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ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

I really enjoy doing Google searches for fun facts and I hope that you do too. I am starting a new message in each game community with the same discussion title. Please feel free to add fun facts and maybe, if I have time, I will post a message weekly.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    March Forth and Do Something Day is a made-up holiday celebrated each year on March 4.

    The holiday encourages people to do something new that enriches their own lives or the lives of people in their community.

    March Fourth

    The name of this unofficial holiday plays on the words, march fourth, which when spoken out loud sounds like march forth - an expression used to convey action and moving forward.

    How to Celebrate?

    March forth and do something.

    Volunteer in your community.

    Start something that you have always wanted to do but have never had the chance to.

    You can read more here.   

     March 4, 2020 is ...

    64th day of the year. There are then 302 days left in 2020.

    10th Wednesday of 2020.

    on the 10th week of 2020 (using US standard week number calculation).

    74th day of Winter. There are 16 days left till Spring.

    Birthstone for this day: Aquamarine, Bloodstone & Jade

    This information came from here

    This Day in Music

    1967 - The Rolling Stones' Ruby Tuesday hits #1

    1972 -Badfinger's Day After Day is certified gold

    1976 - Hall & Oates, Rich Girl is recorded

    1978 - In the Top 5 songs on this day, Dan Hill's, Sometimes When We Touch at #3 is the only song not written by the Bee Gees

    This Day in Sports

    1913 - New York Yankees are the 1st team to train outside the US in Bermuda

    1967 - Worlds Ladies Figure Skating Champion in Vienna won by Peggy Fleming of the US

    1968 - Joe Frazier TKOs Buster Mathis in 11 for heavyweight boxing title

    1976 - San Francisco Giants are bought for $8 million by Bob Lurie & Bud Herseth

    All the above came from here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Superman didn't always fly. The original comic book Superman could leap tall buildings in a single bound. But then he had to come right back down to Earth—because he didn't fly. It wasn't until the 1940s, when animators for a new animated series decided it would be too difficult to routinely draw him bending his knees, that it was decided that Superman could take off into the air. Readers got to see smooth animation, and a superhero gained a new power.


    Bees sometimes sting other bees. Bees are notorious for their stings, but humans aren't the only ones who experience this pain in the neck (or the arm, or the leg…). In protecting their hives from outsiders, some "guard bees" will stay by the entrance and sniff the bees that come in, says Marianne Peso from the biology department of Macquarie University. If there's a rogue bee from another hive trying to steal some nectar, the guard bee will bite and even sting the intruder.


    Water makes different pouring sounds depending on its temperature. If you listen very closely, hot water and cold water sound slightly different when being poured. The heat changes the thickness, or viscosity, of the water, which changes the pitch of the sound it makes when it's poured. What we feel as heat comes from the molecules of the water moving faster. Cold water is thicker and therefore makes a slightly higher-pitched sound.

     All of the above came from here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Daylight Saving Time will begin at 2:00 AM on Sunday, March 8

    Don't forget to change your clock before going to sleep tonight! But what does it mean and why do we do it?

    The terms “spring forward” and “fall back” are used to describe a practice of changing standard time with the intention of “saving” (as in, making better use of) natural light. During daylight savings time (DST), clocks are turned ahead one hour, so that the sun rises later in the morning and sets later in the evening. The change is reversed in autumn.

    Originally enacted in the United States as a wartime conservation effort, observance of DST became federal law in 1918. (To dispel a common myth: It was not enacted for farmers—in fact, most farmers fought for its repeal.) While it was quickly repealed after the war ended, DST was observed nationally again during World War II. By 1966, some 100 million Americans were practicing some type of DST through their own local laws. In 1966, Congress acted to end the confusion and establish one consistent nationwide pattern. The Uniform Time Act of 1966 stated that DST would begin on the last Sunday of April and end on the last Sunday of October. (Any area that wanted to be exempt from DST could do so by passing a local ordinance. Hawaii and most of Arizona, for example, are exempt from DST.) By 2005, the Energy Policy Act established that DST begins each year on the second Sunday in March at 2:00am and that the changeover back to standard time (ST) occurs on the first Sunday in November at 2:00am.

    You can read more here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    To help you navigate through the community a bit easier I have created a blog with some wonderful community links. To see the entire message view it HERE.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    You already know how to play the game and even though it might be different than the card game of Solitaire there are some similarities. Below please find some facts about Solitaire.

