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magilicuti

Some more interesting facts!

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Here are some facts about the 1500s

Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to smell so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor. Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it hence the saying, "Don't throw the baby out with the bath water."

Houses had thatched roofs. Thick straw, piled high, with no wood underneath. It was the place for animals to get warm, so all the dogs, cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof. When it rained it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the saying "It's raining cats and dogs."

There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could really mess up your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That's how canopy beds came into existence.

The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt, hence the saying "dirt poor." The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on the floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they kept adding more thresh until when you opened the door it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entranceway. Hence, a "thresh hold."

In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to the pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes the stew had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, "Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old."

Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off. It was a sign of wealth that a man "could bring home the bacon." They would cut off a little to share with guests and would all sit around and "chew the fat."

Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning and death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf. The family got the middle, and guests got the top, or "upper crust."

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock them out for a couple of days. Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up. Hence the custom of holding a "wake."

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a "bone-house" and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized they had been burying people alive. So they thought they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night the ("graveyard shift") to listen for the bell. Hence, someone could be "saved by the bell", or was considered a "dead ringer".

And that's the truth.... whoever said that History was boring?

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Homemade Mosquito Repellant

Use Bounce Fabric Softener Sheets...Best thing ever used in Louisiana...just wipe on and go...Great for Babies

Bob, a fisherman, takes one vitaimin B-1 tablet a day April through October . He said it works. He was right. The odor the tablet gives out through your skin (YOU can not smell it) repels mosquitos, black flies, no seeum's, and gnats. It does not work on stinging insect! Bob hasn't had a mosquito bite in 33 years, try it. Vitimin B-1( Thiamine Hydrochloride 100 mg.)

Kenn quoted an NPR report, "If you eat bananas, the mosquitos like you, something about the banana oil as your body processes it. (Maybe they need the potassium too) Stop eating bananas for the summer and the mosquitos will be much less interested."

This is going to floor you, but someone (who is in the woods every day) said one of the best insect repellents is Vick's Vaporub.

Plant marigolds around the yard, the flowers give off a smell that bugs do not like. Plant some in the garden also, to help ward off bugs without using insecticides.

"Tough guy" Marines, who spend a great deal of time camping out, say that the very best mosquito repellant you can use is Avon Skin-So-Soft bath oil mixed about half and half with alcohol.

From Sharon: "One of the best natural insect repellants that I've discovered is made from the clear real vanilla (not the grocery store vanilla extract which is mostly alcohol). This is the pure vanilla that is sold in Mexico. I use half vanilla and half water and find that it works great for mosquitoes and ticks."

Mix Your Own:

20 drops Eucalyptus oil

20 drops Cedarwood oil

10 drops Tea Tree oil

10 drops Geranium oil

2 oz. carrier oil ( such as Jojoba )

Mix together in a 4 oz. container. Apply to skin as needed avoiding the eye area. Keep out of reach of children. Test on a small area of skin for sensitivities . Experiment with different percentages of essential oil.

When all else fails, put a frog on your shoulder.

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The Year of Our Lord 1902:

The year 1902 was only one hundred years ago...what a difference a century makes.

The average life expectancy in the US was 47 years.

Only 14% of the homes in the US had a bath tub.

Only 8% of the homes had a telephone. A 3 minute call from Denver to New York City cost $11.00!

There were only 8,000 cars in the US and only 144 miles of paved roads.

The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.

Alabama, Mississippi, Iowa and Tennessee were each more heavily populated than California.

With a mere 1.4 million residents, California was only the 21st most populous state in the Union.

The tallest structure in the world was the Eiffel Tower in France.

The average wage in the US was 22 cents an hour.

The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.

A competent accountant could expect to earn $2,000 per year, a dentist $2,500 per year, a veterinarian between $1,500 and $4,000 per year, and a mechanical engineer about $5,000 per year.

More than 95% of all births in the US took place at home.

Ninety percent of all US Physicians had no college education. Instead, they attended medical schools, many of which were condemned in the press and by the government as "substandard."

Sugar cost 4 cents a pound. Eggs were 14 cents a dozen. Coffee cost 15 cents a pound.

Most women only washed their hair once a month and used Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.

The five leading causes of death in the US were [in order of frequency]:

1. Pneumonia and Influenza.

2. Tuberculosis.

3. Diarrhea.

4. Heart disease.

5. Stroke.

The American flag had 45-stars, Arizona, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Hawaii, and Alaska hadn't been admitted to the Union yet.

The population of Las Vegas, Nevada was 30.

Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and iced tea hadn't been invented yet.

There was no Mother's Day or Father's Day.

One in ten US adults could not read or write.

Only 6% of all Americans had graduated from high school.

Marijuana, heroin and morphine were all available over the counter at corner drug stores. According to one pharmacist, "Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind, regulates the stomach, and the bowels, and is, in fact, a perfect guardian of health."

Eighteen percent of all households in the US had at least one full-time servant or domestic.

There were about 230 reported murders in the entire US.

SOMEHOW LIFE HAS CHANGED!!!

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Originally posted by magilicuti

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a "bone-house" and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized they had been burying people alive. So they thought they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night the ("graveyard shift") to listen for the bell. Hence, someone could be "saved by the bell", or was considered a "dead ringer".

this is crazy:eek:

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Does the statement, "We've always done it that way" ring any bells...?

The 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 world's 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 ??

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