Friday, March 21, 2008

The Yo-yo

It is believed that the yo-yo most likely originated in China. The first historical mention of the yo-yo, however, was from Greece in the year 500 B.C. These ancient toys were made out of wood, metal, or painted terra cotta disks and called just that, a disc. It was customary, when a child turned of age, to offer toys of their youth to certain gods. Due to the fragile nature of the material, it is presumed that the disks made of terra cotta (clay) were used for this purpose rather than for actual play. A vase painting from this time period shows a Greek youth playing with a yo-yo. Such vases, as well as an actual terra cotta disk can be found in the National Museum of Athens, Greece.

Even in ancient Egyptian temples, drawings of objects have been seen in the shape of yo-yos.

Historical records indicate that 16th century hunters in the Philippines hid up in trees and used a rock tied to a long cord, up to 20 feet in length, to throw at wild animals beneath them. The weapon was able to be pulled up and thrown back down for multiple attempts at the prey. This gave rise to the widespread idea that the practice was the true forerunner of the yo-yo, but this is a stretch of imagination and has no real basis in fact. It is extremely likely, however, that the yo-yo did travel from China not only to Greece, but also to the Philippines, where the yo-yo is known to have been a popular toy for children over a very long period of time.

The next historically dated mention of the yo-yo is a box from India made in the year 1765. This miniature box was hand-painted with the picture of a girl in a red dress playing with her yo-yo. Within the next 25 years, the yo-yo traveled from the Orient to Europe, specifically to the aristocracy (upper class) of Scotland and France and on to England. As it traveled, it became known by a variety of names.

In France, a painting dated to 1789 shows the 4 year-old, future King Louis XVII holding his l’emigrette. It was during this time of the French Revolution and the “Reign of Terror,” that many of the French aristocracy were forced to flee to Paris, Germany and across other borders when their style of life was threatened by the peasant uprisings, taking their popular yo-yos made of glass and ivory with them. L’emigrette is a French term meaning to ‘leave the country.’ Another nickname for the yo-yo at this time was de Coblenz, which was a city to which many French fled. These names reflect an important historical connection between the toy and the French Revolution.

The yo-yo’s value as a stress reliever is also seen through history. While being a fashionable toy for the French nobility, those less fortunate are said to have played with their emigrettes to reduce the understandable tension of their one-way trip to the guillotine. Dating through the 1780’s, there are drawings of General Lafayette and others with their troops flinging their yo-yos. The yo-yo arrived in Paris in 1791 as it spread through France and was called the “joujou de Normandie.” Some believe that this term may reflect possible roots for the modern American name of “yo-yo.” High interest in the toy continued as evidenced by the famous French playwright, Beaumarchais, in his treatment of “The Marriage of Figaro” in 1792. There is a scene where the nervous Figaro enters and conveys his tension, not by the conventional
wringing of his hands, but playing with his emigrette! When asked what the emigrette is good for, Figaro responds, “It is a noble toy, which dispels the fatigue of thinking.” Even on June 18, 1815, at the famous Battle of Waterloo, Napoleon and his army are known to have been seen relaxing with their yo-yos before battle.

The yo-yo craze traveled throughout Europe to England by way of Scotland and France. The English used the French word bandalore, the term quiz, and the word incroyable which means ‘a French dandy’, to identify the toy. In 1791, a print was circulated of the Prince of Wales, future George IV, whirling his bandalore. Because of the toy’s popularity as well as the prince’s power to sell, the toy also became known as the Prince of Wales’ toy and soon became a toy that any person of fashion had to own. The toy’s ongoing popularity in England is shown as late as 1862 when an illustration appeared showing two young lads terrifying an older woman with their quizzes.

The first recorded reference to any type of yo-yo in the United States was in 1866 when two men from Ohio received a patent for an invention called “an improved bandalore,” in that it was rim weighted. One year later, a German immigrant named Charles Kirchof patented and manufactured the return wheel. From then until 1911, although various patents were awarded in the United States related to the yo-yo, nothing notable occurred. In 1916, the Scientific American Supplement published an article titled “Filipino Toys” which showed it and named it a yo-yo. This was explained by some as the Filipino word for “come-come” or “to return.” Significant events were soon to happen in the United States.

Meanwhile, back in the Philippines, the natives were becoming experts at making and using the toy. They became excellent wood carvers of the yo-yo and playing with a yo-yo, beginning early in childhood, became a national pastime. Not surprisingly, it was from here that the yo-yo as we know it today was truly introduced into the United States. In the 1920s, a man named Pedro Flores brought the first Filipino yo-yo to the U.S. and in 1928, began a yo-yo company by the same name in California.

