The Neatest Little Paper Ever Read ®

Issue 974

By Lucie Winborne

* The first sunglasses were invented in 12th-century China and made from smoked quartz. While providing no protection against harmful UV rays, they did give some relief from the sun’s glare and also served as a valuable tool for Chinese judges, allowing them to seem emotionally detached during interrogations.

* English Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) is credited with the first printed use of the words “selfless,” “psychosomatic,” “bipolar” and “bisexual.”

* A study by neurologists showed that some patients suffering from brain trauma and damage on the right-hand side of their brain have a compulsive obsession to tell jokes they find hilarious, while not finding other peoples’ jokes funny at all.

* The hacker group Anonymous once sent thousands of all-black faxes to the Church of Scientology to deplete all of their ink cartridges.

* May 29 is officially “Put a Pillow on Your Fridge Day.” This curious holiday derives from an old custom of placing a piece of cloth from one’s bedroom in a place where food was kept, helping to ensure a supply of future plenty to the household.

* Sierra Leone is the world’s roundest country and sits not too far from Egypt — the world’s squarest country.

* Nearly 3% of the ice in Antarctic glaciers is composed of penguin urine. Due to the subzero temperature in that area, it can’t evaporate.

* Think you hate going to the dentist? A 12-year-old French boy once faked his own kidnapping to get out of it! After being located in a village 100 miles from his home, the lad lied to police, even describing his kidnapper’s distinctive cheek scar. Only after they had searched for a month and re-questioned him did the boy confess.

***

Thought for the Day: “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.” — Albert Einstein

(c) 2020 King Features Synd., Inc.

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