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Look Before You Leap (Year)!

Thursday, February 27th, 2020

It comes only once in four years, and it’s already time! If you weren’t fascinated with the concept of leap day as a kid, were you even a kid? To find out that a year is technically 365 days but actually 365 and one fourth day was cute enough, but then to be told that since you couldn’t put a quarter day into the calendar, so they decided to four quarters together and create a single day every four years was beyond fascinating. If you were anything like us growing up, you were probably wondering you “they” even were. Who comes up with these things? But all of that aside, leap day, as the 29th of February has come to be known, is actually quite ‘famous’ for some other reasons too. The day is immersed in myths, old beliefs, weird superstitions, and whatnot. Let’s check some of them out.

 

1. Proposal??

So while it’s not that big of a deal these days, long, long, long ago, it was quite scandalous for a woman to propose marriage to a man. So much so, that a quaint little tradition was started where apparently, a woman could propose marriage to a man on leap day and it was okay!

Image Source - Stuff.co.nz

Image Source – Stuff.co.nz

 

2. Taking the gloves off!

This one’s kind of a continuation of the previous one, but weird enough that it deserves it’s own heading. Apparently, if a man refused a woman’s proposal on leap day, he had to buy her 12 pairs of gloves as a punishment! You might not believe this but there were actually laws regarding this back in the olden days too. The reasoning behind this, they say, is so that the woman could hide her bare, no-ring-to-show-off-here fingers and save herself the embarrasment of having been turned down. Of course, it was slightly different based on which country was involved. In Finland, for example, the punishment was not gloves, but the man having to buy the woman enough cloth to make a skirt. We’re not too sure about the logic behind that one, but it’s amusing either way.

Image Source - TimeAndDate.com

Image Source – TimeAndDate.com

 

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3. Capital fun

Did you know there is an actual “Leap Year Capital of the World”? The US town Anthony is that esteemed (and self-proclaimed) spot, and even celebrates by holding an actual festival every four years on Leap Day.

Image Source - Facebook

Image Source – Facebook

 

4. Bad luck?

Several countries believe that the entire leap year is just plain old bad luck, and therefore nothing celebratory or auspicious should be done during a leap year, especially marriages. The people of Greece and Italy believe that marriages are doomed. Russia and Taiwan believe these years bring death. Scotland believes it’s a bad year for livestock. Makes us kinda scared about 2020, to be honest.

Image Source - The Golden Star

Image Source – The Golden Star

 

5. Leaplings!

Babies born on the 29th of February are fondly known as Leaplings, and it said that they are all invited to join The Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies – seriously, we’re not making this up. It’s an actual thing.

Image Source - Essential Baby

Image Source – Essential Baby

 

Hope you have a great Leap Year!

India Quiz

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018

We all love our country, but how much do we really know about India? While it’s true that we learned the basics in school, such as the names of states and their capitals, water bodies, a little bit of history, most of us hardly went beyond our school syllabus to do any discovering all on our own. And as we grew older, we all eventually got caught up in the same old story – higher education, jobs, marriage, family, retirement. And if you ever ask anyone about their ideal vacation spot, chances are, most people will name a foreign location. But why? India is diverse, beautiful, and most of all, waiting for you to discover her. So let’s see how much you know about her, with a quiz about facts about India.

As always, the answers are at the end, but you won’t peek and cheat, will you? No, we know you won’t. Ready, steady, go!

 

Q.1 The highest cricket ground (7500 ft above sea level) in the world is in India. Can you name it and where it is?

Image source - TourMyIndia

Image source – TourMyIndia

 

Q.2 Who wrote the Indian National Anthem, Jana Gana Mana?

Image source - Goodreads

Image source – Goodreads

 

Q.3 With an altitude of 8,586 meters, which is the highest mountain peak of India?

Image source - Himalayan Exploration

Image source – Himalayan Exploration

 

Q.4 Five international championships of this game have been held, and India has won all of them. Which sport are we referring to?

Image source - South Street Community

Image source – South Street Community

 

Q. 5 Switzerland celebrates May 26th as Science Day, to commemorate a visit by which Indian President?

Image source - Dreamstime

Image source – Dreamstime

 

Q. 6 India has a floating postal office. Where is it?

Image source - inmarathi

Image source – inmarathi

 

Q.7 Zero was invented by which famous Indian mathematician?

Image source - Quora

Image source – Quora

 

Q.8 Farrokh Bulsara was born in India, but went on to change his name and become the lead singer for an International band. What name did he take?

Image source - Starts at 60

Image source – Starts at 60

 

Q.9 The world’s hottest chilli is from India. Can you name it?

Image source - pepperseeds.eu

Image source – pepperseeds.eu

 

Q.10 What is the national bird of India?

Image source - Indiamart

Image source – Indiamart

 

 

 

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Answers.