    Fun Facts about Solitaire

    The history of a group of card games known as Solitaire dates back to the mid-18th century. Internationally, the game of solitaire has many names. It is often called "Patience," especially in Britain. In France, the game is sometimes called "Success" (reussite). Other languages, such as Danish, Norwegian and Polish often use the word "Kabal" or "Kabala" (secret knowledge) to describe these games. This goes back to the early origins of solitaire where the outcome of a game may have been though to be a type of fortune telling.

    Solitaire makes it earliest appearance in writing in about 1783 where it is described in a German book of games. It was described as a competitive card game where players would take turns or play with separate decks of cards. The idea of playing solitaire completely by one's self probably came out of people enjoying practicing for competitive games.

    It is widely believed, but not true, that Napoleon played solitaire during his exile. Many solitaire games bare his name or the name of the island he was exiled to. However, Napoleon enjoyed the more popular games of the day such as Whist. But by the mid-19th century, solitaire was popular in French society.

    It was also around that time that solitaire took hold in English society. Prince Albert was known to play, and books of rules began appearing in English in the late 19th century.

    It wasn't until the second half of the 20th century that most modern forms of patience games began to take shape. Hundreds of books describing hundreds of different solitaire games have been published.

    In the 1980s, personal computers made solitaire more popular than ever. Since players don't need to shuffle and deal the cards for each and every hand, game play has become more enjoyable. In addition, the ability to start a new game with only the click of a mouse has brought forward the addictive quality of these games.

    There are more than 100 distinctly individual solitaire games, with that number reaching more than 1,000 when you consider minor variations.

    You can read more here.

    7 FUN FACTS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT PLAYING CARDS

    Playing cards have been around since we all can remember. Many of us grew up playing games like Go Fish, Crazy Eights, Spoons, Gin Rummy, Solitaire, Bridge and much more.

     THE FIRST DECKS OF CARDS WERE CREATED IN IMPERIAL CHINA SOMETIME DURING THE 9TH CENTURY. It is believed that the first printed card deck was made around 13 centuries ago and consisted of only 32 cards, which included all combinations of a pair of dice. The decks were initially printed on paper, wood and even bone. 

    THE FRENCH SUIT SYMBOLS WE USE IN CARD DECKS TODAY WERE ORIGINALLY DERIVED FROM GERMAN ONES DURING THE LATE 1400S. The French suit symbols we are most familiar with (Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs and Spades) are a variation of the German suit symbols used in the late 1370s. Those symbols include Acorns, Leaves, Hearts and Bells. Even earlier than that in the 14th century, the symbols were Cups, Swords, Coins and Batons, which were copied by the Italians. It wasn’t until the 1480s that the French suit symbols became popular and are still widely used today in America and other regions.

    FACE CARDS WERE DESIGNED AFTER REAL PEOPLE IN HISTORY. French card decks (the version we use today) were modeled after renowned historical figures. These personalized playing cards included Charlemagne (King of Hearts), Julius Caesar (King of Diamonds), Alexander the Great (King of Clubs) and King David from the Holy Bible (King of Spades).

     

    THE FIRST BICYCLE® PLAYING CARDS WERE PRODUCED IN THE LATE 1800S. The most iconic card deck known to Americans is the Bicycle brand. Dating back to 1885, Bicycle cards were used by (and continue to be used by) magicians, gamblers and card players across the globe.

     

    MOST CASINO PLAYING CARDS ARE MADE OF 100% PLASTIC. It is very common for casinos to have plastic cards for two main reasons: 1) they are better for frequent handling and last much longer than paper cards, and 2) they are significantly more difficult to write on, which in turn, makes it hard for players to try and cheat.

     

    PLAYING CARDS ONCE HELPED AMERICAN WAR PRISONERS ESCAPE TO FREEDOM. During World War II, the government partnered with the United States Playing Card Company to produce and ship out specially designed card decks to help lead American POWs to freedom. The cards were designed to peel apart when wet, revealing pieces to a secret map that helped them escape.

     

    THE U.S. USED ACE OF SPADES CARDS TO SCARE THE VIET CONG DURING THE VIETNAM WAR. Playing cards didn’t just help American soldiers during World War II. They also assisted them during the Vietnam War in 1966, two U.S. lieutenants had an idea to create psychological warfare among the Viet Cong. The lieutenants knew three very important things: 1) that the French used playing cards to foretell the future, 2) that the Ace of Spades signified a forewarning of death, and 3) that the Viet Cong were very superstitious people. So, they decided to use this information to create a very methodical scare tactic for their enemies. After contacting the United States Playing Card Company, they coordinated a shipment of thousands of crates full of only Ace of Spades cards to be sent to the warzone areas of Southeast Asia and dispersed throughout the jungles to frighten the Viet Cong. They were successful in their scare tactic.

