Or Best Offer

Unusual items sold on eBay:

  • The right to permanently tattoo an ad on a woman’s forehead (sold to GoldenPalace.com for $10,000)
  • A Volkswagen Golf that had previously been registered to Josef Kardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) (sold on eBay’s German site for €188,938.88)
  • The first ride on Kingda Ka, the tallest roller coaster on Earth ($1,691.66)
  • A piece of Nutri-Grain resembling E.T. ($1,035 Australian)
  • A 50,000-year-old mammoth weighing 250,000 kilos (£61,000)

Unsold: a 16-year-old’s virginity and a half-eaten grilled-cheese sandwich.

Elbow Room

The world’s population reached:

  • 1 billion in 1802
  • 2 billion in 1927
  • 3 billion in 1961
  • 4 billion in 1974
  • 5 billion in 1987
  • 6 billion in 1999

According to the United Nations Population Fund, the 6 billionth baby was born at 12:02 a.m. on Oct. 12, 1999, to Fatima Nevic and her husband, Jasminko, in Sarajevo, Bosnia.

The forecast, according to the U.N.’s World Population Prospects database:

  • 2010: 6.8 billion
  • 2020: 7.6 billion
  • 2030: 8.2 billion
  • 2040: 8.7 billion
  • 2050: 9.1 billion

Better get started early on that Christmas shopping.

Mare Rides


Folk remedies to prevent nightmares:

  • Stop up the keyhole, place your shoes with the toes facing the door, then get into bed backward.
  • Put something made from steel, such as an old pair of scissors, in your bedstraw.
  • Urinate into a clean, new bottle, hang the bottle in the sun for three days, carry it — without saying a word — to a running stream, and throw it over your head into the stream.

Or take a small child free of sin, soak it in a bath for a couple of hours, then dry it on a goat or a sheep. The next night, sleep with the naked baby in your bed and you’ll never have nightmares again.

Nimrod, Minnesota

Image: Wikimedia Commons)

Unfortunate place names:

  • Accident, Maryland
  • Big Ugly Wilderness Area, West Virginia
  • Difficult, Tennessee
  • Effort, Pennsylvania
  • Foulness, Essex, England
  • Hell For Certain, Kentucky
  • Hole in the Ground, Oregon
  • Nothing, Arizona
  • Pity Me, County Durham, England
  • Toadsuck, Texas

Niemyje-Zabki, Poland, means “He is not cleaning his teeth.”

Red Alert

Next time you visit the circus, if the band starts playing “Stars and Stripes Forever” — run. The hymn is known as the “disaster march”; it’s played during a life-threatening emergency to organize aid and evacuate the audience without panic.

Circus bands never play it under any other circumstances.

Commuting Times

Average travel time to work:

  • New York: 39.0 minutes
  • Los Angeles: 28.1 minutes
  • Chicago: 33.1 minutes
  • Houston: 25.9 minutes
  • Philadelphia: 29.2 minutes
  • Phoenix: 24.7 minutes
  • San Diego: 22.6 minutes
  • Dallas: 25.2 minutes
  • San Antonio: 21.5 minutes
  • Detroit: 24.2 minutes

The average U.S. commute is 24.3 minutes.



Dog barks around the world:

  • English: woof, woof
  • Albanian: ham, ham
  • Arabic: haw, haw
  • Bulgarian: bau, bau
  • Danish: vov, vov
  • Estonian: auh, auh
  • Farsi: vogh, vogh
  • Finnish: hau, hau
  • French: ouaf, ouaf
  • German: wau, wau
  • Greek: gav, gav
  • Hindi: bho, bho
  • Icelandic: voff, voff
  • Italian: bau, bau
  • Japanese: wan, wan
  • Korean: mung, mung
  • Latvian: vau, vau
  • Mandarin Chinese: wang, wang
  • Norwegian: voff, voff
  • Polish: hau, hau
  • Romanian: ham, ham
  • Russian: gav, gav
  • Spanish: guau, guau
  • Swedish: voff, voff
  • Thai: hoang, hoang

Robert Benchley wrote, “A boy can learn a lot from a dog: obedience, loyalty, and the importance of turning around three times before lying down.”

Busy Airports


World’s busiest airports:

  1. Atlanta
  2. Chicago
  3. London
  4. Tokyo
  5. Los Angeles
  6. Dallas
  7. Frankfurt
  8. Paris
  9. Amsterdam
  10. Denver

Actually, it depends on how you measure busyness. Atlanta serves the most passengers each year, but Chicago has the most arrivals and departures. Frankfurt serves the most international destinations, but Heathrow handles the most international passengers. And Memphis, home of FedEx, handles the most cargo traffic.

They fight over this, but I don’t see why. Who would prefer a busy airport?


Occupations with highest median earnings:

  1. Physicians and surgeons
  2. Dentists
  3. Chief executives
  4. Podiatrists
  5. Lawyers
  6. Engineering managers
  7. Optometrists
  8. Petroleum engineers
  9. Natural sciences managers
  10. Actuaries

Lowest median earnings:

  1. Dishwashers
  2. Counter attendants, food concession
  3. Child-care workers
  4. Maids and housekeeping cleaners
  5. Dining room, cafeteria attendants, bartender helpers
  6. Food preparation workers
  7. Teacher assistants
  8. Restaurant hosts, hostesses
  9. Food prep and serving workers
  10. Waiters and waitresses

Vegetarian Actors

Vegetarian actors:

  • Pamela Anderson
  • Christian Bale
  • John Cleese
  • Richard Gere
  • Darryl Hannah
  • Woody Harrelson
  • Josh Hartnett
  • Dustin Hoffman
  • Samuel L. Jackson
  • Tobey Maguire
  • Ian McKellen
  • Gwyneth Paltrow
  • Natalie Portman
  • Hilary Swank

“I’m not a vegetarian because I love animals,” says A. Whitney Brown. “I’m a vegetarian because I hate plants.”