In 1941, the British ship HMS Trinidad torpedoed itself (one of its torpedoes malfunctioned).
The most common last name in Japan is "Suzuki."
In Bangladesh, a 1989 riot which killed one person and injured at least 30 was caused by shoes. Some Moslems happened to see the Thom McAn logo on some sandals, and thought it looked like the Arabic characters for "Allah." They became incensed that Westerners would denigrate their religion, and began destroying shoe stores.
In Singapore, it is a crime to import, sell or manufacture chewing or bubble gum.
A woman was trapped for three days in a New Zealand parking garage elevator. After finally escaping, the garage attendants tried to charge her for three days of parking.
Feminist author Andrea Dworkin was responsible for developing legal theories that were incorporated into Canada’s 1993 anti-pornography law. Two of the first books banned by the law were her own works.
In Stockholm in 1993, a woman was found dead in her apartment. She had died three years before, but government computers had paid her pension and bills, so no one had discovered her.
In 1996, the major city with the highest cost of living in the world was Tokyo, Japan. Tokyo was the worlds most populated city as well, with over 28 million people.
Chang Hsien-chung, a Chinese bandit, is believed to have killed 40 million people in the 17th century (including the entire population of Szechwan province). That stood as the record for mass murder until the career of Mao Tse-tung.
Many countries prohibit parents from giving unusual names to their children. In Norway, parents must choose from a list of approved names. Included on the approved list are Odd, Bent, Roar, Dits and Anon.
As a show of admiration, the Pakistani Army gave a gift of three thoroughbred geldings to the Army of Sweden. Since Swedish law prohibits the importation of Asian horses (for fear of disease) the Swedes decided to avoid offending the Pakistanis, as might happen if the horses were returned. Rather, the Swedes destroyed the animals. The Pakistanis were offended.
In Italy, pregnant women are required to leave their jobs for the last two months of their pregnancies and for the first three months after giving birth. During this time, they must be paid their full salaries, 80% of which is provided by the taxpayers.
In China, actors are now required to get a license before they are allowed to perform
Police in Cebu City in the Philippines killed a man while trying to prevent him from committing suicide.
In 1984, a Canadian farmer began renting ad space on his cows.
The Great Wall of China was not intended to keep men out of China (soldiers could easily climb the wall using ladders). It was designed to keep horses (and cavalry) out.
In 1993, Italy passed a law forbidding the imprisonment of anyone with AIDS. This led to several gangs of AIDS-infected career criminals roaming the country immune from arrest.
In 17th century China, finely chopped tiger whiskers would be put on someones food to torture them. The microscopic barbs on the whiskers would cause the pieces to lodge in the victims intestines, causing painful infection.
In Frankfurt, Germany, a couple was forbidden from naming their child Schroeder. Other names that have been forbidden include Woodstock, Pushkin, Hemingway, Pumuckl, Stechpalme (German for holly), and Moewe (German for seagull).
Joseph Stalin is responsible for the murder of an estimated 50-60 million people, making him history's top mass murderer. Mao Tse-tung is second, with 25-30 million. Adolf Hitler comes in third, with 15-20 million.
In 1996, the government of France had $500 in unpaid, overdue telephone bills.
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Generally Useless Facts
Copyright 2003-2007 by Ray Bromley.
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