     

    All of this info came from here.

     

     



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar
    edited March 8

    You already know how to play the game and even though it might be different than the card game of Solitaire there are some similarities. Below please find some facts about Solitaire.

     

    Fun Facts about Solitaire

    The history of a group of card games known as Solitaire dates back to the mid-18th century. Internationally, the game of solitaire has many names. It is often called "Patience," especially in Britain. In France, the game is sometimes called "Success" (reussite). Other languages, such as Danish, Norwegian and Polish often use the word "Kabal" or "Kabala" (secret knowledge) to describe these games. This goes back to the early origins of solitaire where the outcome of a game may have been though to be a type of fortune telling.

    Solitaire makes it earliest appearance in writing in about 1783 where it is described in a German book of games. It was described as a competitive card game where players would take turns or play with separate decks of cards. The idea of playing solitaire completely by one's self probably came out of people enjoying practicing for competitive games.

    It is widely believed, but not true, that Napoleon played solitaire during his exile. Many solitaire games bare his name or the name of the island he was exiled to. However, Napoleon enjoyed the more popular games of the day such as Whist. But by the mid-19th century, solitaire was popular in French society.

    It was also around that time that solitaire took hold in English society. Prince Albert was known to play, and books of rules began appearing in English in the late 19th century.

    It wasn't until the second half of the 20th century that most modern forms of patience games began to take shape. Hundreds of books describing hundreds of different solitaire games have been published.

    In the 1980s, personal computers made solitaire more popular than ever. Since players don't need to shuffle and deal the cards for each and every hand, game play has become more enjoyable. In addition, the ability to start a new game with only the click of a mouse has brought forward the addictive quality of these games.

    There are more than 100 distinctly individual solitaire games, with that number reaching more than 1,000 when you consider minor variations.

    You can read more here.

     FUN FACTS YOU NEVER KNEW ABOUT PLAYING CARDS

    Playing cards have been around since we all can remember. Many of us grew up playing games like Go Fish, Crazy Eights, Spoons, Gin Rummy, Solitaire, Bridge and much more.

     THE FIRST DECKS OF CARDS WERE CREATED IN IMPERIAL CHINA SOMETIME DURING THE 9TH CENTURY. It is believed that the first printed card deck was made around 13 centuries ago and consisted of only 32 cards, which included all combinations of a pair of dice. The decks were initially printed on paper, wood and even bone. 

    FACE CARDS WERE DESIGNED AFTER REAL PEOPLE IN HISTORY. French card decks (the version we use today) were modeled after renowned historical figures. These personalized playing cards included Charlemagne (King of Hearts), Julius Caesar (King of Diamonds), Alexander the Great (King of Clubs) and King David from the Holy Bible (King of Spades).

     PLAYING CARDS ONCE HELPED AMERICAN WAR PRISONERS ESCAPE TO FREEDOM. During World War II, the government partnered with the United States Playing Card Company to produce and ship out specially designed card decks to help lead American POWs to freedom. The cards were designed to peel apart when wet, revealing pieces to a secret map that helped them escape.

     THE U.S. USED ACE OF SPADES CARDS TO SCARE THE VIET CONG DURING THE VIETNAM WAR. Playing cards didn’t just help American soldiers during World War II. They also assisted them during the Vietnam War in 1966, two U.S. lieutenants had an idea to create psychological warfare among the Viet Cong. The lieutenants knew three very important things: 1) that the French used playing cards to foretell the future, 2) that the Ace of Spades signified a forewarning of death, and 3) that the Viet Cong were very superstitious people. So, they decided to use this information to create a very methodical scare tactic for their enemies. After contacting the United States Playing Card Company, they coordinated a shipment of thousands of crates full of only Ace of Spades cards to be sent to the warzone areas of Southeast Asia and dispersed throughout the jungles to frighten the Viet Cong. They were successful in their scare tactic.

     All of this info came from here.

    Our @Ashraf created Fun facts about The Great Pyramids.  You will definitely want to check it out!



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Are you superstitious? Do you avoid going under ladders? Do you throw salt over your shoulder? Do you believe that if you break a mirror you will have 7 years of bad luck? What about Friday 13? 

