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Friday, February 24, 2006

Friday Top Ten 

I have lived in Delaware practically my whole life. I was born in the Wilmington hospital which no longer exists, grew up on Delaware Avenue, went to Kindergarten at an elementary school on Foulk Road which no longer exists, and then went to Wilmington Christian School. With the exception of a couple of years with my family as missionaries to the Philippines, I spent my entire childhood living in Delaware. After 5ish years at Virginia Tech, I moved back to Delaware to woo and wed my wife, and we have also settled in Delaware. Even though I do not consider myself an expert on the subject, I believe I am qualified to offer you...

The top 10 little known facts about Delaware:

  1. There are no national parks, national seashores, national historic sites, national battlefields, national memorials, or national monuments in Delaware.
  2. The state was named after a former governor of Virginia.
  3. Delaware has the nation's second lowest highest point. It used to have the lowest highest point, but the highest point in Florida was located on a sinkhole and actually sunk below the 442 feet elevation along Ebright Road.
  4. There are more chickens living south of the canal than there are people living north of it.
  5. The state ranks 49th in the nation in total land area, with less than 2,000 square miles. It is less than 100 miles in length and at one point less than 10 miles in width.
  6. Contrary to popular belief, the Mason-Dixon line does not cut through the state, but rather runs North-South along our western border.
  7. To add insult to injury, with our state bird being the blue hen, our state bug is the lady bug, our state fish is the weakfish, and our state beverage is milk.
  8. Caesar Rodney had nothing to do with Delaware being the first state to ratify the constitution. In fact, he didn't even sign it. However, Delaware does boast five signers of the Constitution, more than any other state besides Pennsylvania (which had 8).
  9. The longest twin span suspension bridge in the world is the Delaware Memorial Bridge that connects Delaware with New Jersey.
  10. Among celebrities from Delaware are: that dude that invented the Heimlich Maneuver, that guy who started the company that eventually became RCA, that chick from the Karate Kid movies and also from one of my wife's favorite movies (The Saint), that girl engaged to Ben Stiller in Meet the Parents, and that woman who married Eddie Van Halen.

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More trivial trivia on the Del Mem Bridge - While built to the same design, one span was built with rivets and the other with bolts, due to technology changes. This resulted in one span (1) being shorter and (2) having different modal characteristics (i.e. movement) than the other span.

Oh, one more thing ... you can't drive a standard American aircraft carrier under either span. Modifications are required.

And all this from an electrical (NOT mechanical OR civil) engineer NOT from Delaware. Just remember, you can't spell geek without a double-e ...

- Ted Neeves :-)


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