of the votes in just 11 U.S. States.

The tomato has been brought back from the verge of extinction at least three times since it was first domesticated.

The word acalculia describes the inability to do sums.

Hummingbirds, bees and ants spend 80% of their day doing absolutely nothing.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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A human being has about the same number of genes as a cabbage.

Pumpkin Island, Australia, has been renamed XXXX Island.

Lipstick can still contain lead, but no more than 20 parts per million; arsenic, but no more than 3 parts per million; and mercury, but no more than one part per million.

The Dutch for ‘piglet’ is big.

According to the Quran, the testimony of two women is needed to contradict that of a man.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

Taxonomic Hierarchy

In biology, every organism has several taxonomic classifications; these classifications are taken from the taxonomic hierarchy. This hierarchical tree displays how all Earth organisms are related to each other.

Biological ClassificationTo illustrate this hierarchical tree, imagine a daffodil, ladybug, goldfish, human, cat, fox, jackal and dog.

Out of the three Domains that make up Life on Earth, the Eukarya is the most diverse domain. (The other two Domains are that of the Archaea, a group of single-celled organisms, and that of the Bacteria, very small organisms whose cells do not have a nucleus.)

This Eukarya Domain includes all organisms with complex cells, or a single cell with a complex structure; in these cells the genetic material is organized into chromosomes in the cell nucleus. Obviously, this includes the life forms listed above.

The Eukarya Domain is made up of Kingdoms; the Animal Kingdom being the most well known. This Kingdom includes all the animals listed above, from ladybug to dog, but excludes a plant like the daffodil.

The Animal Kingdom is made up of Phyla; the Phylum Chordata is one of the most interesting Phyla because it includes all vertebrates. That is to say, all mammals, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds – to name a few – are part of this Phylum. Note that the ladybug is not part of this Phylum.

The Chordata Phylum is made up of Classes; the Mammal Class being the most dominant on Earth. Humans, cats, foxes, jackals, dogs and all other animals who suckle their young are part of this Class. This excludes the goldfish.

“If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and man.”
– Mark Twain

The Class of Mammals is made up of Orders; if we take the Order of Carnivora, the carnivores, we would exclude human beings (who are the story telling member of the Order Primates, in the Family of the Hominidae, of the Genus Homo). This leaves us with the cat, fox, jackal and dog.

The Order of Carnivora is made up of Families; the fox, jackal and dog are part of the Family Canidae. That is, all dog-like animals. This excludes the cat.

The Family Canidae is made up of Genera. (The term comes from the Latin genus meaning “descent, family, type, gender”; from the Ancient Greek: γένος, “race, stock, kin”.) In our example, the fox is part of a different Genus than the jackal and the dog.

The Genus Canis is made up of Species; the most widely accepted definition of a species is ‘the largest group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring’. That brings us to the difference between a jackal (canis aureus) and a dog (canis lupus), who are part of the same genus, but are different species.

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”
– Groucho Marx

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Peter the Cruel of Aragon and Peter the Cruel of Castile were at war with each other for ten years 1356-66.

Mushrooms have more in common with animals than with plants.

Ball’s Pyramid, Australia, is the tallest volcanic stack in the world.

The Japanese believe plums and miso soup can cure hangovers.

The Latin tag nolens volens ‘unwilling, willing’ – that is, ‘whether unwillingly or willingly’ – is sometimes rendered volens nolens, aut nolens aut volens or nolentis volentis. It is similar to willy-nilly, though that word is derived from Old English will-he nil-he (i.e. [whether] he will or [whether] he will not).

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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On the last Wednesday in August, crowds of over 40,000 people gather in the Spanish town of Buñol and throw tomatoes at each other. The event is called La Tomatina. Over 50 tons of tomatoes are wasted.

In Dutch, the noun eend means both ‘duck’ and ‘Citroën 2CV’.

In Britain, it is illegal for a party in an election to call itself None of the Above. This is to prevent the words appearing on ballot papers; presumably, there is a fear that NOTA would win by a landslide.

In the First World War, the British were the only side to have separate brothels for officers and men.

The hobbies of Norodom Sihanouk, the ex-King of Cambodia, were listed on his website as ‘jazz saxophone, magazine editing and having affairs with foreign women’.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

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The hemline index is supposed to predict how the market will fare. Coined in 1926 by US economist George Taylor, the idea has been spookily accurate. When skirts get shorter, the market goes up.

The French word for ‘memory’ is souvenir.

In Nunavut, in northern Canada, a cabbage can cost up to $28. 

The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one mile in every five must be straight. These straight sections are usable as airstrips in times of war or other emergencies.

The fruit bat, Cynopterus sphinx, has been observed to engage in fellatio during mating. Female bats perform fellatio to increase copulation time. This species is the only non-primate known to exhibit this behaviour.

See other: Quite Interesting Facts

Scoville Scale

The Scoville scale is the measurement of the pungency (spicy heat) of chili peppers.

The scale is named after its creator, American pharmacist Wilbur Scoville. His method, devised in 1912, is known as the Scoville Organoleptic Test. The modern commonplace method for quantitative analysis uses high-performance liquid chromatography, making it possible to directly measure capsaicinoid content – the active component of chili peppers, which are plants belonging to the genus Capsicum, which is an irritant for mammals.

Sweet Bell Peppers, Sweet Banana, Pimento (0 – 100 Scoville units)
Mexican Bell, Cherry; New Mexico, Anaheim, Pepperoncini (100 – 1,000)
Ancho, Pasilla, Espanola, Anaheim (1,000 – 1,500)

Sandia, Cascabel, NuMex Big Jim (1,500 – 2,500)
Jalapeno, Mirasol, Chipotle, Poblano (2,500 – 5,000)
Yellow Wax, Serrano (5,000 – 15,000)

Very hot
Chile de Arbol, Manzano (15,000 – 30,000)
Aji, Cayenne, Tabasco, Piquin (30,000 – 50,000)
Santaka, Chiltecpin, Thai (50,000 – 100,000)

Incredibly hot
Habanero, Scotch Bonnet, Bird’s Eye, Jamaican Hot (100,000 – 350,000)
Red Savina Habanero, Indian Tezpur (350,000 – 855,000)
Dorset Naga (876,000 – 970,000)
Naga Jolokia Pepper, also known as Ghost Pepper (855,000 – 1,041,427)

Common Pepper Spray (1,150,000 – 2,000,000)
US Grade Police Pepper Spray (2,500,000 – 5,300,000)
Homodihydrocapsaicin (6,000,000 – 8,600,000)
Nordihydrocapsaicin (8,800,000 – 9,100,000)
Pure Capsaicin (15,000,000 – 16,000,000)