    Very little is known about the origins of the day's notoriety. Some historians believe that the superstitions surrounding it arose in the late 19th century. The first documented mention of the day can be found in a biography of Italian composer Gioachino Rossini, who died on a Friday 13th. A 1907 book, Friday the Thirteenth, by American businessman Thomas Lawson, may have further perpetuated the superstition. Others believe that the myth has Biblical origins. Jesus was crucified on a Friday, and there were 13 guests at the Last Supper the night before his crucifixion. Another account suggests that the day has been associated with misfortune since 1307 when on a Friday the 13th, the French king gave the orders to arrest hundreds of Knights Templar.

    Yet, the Fear is Very Real... The fear of Friday the 13th is also called friggatriskaidekaphobia or paraskevidekatriaphobia. Experts say that friggatriskaidekaphobia affects millions of people and estimate that businesses, especially airlines, suffer from severe losses on Friday the 13th.

    Triskaidekaphobia, or the fear of the number 13, is even more widespread. So much so that many high-rise buildings, hotels, and hospitals skip the 13th floor and many airports do not have gates numbered 13. In many parts of the world, having 13 people at the dinner table is considered bad luck.

    Alfred Hitchcock was born on the 13th. The master of suspense was born on August 13, 1899 – so Friday, August 13, 1999 would have been his 100th birthday. He made his directorial debut in 1922 with a movie called Number 13. Unfortunately, the film was doomed from the start and never got off the ground due to financial troubles. Other celebrities and well-known personalities born on a Friday the 13th include actors Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen; novelist and playwright, Samuel Beckett; and former President of Cuba, Fidel Castro. The Day Inspired One of the Highest Grossing Film Series

    The commercially successful Friday the 13th enterprise includes 12 horror movies, a television series, and several books that focus on curses and superstitions. Even though the films and the television series consistently received negative reviews from critics, they have a huge following. The mask worn by the key character in the films, Jason Voorhees, is one of the most known images in popular culture.

    You can read more info here

    Taylor Swift thinks of 13 as her lucky number and has some connections with Friday the 13th: "I was born on the 13th. I turned 13 on Friday the 13th. My first album went gold in 13 weeks. My first #1 song had a 13-second intro," she told MTV in 2009.

    Stephen King’s triskaidekaphobia – The number 13 and Friday the 13th in particular, scares even the horror master himself. He wrote an article about it for the New York Times in 1984 and you can read it here.

    Mark Twain was allegedly once invited to be the 13th guest at a dinner party. As the story goes, he went to the dinner despite a superstitious friend's warning. Twain reportedly said, "It was bad luck. They only had food for 12."

    In his No. 1 hit song "Superstition," Stevie Wonder sings: "Thirteen-month-old baby, broke the lookin' glass. Seven years of bad luck, good things in your past. When you believe in things that you don't understand, then you suffer. Superstition ain't the way."

    In some Spanish-speaking countries, Tuesday (Martes) the 13th is considered bad luck. Tuesday is feared because it is the day of the week associated with the Roman god of war, Mars. There is a cautionary saying: "On Tuesdays, don't get married, don't take a trip and don't leave your home."

    Founded in 1882 by Capt. William Fowler, The Thirteen Club of New York was a group of skeptics who defied superstitions by hosting dinner parties on Friday the 13th. At the first dinner, the 13 members performed such unlucky feats as passing under a ladder. They dined on 13 courses, the first by the light of 13 candles. The devil-may-care group tipped over salt containers on the table but were forbidden from tossing any of the spilled granules over their shoulders. The small club evolved into a national organization that boasted such members Grover Cleveland and Theodore Roosevelt, according to the New York Historical Society.

    You can read more here.

    In some countries, Tuesday the 13th is the unlucky day, not Friday the 13th.  In Spain and Spanish speaking countries, it's Tuesday the 13th that gets people wound up. Martes, Tuesday in Spanish, comes from the Roman god of war, Mars, forever tying the day to violence, death and bloodshed. In conjunction, Constantinople supposedly fell on a Tuesday during the Fourth Crusade. And then Ottoman Turks supposedly claimed the city on a Tuesday more than 200 years later.

     Please follow this link to read more about superstitions: 13 Superstitions From Around the World



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar
    Gardening Facts and Tips

    The ladybug is a beneficial insect. They consume large numbers of aphids and scale bugs thus keeping them from chewing on your precious plants.

    The best time to water your plants is in the morning or at dusk. This not only protects your plants from burning but watering in the heat of the day also causes an increase in evaporation and thus your plants don’t get as much water as you think. It also saves water!

    When watering your plants try not to water the leaves. Water remaining on the leaves is a great way get and spread disease. To avoid this try placing the hose at the base of the plant.

