I originally got this for the boys, but then I had to go through it. I love stuff like this. That probably explains why I tend to win games of Trivial Pursuit. The more esoteric and useless a piece of knowledge is the more likely to stick in my brain.
A few tidbits from this book:
The pearly stuff in nail polish? --fish scales. They clean them, but YUCK!
YKK on every zipper you own? -- the name of the company is Japan that makes them, almost every zipper we wear comes from one place.
Most smoke detectors work by analyzing the ions coming off a very small piece of radioactive material. The smoke changes those ions and sets off the alarm. So what do all the people opposed to irradiated food think about having a radioactive device in every room in their house? Heehee.
And the main reason jet engines take so long to build is they have over 25,000 parts.
There you go, useless facts for your day.
How Things are Made: From Automobiles to Zippers. Sharon Rose & Neil Schlager. Black Dog & Leventhal Pub. 1995