Weird Statistics About Weird Things

There are a lot of weird things about people and world around us that can’t be explained.

» In chess, there are 169,518,829,100,544,000,000,000,000,000 ways to play the first ten moves.

» It only takes 7 pounds of pressure to rip your ear off.

» $26 billion in ransom has been paid out in the U.S. in the past 20 years.

» You use more calories eating celery than there are in the celery itself.

» On average, there are 178 sesame seeds on each McDonalds BigMac bun.

» There are 1 million ants for every person in the world.

» Odds of being killed by a dog – 1 in 700,000.

» Odds of dying while in the bath tub – 1 in 1 million.

» Odds of being killed by space debris – 1 in 5 billion.

» Odds of being killed by poisoning – 1 in 86,000.

» Odds of being killed by freezing – 1 in 3 million.

» Odds of being killed by lightening – 1 in 2 million.

» Odds of being killed in a car crash – 1 in 5,000.

» Odds of being killed in a tornado – 1 in 2 million.

» Odds of being killed by falling out of bed – 1 in 2 million.

» Odds of being killed in a plane crash -1 in 25 million.

» If you played all of the Beatles’ singles and albums that came out between 1962 and 1970 back to back, it would only last for 10 hours and 33 minutes.

» Termites eat through wood 2 times faster when listening to rock music.

» The Apollo 11 only had 20 seconds of fuel when it landed.

» 13 people are killed each year by vending machine’s falling on them.

» There is a 1/4 pound of salt in every gallon of seawater.

» About 1/3 of American adults are at least 20% above their recommended weight.

» The average talker sprays about 300 microscopic saliva droplets per minute, about 2.5 droplets per word.

» The average smell weighs 760 nanograms.

» The Earth experiences 50,000 earthquakes each year.

» Skin temperature does not go much above 95 degrees even on the hottest days.

» 314 Americans had buttock lift surgery in 1994.

» Annual growth of WWW traffic is 314,000%.

» Experts at Intel say that microprocessor speed will double every 18 months for at least 10 years.

» The Earth’s revolution time increases .0001 seconds annually.

» Driving at 75 miles (121 km) per hour, it would take 258 days to drive around one of Saturn’s rings.

» Driving 55 miles (88 km) per hour instead of 65 miles (105 km) per hour increases your car mileage by about 15%.

» Airbags explode at 200 miles (322 km) per hour.

» If we had the same mortality rate now as in 1900, more than half the people in the world today would not be alive.

» 1/3 of all cancers are sun related.

» The average person flexes the joints in their finger 24 million times during a lifetime.

» There are more than 1,000 chemicals in a cup of coffee.

» It would take 7 billion particles of fog to fill a teaspoon.

» The average iceberg weighs 20 million tons.

How Important Is A Horses Ass?

US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5 inches. That’s an exceedingly odd number
Why was that gauge used? Because that’s the way they built them in England, and English expatriates built the US Railroads.
Why did the English build them like that? Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that’s the gauge they used.
Why did "they" use that gauge then? Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.
Okay! Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because that’s the spacing of the wheel ruts.
So who built those old rutted roads? Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (and England) for their legions. The roads have been used ever since.
And the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome, they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing.
The United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot.
And bureaucracies live forever.
So the next time you are handed a spec and told we have always done it that way and wonder what horse’s ass came up with that, you may be exactly right, because the Imperial Roman war chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the back ends of two war horses.
Now the twist to the story…
When you see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or SRBs. The SRBs are made by Thiokol at their factory in Utah. The engineers who designed the SRBs would have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site.
The railroad line from the factory happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains. The SRBs had to fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track, as you now know, is about as wide as two horses’ behinds.
So, a major Space Shuttle design feature of what is arguably the worlds most advanced transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a Horse’s ass.
And you thought being a horse’s ass wasn’t important!