These yo-yos were hand-carved from a single piece of wood. The yo-yo was unique because it was the first yo-yo that did not have the string tied to the axle. Instead, the string was looped around the axle, allowing the yo-yo to spin or “sleep” at the end of the string. This concept is at the heart of yo-yoing today. Rather than being able to only go up and down, the yo-yo was now capable of doing an infinite number of tricks.

In 1928 or 1929, a businessman named Donald F. Duncan Sr. saw his first Flores yo-yo while he was in San Francisco. He saw the potential of the toy as he witnessed the crowd that Pedro was able to draw by doing a few tricks. He purchased not only the idea of the yo-yo, but the Pedro Flores company itself. And, as they say, “the rest is history.”

Donald Duncan was an excellent businessman. He developed advertising campaigns and had demonstrators working for him in the U.S., as well as Western Europe. “Duncan Yo-Yo Professionals” traveled throughout the United States teaching and demonstrating yo-yo tricks and conducting contests in an effort to promote sales. Competition grew as other companies began to see the toy’s potential. In 1932, in an effort to protect his interest, Duncan filed for and was assigned a trademark for the word “yo-yo.” Not able to use the term “yo-yo,” competitors were forced to use terms like “come-back”, “return”, “returning top”, “whirl-a-gig”, and “twirler” for their versions of the toy.

In 1946, the Duncan Company moved to Luck, Wisconsin, which quickly became known as the “Yo-Yo Capital of the World” producing 3,600 yo-yos per hour. They produced the original maple wooden yo-yos using 1,000,000 board feet per year. In 1960, plastic yo-yos that we still see today began to be manufactured. Sales grew and grew. By 1962, the Duncan Company alone sold a record 45 million yo-yos in a country with only 40 million kids, and still could not keep up with the demand. High television advertising expenses and excessive expenses in overtime wages and materials to keep up with the demand hurt profits. There was also the continual legal expense in trying to hold onto the trademarked word “yo-yo.” Competitors fought hard to use it in describing their products. Finally, in 1965, the Federal Court of Appeals ruled that Duncan’s trademark for the word “yo-yo” was no good. The term yo-yo had become so widespread that it was now a permanent part of the language and it no longer only described the toy. It, in fact, WAS the toy.

Tragically, in November of 1965, the Duncan Company could hold on no longer and was forced into bankruptcy. Although pieces of equipment were auctioned off to various buyers, Flambeau Plastics Company purchased the most valuable asset, the “Duncan” name and the goodwill that came along with it. It is the Flambeau Plastics Company that manufactures and sells the eleven different models of Duncan yo-yos today. June 6 has been deemed National Yo-Yo Day in honor of Donald Duncan Sr.’s birthday and the phenomenal influence he had in the world of yo.

Trivia enthusiasts will enjoy noting that in 1968, Abbie Hoffman was cited for contempt of Congress for “walking the dog” in an effort to entertain the House Subcommittee on Un-American Activities that was investigating him and Richard Nixon made headlines when he yo-yoed on stage at the opening of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville in 1974. The yo-yo is, indeed, universal.

In recent years, technology has affected a multitude of the products we use, and the seemingly simple yo-yo has been no exception. Beginning in the 1970s, yo-yo manufacturers, seeing the benefit of periphery weight distribution, began rim-weighting their products for a longer spin. In 1978, Tom Kuhn patented the “No Jive 3-in-1” yo-yo, the first take-apart by hand yo-yo and the first having a replaceable axle. In 1980, Michael Caffrey patented “The yo-yo with a Brain.” In addition to a free-spinning sleeve bearing for long spin times, “The Brain” has a centrifugal spring loaded clutch mechanism that causes an automatic return of the yo-yo to the hand when the rotational spin slows to a pre-determined rate. And by the 1990s, transaxle yo-yos were available with ball-bearing axles, increasing spin times once again.

But this is not quite the end of the story. On April 12, 1985, the yo-yo was first taken into space by NASA on the Space Shuttle Discovery as part of the Toys in Space project. A basic spinning yo-yo was used to see what effect microgravity would have on it. What they discovered was that a yo-yo could be released at slow speeds and gracefully move along the string. However, the yo-yo refused to “sleep.” Without the downward force of gravity, the yo-yo could not spin against the loop at the end of the string and so, rebounded up the string. It was also found that the yo-yo must be thrown, not dropped, as there was no gravity to pull it down. And on July 31, 1992, the yo-yo (an SB-2) again made its way into space, on the Space Shuttle Atlantis, this time for an educational video including slow-motion yo-ing.

Whether the yo-yo was a Chinese, Greek or Filipino invention or some combination is difficult to prove. By the same token, it is also difficult to say with certainty whether the toy spread from country to country or whether the same basic pattern for the toy appeared in completely different parts of the world for no obvious reason. We do know that its use as a toy around the world and throughout history is unmatched. And, although the yo-yo has gone through periods of hibernation in its trek through the ages, its popularity, just like the toy itself, always comes back.

