• It was infamous German philosopher Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche who made the following sage observation: “In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.”

• If you’re like the typical person, you completely regrow your fingernails once every four and a half months.

• Financial statistics show that 1 percent of the population in the United States owns more than one-third of the country’s wealth.

• In the 17 th century, a Frenchman opened a coffee shop in London and sold chocolate, newly imported from the Americas, for 10 to 15 shillings a pound. That may not sound like much until you learn that at the time, the going price of a pound of gold was 20 to 30 shillings.

• Some species of lizards can lay many clutches of eggs over the course of a number of years after having mated only once.

• Way back in 1879, the Cincinnati Gazette predicted that the game of baseball had “run its course.”

• If you’re a fan of fishing, here’s a cautionary tale regarding the weather: A 48-year-old Colombian man named Felipe Ortiz decided (for reasons unknown) to go out fishing in a raging storm. He cast his line into a strong wind, but the line blew back and caused the baited hook to lodge in his throat, killing him.

• You probably have never heard of the affliction once known as “boanthropy,” but evidently in the 1800s a man thinking he was an ox was common enough to require its own word.

• In the past 30 years, the size of the average American home has increased by nearly two-thirds. ***

Thought for the Day: “Some people with great virtues are disagreeable, while others with great vices are delightful.” — Francois, duc de La Rochefoucauld

(c) 2009 King Features Synd., Inc.