Obscure knowledge thread – edumacate STW!
The phrase “Money for old rope” comes from when hangmen would sell bits of the noose rope as a tasteful souvenir to commemorate the hanging of an infamous criminal.
Contrary to popular belief, a penny dropped from the Empire State Building / Eiffel Tower / space will not kill a person or crack the pavement. The terminal velocity of a penny is only around 50 miles an hour.Posted 6 years agoJacksonPollockMember
It is thought that the phrase “the rule of thumb” comes from old english law that you could beat your wife with a stick so long as it was no thicker than your thumb!
It is often attributed to Judge Buller in the 1700s who was notoriously harsh in his punishments.
It cannot be substantiated however because this law never existed in statute.Posted 6 years agoandrewhMember
sc-xc – Member
Spiral staircases go clockwise up so that those defending the tower have the advantage of a less restricted sword hand.
Not sure if this is true, but people seem to believe it when I tell them.
Correct. However, there is one, and only one British castle (I forget which) where the stairs go the ‘wrong’ way because the lord was left-handed.Posted 6 years agotheotherjonvSubscriber
The football / string one is quite cool, I worked out something similar one day purely out of boredom, sat in roadworks on the M25.
I thought, i wonder how much further it is to circuit the M25 in the inside lane of the clockwise carriageway (the outer one) compared to the inside lane of the anti-cw one, thinking that on a ‘circle’ that big it might be some distance.
So approximating it as a circle, I estimated the difference in radius to be maybe 20m. So, circumference of inner = pi x diam of inner; circumference of outer = pi x (diam+40) Cancel out and you’re left with the difference as pi x 40 = about 125m.
So my quiz question would be: if Usain Bolt cloned and then raced himself around the m25, one in the inner lane, one in the outer, how much headstart should he allow to make it a decent race?Posted 6 years agomolgripsSubscriber
Shinola – as in ‘he don’t know sh•t from shinola – was an American brand of waxy shoe polish.
I thought it was hair cream?
Edukator – where we stayed the play parks and fields were deserted until late April, and when they did appear they were bundled up ridiculously, not removing hat, gloves and winter coats until it reached the high teens. Old German women scowled and shouted at us presumably for under-dressing our kid.Posted 6 years agostucolMember
By far the most amusing house name i pass on my local roads is…Posted 6 years ago
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