In 1659, the Massachusetts General Court ordered a 5-shilling fine to be paid by anyone caught celebrating Christmas. the ban was revoked in 1681. Christmas did not become an official federal holiday until 1870, under President Ulysses S. Grant. New Year's Day, Independence Day, and Thanksgiving were all made federal holidays under the same legislation.
According to a 2005 survey by CareerBuilder.com, 43% of Americans called in sick when there was nothing wrong with them, up from 35% the year before.
Disney World in Orlando, Florida, covers 30,500 acres (46 square miles). That's twice the size of Manhattan.Next week, the circus and circus animals!
Voltaire, the French philosopher, novelist, ans ardent atheist, once held up the Bible and proclaimed, "In 100 years this book will be forgotten, eliminated." Less than 50 years after Voltaire's death, the Geneva Bible Society bought the house he grew up in - in order to produce and distribute Bibles.
According to Guinness World Records, the Bible is the best-selling book of all time, with roughly 2.5 billion copies in distribution since 1815 in over 2,200 languages and dialects.
In 2004, the glossy Ikea catalogue overtook the Bible as the world's most distributed publication - 145 million copies versus 25 million copies.
The Bible is the most shoplifted book in the world.Next week... holidays
The ideal knuckleball should complete less than a single rotation on its way to home plate. Its erratic path is created by the difference in air molecules traveling over the baseball's seams and smooth surfaces.
Ice skaters skate on water, not ice. At 32 degree Fahrenheit, ice has a liquid surface measuring 40 billionths of a meter thick. Below -31 degrees Fahrenheit, the liquid layer becomes so thin that a skater's blades would stick rather than glide across the ice.
The average lifespan of an NHL hockey puck is 7 minutes. Those that don't fly into the stands are removed because they warm up from friction and bounce on the ice. Game pucks - chilled to -10 degrees Fahrenheit for maximum performance - are kept in a freezer in the penalty box.
"Fore!" the warning yelled by weekend duffers after hitting an errant golf shot, was originally an English military term. Back when soldiers fired rifles in lines, the command Beware before!" was a signal for the front line to kneel or risk getting their heads blown off.