1. Chail Cricket Ground in Chail, Himachal Pradesh

2. Rabindranath Tagore

3. Kanchenjunga

4. Kabbadi

5. Dr. ABJ Abdul Kalam

6. Dal Lake, Srinagar

7. Aryabhatta

8. Freddie Mercury

9. Bhut Jolokia

10. Peacock

 

So, how many did you get right? And if you weren’t able to answer at least half of these correctly maybe it’s time to read up a bit about our country. Trust us, India is absolutely fascinating. Try to get to know her a little, we promise she won’t disappoint.

Bare Facts about your Favorite Brew (Coffee)

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

Coffee is that one delectable addictive we’ll probably never be able to give up. For many of us, it is the magic potion that banishes sleep, anger, hunger and a bad mood. We cling to our coffee mugs like we cling to hope and just like that optimistic emotion, coffee too helps us feel like everything is going to be okay. If you too love this warm brew as much as we do, here are some facts about this bitter-sweet liquid you’ve probably never heard of before.

keurig

Image courtesy: keurig

  • This piece of trivia will particularly interest cappuccino drinkers; the word ‘cappuccino’ finds its roots in a name used to address 16th century Italian friars. Called the Capuchin friars, these holy men wore brown tunics and lived a hard and simple life. Later on, the name Capuchin was given to a breed of monkeys covered in brown fur. Eventually, the word came to be associated with coffee lightened by milk, cream or egg! Well, so how do you like to have your cup of cappuccino?
  • Coffee is still an integral part of Turkish culture. However, a couple of decades ago, it played an important role in matrimonial matters as well. Men would gauge a woman’s homemaking skills based on her ability to brew coffee. Women in turn were legally allowed to divorce their husbands if they didn’t bring home a daily supply of coffee!
  • Love how you can just hold a cup under the coffee dispenser and get all the coffee you want? Well, a few centuries back that wouldn’t have been possible, and that’s not because dispensers hadn’t been invented yet. In the days of yore, many countries tried to ban coffee as rulers and governments feared the stimulating powers of the beverage. Mecca banned coffee is 1511. In 16th century Europe, clergymen labelled it a satanic drink and demanded it be banned. The Ottoman ruler Murad IV prescribed harsh penalties for coffee drinking, like flogging or drowning. In 1746, the Swedes went an extra mile by banning not just coffee, but coffee cups and dishes too!
  • Would you pick brewed coffee over filter coffee any day? Well, you might want to reconsider your preference as brewed espresso is believed to contain 2.5% fat, while filtered coffee contains just 0.6% fat!
  • In 2001, The Brazil Postal Office launched coffee-scented postage stamps to publicize and celebrate aromatic Brazilian coffee. The smell is said to last up to 3-5 years!

jess_boss_4

 

Enjoy coffee and art at QTube Cafe!

Well, if all these strange and captivating facts have made you crave for a strong cup of coffee, waste no time and make your way to QTube Café, for here, you can sip on cups of coffee for free! Plus, you can indulge in some reading or a board game to pass time, for the Café is stocked with both! Come on down to enjoy your favorite beverage at your favorite hangout!

Juggling Facts That’ll Dazzle Your Mind

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016

Jugglers fascinated us as kids, especially the ones dressed as clowns. As their props danced in the air, our hearts danced in our chests, and our eyes stayed glued to those tumbling objects. As kids, none of us realized how difficult juggling was or how much time those performers must’ve spent perfecting their art. The art of juggling is difficult to master. It calls for an immense amount of focus, coordination and strength. It’s not an art that can be mastered in a day or two and performers spend months, even years perfecting their moves. Some jugglers stick to safer props like balls, clubs and rings. However, daredevils in the lot experiment with riskier props like chainsaws, fire torches and even knives to up the thrill factor or their performance. Here are some more little-known facts about this fun art form that’ll surely blow your mind.

juggling

Juggling has been around for centuries. A painting on an Egyptian tomb dating back to 2000 BC shows a man juggling for an unknown prince!

Today, juggling is a form of entertainment, but this wasn’t so for ancient Chinese warriors. They used this skill to intimidate their enemies before battles.

Want to learn juggling? Start with scarves as their supposed to be the easiest items to juggle.

Research says that juggling improves hand-eye coordination by 10% and burns up to 280 calories per hour. Since it engages both sides of your brain, it can help prevent Alzheimer’s in the long run!

slack taxi

Image courtesy: Slack Taxi

Bounce juggling became possible only in the 19th century, after the invention of rubber balls.

Ever seen a juggler lie on his back and juggle items with his feet? It’s called Antipodism, which is another name for foot-juggling.

Enrico Rastelli is considered to be the greatest juggler of all time. He could juggle 10 balls at a time!

The first man to juggle four clubs at a time was Charles Hoey, but he didn’t know how to bring his act to a close without dropping the clubs. So, the curtain would come down while he was still juggling.

talents-productions

Image courtesy: Talents productions