Beavers Yea

The Yogurt Explosion

Have you noticed the huge expansion in the yogurt aisle in recent months? I sure have. It seems that there are so many types, with specific health benefits associated with each.

Gone are the days, so it seems, that yogurt was considered a "health food," which simply provided a good source of calcium and protein.

Well, that's all still true, but I'd like to talk about the new yogurt products that fill the shelves. Check back later for the video from my Today Show segment (watch the video here), for a look at all the products.

Yogurt 101: What Is It?

Yogurt is a dairy product produced when "good" bacteria are put into milk under controlled conditions. These bacteria ingest the milk sugar (AKA lactose) for energy and then release lactic acid as a "waste" product. It's the lactic acid that acts on the milk protein to give yogurt its characteristic "tanginess" and texture.

This process is totally safe, since the whole biological action is acidic, meaning "bad" bacteria don't grow during the process. Most yogurt is from dairy (from cows), but soy yogurt is also available for those with lactose intolerance or milk-protein (casein) allergy. Yogurt can be a good option for people with lactose (milk sugar) intolerance. Since much of the milk sugar is gone in yogurt (that's the lactose), many people can often tolerate at least one serving a day.

Yogurt's been around for more than 4000 years, and yet there's no clear idea of where it was first "discovered." Eaten all over the world, yogurt was always "plain" until the 1930s, when a fruit jam was added to help prevent yogurt from spoiling too soon. As a patented process, it was introduced to the USA in the late 1940s by a company now well known in the world of yogurt, Dannon.

Yogurt (like all dairy products) is a good source of protein, and calcium. As for all dairy products, choosing non-fat, or at least low-fat yogurt, provides all the benefits (AKA the same protein and calcium), without the artery-clogging animal fat. (After all, it does come from a cow).

The yogurt selection in out grocery aisles are huge and filled with a few dozen options. How are we to choose?

I'd like to provide some different options and hear what you look for in yogurt. One of my first tips: Look for "live cultures" or "active cultures" on the container, which indicate a reasonable source of biologic activity.

For weight loss
Try: Fage plain fat free, Oikos plain fat free, Skye plain fat free

These yogurts are high protein, as the extra milk liquid (AKA Whey) has been filtered out, making it very thick. You're getting high protein for few calories—about 100 calories for 6 ounces and 22 grams of protein.

Protein is biologically VERY satisfying, and helps curb appetite on less food (compared to same calories found as carbohydrates). This is unrelated to the "Probiotics"—the good bacteria for further health uses—it's the protein here that is key.

For high cholesterol
Try: Promise ACTIV "shooters"

This product has two grams of "Phytosterols," which have nothing to do with the yogurt. It's only a carrier, so it must be consumed daily for an effect on cholesterol levels. (This is measured by a blood test). It acts to block cholesterol you are eating, with no effect on the other source of body cholesterol. This is what your body makes in the liver, so consume with meals (preferably, if you're eating higher cholesterol at that meal).

Remember: This does not replace medical care, so do not compare with a Statin drug! This can have a modest effect when used regularly. Again, it only blocks cholesterol absorption in the digestive track. It doesn't get in the body!

For irritable bowel and constipation
Try: Activia, Activia-Light (no sugar), Yo-Plus

The extra Probiotics (good bacteria) added to these yogurts enhance the action of the good bacteria already in the yogurt. It's another strain of the bacteria, so you have more benefit with more good bacteria per serving. This is still somewhat controversial, compared with what yogurt does "normally," but Activia comes with a money-back guarantee. It can affect transit time in the gut, which is good for regularity.

For immune function
Try: DanActive Immunity

Another source of Probiotics, healthy bacteria that have been shown to boost immune function, like increase white blood cell count—those are one of the cells that help fight infection. Plus, other studies show some effect on antibodies in the gut, but are not definitive. Certainly can't hurt—still, the great benefits of yogurt.

For dessert
Try: "Fun" Yogurts

To tame a sweet tooth, yogurt can help, but read the label to check for calories and fat. Cool packaging is eye-catching, but "fun" yogurts are definitely not all the same.

Look for lower fat, low sugar. Some of the Dannon "pie" yogurts are low fat and low sugar—a big help for many. Also, frozen yogurt, with or without sugar, is a preferred choice from ice cream. Great taste, with much lower fat content.

One more thing: I'm a fan of plain yogurt and adding fresh or frozen (no-sugar added) fruits. This saves on calories, and provides great flavor.