    Variegated (different colored pieces of leaves, etc) plants are due to a mutation in the plant.

    Picking off flowers and vegetables actually increases the productivity of the plant.

    Thinner leaved plants tend to need more water than plants with thicker leaves.

    Mixing cinnamon in with your soil is a simple and easy fungicide.

    Control mildew buildup by diluting milk with water and spraying it on your plants.

    Less than 2 percent of insects are harmful.

    You can read this here

     • A sunflower is not just one flower. Both the fuzzy brown center and the classic yellow petals are actually 1,000 – 2,000 individual flowers, held together on a single stalk.

    • There are more microorganisms in one teaspoon of soil than there are people on earth. It's aliiiiive! OK, in all seriousness, that fact might make you itchy, but microbes are important for keeping your soil full of nutrients.

    • Plants really do respond to sound. Talking to plants to help them grow is a well-known old wives' tale, but studies have shown vibration (like music, or perhaps even the sweet sound of your voice) can affect plant growth. Plus, the Myth Busters (in an admittedly not-so-scientific study), compared a silent greenhouse to one where they piped in a voice soundtrack, and found that plants in the latter grew more.

    • Butterflies might be more attracted to your weeds than your flowers. Colorful blooms aren't the chief reason these insects love your garden – it's more about the fragrance and nectar. According to the Smithsonian Institute, new cultivars of popular flowers have been bred for enhanced color and size but have often lost their fragrance in the process. So everyday weeds, like dandelions and clovers, might actually be the most appealing things in your yard to butterflies (they hate pesticides, too). Taking care to choose heirloom flower seeds can get them to also fly your way.

    • A little baking soda can help you grow sweeter tomatoes. A regular sprinkling of this kitchen staple into your plant's soil can help reduce acidity, which sweetens up your crop.

    • Some of your favorite fruits are actually in the rose family. Apples, pears, peaches, cherries, raspberries, strawberries, and more are rosaceae, making them cousins to the long-stemmed Valentine's Day variety.

    • The right orchid combination can smell like your favorite dessert. Did you know that the vanilla bean comes from a orchid varietal? And it's not the only sweet-smelling kind: "An oncidum hyrbrid called Sharry Baby smells like chocolate," says George Hatfield, president of the Santa Barbara Orchid Show. "It's 'baking cookie' aroma has made it a winner." And that's not all: The cymbidium Golden Elf smells lemony, and the phalaenopsis violacea has a cinnamon scent. "Just like you'd combine Jelly Belly beans to create new flavors, you can combine orchids to create a garden that smells like a dessert buffet," says Hatfield.

    • You can change a hydrangea's color by altering the pH level of the soil. A more alkaline soil will result in pinker blooms, while more acidity will produce blue blooms. To coax your plant to the blue side, add more organic matter to your soil, like eggshells and coffee grounds (though the acidity in used coffee grounds can vary greatly, so you might try a high-acid fertilizer, too). The change won't happen overnight, but eventually you should succeed in manipulating your soil's pH level.

    • Deer can jump eight feet highThey might require a running start to reach such heights, but a tiny fence often isn't enough to keep these garden nibblers away. Try a taller one, plant thorny or pungent plants as a natural barrier, or scare them off with lights or wind chimes.

    • You don't need to be a dedicated composter to reap similar benefits. Call it cheating but applying used coffee grounds, eggshells, chopped-up banana peels, and other organic matter directly to your soil (no composting required) can offer plants nutrients as they decompose. For already-growing beds, scatter and bury the items within the first few inches of soil.

    The above info came from here

     If you would like to read ‘What Your Favorite Flower Says About You’ you can read it here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Pi Day is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159. Pi Day is an annual opportunity for math enthusiasts to recite the infinite digits of Pi, talk to their friends about math, and to eat Pie.

    Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits beyond its decimal point. As an irrational and transcendental number, it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern. While only a handful of digits are needed for typical calculations, Pi’s infinite nature makes it a fun challenge to memorize, and to computationally calculate more and more digits.

    You can read more here

    Pi facts

    It is thought the concept of pi was first discovered around 4,000 years ago.

    We can never find the true meaning of pi because it is what is known as an "irrational number".

    Welsh mathematician William Jones was the first person to use the symbol we now use for pi more than 250 years ago.

    The Guinness World Record for most decimal places memorised is held by Rajveer Meena, who took 10 hours to recall 70,000 places blindfolded in March 2015.

