Trivial pursuits

Published 12:48 pm Thursday, February 24, 2022

Regardless of the fact that I’ve never won a pub quiz, or even come close, I’m one of those people who knows just enough trivia to be considered obnoxious by everyone else.

 

I’m not even sure how I picked up such useless information over my life–perhaps from poring over reading material when having to write jokes for my stand up act, but does anyone really care that most of the bones in our feet don’t harden until we’re adults? I mean, it explains how the kids in my neighborhood, including myself, used to jump off the roof of any new house being constructed and land in the dirt below without incident. Come to think of it, I was 32 when I did that, so it’s even more impressive.

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To further illustrate, wood tree frogs can hold their pee for 8 months (pretty impressive as many of us stop drinking anything by 7pm), cotton candy was invented by a dentist (’nuff said), and young children ask, on average, 300 questions a day. Ask any mother. 

 

It’s been said that the more we know, the more we realize what we don’t know, and the fact that I have no idea who said that only bolsters my point, but I couldn’t believe how much I really didn’t know until much, much later in life.  For example, I only learned a couple of years ago that those giant heads on Easter Island, which resembles my non communicative family sitting around the table for Thanksgiving, actually have bodies! Who knew? Clearly not yours truly. And that ‘goose bumps,’ according to Scientific American, is an inherited ability from our hairy ancestors to raise our fur, sort of like porcupines, in order to make us appear larger than we are to ward off predators. That might work with an annoying visitor but probably not bears. 

 

And just this past week I learned a couple of new things:  in a study using data from the US Dep’t of Veterans Affairs national health care databases, it was determined that those who have had Covid-19, even mild cases, are, 30 days after infection, at an increased risk from incidence of cardiovascular disease spanning several categories over at least the next year. 

 

Yikes.

 

I also learned that a cherished and historic home listed with the National Register of Historic Places in no is protected from being demolished by a new owner. 

 

Sigh.

 

Finally, it became clear that Mitt Romney’s prediction well over a decade ago that our biggest geopolitical foe was Russia, as it turns out, was spot on.

 

That comment probably lost you the election, Mr Romney, but you called it while others laughed.

 

Well played, sir. Well played.