Special Thanks to iVillage and Helath Journal with Dr. Madelyn Fernstrom

Yeah Boomerangs Nature's Curse on Man Kind

Nearly all of us have seen or thrown a boomerang. We throw it and its supposed to sail right back to use. However have you realised how few people can actually get boomerangs to come back. Well I realised that I knew of so few that I could count them on one hand. Well enough of my rambling here's a little short history on the boomerang.
The History of Boomerangs
Contrary to popular belief, the boomerang did not originate in Australia. Historical traces of boomerangs have been found throughout the world. Boomerangs are considered by many to be the earliest "heavier-than-air" flying machines invented by human beings. Australian Aboriginal boomerangs have been found as old as ten thousand years old, but older hunting sticks have been discovered throughout Europe. The famed King Tutankhamen of Egypt had an extensive collection of boomerangs over 2000 years ago.

Although historians are not certain of the exact origin of the first boomerang, it is speculated that the boomerang was developed from a flattened throwing stick, used by early hunters. The returning boomerang was most likely discovered by accident by an early hunter trying to fine tune a hunting stick. The modern boomerang is most commonly associated with Australia because it has been preserved in its highest state of development by Australian Aborigines. Since the Australian Aborigines are one of the few cultures in history never to develop a bow and arrow, their heavy dependence on the boomerang for hunting has ensured its preservation.

The modern boomerang has been refined over time to state of the art boomerang materials such as paxolin and carbon fibre. The use of Finnish birch wood has been found to be useful for more durable wooden boomerangs. Aircraft windfoil design programs and Computer Aided Drawing programs are used to optimize flight characteristics. Modern competition boomerangs can stay aloft for up to several minutes time and distances over 200 yards.

