Strange but False: Revealed: the awful untruth
Monday 22 March 1993
None of the above is true, but neither is the rest of this column, which is presented as an antidote to the overdose of factual information in the rest of the paper. We have included one true piece of information - revealed at the end.
1 When Sir Robert Walpole was invited to costume parties given by George II, he went dressed as a lizard. The king once asked him why and received the reply: 'To keep cool, your majesty.'
2 In a pidgin English dialect spoken in Western Samoa, the expression for 'Prime Minister' is Big-fella-live-Downing-Street-tell-Mrs-Queen-what-do. When Mrs Thatcher became Prime Minister, they changed it to Big-fella-lady-live-Downing-Street-tell-Mrs-Queen-what-do.
3 Lloyd George was the only Prime Minister to keep a goat at 10 Downing Street.
4 The goat is the only quadruped with an Adam's apple.
5 The world's first successful kidney transplant on a goat took place in 1976 in Tokyo zoo.
6 The first dog in Spain to be fitted with contact lenses was knocked down by a car and killed. The dog's name was Stan. It happened in Bilbao.
7 Under a law made during the 18th-century vegetable famines, it is still illegal in the Bilbao region to eat carrots between Tuesday and Friday.
8 According to Sir Walter Raleigh's History of the World, the anteater was allowed on Noah's ark on condition that it would not eat the ants. It promised to eat carrots instead and consequently survived the flood.
9 When Raleigh visited Greenland, he asked the natives what manner of waterproof seal-skin garb they were wearing. They replied 'Anorak' and the word came into English usage. 'Anorak', in the local Inuit dialect, means 'mind your own business'.
10 The Greenland huskie bitch is famed for its fecundity, one such animal producing 23 offspring from separate matings with three different dogs in three separate litters, all in 1873.
11 Strictly speaking, a female huskie should be called a hussie. The collective noun for huskies is a directorship.
The only true item, as far as we know, is no 6.
Jeff Fletcher found fame in 1990s
'At times I thought he was me'film
Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Film More romcom than S&M
Review: The Imitation Gamefilm
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by police in Ohio park
- 2 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 3 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 4 Naked free runner captured in breathtaking photographs above London's streets
- 5 Manchester United named Premier League's loudest fans despite late push by Chelsea according to 'Smart Meter' app
Hitler painting sells for 130,000 euros at auction despite controversy over Nazi dictator's artworks
Strictly Come Dancing results: Steve Backshall sent home after dance off with Sunetra Sarker
Naked free runner captured in breathtaking photographs above London's streets
Marilyn Manson denies involvement in shocking leaked clip of Lana Del Rey rape video
Band Aid 30: 'Do They Know It's Christmas' storms to number one
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Green Party Caroline Lucas interview: 'We could be on the edge of something very big'