    British mathematician William Shanks became famous for manually calculating pi to 607 places in the 19th century. However, it later emerged the 527th number was wrong, making the rest of his calculations wrong by default.

    Google employee Emma Haruka Iwao has calculated the number pi to a world record 31 trillion digits today!

     The above info came from here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Today is Red Nose Day! This special holiday got its start in England in 1988, and today it’s one of the largest fundraisers in the UK. The day is sponsored by Comic Relief, a British charity that raises money for people in need in the United Kingdom and Africa. Red Nose Day happens every two years on the second or third Friday in March. In the past 30 years, the event has raised over £1 billion. The day features a telethon, TV specials, and events around the country. You can read more here.

     Jack Black hosting 'Celebrity Escape Room' for NBC's Red Nose Day charity event

    NBC will kick off its annual Red Nose Day, the national fundraising campaign to end child poverty, with the Ben Stiller-produced Celebrity Escape Room, the network has announced. NBC describes it as “sort of a show within a show,” where “all-knowing ‘Game Master'” host Jack Black, will put comedy stars Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow and Adam Scott to the test as they “work together under intense pressure to beat the clock, unlocking a series of surprising puzzle rooms to ultimately engineer their great escape.”  

     Celebrity Escape Room airs May 24 at 8 p.m. ET, followed by the two-hour Red Nose Day Special. The annual star-studded programming block supports the Campaign to End Child Poverty. This info came from here.

    What is Celebrity Escape Room?

    Celebrity Escape Room “combines the drama and tension of a real-life video game with the side-splitting allure of the ultimate party game,” says NBC. Stiller, Cox, Kudrow and Scott will work together and channel their inner Sherlocks to decipher clues and solve puzzles, brainstorm for solutions and combine their comedic talents to ultimately gain their freedom before time runs out.

    In addition to Stiller, Celebrity Escape Room will be executive produced by Black, Christine Taylor, Nicky Weinstock, Amiira Ruotola and Lee Metzger (The Voice). The show is produced by Universal Television Alternative Studio and Red Hour Productions.

    The annual Red Nose Day Special will follow Celebrity Escape Room with an entertainment showcase featuring music, comedy and poignant films. The films will share stories of children and young people who have been affected by poverty and how Red Nose Day funds have helped change their story for good.

    “Kicking off with Ben Stiller’s hilarious Celebrity Escape Room, NBC’s Red Nose Day lineup is the perfect vehicle to help drive this year’s fundraising efforts,” said Paul Telegdy, Chairman, NBC Entertainment. “We are privileged to continue our support of this incredible cause in partnership with our amazing friends at Comic Relief US as we work together on behalf of children in need around the world.”

    “Through the power of laughter and entertainment, Red Nose Day serves as a galvanizing force, rallying Americans to come together to end child poverty,” said Alison Moore, CEO of Comic Relief US. “Together with our incredible partners and celebrity supporters, we are working to change the story for good for millions of children in the U.S. and around the world.”

    The multi-week Red Nose Day campaign launches Monday, April 13 when the official Red Noses go on sale exclusively at Walgreens locations nationwide in more than 9,000 stores across the country. All net proceeds of Red Nose sales go to the Red Nose Day Fund. Between April 13-May 30, Walgreens will donate $.50 from each Red Nose sold to Comic Relief.

    Funds raised through Red Nose Day are split evenly between domestic and international programs that ensure children in need are safe, healthy and educated. The goal is to address the short-term needs of children living in poverty and also foster long-term change to break the poverty cycle and provide hope for a better future. Children and young people who benefit from Red Nose Day-supported programs span all 50 states, Puerto Rico and some of the poorest communities across Latin America, Africa and Asia. Since launching in the U.S. in 2015, Red Nose Day has raised $200 million and positively impacted the lives of nearly 25 million children.

    You can read the entire article here.  You can watch a video on the Celebrity Escape room here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    The Coronavirus has affected many countries. I'm sure that all of you have either read about it or saw the news on TV. Many of you might be at home for the next couple of weeks because your job has closed down to prevent this virus from spreading more.

    if you follow this link: Let's do some puzzles you will see math puzzles, word puzzles and mazes! Please feel free to tag your friends here in the community.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Each year, March 30th National Pencil Day honors the writing utensil that has done more than just teach millions the alphabet and draw straight lines. It’s also helped win wars and enabled amazing art.

    Hymen Lipman received the first patent for attaching an eraser to the end of a pencil on this day in 1858. Before that time, pencils and erasers existed separately. Lipman combined the two making two tools much more convenient to use. The intuitive businessman also manufactured envelopes for his stationery shop and was the first to add adhesive to the flap of envelopes. 

