WEIRD BIRTHDAY FACTS
Birthdays: A Brief History
What is a “birthday” it is the name given to the date of the annual event (anniversary) of a person’s birth. Birthdays are a global tradition for people to celebrate this specific day.
Birthday invitations are thought to date as far back as the 1st century AD!
Claudia Severa, wife of Roman commander Aelius Brocchus, sent out the first documented birthday invitation sometime during 100 AD. Known as the Vindolanda Tablets, these carbon-based ink slabs were made out of wooden leaf fragments, and served as an archaic precursor to what we currently refer to as “save the date” reminders!
The history of birthday observance can also be traced back to before the rise of Christianity. In pagan culture, it was believed evil spirits visited people on their birthdays. To protect the birthday person from evil, people used to surround him and make merry. They would make a lot of noise to scare away the evil spirits.
- More people celebrate their birthdays in August than in any other month (about 9% of all people). The two other months that rate high for birthdays are July and September.
- Close to 2 billion Birthday Cards are sent each year in the U.S. alone, accounting for nearly 58 percent of all cards sent.
- The world's largest birthday cake was created in 1989 for the 100th Birthday of the city of Fort Payne, Alabama. The cake weighed 128,238 pounds, 8 oz. and used 16,209 pounds of icing.
- The most famous rendition of "Happy Birthday" is when Marilyn Monroe sang to "Happy Birthday, Mr President" to President John F. Kennedy at Madison Square Garden on 19 May 1962.
- The song "Good Morning to You" was written by Mildred Hill and Dr. Patty hill in 1893, for Kindergarten schools. Patty Hill later changed the lyrics to "Happy Birthday" after it gained in popularity (The song is still copyrighted, meaning have to pay a royalty to play this song). Source
- Paul McCartney's Birth Certificate was auctioned in March 1997, for US $84,146. It is believed to be the world's most expensive Birth Certificate.
- In the 19th and early 20th centuries, a popular 21st birthday present was to have all your teeth removed and replaced with a set of dentures – the idea was it would prevent the expense of dental treatment later in life.
- The Sultan of Brunei hosted the world's most expensive Birthday Party to celebrate his 50th Birthday on 13 July, 1996. The cost was a whopping US $27.2 million. Three concerts featuring Michael Jackson costs US $16 million of the total amounts.
- Anne Frank's world famous diary was given to her as a present for her 13th birthday.
- William Shakespeare's died on his 52nd birthday: 23 April 1616.
- A recent survey suggests that more people are born on October 5 in the United States than any other day. October 5 holds a not-so-surprising significance, as conception would have fallen on New Year's Eve.
- When your age and date of birth are same, the day is special and is known as the Golden Birthday. So if you where born on the 22 of the month, your golden birthday would be when you turn 22 years old.
- The most common birth date of the year is 5th of October which falls 9 months after the New Year's Eve.
- The least common birth date in the U.S. is May 22nd, not counting leap years.
- Cards that play a song when you open them use more computing power than was used to send man to the moon.
- Shirley Temple received 135,000 presents for her eighth birthday.
Birthday Facts from India
* 14th November - the Birthday of Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India is celebrated as Children's Day in India in memory of his love of children.
* 5th of September - the Birthday of Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan - former President of India and a great educationist is celebrated as Teachers Day.
Strange Birthday Facts
- Since your last birthday 31,536,000 seconds have passed.
- In the past year your hair will most likely have grown 12 cm and your nail about 4 cm.
- Your heart beats at a rate of around of 72 to 80 beats per minute - since your last birthday it will have beat about 42,075,900 times.
- You breath at a rate of about 20 breaths per minute so, since your last birthday you have taken approximately 10,512,000 breaths. Source
- The volume of blood in your body is approximately 5 litres. The heart pumps about 280 litres of blood around your body every hour - that’s 2,688,000 litres per year!
- The average garden snail (not one that has entered the Olympics 100 meters race) moves at around 0.03 mph. If one set out on your last birthday, and walked non-stop it would have traveled 263 miles. If you walked this distance non-stop you would complete it in around three days.
- Since your last birthday you will have had about 1,460 dreams.
- World population has grown by around 76,570,430 since your last birthday. In the time it takes you to read this another five babies will have been born.
- During the past year there have been more than 50,000 earthquakes throughout the world.
- The Earth is zooming around the sun at around 66,780 miles per hour! Since your last birthday the Earth has completed one journey around the sun traveling about 584,337,600 miles.
- If you counted 24 hours a day, you would be over 31,000 years old when you reach one trillion
If there are 23 people in a room there is a 50-50 chance that two of them will share a birthday. This is known as the birthday paradox, because it appears there are only 22 possible pairs and therefore a low chance of a match. In fact, because every guest could match with every other guest, there are 253 possible combinations (1+2+3+4… up to 22) and the probability of finding a successful one is 50.048 per cent.
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