What is the Origin of Saluting and Why is the Royal Naval Salute Different to the Army?
Jun10

What is the Origin of Saluting and Why is the Royal Naval Salute Different to the Army?

In this platinum Jubilee year of Queen Elizabeth II we will see many military parades and salutes to her. But what is the origin of the military salute and why is the Royal Naval salute different to that of the British Army?

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Why Do Onions Make us Cry When We Cut them ?
May27

Why Do Onions Make us Cry When We Cut them ?

Why Do Onions Make us Cry When We Cut them ? : In a Nutshell : Breaking open onion cells which releases enzymes which in turn react with other released substances to release a volatile gas – which when it reaches our eyes, it reacts with the water that is intended to keep our eyes moist.

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They have a word for that in German / Scots /  German… (things you can’t say in English Kummerspeck; Guddle & Bourach; Schnapsidee & Fremdschämen)
May20

They have a word for that in German / Scots / German… (things you can’t say in English Kummerspeck; Guddle & Bourach; Schnapsidee & Fremdschämen)

If you look at the statistics around the English language you’d think that we already have more than enough words in this ‘language of the World’. However as much as we like to think of English as the biggest and best of all the World languages, it turns out there’s just some things you can’t express in one word … but you can in other languages. Kummerspeck(German); Guddle & Bourach (Scots); Schnapsidee (German); Fremdschämen (German)

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What’s the Meaning and Origin of the Phrase Catch 22
May13

What’s the Meaning and Origin of the Phrase Catch 22

The phrase “catch-22” is, in short, common parlance for when someone is trapped in an inescapable dilemma. But where does the phrase come from?

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Time for a Party Game – Pub Quiz Challenge
Apr08

Time for a Party Game – Pub Quiz Challenge

Party time is always a good time for a game or two and everyone loves a “good ol’ pub quiz”. To test your knowledge we’ve gathered together a few pub-style quiz questions to challenge the “little grey cells”. 40 questions guaranteed to tempt & tease out those nuggets of information that we’re sure you will have squirrelled away somewhere.

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Inside the Mind : Not Everyone Has An Internal Monologue!
Apr01

Inside the Mind : Not Everyone Has An Internal Monologue!

I remember asking a friend once about how he thought about things. I’d asked if he heard his own voice in his head when he thought about things or when reading. He looked at me blankly and said “Err I don’t hear anything”. So do we all have an inner monologue if not how do some people think ?

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Columbanus – The Monk Who Saved Europe
Mar25

Columbanus – The Monk Who Saved Europe

You may never have heard of Columbanus, but this radical-thinking monk can be credited with helping to save Europe in crisis after the fall of the Roman Empire.

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Why Do Our Fingernails Grow Faster Than Our Toenails?
Mar11

Why Do Our Fingernails Grow Faster Than Our Toenails?

No, you’re not imagining it – your toenails really do grow much more slowly than your fingernails. In this article we look at some theories

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Can Sneezing Pop Your Eyeballs Out ?
Mar04

Can Sneezing Pop Your Eyeballs Out ?

More often than not, it comes from out of the blue. With only a second’s notice to brace yourself … achoo! Instinctively you close you’re eyes and the sneeze issues forth at speed. It’s such a forceful reaction one has to wonder : If you had managed to keep your eyes open – would they have popped out ?

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The Way We Speak – Why we use Adjectives in a certain way
Feb18

The Way We Speak – Why we use Adjectives in a certain way

There is a rule we all seem to follow unconsciously to do with English adjective order. A blueprint discovered by writer Mark Forsyth.
[opinion – size – age – shape – colour – origin – material – purpose]

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What’s the Origin of the Term OK ?
Feb11

What’s the Origin of the Term OK ?

“OK” – the all-purpose American expression that became an all-purpose English expression that became an all-purpose expression in dozens of other languages. It’s amazing that we ever got along without it at all. But we did. Until 1839.

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How Has The Bayeux Tapestry Survived for So Long ?
Feb04

How Has The Bayeux Tapestry Survived for So Long ?

The Bayeux Tapestry tells one of the most famous stories in British history. It has survived revolution, war, clumsy restorations and even ‘kidnapping’ and has been threatened with destruction at every turn of these events. So how has it survived for nearly 1,000 years?

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Who Invented Spaghetti?
Jan28

Who Invented Spaghetti?

There seems to be a fair bit of controversy and some urban myth surrounding this particular question, which could also be asked as “Who invented Pasta ?” In this article we look at the origins of pasta and spaghetti.

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How Old is Your Cat in Human Years ?
Jan21

How Old is Your Cat in Human Years ?

A question often asked by cat owners when trying to decide if their pet pussy is young, middle-aged or just plain ‘over the hill’. The calculation is fairly simple. Compared to dogs, which have greater variation based on size and breed, the method to calculate a cat’s age is pretty standard.

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Ice Age Guernsey – What was it Like ?
Jan14

Ice Age Guernsey – What was it Like ?

Guernsey and the other Channel Islands have not always been islands. In fact Guernsey has been an island and not an island several times over the millennia with the waxing and waning of various ice ages. But what was it like ?

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