Friday, November 16, 2007

Things I Learned at Work, Sort of.

[I wrote this early Friday morning and kept adding to it, and then forgot to post it. Oops.]

Some new, interesting things that I learned at work this morning by reading ancestry magazine:

- Watermelon is indigenous to Africa and came over to America in the late 1600s when settlers started bringing slaves over. Peanuts, sesame seeds, and yams came from Africa, too.

- Graham crackers were created by a Presbyterian minister named Sylvester Graham, in 1830, to help people fight lustful feelings. "As part of his health regimen, Graham advocates daily cold baths, lots of exercise, chastity, temperance, and hard mattresses." (pg. 25)

- Arsenic and strychnine were used in 1894 for weight loss.

- They've done DNA testing on cats, and basically all domestic cats go back to five mother cats, which were Near Eastern wildcats from "the deserts of Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia" about 10,000 years ago. It's the same time and place that wheat and barley were domesticated, and they think maybe those five mamma cats kept rodents from the grain and were welcomed (with their kittens) by humans. They guess that the cats liked the arrangement and adapted, domesticating themselves. (pg. 20)
- Turkey is the only commercially available meat native to America. (pg. 34)

4 comments:

bawb said...

Why doesn't bison meat count?

dimmi said...

Maybe it isn't exported too much? I think it meant that like, pigs aren't from here and neither are cows, and that turkeys aren't really from England or Africa or something.

zookeeper08 said...

Eating graham crackers sure helps with my lustful feelings...

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