These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Tuesday Trivia

Todoay's theme is about the Heavens, or at least the skies and space, and the Earth.


Halley`s Comet passes by the Earth approximately every 76 years.

The planets in the solar system rotate anticlockwise, except Venus, Uranus and Pluto which rotate clockwise. No one knows why.

All the moons of the Solar System are named after Greek and Roman mythology, except the moons of Uranus, which are named after Shakespearean characters.

Jupiter's moon Ganymede is the largest moon in the Solar System, and is larger than the planets Mercury and Pluto.

Saturn's moon Titan has hundreds of times more oil and natural gas than all the known reserves on Earth.

There are many theories about the birth of our solar system. The Tidal Theory (or Chamberlain-Moulton Theory) suggests that a passing star pulled dust and debris from the forming Sun, leaving a string of debris that eventually formed the planets.

Mercury & Venus are the only planets in our solar system without moons. Saturn has the most moons, with more than twenty.

Discovered by James Christy in 1978, Pluto's moon is named Charon. With a diameter of 728 miles, Charon is just under half the size of Pluto. Due to this very small difference in size, some scientists consider Pluto and Charon to be a double planet.

Syzygy is the condition when three celestial bodies are arranged in a straight line--as, for example, when the Sun, Moon, and Earth are aligned during solar and lunar eclipses.

The Apollo program was a manned U.S. space program that eventually put 12 men on the Moon. The first Apollo mission to circle the Moon was Apollo 8, and the first to land was Apollo 11. Apollo 13 never landed because of an accident en route that required the spacecraft to return to Earth after swinging around the far side of the Moon. The last Apollo mission to land on the Moon was Apollo 17.

Comets have three main parts: the nucleus, the coma, and the tail. The coma consists of gases and dust around the nucleus.


During World War II, U.S. pilots began reporting odd balls of light or shiny metallic spheres that could fly circles around their planes. These UFOs came to be called Foo Fighters. British and German pilots also reported seeing these strange lights, and each side thought that they were some sort of secret weapon developed by the enemy. The phenomenon was never explained.

The earliest known report of a UFO sighting was by Julius Obsequens, a Roman writer, in 100 B.C.. He claimed to have seen "things like ships" in the sky over Italy.

The U.S. Air Force conducted a 22-year investigation, based out of Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, called Project Blue Book which studied evidence for the existence of UFOs. J. Allen Hynek, Project Blue Book's lead investigator from 1948 to 1969, investigated hundreds of UFO reports each year. The official conclusion of the project was that no evidence of extraterrestrials or extraterrestrial vehicles existed.

In October (some sources say January) 1969, Jimmy Carter observed a UFO in the skies near Leary in southwestern Georgia. This unidentified flying object, which appeared just after dusk, was a single luminous object about 30 degrees above the horizon that Carter estimated to be about 300 to 1000 yards away. Carter and about a dozen other men watched the object for about 10 to 12 minutes as it hovered, changed course several times, and eventually disappeared in the distance.

MUFON, or the Mutual UFO Network, was founded on May 31, 1969, shortly after the publication of the University of Colorado "Condon Report", as a vehicle to promote the investigation of UFO phenomena.

On September 24, 1235, General Yoritsume and his army observed mysterious globes of light flying loops in the night sky near Kyoto, Japan. The General's advisors told him not to worry -- it was merely the wind blowing the stars about.


Sea water, loaded with mineral salts, weighs about a pound and a half more per cubit foot than fresh water at the same temperature.

Mineral deposits in caves growing upward are stalagmites, the ones growing downward are stalactites.

Sea water, loaded with mineral salts, weighs about a pound and a half more per cubit foot than fresh water at the same temperature.

The most abundant metal in the Earth's crust is aluminum. It is also one of the most difficult to extract.

The Chinese were using aluminum to make things as early as 300 AD Western civilization didn't rediscover aluminum until 1827.

Forty-six percent of the world's water is in the Pacific Ocean; that's around 6 sextillion gallons of water. The Atlantic has 23.9 percent; the Indian, 20.3; the Arctic, 3.7 percent.

Global Warming - Every year, U.S. school buses emit 3,000 tons of toxic soot, 95,000 tons of smog-forming pollutants, and 11 million tons of global warming gases.

Need more Energy - The more developed world uses over five times the energy per capita used by the less developed world. North America uses over eight times as much energy per person as does Latin America.

The sky is falling - In 1962, a 21 lb fragment of Soviet Sputnik IV landed at the intersection of Park and North 8th Streets in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

Watch where you're walking - Dodging space junk is a dangerous occupation. A 0.5 millimeter metal chip could puncture a space suit and kill an astronaut walking in space. A particle as small as ten millimeters could damage and possibly even destroy an orbiting space vehicle.

That's crazy - Before it blew up in 1986, the space shuttle Challenger was hit by a flake of paint measuring 0.2 millimeters, which damaged a window during one of its missions.

