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Know It All
October 16, 2013, 05:00 AM

Federal Express Corporation was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1978 with the ticker symbol FDX. Federal Express changed their name to FedEx in 1994.

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When a local radio DJ in Sterling, Colo. asked people to call in and say what their favorite snack was, the resounding answer was Chex Mix. So the town proclaimed Chex Mix as its official snack.

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The advertising campaign “takes a licking and keeps on ticking” was so popular that by the end of the 1950s, one out of every three watches sold in the United States was a Timex.

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Ben Hirsch created Plastone Polish car cleaner in 1944 and sold it door to door to gas stations. He mixed the cleaner in the bathtub and his wife bottled it. After a sales call to Turtle Creek, Wisc., Hirsch changed the product name to Turtle Wax Liquid Car Polish. Today, Turtle Wax is the world’s largest manufacturer of car-care products.

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Pyrex is the brand name for heat resistant glassware introduced by Corning Incorporated in 1915. Pyrex expands and contracts less than regular glass so it can withstand oven temperatures. The first Pyrex product was a pie dish that sold for 69 cents.

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The first English woman to swim the English Channel was Mercedes Gleitze (1900-1981). During the 10-hour swim, Gleitze wore something that soon became popular. Do you know what it was? See answer at end.

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Introduced in 1925, Kleenex was intended to be a disposable cleansing tissue for removing cold cream. However, people soon began using the tissue in place of a handkerchief and a new product, the facial tissue, became popular.

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Netflix, founded in 1997, was the first company that allowed people to rent DVD movies through the Internet and receive them by mail, with no set return date or late fees. The founder of Netflix had the idea for the business when he had to pay a fine of $40 after returning an overdue videotape of the film “Apollo 13” (1995).

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The vertical creases between eyebrows are called glabellar lines. To reduce those wrinkles, and other facial wrinkles, there is a procedure called Botox Cosmetic. It is an injection directly into the facial muscles that reduces muscle activity so wrinkles do not show.

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Wood-plastic composite is used for outdoor decks and fences as an alternative to wood decks. Made from recycled plastic and sawdust, it is made to look like wood and withstand weather. One of the popular brands of wood-plastic composite is called Trex.

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Prior to computers, the Rolodex was found in every office. It is a rotating card index with removable cards to sort names and phone numbers. The name Rolodex comes from a combination of the words rolling and index.

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Borax is a naturally occurring mineral that can be used as a general purpose cleaner. Large borax deposits was discovered in Death Valley in the 1880s. It used to be moved by teams of 20 mules from out of the valley to the railways. Borates were a household staple when a brand of cleaner called 20 Mule Team Borax was introduced. The product was, and still is, a laundry booster and household cleaner.

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Answer: Gleitze wore a Rolex watch. It was the first waterproof watch, called the Oyster, created in 1926. Gleitze had made the historical swim on the English Channel in October 1927 but there was no proof. Later that month, she swam the channel again, amid much publicity. Rolex recognized a great opportunity to showcase their new watch, and Rolex earned a reputation for quality.

Know It All is by Kerry McArdle. It runs in the weekend and Wednesday editions of the Daily Journal. Questions? Comments? Email knowitall(at)smdailyjournal.com or call 344-5200 ext. 114.

 

 

Tags: cleaner, called, gleitze, product, first, popular,


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