Who could have anticipated the dire consequences of the pharmacist’s experiments? It started so innocently. Hippolyte Mège-Mouriès was participating in a challenge that was sanctioned by none other than Emperor Napoleon III. […]
The Quest to Add Orbisculate to the Dictionary
What is the difference between a real word and a made-up word? OK, admittedly all words are made-up. We should probably ask what it takes to transform a newly manufactured word into […]
How a Spoiled Shipment Transformed a Popular Beverage
Ludwig Roselius was not at all happy. He paid good money to have his shipment sent to Europe, but when it arrived, it was ruined. He looked at the spoiled shipment and […]
Try the Seafood Dish That Is Both Dead and Alive
Physicists are familiar with the concept of Schrödinger’s Cat — a creature that can be described as being simultaneously dead and alive. Most of us can relate to having been served undercooked […]
The First Turkey Pardoned By a President
The U.S. Constitution gives the President virtually unlimited authority to grant pardons to anyone facing federal charges. Except for William Henry Harrison and James Garfield, all of the nation’s chief executives have […]
How much will kill you?
The Oxford English Dictionary defines “poison” as “a substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.” At first glance, that seems to […]
How A Fast-Food Phenomenon Was Started As a Service to Servicemen
The soldiers at Fort Huachuca had a problem. Their duties frequently had them traveling off base at meal times, and it was hard to get a good meal.
How One Man Owns All of a Country’s Bread for One Week
Some people like bread. I mean they really like it. They can consume several loaves a day and still want more. Some may even dream about buying all the bread in the […]
Research Proves Benefits When Doctors Prescribe Ice Cream
It sounds like the stuff of fairy tales or a thing that could only happen in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Imagine a doctor writing the words “ice cream” on a prescription […]
How a Popular Snack Was Born Out of a Fit of Frustration
George Crum had run out of patience. He certainly subscribed to the adage that the customer is always right, and he tried his best to be accommodating, but enough was enough!
Why Hanson Gregory is Remembered for Inventing Nothing
When you get to the end of your days, the last thing you want to hear is the solemn proclamation that you were responsible for nothing. You would likely defend yourself against […]
The Man Who Invented the Pringles Can Left This Life In One
An article from The Hob-bee Hive from 2010 lists ten clever uses for Pringles cans. Among the suggestions are using them to store yarn, turning them into coin banks, making them into […]
If You Swallow Gum Will It Stay In Your Stomach For Years?
“If you swallow your gum, it will stay in your stomach for ten years.” This was the sage warning given by our 7th-grade science teacher, and we took it to heart. Of […]
Why Butter is Shaped Differently Around the USA
Everyone knows there is a difference between the western and eastern halves of the United States. The weather, culture, cost of living, and political preferences are so stark that it is almost […]
Can You Cut the Cake Into Eight Pieces?
It’s your lucky day! Just in time for your birthday party, a beautiful circular cake has been delivered to your house. It promises to be just as pleasing to the tastebuds as […]