The only two spots below sea level in the United States are Death Valley, CA and New Orleans, LA. Death Valley is 282 feet below sea level and New Orleans is 8 feet.

One acre of forest absorbs six tons of carbon dioxide and puts out four tons of oxygen. This is enough to meet the annual needs of 18 people.

The heaviest know meteorite to fall to Earth, the Hoba West meteorite, lies where it fell in Africa. Weighing about 60 tons, it is not likely to be moved.

At sea level there are 2,000 pounds of air pressure on each square foot of your body area.

Millions of meteorites fall against the outer limits of the atmosphere every day and are burned to nothing by friction.

A mile on the ocean and a mile on land are not the same distance. On the ocean, a nautical mile measures 6,080 feet. A land or statute mile is 5,280 feet.

The nautical mile is based on the circumference of the earth at the equator. Since the earth is 360 degrees of longitude around, and degrees are broken into 60 minutes, that means there are 360 * 60 = 21,600 minutes of longitude around the earth. This was taken as the basis for the nautical mile; thus, by definition, 1 minute of longitude at the equator is equal to 1 nautical mile. So the earth is ideally, by definition, 21,600 nautical miles (and 21,600 "minutes" of longitude) in circumference at the equator.

A knot is a unit of measure for speed. If you are traveling at a speed of 1 nautical mile per hour, you are said to be traveling at a speed of 1 knot.

It has been estimated that at least a million meteors have hit the Earth's surface, which is only 25 percent of the planet.

Every last trace of more than 99 percent of the craters thus formed has vanished.

Erased by the effects of wind, water and living things.

Michigan has the longest-inland shoreline. It's more than 3,100 miles of freshwater shoreline includes four of the five Great Lakes - Michigan, Superior, Huron, and Erie.

If you were to take a square inch column of the air extending six hundred miles above the earth, its weight and pressure exerted on the earth at sea level would be 14.7 lbs. This is called atmospheric pressure.

The temperature of Earth's interior increases by 1 degree every 60 feet down.

Afternoon temperatures on Mars go up to about 80 degrees in some areas, and down to -190 degrees F at night.

The earth is approx. 6,588,000,000,000,000,000 tons.

Mountains (Part of the Earth, of course):

Volcanic mountains are formed by volcanoes and shaped by eruptions, lava flows, and collapses. Mount St. Helen in Washington is one example of a volcanic mountain that has been altered by eruption. On May 18, 1980, the mountain experienced one of the most explosive eruptions ever recorded, causing the whole north side to disintegrate, and altering the height of the mountain by nearly 1,300 feet.

Dome mountains have a characteristic ‘dome’ top. In the US, the Black Hills of South Dakota offer excellent examples of dome topped mountains. Erosion is believed to be a major factor in the shaping of most dome formations.

Another type of mountain is known as a fold mountain. The earth has taken pieces of itself, and over time, with great force, pushed pieces of earth upward and folded them over onto themselves. Example of Fold Mountains includes the Appalachian Mountains.

Mauna Kea, Hawaii, with an elevation of 13,796 feet, is actually 32,000 feet tall from its start on the sea floor, making it the world’s highest island peak from base to tip.

A Timberline is where timber growth no longer occurs on a mountain, also referred to as the ‘tree line’. Depending on the mountain range, the height of the actual timberline varies greatly. This is partly due to the area where the mountain is located, or the normal climate of this surrounding area.

Mount Everest, part of the Himalayas, is the highest point on earth, with a height of 29,023 feet. Mount Everest is only one in this range of over 30 peaks that rise to over 24,000 feet. Also in this range is Kanchenjunga at 28,208 feet, Makalu at 27,766 feet, and Dhaulagiri at 26,810 feet.

Volcanoes (Part of Mountains, so part of Earth, right?):

Volcanoes are vents in the Earth's surface from which molten rock, debris, and steam issue. About 1,900 volcanoes are active today or known to have been active in historical times.

Almost 90 percent of volcanoes are in the Ring of Fire, a band of volcanoes circling the edges of the Pacific Ocean.

Most volcanoes occur at plate boundaries, areas where huge slabs of rock meet in the Earth's lithosphere, or outer shell. Volcanoes can rise in subduction zones, areas where plates meet and one is pushed beneath another. Molten rock rises to the surface and forms a volcano.

Intraplate volcanoes are caused by hot spots deep within the Earth. Magma rises and erupts as lava through cracks in the Earth's surface, forming volcanoes.

Volcanoes can erupt in a combination of ways: explosively with hard pyroclastic material; explosively with fluid lava (lava fountains); effusively with hard pyroclastic flows (clouds of ash and gases); and effusively with fluid lava.

Although some volcanoes are considered extinct, almost any volcano is capable of rumbling to life again. Volcanoes provide valuable mineral deposits, fertile soils, and geothermal energy.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it!! It oughta last all day! And I'm so tired after finding all this I'm going back to bed!


  1. I always enjoy your trivia and learn something! It's never boring!

  2. Queenie, as I always say, I love trivia and sharing it is even more fun. :)


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