Ball Point Pen
When NASA first started sending up astronauts, they quickly discovered that ball-point pens would not work in zero gravity.
To combat this problem, NASA scientists spent a decade and $12 billion developing a pen that writes in zero gravity, upside down, underwater, on almost any surface including glass and at temperatures ranging from below freezing to over 300° C.
The Russians use a pencil.
Touring guide for Northerners Visiting the South
Information for Northerners Visiting the Southern States. If you are from the northern states and planning on visiting or moving to the south, there are a few things you should know that will help you adapt to the difference in life styles:
- If you run your car into a ditch, don't panic. Four men in a four-wheel-drive pickup truck with a 12-pack of beer and a tow chain will be along shortly. Don't try to help them, just stay out of their way. This is what they live for.
- Don't be surprised to find movie rentals and bait in the same store. Do not buy food at this store.
- Remember: "Y'all" is singular, "All y'all" is plural, and "All y'alls'" is plural possessive.
- Get used to hearing, "You ain't from around here, are ya?"
- You may hear a Southerner say "Oughta!" to a dog or child. This is short for "Y'all oughta not do that!" and is the equivalent of saying "No!"
- Don't be worried about not understanding what people are saying; they can't understand you, either.
- The first Southern expression to creep into a transplanted Northerner's vocabulary is the adjective "big ol'," as in "big ol' truck " or "big ol' boy." Most Northerners begin their new Southern-influenced dialect this way. All of them are in denial about it.
- The proper pronunciation you learned in school is no longer proper.
- Be advised that, "He needed killin'" is a valid defense here.
- If you hear a Southerner exclaim, "Hey, y'all, watch this," stay out of the way. These are likely to be the last words he'll ever say.
- If there is the prediction of the slightest chance of even the smallest accumulation of snow, your presence is required at the local grocery store. It doesn't matter whether you need anything or not. You just have to go there.
- When you come upon a person driving 15 mph down the middle of the road, remember that most folks here learn to drive on a John Deere and that this is the proper speed and position for that vehicle.
A guy walks into a gun shop to buy a gun. "Can I help you sir?" asked the shopkeeper. "Ah, yes... I want to buy a .44 Magnum please." The shopkeeper informs the man that the .44 is a very powerful gun, and asks the customer what he's going to use it for. The man replies, "I want to shoot cans!" "What? Cans! You don't need a .44 to shoot cans sir, a much smaller gun would do," advised the shopkeeper. The customer has enough and finally says, "Shut up and give me the dang .44 Mag... I want to shoot AmeriCans, MexiCans, and AfriCans!"
Japan's Quality Standard
This speaks a lot about the Japanese quality standards and also cultural misunderstandings. They're still laughing about this at IBM. Apparently the computer giant decided to have some parts manufactured in Japan as a trial project. In the specifications, they set out that they will accept three defective parts per 10,000. When the delivery came in there was an accompanying letter. "We, Japanese people, had a hard time understanding North American business practices. But the three defective parts per 10,000 have been separately manufactured and have been included in the consignment. Hope this pleases you."
An American on a London Street Corner
An American was waiting on a London street corner. An attractive English girl was passing by when a gust of wind blew her dress above her waist. "A bit airy, isn't it?" remarked the American. Hearing this, the Cockney girl replied indignantly,"'Ell yes! What did you expect - feathers?!"