Snapple Facts

#1 A Goldfish's attention span is three seconds.
#2 Animals that lay eggs don't have belly buttons.
#3 Beavers can hold their breath for 45 minutes under water.
#4 Slugs have four noses.
#5 Camels have three eyelids.
#6 A honey bee can fly at 15mph.
#7 A queen bee can lay 800-1,500 eggs per day.
#8 A bee has five eyes.
#9 The average speed of a housefly is 4.5 mph.
#10 Mosquitoes are attracted to people who just ate bananas.
#11 Flamingos are pink because they eat shrimp.
#12 Emus and kangaroos cannot walk backward.
#13 Cats have over 100 vocal chords.
#14 Camel's milk does not curdle.
#15 All porcupines float in water.
#16 The world's termites outweigh the world's humans 10 to 1.
#17 A hummingbird weighs less then a penny.
#18 A jellyfish is 95% water.
#19 Children grow faster in the spring.
#20 Broccoli is the only vegetable that is also a flower.
#21 Almonds are part of the peach family.
#22 Alaska has the highest percentage of people who walk to work.
#23 The San Francisco cable cars are the only mobile national monument.
#24 The state of Maine has 62 lighthouses.
#25 The only food that does not spoil is honey.
#26 The Hawaiian alphabet only has 12 letters.
#27 A ball of glass will bounce higher then a ball of rubber.
#28 Chewing gum while peeling onions will prevent you from crying.
#29 On average a human will spend up to 2 weeks kissing in his/her lifetime.
#30 Fish have eyelids.
#31 The average human will eat an average of eight spiders while sleeping.
#32 There are one million ants to every human in the world.
#33 Termites eat through wood two times faster when listening to rock music!
#34 If you keep a goldfish in a dark room it will eventually turn white.
#35 Elephants only sleep two hours a day.
#36 A duck's quack doesn't echo.
#37 A snail breathes through its foot.
#38 Fish cough.
#39 An ant's smell is stronger then a dog's.
#40 It is possible to lead a cow up stairs but not down.
#41 Shrimp can only swim backward.
#42 Frogs cannot swallow with their eyes open.
#43 A cat's lower jaw cannot move sideways.
#44 The bullfrog is the only animal that never sleeps.
#45 Elephants are capable of swimming 20 miles per day.
#46 Elephants are the only mammal that cannot jump.
#47 Giraffes have no vocal chords.
#48 Cats can hear ultrasound.
#49 Despite its hump ... camels has a straight spine.
#50 Mosquitoes have 47 teeth.
#51 There are 63,360 inches in a mile.
#52 Eleven percent of people in the world are left-handed.
#53 The average women consumes six pounds of lipstick in her lifetime.
#54 The average smell weighs 760 nanograms.
#55 A human brain weighs about three pounds.
#56 A quarter of the bones in your body are in your feet.
#57 You blink over 10,000,000 times a year.
#58 A sneeze travels out of your nose at 100 mph.
#59 Brain waves can be used to power an electric train.
#60 The tongue is the fastest healing part of the body.
#61 Pigs get sunburned.
#62 The lifespan of a taste bud is 10 days.
#63 The average human produces 10,000 gallons of saliva in a lifetime.
#64 Strawberries contain more vitamin C then oranges.
#65 A one-day weather forecast requires about 10 billion math calculations.
#66 Americans, on average, eat 18 acres of pizza a day.
#67 There are 18 different animal shapes in the animal cracker zoo.
#68 The longest one syllable word is "screeched."
#69 No word in the English language rhymes with month.
#70 A "jiffy" is actually 1/100 of a second.
#71 There is a town called "Big Ugly" in West Virginia.
#72 The average person uses 150 gallons of water per day for personal use.
#73 The average person spends two weeks of its life waiting for a traffic light to change.
#74 You share your birthday with nine million others in the world.
#75 The average person makes 1,140 phone calls per year.
#76 The average person spends two years on the phone in his/her lifetime.
#77 No piece of paper can be folded more then seven times.
#78 Alaska is the most eastern and western state in the U.S.
#79 There are 119 grooves on the edge of a quarter.
#80 About 18 percent of animal owners share their bed with their pet.
#81 Alaska has more caribou than people.
#82 August has the highest percentage of births.
#83 Googol is a number (1 followed by 100 zeros).
#84 Oysters can change genders back and forth.
#85 The Mona Lisa has no eyebrows.
#86 Until the 19th century, solid blocks of tea were used as money in Siberia.
#87 A mile on the ocean and a mile on land are not the same distance.
#88 A ten gallon hat holds less then one gallon of liquid.
#89 The average American walks 18,000 steps a day.
#90 The average raindrop falls at seven mph.
#91 There are more telephones than people in Washington, D.C.
#92 Fish can drown.
#93 A kangaroo can jump 30 feet.
#94 Lizards communicate by doing push-ups.
#95 Squids can have eyeballs the size of volleyballs.
#96 The average American will eat 35,000 cookies in his/her lifetime.
#97 A turkey can run at 20 mph.
#98 When the moon is directly over you, you weigh less.
#99 You burn 20 calories an hour chewing gum.
#100 In a year, the average person walks four miles making their bed.
#101 About half of all Americans are on a diet at any given time.
#102 A one-minute kiss burns 26 calories.
#103 Frowning burns more calories then smiling.
#104 There are more then 30,000 diets on public record.
#105 You will burn seven percent more calories walking on hard dirt then pavement.
#106 You weigh less at the top of a mountain then sea level.
#107 You burn more calories sleeping then watching TV.
#108 Licking a stamp burns 10 calories.
#109 Smelling apples and/or bananas can help you lose weight.
#110 Frogs never drink.
#111 Only male turkeys gobble.
#112 At birth, a Dalmation is always pure white.
#113 The fastest recorded speed of a racehorse was over 43 mph.
#114 The oldest known animal was a tortoise, which lived to be 152 years old.
#115 Bamboo makes up 99 percent of a panda's diet.
#116 The largest fish is the whale shark - it can be over 50 feet long and weigh two tons.
#117 The starfish is the only animal that can turn its stomach inside out.
#118 Honeybees are the only insects that create a form of food for humans.
#119 The hummingbird is the only bird that can fly backwards.
#120 The only continent without native reptiles or snakes is Antarctica.
#121 The only bird that can swim and not fly is a penguin.
#122 A duck can't walk without bobbing its head.
#123 Beavers were once the size of bears.
#124 Seals sleep only one and a half minutes at a time.
