July 13

WORD OF THE DAY

Varix [vair-iks] (noun) 1. (pathology) also called varicosity; a permanent abnormal dilation and lengthening of a vein, usually accompanied by some tortuosity; a varicose vein; 2. (zoology) a ridgelike mark or scar on the surface of a shell at a former position of the lip of the aperture.

TV TRIVIA

On “Whose Line is it Anyway?,” what is Colin Mochrie most ridiculed for by the other contestants?

A. His lack of hair

B. His weight

C. His height

D. His taste in shoes

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

55: With 55, Wilt Chamberlain still holds the NBA record for the most rebounds in a single game.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 13, 1960: In Los Angeles, Sen. John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts is nominated for the presidency by the Democratic Party Convention, defeating Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas. The next day, Johnson was named Kennedy’s running mate by a unanimous vote of the convention.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

Movie actor Harrison Ford (78)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“It has been my experience that folks who have no vices have very few virtues.” - Abraham Lincoln

TRIVIA ANSWER

A. His lack of hair

July 14

WORD OF THE DAY

Xeric [zeer-ik] (adjective) of, relating to or adapted to a dry environment.

TV TRIVIA

In the opening credits of the first couple of seasons of “The Waltons,” what was the father bringing home?

A. A radio

B. Washing machine

C. Record player

D. Cow

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

27.4 billion: An estimated 27.4 billion disposable diapers are used each year in the U.S.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 14, 1789: Parisian revolutionaries and mutinous troops storm and dismantle the Bastille, a royal fortress and prison that had come to symbolize the tyranny of the Bourbon monarchs.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

MMA fighter Conor McGregor (32)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“The very essence of instinct is that it’s followed independently of reason.” - Charles Darwin

TRIVIA ANSWER

A. A radio

July 15

WORD OF THE DAY

Wergild [wur-gild, wer-] (noun) (in Anglo-Saxon England and other Germanic countries) 1. money paid to the relatives of a murder victim in compensation for loss and to prevent a blood feud; 2. the amount of money fixed as compensation for the murder or disablement of a person, computed on the basis of rank.

TV TRIVIA

On “How I Met Your Mother,” who gets married on a boat only to get unmarried a moment later?

A. Marshall and Lily

B. Barney and Shannon

C. Ted and Robin

D. Ted and Victoria

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

30: Growing up to 30 feet long, the reticulated python, of southeastern Asia and the East Indies, is the longest snake in the world.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 15, 2006: The San Francisco-based podcasting company Odeo officially releases Twttr - later changed to Twitter - its short messaging service (SMS) for groups, to the public.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

Movie actor Forest Whitaker (59)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“They do not love that do not show their love.” - William Shakespeare

TRIVIA ANSWER

A. Marshall and Lily

July 16

WORD OF THE DAY

Zeitgeber [tsahyt-gey-ber] (noun) an environmental cue, as the length of daylight or the degree of temperature, that helps to regulate the cycles of an organism’s biological clock.

TV TRIVIA

On “The Jetsons,” what is the last name of George’s boss?

A. Elmo

B. Connie

C. Cogsworth

D. Spacely

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

900: Venus’ surface temperature is about 900 degrees F - hot enough to melt lead.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 16, 1945. The Manhattan Project comes to an end as the first atom bomb is successfully tested in Alamogordo, New Mexico.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

Movie actor Will Ferrell (53)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“A work of art that contains theories is like an object on which the price tag has been left.” - Alexander Pope

TRIVIA ANSWER

D. Spacely

July 17

WORD OF THE DAY

Yerk [yurk] (verb) 1. (used with object) to strike or whip; 2. to stir up; arouse; excite; 3. (used without object) to kick; 4. to rise suddenly; (noun) 5. a kick or jerk; 6. a thud or blow, as from a stick.

TV TRIVIA

On “How I Met Your Mother,” what was Robin’s stage name when she was a Canadian teen pop star?

A. Robin Sunshine

B. Robin Glitter

C. Robin Sparkles

D. Robin Star

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

5,000: Saffron prices at wholesale and retail rates range from $500 to $5,000 per pound.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 17, 1955: Disneyland, Walt Disney’s metropolis of nostalgia, fantasy and futurism, opens.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

R&B singer Kali Uchis (26)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“Nature, like man, sometimes weeps from gladness.” - Benjamin Disraeli

TRIVIA ANSWER

C. Robin Sparkles

July 18

WORD OF THE DAY

Abuna [uh-boo-nuh] (noun) (often lowercase) the title of the chief bishop of the Ethiopian Church.

TV TRIVIA

On “The Waltons,” what was the name of the family cow?

A. Reckless

B. Myrtle

C. Rover

D. Chance

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

64: The largest organ pipe is 64 feet. There are two instruments that have a full-length 64-foot stop - the Midmer-Losh organ at the Atlantic City Convention Center and the Pogson organ in the Organ Sydney Town Hall.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 18, 1940: Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who first took office in 1933 as America’s 32nd president, is nominated for an unprecedented third term.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

TV actress Kristen Bell (40)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“For NASA, space is still a high priority.” - Dan Quayle

TRIVIA ANSWER

D. Chance

July 19

WORD OF THE DAY

Bathos [bey-thos, -thaws, -thohs] (noun) 1. a ludicrous descent from the exalted or lofty to the commonplace; anticlimax; 2. insincere pathos; sentimentality; mawkishness; 3. triteness or triviality in style.

TV TRIVIA

Which one of these celebrities did not guest star on “Whose Line is it Anyway?”

A. Richard Simmons

B. Brittany Spears

C. David Hasselhoff

D. Robin Williams

(Answer at bottom of column)

NUMBER TO KNOW

1 billion: Though it only lives one season, a single plant can produce up to 1 billion pollen grains.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

July 19, 1799: During Napoleon Bonaparte’s Egyptian campaign, a French soldier discovers a black basalt slab inscribed with ancient writing near the town of Rosetta, about 35 miles east of Alexandria. The artifact held the key to solving the riddle of hieroglyphics, a written language that had been “dead” for nearly 2,000 years.

FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS

Movie actor Benedict Cumberbatch (44)

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“Fortune knocks but once, but misfortune has much more patience.” - Laurence J. Peter

TRIVIA ANSWER

B. Brittany Spears