The Austin Chronicle

Mr. Smarty Pants Knows

By Mr. Smarty Pants, June 27, 2014, Columns

The earliest known "bill of mortality," predecessor of today's death certificate, was written in early 1512 in London. King James ordered parish clerks to also begin listing cause of death, other than plague.

The 1666 Great Fire of London killed rats and fleas, thereby ending the bubonic plague.

Oxygen makes up about 90% of the mass of water.

Lucille Ball shaved off her eyebrows for a role in Roman Scandals and they never grew back – she had to pencil them in for the rest of her life.

The "ICEE" was invented in the late Fifties by Omar Knedlik of Kansas. He owned an old Dairy Queen whose machinery kept breaking down; when his soda fountain went out, he put some bottles in the freezer to stay cool. Folks loved his new slushy "drinks" so he built a machine to make them using a car's air conditioner to create slushy soda.

Copyright © 2017 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.