Truth in Labeling

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The given name of Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, is Edward Anthony Richard Louis.

Thus his initials are E.A.R.L.

Nobel Prize-winning chemist Herbert Charles Brown studied compounds of boron and hydrogen in organic chemistry. He joked that his initials reflected his field of study.

Misc

  • Seattle is closer to Finland than to England.
  • Is a candle flame alive?
  • ABANDON is an anagram of A AND NO B.
  • tan-1(1) + tan-1(2) + tan-1(3) = π
  • “A thing is a hole in a thing it is not.” — Carl Andre

Detractors of Massachusetts governor Endicott Peabody said that three of the state’s towns had been named for him: Peabody, Marblehead, and Athol.

Parting of the Waters

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In Wyoming’s Teton Wilderness, North Two Ocean Creek splits into two smaller creeks: Pacific Creek flows westward to the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Creek eastward to the Atlantic.

In principle this makes it possible for a fish to swim upstream from the Pacific, cross the Great Divide, and pass down into the Atlantic. This may be how the Yellowstone cutthroat trout came to be found in both the Snake and Yellowstone rivers.

Neighbors

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Image: Wikimedia Commons

China and Afghanistan share a border. The Wakhan Corridor, a slender panhandle only 40 miles wide, reaches between Tajikistan and Pakistan to touch Afghanistan’s eastern border.

Because China does not use conventional time zones, that border requires the greatest time change of any international frontier — travelers must reset their watches by 3.5 hours.

Neighborly

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Image: Wikimedia Commons

Located in Texas’ northwest corner, the town of Dalhart is closer to six other state capitals than to Texas’ own capital, Austin.

As the crow flies, Dalhart is 201 miles from Santa Fe, 281 miles from Oklahoma City, 289 miles from Denver, 375 miles from Cheyenne, 434 miles from Topeka, and 458 miles from Lincoln, but 491 miles from Austin.

In driving distance, it’s 263 miles from Santa Fe, 343 miles from Oklahoma City, 348 miles from Denver, 448 miles from Cheyenne, 461 miles from Topeka, and 540 miles from Lincoln, but 579 miles from Austin.

Fate Fall

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Image: Wikimedia Commons

Triple Divide Peak, in Montana’s Glacier National Park, sits at the meeting of two continental divides (red and green on the map above). A drop of rain that lands on the mountain might arrive at any of three oceans — the Atlantic, the Pacific, or the Arctic.

Like Father, Like Son

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The first person to die in the construction of the Hoover Dam was J.G. Tierney, a surveyor who drowned in the Colorado River on Dec. 20, 1922. Thirteen years later, to the day, his son Patrick became the last man to die when he fell from one of the intake towers.

The first conscript in World War II was the son of the first conscript in World War I. Alden C. Flagg Jr., of Boston, held the first number drawn in the U.S. peacetime draft lottery of 1940. His father, Alden C. Flagg, had drawn the first number in the draft of 1917.