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Today I Learned...Random Acts of Learning

Lifelong learners learn something every day. What did you learn today?


Trivia lovers unite! We're celebrating random acts of learning, the learning that happens every day if you're paying attention, with this list of entries in our series "Today I Learned...."

What did you learn today? Share it with us! Readers Respond: Share what you learned today.

Today I learned...

1. What Twerk Means

Miley Cyrus by Getty Images for MTV
Getty Images for MTV
Miley Cyrus rocked the world, in a terribly inappropriate way, on August 26, 2013 at the MTV Music Video Awards. Before then, I had never heard the word "twerk." Turns out it's from 1930. What does it mean?

2. That Rosé Wines Are Not Sweet

Del Rio Rosé Wine
Deb Peterson
It turns out that not all pink wines taste like White Zinfandel, which is very pretty, but sweet. Rosé wine is a completely different product, one that has been around for oh, 2,600+ years. White Zinfandel was a 1975 mistake.

3. That Marshmallows Originally Came from a Plant

Marsh Mallow by Charles Cuthbert
Charles Cuthbert
Most of us think "S'mores" when we think of marshmallows, or maybe Peeps, but did you know that the sweet spongy treat originally came from a plant? Neither did I.

4. About Rose-Colored Glasses

Rose-colored glasses by Barbara Penoyar - Getty Images
Barbara Penoyar - Getty Images
Have you ever looked through rose-colored glasses? If you've ever wondered about the origin of this idiom, you'll love my personal experience with rose-colored glasses.

5. About B.A.R.F.

Cocopop by Deb Peterson
Deb Peterson
Some people feed their dogs barf. Er, make that B.A.R.F. The idea elicits a look of disgust on most people's faces. What is it?

6. How to Get Chlorine Out of My Hair

Deb Peterson
I learned this handy trick while watching the 2012 Summer Olympics. So much swimming. So many swimmers dealing with chlorine in their hair. How do they do it? I found out.

7. That Really Big Fish Bite on Swimbait

Matt Peters
Matt Peters
I don't even fish, and I found myself fascinated by the results of fishing with swimbait. What is it? You might be surprised, too.

8. That Mussel Shells Are Really Cobalt Blue

Deb Peterson
This is one of my all-time favorite learnings. I put our empty mussel shells in a planter on our deck after a nice paella dinner. A few weeks later, they had transformed.

9. That Many English Surnames Were Professions

Justin Pumphrey - OJO Images Ltd - Getty Images
Justin Pumphrey - OJO Images Ltd - Getty Images
You would think I learned this in grade school, and perhaps I did. But with apologies to my teachers, I had completely forgotten. It's one of those blinding flashes of the obvious to become reacquainted with the idea as an adult.

10. What Coyotes Sound Like

Coyote by Justin Johnsen - Flickr
Justin Johnsen - Flickr
If you've lived in the country, the sound of coyotes is probably no surprise to you. But for a city girl transplanted, the cry of a pack of coyotes was a curious surprise.

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