The Austin Chronicle

Mr. Smarty Pants Knows

By Mr. Smarty Pants, July 11, 2014, Columns

The Texas Quilt Museum says there were 21 million quilters in the U.S. in 2010.

Chickens with red earlobes lay brown eggs.

Magnesium aluminum oxide sure forms spinel, a coveted gem whose red variant is sometimes confused with ruby. It was used in the Timur Ruby necklace made for Queen Victoria. And an egg-sized lump of it forms the centerpiece of the Imperial State Crown. Both are part of the British Crown Jewels, and there's an even bigger rock, the Samarian spinel, in the Iranian Crown Jewels.

The longest word in the English language has 189,819 letters, takes more than three hours to pronounce, and is the name of a protein that begins with "methio" and ends in "leucine." The protein is nicknamed "titin."

James Dean had a slice of apple pie and a glass of milk at a roadside diner before his fatal wreck.

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