April 03, 2020
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What We Learnt Circa 2012

It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible

What We Learnt Circa 2012

“There is nothing, sir, too little a creature as man. It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible.”

–Samuel Johnson

  • Facebook’s following is currently larger than the entire population of the world...in 1804
  • Twitter is more addictive than cigarettes and liquor
  • The world’s most expensive cocktail drink costs $8,830 (Rs 4,58,233)
  • It costs the RBI Rs 3.17 to print a thousand rupee note but a five-rupee note costs 48 paise
  • Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has an 80-inch tablet in his office
  • Apple’s co-founder Steve Wozniak doesn’t have high-speed broadband at his California home
  • The Tirupati temple earned Rs 200 crore by auctioning tonsured human hair against Rs 54 crore in 2011
  • 29.875 years is the age at which a cricket batsman has the best average
  • 63 degrees Celsius is the temperature at which an egg boils perfectly
  • Men are at their happiest when they are 65
  • Delhi, with a population of 1.67 crore people, has 4.25 crore mobile phones
  • Census 2011 revealed that 563 million Indians had phones while only 366 million had access to toilets
  • Between 2009-10 and 2011-12, spending by rural India was Rs 3,750 billion versus Rs 2,994 billion by urban india
  • 42% rural households in India now own a TV set, against 26% in 1993-94
  • An RTI applicant was charged Rs 1.3 lakh for photocopying documents he had sought information on
  • A survey of 1,000 listed firms shows independent directors account for only 12% of boardrooms; 93% belong to forward castes, OBCs 3.8%
  • At 8.8 per cent, Tamil Nadu has the highest divorce or separation rate; Delhi has the lowest, at 4.1 per cent.
  • There are 25 lakh gay people in India; about 7 per cent of them are HIV-infected
  • A government, howsoever corrupt, can't be called ‘Alibaba aur 40 chor’ in Parliament
  • The British have invaded 90 per cent of the world’s countries
  • A British woman who tests beds in inns and hotels insured her bottom for £4 million
  • An Air India pilot landed a plane from Thiruvananthapuram in Kochi, 181 km away from Kozhikode where it was scheduled to arrive
  • Osama bin Laden's burial at sea was confirmed by a senior US sailor with the coded message "FedEx delivered the package".
  • In 1937, the princely state of Travancore had offered vice-chancellorship of Travancore University to Albert Einstein for Rs 6,000 per month
  • Einstein’s brain was not particularly large
  • The higher the chocolate intake of a country, the greater its chances of winning a Nobel Prize per capita—to produce just one more laureate, a nation has to up its cocoa intake by a whopping 275 million pounds a year
  • The average person’s DNA has 400 flaws
  • Indian students came second from last among 73 countries in a math-science contest
  • Climbing stairs one at a time burns more calories than leaping up multiple steps.
  • It takes more energy to sit through a 15-minute meeting than it takes Usain Bolt to run three Olympic 100m races.
  • The case on the attempt on the life of Justice A.N. Ray has been dragging on for 35 years now
  • 10.713 per cent of all bank account holders have the same ATM pin number: 1234
  • The highest proportion of readers for romantic fiction in the country is in the Northeast: 23%; the national average is 5.6%
  • Authors who finish the unfinished works of other writers are known as "continuators".
  • Researchers say pushing Indian Standard Time by half an hour to accommodate the Northeast could save India 2.3 billion units of power
  • A woman tells 468 lies a year on what she has eaten, about 9 times a week
  • Women get more stressed than men when they read bad-news stories
  • A mutation on chromosome 16 gave Elizabeth Taylor her double eyelashes
  • The Anglo-Indian rice dish, Kedgeree, originally had no fish in it
  • Catastrophists have valued the life of each human being at 860 euros (Rs 62,357)
  • 51,000 breast implants were done in India in 2010
  • The first silicone breast implant was done on a dog called Esmerelda in 1962
  • The bra is 600 years old
  • Women who have just finished ovulating are better at detecting snakes than at other times of their menstrual cycle
  • 21 of the 30 fastest growing cities in the world are in China
  • China's fertility would have declined at a similar rate without the one-child policy and would continue to decline even if the policy was discarded
  • In Italian, there is a word for a summer hit song that is played everywhere you go: tormentone
  • The total weight of the global human population is 287 million tonnes; 15 million tonnes of this mass is due to people being overweight, and 3.5 million tonnes due to obesity
  • For the second year in a row in the United States, more new ma  gazines were launched than closed
  • Thinking about death is good for you

Four People We Didn’t Know Of Before 2012

Gopal Kanda Haryana minister and Sirsa MLA and promoter of the erstwhile MDLR airlines. Featured in ex-air hostess Geetika Sharma’s suicide note alleging harassment.   Cheteshwar Pujara Thanks to scintillating tons against New Zealand and a double hundred against England, the young cricketer from Gujarat now seen as a replacement to Dravid.

Madhura Nagendra The mystery woman in a red tracksuit who gatecrashed the Indian contingent’s march past at the Olympics’ Opening got everyone hot under the collar for a while.   Aseem Trivedi The unknown cartoonist was arrested under the IT Act and accused of sedition. He goes on an 8-day fast. Later, invited to be a part of reality show, Bigg Boss.

Four Ways To Do Psy’s Gangnam Style

Korean singer PSY becomes an overnight celebrity after the video of his song, Gangnam Style, gets over one billion views globally. A guide to do PSY’s trademark dance:

  • Step One: Bend knees slightly; step a bit to the left, then right, keep a little bounce going.
  • Step Two: While doing this, lift one hand as if checking the time; raise the other hand, stick out a finger and circle it like you have a chakram.
  • Step Three: Next, repeat the same leg movements, but now with your hands crossed.
  • Step Four: Add a running motion to the entire movement and combine all procedures.

Enjoy till you’re out of breath.

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