#125 Pigeons have been trained by the U.S. Coast Guard to spot people lost at sea.
#126 A pigeon's feathers are heavier than its bones.
#127 A hummingbird's heart beats 1,400 times a minute.
#128 Dragonflies have six legs but can't walk.
#129 Mosquitos have 47 teeth.
#130 Koala and humans are the only animals with unique fingerprints.
#131 Penguins have an organ above their eyes that converts seawater to fresh water.
#132 A crocodile cannot move its tongue.
#133 Honeybees navigate by using the sun as a compass.
#134 An ant can lift 50 times its own weight.
#135 A single coffee tree produces only about a pound of coffee beans per year.
#136 Strawberries are the only fruits whose seeds grow on the outside.
#137 The city of Los Angeles has three times more automobiles than people.
#138 Hawaii is the only U.S. state that grows coffee.
#139 Hawaii is the only state with one school district.
#140 Holland is the only country with a national dog.
#141 The square dance is the official dance of the state of Washington.
#142 Hawaii is the only U.S. state never to report a temperature of zero degrees F or below.
#143 "Q" is the only letter in the alphabet not appearing in the name of any U.S. state.
#144 Texas is the only state that permits residents to cast absentee ballots from space.
#145 Lake Superior is the world's largest lake.
#146 The smallest county in America is New York County, better known as Manhattan.
#147 Panama is the only place in the world where you can see the sun rise on the Pacific and set on the Atlantic.
#148 The tallest man was 8 ft. 11 in.
#149 Theodore Roosevelt was the only president who was blind in one eye.
#150 The first sport to be filmed was boxing in 1894.
#151 The fastest served ball in tennis was clocked at 154 mph in 1963.
#152 In 1985, the fastest bicyclist was clocked at 154 mph.
#153 The speed limit in NYC was eight mph in 1895.
#154 Americans spend more than $630 million a year on golf balls.
#155 In 1926, the first outdoor mini-golf courses were built on rooftops in NYC.
#156 Swimming pools in the U.S. contain enough water to cover San Francisco.
#157 The first TV soap opera debuted in 1946.
#158 The first MTV video was "Video Killed the Radio Star," by the Buggles.
#159 The first TV show ever to be put into reruns was "The Lone Ranger."
#160 One alternative title that had been considered for NBC's hit "Friends" was "Insomnia Café."
#161 The first TV network kids show in the U.S. was "Captain Kangaroo."
#162 The temperature of the sun can reach up to 15 million degrees Fahrenheit.
#163 The first penny had the motto "Mind your own business."
#164 The first vacuum was so large, it was brought to a house by horses.
#165 Panama is the only place in the world where you can see the sun rise.
#166 Before mercury, brandy was used to fill thermometers.
#167 You have to play ping-pong for 12 hours to lose one pound.
#168 One brow wrinkle is the result of 200,000 frowns.
#169 The first human-made object to break the sound barrier was a whip.
#170 In 1878, the first telephone book ever issued contained only 50 names.
#171 The most sensitive parts of the body are the mouth and the fingertips.
#172 The eye makes movements 50 times every second.
#173 Chinese is the most spoken language in the world.
#174 The world's biggest pyramid is not in Egypt, but in Mexico.
#175 In 1634, tulip bulbs were a form of currency in Holland.
#176 The first bike was called a hobbyhorse.
#177 The first sailing boats were built in Egypt.
#178 The first ballpoint pens were sold in 1945 for $12.00.
#179 The first lighthouse to use electricity was the Statue of Liberty in 1886.
#180 The first VCR was made in 1956 and was the size of a piano.
#181 The first jukebox was located in San Francisco in 1899.
#182 A rainbow can only be seen in the morning or late afternoon.
#183 The Capitol building in Washington, D.C. has 365 steps to represent every day of the year.
#184 The most used letters in the English language are E, T, A, O, I and N.
#185 A male kangaroo is called a boomer.
#186 A female kangaroo is called a flyer.
#187 There are over 61,000 pizzerias in the U.S.
#188 Antarctica is the driest, coldest, windiest, and highest continent on earth.
#189 The Sahara Desert stretches farther than the distance from California to New York.
#190 Thailand means "Land of the Free."
#191 Popcorn was invented by the American Indians.
#192 Jupiter spins so fast that there is a new sunrise nearly every 10 hours.
#193 The year that read the same upside down was 1961. That won't happen again until 6009.
#194 You don't have to be a lawyer to be a Supreme Court Justice.
#195 Eleven of the 50 states are named after an actual person.
#196 If you doubled one penny every day for 30 days, you would have $5,368,709.
#197 The first person crossed Niagra Falls by tightrope in 1859.
#198 The U.S. is the largest country names after an actual person (Amerigo Vespucci).
#199 The largest cheesecake ever made weighed 57,508 lbs.
#200 The first country to use postcards was Austria.
#206 Over 1 million earths would fit inside the sun.
#208 Add up opposing sides of a dice cue and you'll always get seven.
#214 Giraffes can lick their own eyes.
#218 A jackrabbit can travel more than 12 feet in one hop.
#221 The game of basketball was first played using a soccer ball and two peach baskets.
#227 Tsiology is anything written about tea.
#228 There is a town in South Dakota named Tea.
#229 The Caspian Sea is actually a lake.
#232 The blue whale's heart is the size of a small car.
#233 There are seven letters that look the same upside down as right side up.
#236 Cows give more milk when they listen to music.
#238 An ostrich's brain is smaller than its eye.
#244 The watermelon seed-spitting world record is about 70 feet.
#251 There are more French restaurants in New York City than in Paris.
#257 The first food eaten in space by a U.S. astronaut was applesauce.
#258 Lemon wood is carved into chess pieces.
#262 The act of chewing an apple is a more efficient way to stay awake than caffeine.
#267 Double Dutch jump rope is considered a cross-training sport.
#268 One lemon tree will produce about 1,500 lemons a year.
#269 Horseback riding can improve your posture.
#270 Colors like red, yellow and orange make you hungry.
#272 At birth a human has 350 bones, but only 206 bones when full grown.
#273 Each year, the average American eats about 15 pounds of apples.
