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World Facts #8

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India is racing to complete a spacecraft for moon orbit next year. Its space agency employs more people than NASA. - KTLA Los Angeles, 2/12/06

Because of a glut of whale meat in Japan, the Japanese government has started serving whale meat burgers to school kids. - San Diego Union, 2/14/06

A potato chip factory in Wales laid off 250 workers and gave each of them a bag of chips worth 50 cents as a good will gesture. - The Week Magazine, 2/24/06

The Spanish Winter Olympics team had every piece of its luggage lost by an airline en route to Turin, Italy, including all their skis and snowboards. - Yahoo.com, 2/9/06

Cheap red wine was used to power environmentally-friendly buses in Sweden because of an ethanol shortage. - New York Times, 9/20/95

Taipei 101 is the world's tallest building - 508 metres (1,667 feet) high. At 700,000 tons, it is among the heaviest. But the sheer size of the Taiwan skyscraper is thought to have triggered two recent earthquakes because of the stress that it exerts on the ground beneath it. - The Guardian, 12/2/05

On average, every man, woman and child uses three gallons of oil daily. Transportation accounts for two of those gallons. - San Diego Union, 12/28/05

Wikipedia, the open-source on-line encyclopedia that anyone can edit, is nearly as error-free as Encyclopedia Brittanica, according to a team of expert reviewers. - The Guardian, 10/26/04

An official in Colombia has proposed a law that would require all males over 14 years old to carry a condom at all times. - CNN.com, 1/11/06

There are 1,385 Russian satellites currently in orbit. Only 96 of them are operational. - Popular Science, 2/06

In Patras, Greece, four patrol cars took more than an hour to catch a gang of teenage thieves who had escaped on a cart pulled by a donkey. - The Globe And Mail, 11/28/05

A small fire at a grocery store turned frustrating for firefighters when some shoppers refused to budge from the checkout lines even as smoke filled the aisles. Afterward, a cashier said, "The store is on fire. Hello?" - WBAL TV, 11/3/05

Employees of a television company have worked for weeks setting up more than 4,000,000 dominoes for an attempt at the Guinness World Record for falling dominoes. A sparrow flew through an open window and knocked down 23,000 of the dominoes after flying into the Leeuwarden exposition center before it was shot to death. - San Diego Union, 11/15/05

The Dutch Animal Protection Agency demanded prosecution for the shooting of the sparrow which knocked over 23,000 dominoes. - San Diego Union, 11/16/05

There are 200 Starbucks in London. 8 of them are within three blocks of St. Paul's Cathedral. - Miami Herald, 10/31/05

Rome has banned goldfish bowls, which animal rights activists say are cruel. - Daily Telegraph, 10/26/05

A ski resort is opening in December 2005 in the desert of Dubai. - Yahoo News, 10/25/05

Al-Qaida has put job advertisements on the Internet asking for supporters to help put together its Web statements and video montages. The London-based Asharq al-Awsat said on its Web site this week that al-Qaida had "vacant positions" for video production and editing statements, footage and international media coverage about militants in Iraq. - MSNBC.com, 10/6/05

A Viennese artists’ group this week installed a giant pink rabbit on the side of an Italian mountain, where it will stay for 20 years. “Rabbit,” a 200-foot-long woolen sculpture, looks like a cute child’s toy, until you climb over it to find its pink woolen entrails spilling out of a gash in its side. - The Week Magazine, 9/23/05

The rising number of men arrested for sexual relations with girls under 16 has resulted in the the Sri Lankan Cabinet to lower the age of consent to 13. - BBC.com, 9/16/05
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