     Pencil Facts

    In the United States, most pencils are painted yellow. It is believed this tradition began in 1890 when the L & C Hardtmuth Company of Austria-Hungary introduced their Koh-I-Noor brand, named after the famous diamond. They intended the pencil to be the world’s best and most expensive pencil. However, other companies began to copy the yellow color so that their pencils would be associated with the high-quality brand.

     Notable pencil users (Wikipedia)

    Thomas Edison had pencils specially made by Eagle Pencil. His pencils were three inches long, thicker than standard pencils, and had softer graphite than typically available.

    Vladimir Nabokov rewrote everything he ever published, usually several times, by pencil.

    John Steinbeck was an obsessive pencil user and is said to have used as many as 60 a day. His novel East of Eden took more than 300 pencils to write.

    Vincent van Gogh used only Faber pencils as they were “superior to Carpenters pencils, a capital black and most agreeable.”

    Johnny Carson regularly played with pencils at his Tonight Show desk. These pencils were specially made with erasers at both ends to avoid on-set accidents.

    Roald Dahl used only pencils with yellow casings to write his books. He began each day with six sharpened pencils and only when all six became unusable did he resharpen them.

     You can read more here.

    History of the Pencil

    On March 30, 1858, Hymen Lipman received a patent for his invention of a pencil with a built-in eraser. U.S. patent 19,783 was awarded to the Philadelphia stationery entrepreneur extraordinaire for what he described as a “combination of the lead and India rubber or other erasing substance [embedded] in the holder of a drawing-pencil.” (Info from here)



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    NATIONAL CRAYON DAY

    Each year, on March 31st children and adults alike, pick up their favorite colors for National Crayon Day. Opening up a box of crayons opens up a world of imagination and hours of fun.  Wax and chalk-based crayons have been used by artists around the world for centuries. Edwin Binney created the brightly colored crayons we are familiar with today. He was part owner of Binney & Smith, a company that produced products such as paint, pigments and slate pencils for schools. (Info from here)

     The Inventors of Crayola Crayons: Binney & Smith

    Binney & Smith, now Crayola LLC, was an outgrowth of a chemical company that made pigments. The company started in 1864 in Peekskill, New York, and Joseph W. Binney was the owner. His son and a nephew took over when he retired, and they re-named the business Binney & Smith.

     Peekskill Chemical Works sold their pigment product, “lampblack,” to foundries and to the cast-iron stove manufacturers that were located nearby. As the business grew and pigment was shipped elsewhere, the company used wax marking crayons to label the boxes. Later on, these wax crayons would be a main part of their business in the form of Crayola crayons.

    When his son, Edwin Binney (1866-1934), finished his schooling in 1883, he joined his father’s company. One of Joseph’s nephews, C. Harold Smith (1860-1931) also joined the company around that time.

    New Pigment Developed

    In the meantime, Edwin Binney was investigating new ways to expand their line at home. Some businesses were marketing a new pigment known as “carbon black,” which was a byproduct of the drilling for natural gas that was being done in western Pennsylvania. Edwin Binney was very taken with the possibilities, and in 1892 he received a patent for an apparatus that permitted the mass manufacture of carbon black. Soon Binney & Smith became one of the major producers of the pigment. (In 2011, Edwin Binney was honored posthumously by the National Inventors Hall of Fame in recognition for his invention.)

     Slate Pencil Let Company Enter School Market

    At the turn of the 20th century, school children each had their own slates (like small two-sided blackboards) since paper was expensive and not easy to come by. The students used slate pencils to write on these tablets, and the softer the pencil the better. (The marks from a slate pencil are very much like markings of chalk and can be easily wiped away using a cotton cloth–or even a sleeve.) As Binney & Smith became familiar with the school market, Smith began listening for what else teachers needed. Two requests came up again and again: chalk that didn’t produce a dusty mess, and inexpensive wax crayons children could use for artwork.

     Crayola Crayons Division Grows

    The first wax crayons in the U.S. were imported from Europe, but by the 1880s, a few American companies were making them, too. Franklin Manufacturing in Rochester, New York, began with lumber and marking wax crayons, and by the 1880s, they expanded into the colored crayon market. Other companies, including Louis Prang (maker of early Christmas cards) and the Milton Bradley game company made wax crayons as well.

