Trivia Day 2020: Here are 10 interesting and bizarre trivia that will give you ample food for thought
Did you know that there is a floating post office in the city of Srinagar in Kashmir or that Saudi Arabia has no rivers? While these trivia may seem of little importance, they make for interesting conversation starters and games for candid get-togethers. January 4 is celebrated as National Trivia Day.
Back in the 1960s, nostalgic college students in the US started trading questions and answers about pop culture from their youth. This, in turn, led to the parlour game ‘Trivia’, which was published in a Columbia Daily Spectator column in 1965.
Soon after, trivia contests started being organised, leading to authors Ed Goodgold and Dan Carlinsky writing the book Trivia and subsequently More Trivial Trivia. While the exact origin of National Trivia Day is unknown, the day is marked on January 4 every year.
On Trivia Day, here’s looking at a few interesting facts:
1. Polling booth for single voter: Till 2019, the polling booth in Banej in Gujarat’s Gur Somnath district catered to a single person, Mahant Bharatdas Bapu. This also meant that it was possibly the only booth in the country with a cent per cent voting record. Unfortunately, he passed away in November.
2. A village without doors: Houses in the village of Shani Shignapur in Maharashtra do not have doors since people living there believe that the resident deity of the village (Lord Shani) will protect their house and properties from thieves.
3. Canary Islands: While the name might seemingly refer to birds, the name Islas Canarias is likely derived from the Latin name Canariae Insulae, meaning the ‘Island of the Dogs.’ Historian Pliny the Elder said that Mauretanian king Juba II named the island Canaria because it contained a large number of dogs.
4. Mawsynram is the wettest place in the world: This village on the Khasi Hills, Meghalaya, records the highest recorded rainfall in the world. The record was earlier held by Mawsynram’s neighbour Cherrapunji.
5. Washington DC’s cherry trees: In 1912, the people of Japan sent 3,020 cherry trees to the United States as a gift of friendship and the first two of the trees were planted by First lady Taft and the Viscountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese Ambassador.
6. Australian man tried selling New Zealand: Back in October 2019, an Australian comedian launched a Gofundme campaign to “sell New Zealand” after eBay shut down his auction for the country on the website. The report, published in New Zealand Herald reported that the comedian, Isaac Butterfield was earlier banned from Facebook for making fun of New Zealand.
7. Highest cricket ground in the world: Chail Cricket ground in Himachal Pradesh is the highest cricket ground in the world. It was built in 1893 and is located at an altitude of 2,444 metres.
8. Three countries do not follow the metric system: Myanmar, Liberia and the US are the only three countries in the world which have not adopted the International System of Units.
9. Some cats are allergic to humans: A University of Edinburgh study found that human lifestyles are potentially triggering asthma attacks in cats. The study found that cigarette smoke, dusty houses, human dandruff, pollen and certain types of cat litters can all create inflammation in cats’ airways and worsen asthma.
10. Superman did not always fly: In the original comic book, Superman could jump off tall buildings and leap over them in a single bound but he had to come right back on earth because he did not fly. It was only in the 1940s when a new animated series was made, the creators realised that routinely drawing him bending his knees would be difficult. So, the Man of Steel started flying.
11. National animal of Scotland is a mythical creature: The unicorn is the national animal of Scotland. Before 1603, the Royal Coat of Arms of Scotland was supported by two unicorns. The current royal coat of arms of United Kingdom is supported by a unicorn for Scotland along with a lion for England.
12. Humans are growing horns: A series of academic papers by researchers at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia, have shown that humans are growing horns from prolonged smartphone use. The research was published in the journal Scientific Research.
13. Koalas have fingerprints: Scientists at the University of Adelaide in Australia discovered koala fingerprints in 1996. Scientists say that the discovery explains the feature. The origin of fingerprints is a biochemical result of grasping, say researchers.
14. Chimpanzees like music with different beats: Chimpanzees like to listen to the different rhythms of music from Africa and India, according to research published by the American Psychological Association. The study was published in APA’s Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition.
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