It’s Friday! Here are some fun facts that have nothing to do with home inspection:
- The average four-year-old child asks more than 400 questions per day.
- Routine traffic stops gone awry kill more bystanders each year than stray bullets.
- A baby in the womb develops fingerprints at 18 weeks.
- The fear of vegetables is called lachanophobia.
- The sun is 330,330 times larger than the earth.
The custom of spring cleaning is much older than the arrival of modern cleaning supplies; the clean routine has roots around the world in religious customs that have existed for thousands of years.
In the days leading up to Passover, the spring holiday during which leavened food, or chametz, is strictly forbidden, Jews traditionally clean their homes as a way to rid their spaces of any leftover traces of chametz from the preceding months.
Then there’s the Ancient Persian festival of Nowruz, commemorating the Persian New Year that occurs on the vernal equinox, which is widely regarded as the first day of spring (usually on or around March 20). In the days leading up to Nowruz, ritual house cleaning called kooneh tekouni, or “shaking of the house” is practiced in preparation for the coming year.
Leading up to the Chinese New Year is a holiday called Ninyabaat, which typically falls on the 28th day of the 12th month of the Lunar calendar. According to the Cantonese saying, “Wash away the dirt on ninyabaat,” this day is designated for cleaning—a symbolic way to sweep away the bad luck of the previous year and prepare the home to receive the good luck of the coming New Year.
The etymology behind the word “April” comes from the verb “aperire,” which means “to open.” It’s commonly believed that the word refers to the season of trees and flowers begin to “open” or bloom.
No one is sure how the month ended up with its name, but we do know the Romans named it “Aprillis.”
We know April as the fourth month of the year, but that’s only by the Gregorian calendar that we adhere to now. It was previously the fifth month in the earlier Julian calendar.
The Eiffel Tower was ascended for the first time on March 31, 1889. Gustave Eiffel himself led a group of government officials and members of the press to the top. The elevators were not in operation yet, so the journey was made on foot and took over an hour.
The tower is 324 metres (1,063 ft) tall, about the same height as an 81-storey building, and the tallest structure in Paris.
Wood is made up of a combination of living, dying, and dead cells.
The terms softwood and hardwood describe the leaves, seeds and structure of the trees rather than the type of wood they produce.
The world’s heaviest wood is Australian Bauhinia Red.
The first day of Spring is in March. This year, it falls on the 20th (tomorrow!).
March is the equivalent of September in the Southern Hemisphere.
The American robin is a very widespread and familiar North American bird, and is often one of the first birds children learn to recognize.
These are omnivorous birds that eat a wide variety of different foods, including earthworms, caterpillars, snails, spiders, berries, and fruit
The American robin is the state bird of Michigan, Wisconsin, and Connecticut.
The word pineapple comes from European explorers who thought the fruit combined the look of a pinecone with flesh like that of an apple.
Pineapples are the only edible members of the bromeliad family.
Pineapples contain the bromelain enzyme which can break down proteins, so you can use them to tenderize meat.
April was the second month in an early Roman calendar, but became the fourth when the ancient Romans started using January as the first month.
Arbor Day is a day for planting trees, and it is observed on various April days.
April is Humor Month, so laugh it up!
March’s flower is the daffodil.
March babies have two birthstones: aquamarine, and bloodstone, which symbolize courage.