Odd Ways of Learning Things

Tell your tales of bygone days and rank historical things here.

Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby Santa Claus » Tue Aug 11, 2015 10:01 am

Stefan HSQBRankovich wrote:
cornfused wrote:All of my Isambard Kingdom Brunel knowledge comes from Hark! A Vagrant.

I'm pretty sure these are the only reasons I'm aware of anything that's actually useful in any way.

I can attest to the amount of knowledge one gets from webcomics, being an avid reader of Harkavagrant and xkcd myself.

I first-lined the tossup on Utah at the 2014 HSNCT off the name of their former attorney general John Swallow. I had previously looked him up because a separate (and far less important) person with the same name had developed a neutrally-buoyant float used in Lagrangian current analysis, and because that's the kind of thing you have to study in Ocean Sciences Bowl. As the John Swallow I was looking for had no Wikipedia article I remembered his name to be the same as the encumbent attorney general of Utah. When I got that buzz, I found out he was removed from office though.

I also got the question on the Chesapeake Bay in the last few games of the 2015 HSNCT because I went there for an OSB award trip that summer and I ate blue crab.

That, and I spent a lot of time poring over US fishing statistics from 2012, divided both by state and by type of catch (in 2011 blue crab over took dungeness as the gross earner, but every other year, including all the years since, it's been a close second).

A few more things I remembered:

I powered a question on Hillary Clinton after it reused a clue I had negged on three years prior, because it mentioned the name of her book "It Takes a Village". I had buzzed because it shared its name with a fan-fiction I had read recently.

I have owned Theodore Gray's book "Elements" since like, seventh grade, and I've read it several dozen times. There are a ton of great clues for elements and specific compounds in that book, but that's not really appropriate for this thread. There is a much more convoluted way of getting questions right than just learning the clue outright.

On the page in "Elements" about neon, Theodore Gray plugs his friend Oliver Sacks' book "Uncle Tungsten" by mentioning how he walked through Times Square with a spectroscope. Since I enjoyed Gray's book so much, I went out of my way to check that book out of the library, along with a few other of Sacks' books. One of those was his "Oaxaca Journal", which detailed his visit to the Mexican province. One of the events he describes is getting one of his shirts dyed in a massive vat of cochineal pigment that had been harvested in the area, creating a deep red color. Five years later in senior English, we read Emily Dickinson's poem "Hummingbird" whose first lines are "A route of evanescence. With a revolving wheel; A resonance of emerald, A rush of cochineal". I powered a question on Dickinson on that clue.

Also I first-lined the tossup on the Vasa dynasty in STIMPY because the day we read it in practice there was a comic on the frontpage of /r/polandball that talked about the sinking of ship, and that was the clue they used.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby Wynaut » Mon Jun 13, 2016 2:16 pm

I first learned about Ocracoke Island because of a Wheel of Fortune contestant from there. She also talked about its weird dialect.

Another one I just remembered: I first heard about Ravel's Concerto for the Left Hand in my first-year engineering class. It was in the context of finger implants that needed to withstand a certain number of presses.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby Around occasionally » Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:52 pm

I got the tossup on gamma rays at ACF Regionals on "bursts" because I remembered it from this. I also got a Jesus tossup at HSNCT last year on "Quest for the Historical [this man]" thanks to Eric Mukherjee's hsqb username.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby dhumphreys17 » Mon Jun 13, 2016 7:48 pm

Around occasionally wrote:I got the tossup on gamma rays at ACF Regionals on "bursts" because I remembered it from this. I also got a Jesus tossup at HSNCT last year on "Quest for the Historical [this man]" thanks to Eric Mukherjee's hsqb username.

Sort of the same thing has happened to me twice on the same answerline; I powered a Finland tossup based on Will Overman's hsqb username, Vainamoinen; I powered a different Finland tossup off of Rob Carson's hsqb username, ukonvasara.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby Ndg » Mon Jun 13, 2016 9:07 pm

got a question on Montauk once after eating some Pepperidge Farm cookies.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby gettysburg11 » Mon Jun 13, 2016 9:14 pm

I powered the MLK tossup on Cubans at the mention of Fort Chaffee, which I know because there was a Ghost Adventures episode there.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby gerbilownage » Tue Jun 14, 2016 2:42 am

I once got a DII SCT question on mangoes on a clue about their Tommy Atkins variety, because when I was on vacation in Hawaii in 5th grade, I was skimming a book that discussed mangoes. The only reason I remember the Tommy Atkins variety was because the author spent five pages just talking about how tommy atkins were literally the worst variety of mango and how literally every other variety tasted better and more unique, but because it was easy to grow them in florida everybody started growing them.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby SpanishSpy » Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:19 pm

Got two-thirds of a bonus on Kingdom Hearts at ACF Fall because my sister used to play it.
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Re: Odd Ways of Learning Things

Postby Rothlover » Fri Mar 24, 2017 11:00 pm

I once learned about Shlomo Shekelburg from a now forbidden zoned post necessitating this edit.
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