Orts for your amusement (and use in trivia games)

It takes eight minutes for light from our sun to reach Earth.

(Distance between Earth and sun is nearly 150,000,000 km. Speed of light is 300,000 km/s. So, it takes nearly 500 sec, i.e., nearly 8 min and 20 sec. Formula is d=st or t=d/s. Change seconds to hours and hours to minutes after you get the time in hours.)

(And the contestant was *sort of* on the ball: she said that light travels 186,000 miles an HOUR [ahem], whereas it’s actually miles per SECOND, in a vacuum. No wonder my vacuum doesn’t pick up the dog hair.)

The League of Nations was formed during Woodrow Wilson’s administration, as was the Federal Reserve. The League of Nations yielded in 1946 to the United Nations, during the Harry Truman administration.

Jade is generally nephrite (although there’s also jadeite). I Did Not Know This.

Theodore (“Teddy”) Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States (1901– 1909), following William McKinley to become the first 20th-century leader. Abraham Lincoln (16th, 1861-1865, which is incidentally the date span of the Civil War) used to keep notes and papers in his hat (they say). Benjamin Harrison (grandson of William Henry) is generally considered the worst-ever president (even taking into consideration all the others that you think were stinkers). {EDIT: This was one of those tossed-off remarks that the contestant makes–not actually a trivia “fact.” It’s something they’ve been told by an opinionated historian, I’ll bet.)

The only hit the Strawberry Alarm Clock ever had was “Incense and Peppermints.”

Liberal Arts: (of antiquity) Grammar, dialectic, rhetoric, geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, music
Deadly Sins: wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, gluttony
Cardinal Virtues: chastity, temperance, charity, diligence, patience, kindness, humility
Wonders of the Ancient World: Great Pyramid of Giza, Hanging Gardens of Babylon, Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, Statue of Zeus at Olympia, Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, Colossus of Rhodes, the Lighthouse at Alexandria (alternatively, the Ishtar Gate)
Wonders of the Modern World: Stonehenge, the Colosseum, the Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa, the Great Wall of China, the Porcelain Tower of Nanjing, the Hagia Sophia, the Leaning Tower of Pisa
Tones of the musical scale: Do, re, me, fa, so, la, ti (returning to octave do)
Dwarves: Happy, Sleepy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Bashful, Doc

Aren’t these just ESSENTIAL little orts of knowledge?


Author: shalanna

Shalanna: rhymes with "Madonna" and "I wanna," and is not a soundalike with "Hosanna" or "Sha-Na-Na." Aging hippie with long hair, husband, elderly mother, and yappy Pomeranian. I've been writing since I could hold a crayon. I started with fiction, which Mama said was "lying." “Don’t tell stories,” she would admonish, in Southern vernacular. “That's all in your imagination!” When grownups said this, they were not approving. So, shamed, I stopped telling stories for a few years--rather, I stopped letting anyone read them. I'm married to a fellow computer nerd who doesn't really like hearing about writing, but who reads sf/fantasy and understands the creative drive. I'm actually a nonconformist/hippie still wearing bluejeans and drop earrings and the Alice-in-Wonderland hair with headbands and sandals. Favorite flavor is chocolate/orange, favorite color is either Dreamsicle orange (cantaloupe) or bubble-gum pink, favorite musical is either Bye Bye Birdie, Rocky Horror, or The Producers . . . wait, I also love The Music Man. Is this getting way too specific and irrelevant yet? Obvious why I don't sell a ton of flash fiction, isn't it? To define oneself, I always say, it is good to make a list. How about a booklist? Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird Frank and Ernestine Gilbreth, Cheaper by the Dozen C.S.Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (all the Narnia books) J.R.R.Tolkien,The Hobbit/LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy Gail Godwin, The Odd Woman F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby J. D. Salinger, Catcher in the Rye (before dismissing it, actually read it) George Orwell, 1984 Kurt Vonnegut, Cat's Cradle Donna Tartt, The Secret History Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn James Allen, As A Man Thinketh Mark Winegardner, Elvis Presley Boulevard James Thurber, My Life and Hard Times The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum Winnie-the-Pooh/House at Pooh Corner, A. A. Milne Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie The KJV and NIV Bible (each translation has its glories)

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