Let the Games Begin

The Olympics are upon us. While the Games have technically already started with soccer, the London 2012 Opening Ceremony takes place today. As you settle-in for 5,535 hours of TV coverage across several channels, here is some interesting trivia you can share with friends and family.  The below trivia is from topendsports.com

– When London hosts the Olympic Games in 2012, the city will become the first to host the Games three times:1908, 1948 and 2012.

– Greece is the only nation to have participated under its own flag in all modern summer Olympic Games.

– The only Olympian ever to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize was Philip Noel-Baker of Great Britain, who won the silver in the 1500-meter dash in 1920.

– At the first modern Olympic Games in Athens in 1896, silver medals were awarded to the winners and bronze to the second place getters.

– More athletes than spectators attended the 1900 Paris Olympic Games.

– Oscar Swahn became the oldest gold medalist when he won gold at 64 years and 280 days old in 1912

Welcome Summer!

Yesterday, 7:09pm EDT marked the official start of summer!  Whether you are melting in a heat wave (Midwest & Northeast), or enjoying a nice cool breeze with your feet in the sand, happy first day of summer!  Below are some fun facts about the 2012 summer solstice (these facts are from kirotv.com picture from bbc.co.uk)

– Wednesday, the first day of summer, was the longest day of the year at 15 hours, 59 minutes, and 21 seconds
– Wednesday was three seconds longer than Tuesday
– Today (Thursday) will be one second shorter than yesterday

Penguins

Today is Penguin Awareness Day (according to holidayinsights.com).  This day was created to encourage people to learn about and appreciate penguins, though some take it a step further and don tuxedos for the occasion.  In the spirit of the day, here are some fun facts about penguins. (Ref. penguinfacts.net)

– Penguins don’t fly, they swim.
– They are warm blooded like humans.
– They are mostly found below the equator.
– Penguin chicks have fluffy feathers.
– Penguins have short legs and no knees
– Penguins use sign language to communicate with each other.

On This Day – 18th Amendment

On this day in 1919, the 18th Amendment to the US Constitution (prohibiting the “manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors for beverage purposes”) was ratified.  This Amendment was in effect for almost 15 years until the 21st Amendment (repealing the 18th Amendment) was ratified in December 1933.

We can’t help but wonder how we would have marketed this favorite Lakeside product back in the 1920’s (before the repeal of prohibition)…

Guinness Book of World Records: This Day In History

Today marks the anniversary of Ken Jennings, Jeopardy! superstar & America’s sweetheart, being defeated after a remarkable 74 game winning streak.  Jennings made his first appearance on Jeopardy! in June 2004 and his loss aired on this date, November 30, in 2004.

Jennings’ run on Jeopardy! chiseled his name into the game show history books.  He broke a number of records including highest American game show winnings total ($3.7 million), most appearances on a syndicated game show (81 episodes), and highest 5 consecutive game total on Jeopardy!  ($221,200).  His records even landed him a place in The Guinness Book of World Records under “most cash won on a game show.”

As a bit of trivia for you, here is the final Jeopardy! answer that led to Jennings’ ultimate demise.  “Most of this firm’s 70,000 seasonal white-collar employees work only four months a year.”  The question is posted in the comments below.  (reference: history.com, wikipedia.org)