#275 It took the first man to walk around the world four years, three months and 16 days to complete his journey.
#278 China only has one time zone.
#292 Heavier, not bigger, lemons produce more juice.
#294 No only child has been a U.S. President.
#300 Pennsylvania is misspelled on the Liberty Bell.
#302 Ketchup was once sold as a medicine.
#312 A flea can jump 30,000 times without stopping.
#315 No two lip impressions are the same.
#326 On average, you'll spend a year of your life looking for misplaced objects.
#336 The last letter to be added to our alphabet was J.
#346 The medical term for writer's cramp is graphospasm.
#351 Cold water weighs less than hot water.
#354 Bamboo can grow three feet in one day.
#357 A baboon is a variety of lemon.
#358 Butterflies were formerly known by the name Flutterby.
#359 A teaspoon contains 120 drops of water.
#360 Mexican jumping beans jump to get out of sunlight.
#363 Pearls dissolve in vinegar.
#366 The center of some golf balls contain honey.
#370 Heat, not sunlight, ripens tomatoes.
#372 A housefly hums in the key of F.
#381 Baboons were once trained by Egyptians to wait on tables.
#383 Mount Katahdin in Maine is the first place in the U.S. to get sunlight each morning.
#390 Jack is the most common name in nursery rhymes.
#396 The dragonfly can reach speeds of up to 36 mph.
#399 Manhattan was the first capital of the United States.
#406 The deepest place in the ocean is about seven miles deep.
#408 Panda bears eat up to 16 hours a day.
#409 Approximately 16,500 people in the U.S. go by the last name Lemon.
#411 Lifejackets used to be filled with sunflower seeds for flotation.
#419 A jiffy is an actual time measurement equaling 1/100th of a second.
#422 Apples, peaches and raspberries are all members of the rose family.
#423 U.S. paper currency isn't made of paper - it's actually a blend of cotton and linen.
#424 The "ZIP" in the ZIP code stands for Zone Improvement Plan.
#425 Kangaroos can't walk backwards.
#427 Lemons ripen after you pick them, but oranges do not.
#428 There are 118 ridges on the edge of a United States dime.
#429 There are 336 dimples on a regulation American golf ball.
#430 One acre of peanuts will make 30,000 peanut butter sandwiches.
#431 A twit is the technical term for a pregnant goldfish.
#436 Beavers have orange teeth.
#437 The woodpecker can hammer wood up to 16 times per second.
#438 Mount Everest rises a few millimeters every year.
#439 Snails can sleep for up to three years.
#440 The pupils in goats' eyes are rectangular.
#442 Bees' wings beat 11,400 times per minute.
#444 The Statue of Liberty wears a size 879 sandal.
#445 If there are two full moons in a month, the second one is called a "blue" moon.
#446 You breathe in about 13 pints of air every minute.
#447 A gallon of water weighs 8.34 pounds.
#448 The sun evaporates about a trillion tons of water a day.
#449 Sound travels quicker in water than in air.
#450 A group of cats is called a clowder.
#452 There are approximately 9,000 taste buds on your tongue.
#453 Raindrops can fall as fast as 20 miles per hour.
#454 Polar bear fur is transparent, not white.
#455 Lobsters can live up to 50 years.
#458 Fresh cranberries can be bounced like a rubber ball.
#463 The dot over the letter "I" is called a tittle.
#464 Cows do not have upper front teeth.
#469 454 U.S. dollar bills weigh exactly one pound.
#473 Antarctica has as much ice as the Atlantic Ocean has water.
#474 To temporarily revive your ballpoint pen, dip the tip into hot water for a few seconds.
#475 Wrapping rubber bands around the ends of hangers can prevent clothes from slipping off.
#476 Replacing your car's air filter can improve gas mileage by 10 percent.
#477 A chalkboard eraser is one of the best ways to wipe a foggy windshield.
#478 Candles will burn longer and drip less if they are placed in the freezer a few hours before using.
#479 Knots come out easier if you sprinkle talcum powder on them.
#480 You can tell which day a loaf of bread was baked by the color of its plastic twist tag.
#484 Rinsing bacon under cold water before frying can reduce the amount it shrinks by almost 50 percent.
#485 Refrigerating apples can help them last up to 10 times longer than those left at room temperature.
#486 While chopping onions, hold a piece of bread between your lips to keep your eyes from watering.
#487 Place an apple in the bag with your potatoes to keep them from budding.
#488 Place a slice of bread in the storage container to keep cookies soft when storing.
#489 To keep an ice cream cone from dripping, stuff a miniature marshmallow into the bottom of the cone.
#490 To take lumps out of a bag of sugar, place it in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
#492 To remove crayon marks from walls, use a hairdryer to heat the wax.
#493 To make a zipper slide up and down more smoothly, rub a bar of soap over the teeth.
#494 Wipe the leaves of your plants with the soft inside of a banana skin to bring up shine and remove dust.
#496 To clean paint off your hands, use olive oil - it softens the paint and makes it easy to remove.
#497 To fix a button about to fall off, dab a little clear nail polish over the threads holding it on.
#651 Forty-six percent of leisure visitors to downtown New York City come from outside the United States.
#654 New York taxi drivers collectively speak 60 languages
#658 New York City is made up of 50 islands.
#660 The strike note of The Liberty Bell is E flat.
#661 Pigs were banished from Philadelphia's city streets in 1710.
#662 Philadelphia was the first capital of the United States.
#663 Forty percent of America's population lives within a one-day drive to Philadelphia.
#664 It is against the law to put pretzels in bags in Philadelphia.
#665 One in six doctors in America was trained in Philadelphia.
#667 The shoreline at Wildwood grows almost 100 feet per year.
#668 Cape May is the oldest seashore resort in America.
#669 In the game Monopoly, the properties are named after streets in Atlantic City.
#670 Long Beach Island was once frequented by pirates.
#671 There is a town called "Jersey Shore" in Pennsylvania.
#672 The Wildwood Boardwalk extends nearly two miles and has more than 70,000 wooden planks.
#673 The first Ferris wheel was built in Atlantic City in 1869.
#674 Snapple helped fund the creation of more than 138 new PSAL Teams.
#675 Snapple helped fund the creation of the C.H.A.M.P.S. Sports & Fitness Program, benefiting more than 15,000 NYC Public School Middle Students.

