ASSOCIATES (vol. 4, no. 3, March 1998) -

Table of Contents

                              *LIBRARY LIFE:
                     A COLUMN OF ECLECTIC  RANTINGS*

                               Katie Buller
                         Senior Library Assistant
                     University of Wisconsin - Madison

Things learned while in the bathroom:

	As of 1989, the longest limousine in the world was a 60-foot 
long, 20,000 lb. car called the "American Dream".  It had 16 wheels,
2 engines, a swimming pool, a hot tub, a water bed, a helicopter 
landing pad, a crystal chandelier, 3 color TV's (one a giant screen), 
a microwave oven, VCR, 10 speaker stereo, 10 telephones, a mirrored 
ceiling, cocktail table and hardwood flooring.  It has 8 axles and 
requires two drivers.  My mom's car qualifies on the two drivers 
requirement: one to actually drive the car while the other second 
guesses every move.  Also in 1989, the record for playing music 
non-stop was set by a heavy-metal group called "Vengeance KSA".  They 
played for 107 hours straight.  After setting this record, these 
fellows apparently moved in next door to me.

	As of 1990,   there were some very interesting tourist 
attractions over this broad land.  You can visit the shopping mall 
where Madonna's "True Blue" dress was exhibited and stolen.  The woman
who stole it was chased and tossed it into a bush where it was later 
found by some teenagers.   You could visit the theft site at the 12 
Oaks Mall in Novi, Michigan if I bothered to put the address down here.
You can also visit the various locales where Elvis has reportedly been
spotted since his "death" (wink wink!), most of which are in Kalamazoo,
Michigan.  As a former citizen of Kalamazoo, I can attest to the fact 
that these places once existed:  the Burger King on S. Westnedge, 
Felpausch's Grocery (actually in Vicksburg, Michigan), J.C. Penney's 
at the Crossroads Mall, the Columbia Plaza Hotel on E. Michigan Ave. 
(ask if John Burrows is registered) or Upjohn Pharmaceuticals 
(surprise surprise...not).

	In 1957, the following were among the facts and fiction set 
forth about sexuality and teenagers: spermatozoa were called male germ
cells (maybe they still are for all I know), wearing high-heeled shoes
before age 16 will cause your leg muscles to shorten, unmarried 
pregnant teens are a "rare exception" and being "gay, cheerful and 
radiantly alive" will make you a more attractive companion. Also, the 
"ambition of every girl is to find a life-long mate and prepare 
herself for the ultimate purpose of every woman: to be a wife and 
mother".  Hey, I don't write 'em, I just report 'em.

I also found out that:

	The Boy Scouts' motto of "Be Prepared" shares its initials with 
the Scouts' founder, Colonel Robert Baden-Powell.  Covering a yawn 
with your hand is derived from an attempt to keep the breath of life 
from escaping.  The French guillotine was NOT invented by Dr. Joseph
Ignace Guillotin.  The good doctor was only instrumental in persuading
the French National Assembly to pass a law requiring all capital to be
carried out "by means of a machine".  Oscar Wilde's last words were
"This wallpaper is killing me--one of us has got to go."  Fred 
Waring, 1930s bandleader, financed and developed the Waring Blender in
order to mix his favorite drink, the daiquiri.  The "evil eye" was 
dreaded in nearly all cultures.  Silly Putty was a by-product 
resulting from research to find a low-cost rubber substitute for use 
in military equipment.  However, entertaining as it was, no practical 
use could be found for it until it was packaged and sold as a child's 
toy.  The Slinky spring toy also came from research to develop 
flexible springs to counterbalance ships at sea.  However, unlike 
Silly Putty, it has found other uses than a plaything--it has gone 
into space to observe the effects of weightlessness on springs, used 
as an antenna by soldiers in Vietnam and has been incorporated into a 
device to pick pecans.  

	Canned foods pre-date the can opener by around 40 years.  Dodos 
became extinct in 1681.  By all accounts, this bird had no natural 
predators on its native island of Mauritius until humans arrived.  
Then it was bye-bye dodo.  Today's "garden cemeteries" are the result 
of a movement to clean up the disease-infected quagmires that composed
church graveyards, especially after a yellow-fever epidemic in New 

	Hank Williams died in a pink 1953 Cadillac.  Cowboy star Tom Mix
died in a 1944 Cord when his suitcase became unlashed and flew forward,
breaking his neck and killing him instantly.  Richard Berry wrote the 
words to "Louie Louie" on a piece of toilet paper backstage at the 
Harmony Club Ballroom in Anaheim, California.  The oldest shopping 
center in America is the Country Club Plaza in Kansas City.  It was 
built in 1922.

	Johnny Cash has sung so much about prisons, he must have spent 
quite a bit of time in them, right? Wrong, unless you count his 
concerts in prisons.  Johnny Cash's prison experience is limited to 
20 hours total jailtime for various minor infractions, including 
picking flowers on the courthouse lawn at 2AM.

 	Zsa Zsa Gabor slapped "that gorgeous officer" (and having seen 
the officer involved, I agree!) at the corner of Olympic Blvd. and Le 
Doux Rd. in Beverly Hills.
	And last but not least....Mrs. Fields never sold her cookie 
recipe for $250.00.  Neither did Nieman-Marcus. .

	Now, can you sleep tonight? 

_1989 Guiness Book of World Records_.  New York.  Sterling.

Brunvand, Jan Harold.  _The Vanishing Hitchhiker._  New York.  W.W. 
	Norton, 1981.

Mozes, Eugene B.  _Sex Facts and Fiction for Teenagers._  New York.  
	Medical Research Press.  1957.

Panati, Charles.  _Panati's Extraordinary Endings of Practically 
	Everything and Everybody._  New York. Harper & Row.  1989.

Panati, Charles.  _Panati's Extraordinary Origins of Everyday Things._  
	New York, Harper & Row.  1987.

Staten, Vince.  _Unauthorized America._  New York.  Harper & Row.  1990.