     By 1903 they were satisfied with their new product. Binney & Smith produced their first box of eight colorful crayons that year. Alice Binney, who was a former teacher, is credited with coming up with the Crayola name under which the crayons were released. (“Craie” means chalk in French and “ola” was a shortened form of the French word, “oléagineux,” which means oily.)

     At first, the boxes were sold door-to-door for a nickel. Each box contained crayons in these colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet, brown, and black. Each crayon was wrapped in paper and labeled as to color.

     During the Depression, Binney & Smith hired farm families to hand-letter the papers and wrap the crayons. This provided work in an economic downturn, and over time, certain farms became known for their color specialty.

     More and More Crayola Crayons

    The big seller, however, has always been crayons. And from the beginning (1903), they recognized the growing interest in art education. For that more refined market, they created the Rubens-Crayola crayon. In 1949, the box was expanded to hold 48 colors placed in a box with “stadium seating,” and in 1958 the classic 64-color box was introduced with a built-in sharpener. In 1993, ninety-six colors were packaged into what they called the Big Box.

     Involving the Public

    Crayola has long recognized the importance of public opinion, and that is part of their success. In 1993, they ran a “Name the New Colors Contest.” Almost two million people entered. The oldest winner was an 89-year-old woman who submitted “purple mountain’s majesty” for a new shade of purple, and the youngest was 5, who submitted “razzmatazz” for the raspberry red crayon. To read all the new color names and their winners, click here.

    Eight years later, the company wanted to know the most popular color. In 2001, they conducted the Crayola Color Census and the undisputed winner was the color blue; runners-up were various shades of blue.

    Read more here.



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  • ElsaElsa Posts: 27,377 Superstar

    Celebrated on April 1, April Fool’s Day, also known as All Fool’s Day, is a day for tricks, pranks and jokes. Other names include April Noddy Day, Gowkie Day, Huntigowk Day and St All-Fool’s Morn.

    There are several theories about the origin on the April Fool's Day custom. One explanation focuses on the introduction of the Julian and the Gregorian calendar. From ancient times, people in some parts of Europe celebrated the New Year on or around the March Equinox. However, the new calendar systems defined January 1 as the first day of the year.

    Biblical theories

    Another belief on the April Fool's Day origin points to the biblical character Noah as the first “April Fool”. It is said that on April 1, he mistakenly sent the dove out to find dry land before the waters subsided.

    A second story tells that the day commemorates when Jesus was sent from Pontius Pilate to Herod and back again. "Sending a man from Pilate to Herod", is an old term for sending someone on a fool's errand.

    The Origin of “Fool's Errands”

    According to Roman myth, the god Pluto abducted Proserpina to the underworld. Her mother Ceres only heard her daughter’s voice echo and searched for her in vain. The fruitless search is believed by some to have inspired the tradition of “fool's errands”, practical jokes where people are asked to complete an impossible or imaginary task.

    All Fool's Day in British Folklore

    British folklore links April Fool's Day to the town of Gotham in Nottinghamshire. According to the legend, it was traditional in the 13th century for any road that the king placed his foot upon to become public property. So, when Gotham’s citizens heard that King John planned to travel through their town, they refused him entry, not wishing to lose their main road. When the king heard this, he sent soldiers to the town. But when the soldiers arrived in Gotham, they found the town full of fools engaged in foolish activities such as drowning fish. As a result, the king declared the town too foolish to warrant punishment.

    This info came from here

    Fun facts

    The Scottish love April Fools' Day. In fact, they love it so much, they celebrate it for two days. In Scotland they call it "hunting the gowk" (the cuckoo), and if you are tricked, you are an "April gowk." To really get "behind" the holiday, the second day, called "Taily Day," is devoted to pranks involving the back side of the body. The "butt" of these jokes may often have a "kick me" sign placed on their back.

    There's something fishy going on in France. Kids fool their friends by taping a paper fish to their backs. When the victim discovers the fish, the prankster yells "Poisson d'Avril!" (April Fish!)

    Don't get floured, friends. In Portugal, April Fools' Day is actually celebrated on the Sunday and Monday before Lent. The big trick there? Throwing flour at your friend's face.

    Forget anything serious. In Poland everyone takes part in April Fools' Day activities, including the media and sometimes public institutions. All serious activities are completely avoided for the day. A favorite joke? Pouring water on people.

    In certain areas of Belgium, children lock out their parents or teachers and only let them in if they promise to give them sweets.

    Depending on where you live in England, instead of a "fool" you could be called a "noodle," "noddy," "gobby" or "gob."

    Check out this list of the Top 100 April Fools' Day Hoaxes.

    You can read more here.



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