However Some of these facts are incorrect. Here they are:
• #1 A goldfish's attention span is three seconds. This theory was tested by Discovery's MythBusters. The experiment consisted of training several goldfish to complete a maze. They concluded that a Goldfish's attention span and memory retention lasts well over 3 seconds.
• #36 "A duck's quack doesn't echo" Tested by Snopes and Mythbusters. Both tests concluded that a duck's quack does echo.
• #69 "Caller ID is illegal in California." There is no law against Caller ID in the state, though there were lengthy debates about legalizing it in the early 90's.[15]
• #77 "No piece of paper can be folded in half more than 7 times." This myth was put to the test by the Discovery Channel show MythBusters, who folded a piece of paper 11 times. The piece of paper used in MythBusters was an oversized piece of paper and thinner than a standard 8.5"x11" inch piece of paper.[16]
• #114 "The oldest known animal was a tortoise, which lived to be 152 years old" Currently the oldest living animal, a tortoise named Tu'i Malila, lived to be 188 years old.[17]
• #145 "Lake Superior is the world's largest lake." The Caspian Sea is considered the largest lake, Lake Superior is the largest freshwater lake by surface area. The largest freshwater lake by volume is Lake Baikal in Siberia.
• #146 "The smallest county in America is New York County, better known as Manhattan." Falls Church, Virginia, is the smallest functional county at 2.0 square miles. (Kalawao County, Hawaii is also smaller but is technically part of Oceania, and not either of the American continents[18])
• #162 "The temp. of the sun can reach 15 million degrees F." The core reaches temperatures of 25 million degrees F and the surface reaches only 10,000 degrees F, either way it's wrong. The Raspberry Iced Tea bottle itself also provides inaccurate information regarding the sun's temperature. An arrow on the bottle's sticker points to a picture of the sun with a following statement reading, "if you were 100 billion degrees, you'd be thirsty too" The sun does not reach the temperature of 100 billion degrees.
• #163 "The first penny had the motto 'Mind your own business.'" is actually false. The first penny has the motto "Mind your business".
• #171 "The most sensitive parts of the body are the mouth and fingertips". The clitoris has more nerve endings than all of these, as do the eyeballs.
• #180 "The first VCR was made in 1956 and was the size of a piano." The first VTR (Video Tape Recorder) was made in 1956. VCR's (video cassette recorders) came along in the 1970's.
• #334 "Thomas Edison coined the word "hello" and introduced it as a way to answer the phone." Hello was used in print in Roughing It by Mark Twain in 1872, while the telephone was invented in 1876.[19]
• #383 "Mount Katahdin in Maine is the first place in the U.S. to get sunlight each morning." The town of Lubec, Maine (the easternmost town in the U.S.) is the first place in the U.S. to get sunlight each morning, although some believe Cadillac Mountain on Mount Desert Island (near Bar Harbor, Maine) sees the first sunlight.