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Do Penguins Have Knees & Other Imponderables/Mysteries Of Everyday Life
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Do Penguins Have Knees & Other Imponderables/Mysteries Of Everyday Life

3.61  ·  Rating Details ·  603 Ratings  ·  60 Reviews
Ponder, if you will...

* What happens to your Social Security number when you die?

* Why are peanuts listed as an ingredient in plain M&Ms?

* Why is Barbie's hair made out of nylon, but Ken's hair is plastic?

* What makes up the ever-mysterious "new-car smell"?

Pop-culture guru David Feldman demystifies these topics and so much more in Do Penguins Have Knees? -_the unchalle
Hardcover, 263 pages
Published (first published September 26th 1991)
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Community Reviews

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Jan 28, 2016 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Did I actually read every essay in this book? Errrr, no. But I read most of them, and a whole lot were pretty interesting and informative, and occasionally funny. A great book to kep on the side to while away some time when you have sudden breaks, or you just don't have anything else to pick up at the moment. I think youngsters will enjoy this as well, if not all of the explanations.
Jul 19, 2011 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookcrossing, 2011
I can't resist books about some random things I don't know about. Whether it's the anatomy of the penguins or the history of Moors' medical tools in Europe or the Algerian pirates in co Cork in Ireland, there are just way too many interesting topics around there. And the books like this, covering a bit of everything, in perfectly tiny chapters make a perfect read for so many occasions. When I'm tired, too tired to concentrate in a real book, when traveling with a huge jet lag, or perfect for toi ...more
Rich Mainville Jr.
So I'm torn on how to rate this book. I thought it was enjoyable...and I loved learning about new random facts. But this in itself could never really be rated 5 just isn't something that I could ever say was "amazing".
I did enjoy it though, and would recommend it to other readers. I will read others written by David Feldman, as I come across them.
Apr 14, 2010 Kaylin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: advisory-09-10
To be honest with everyone when i first started reading this book, I only read it because it was the only book that had an interesting title. So before i read it i thought the book was going to be about penguins hence the title "Do Penguins Have Knees?" but i was obviously wrong as soon as I got to the first chapter in the book. So pretty much this book was about these questions that us as people might randomly think of, and then the book would have the question and the answer if there was an an ...more
Hank Hoeft
My favorite bathroom literature are the series of Uncle John's Bathroom Readers by the Bathroom Readers' Institute (BRI) and the Imponderables series by David Feldman. Do Penguins Have Knees? is the fifth book in the Imponderables series and it is just as readable and compulsive (like potato chips) as the first four books. The list of questions tackled range from "Why do cowboy hats have dents in them?" to "How did Dr Pepper get its name?" to "Why can't they make chewing gum flavor last longer?" ...more
Apr 19, 2015 Kelsey rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It took me over a YEAR to finish this book! I would not recommend it to anyone for multiple reasons:

1) Out of the whole book, I think there were maybe 6 questions I thought were interesting.

2) The second HALF of the book is just questions they've answered in other books and also sources (the sources are understandable, but it shouldn't be so long).

3) There were SO MANY questions that they said they weren't sure about or didn't know the answer to. WHY PUT IT IN THE BOOK IF YOU DON'T KNOW THE ANSW
Jul 03, 2008 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was at my house when I was a kid. I can’t remember if I read it because I wanted to be smarter than my sister or if I saw her reading it and I wanted to read it so that she wouldn’t be smarter than me. Either way…I didn’t want to be the dumb sister. Hey look! It worked! Not because my sister turned out to be the dumb one, but because we are both geniuses.

Anyways, I read it a whole bunch of times between the ages of about 9 and 17. I don’t remember a single thing. I don’t even remember
Dec 28, 2009 Bobby rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
This book is apparently #5 or #6 in the Imponderables series. I assume/hope that the previous books were funnier and wittier because I didn't find this one all that entertaining or interesting. The premise of the book is certainly interesting (the author attempts to answer "hard-to-answer" questions) but the content is pretty weak. I suggest skipping this one (but if you really want to read it, you can have my copy).
Nov 24, 2011 Anna rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: unfinished
While the idea is very attractive (and normally I really enjoy books of this kind), the questions were far from exciting and some answers were just so obvious that I was really starting to wonder - who would even ask such a stupid question :)

Besides, 50% of those are related to some "American-only" trivia that really doesn't interest me at all.

Also, many issues are outdated. I don't care about the VCRs anymore - sorry!

Cooper Jones
Dec 10, 2014 Cooper Jones rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hate to say it, but I really didn't like this book. I like to read things that have useless information, but this information was not interesting. I found maybe two or three things that really caught my attention, but the rest I really read the first few sentences and then skipped over the rest. In truth, I read about 25% of the book and retained about 1% of the information. I hope the other books were ether. Sorry for the bad review.
May 04, 2015 Leon_murderz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great read. The whole premise of this book is to answer questions that most wonder about but never get resolution on. It can be used as a reference book, a curl-up-on-the-couch on a rainy day book, or just a light, interesting read. Besides the wonderful life mysteries it cracks, it is hard not to enjoy Feldman's witty and enticing writing. All in all, I'd say read it.
Since this is one of those bits and pieces books (often read in the bathroom), it is full of quick and easy-to-read bits that lend itself well to an afternoon with my daughter where we are both sitting out on the patio just spending time together. Some of it brings back memories, some of it is entertaining and some of it is easy to skip. I even learned a bit.
Kristal Cooper
Published in 1991, so some of the info was outdated. The entry about telephone area codes, for example, confused the heck out of me until I realized that we've moved beyond their explaination and it no longer applies. There were a good number of entries that I learned something from, so it was a worthwhile read. It was perfect bathroom material.
Aug 07, 2010 Zach rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good book file with a lot of cool, funny and mostly unless facts. So if you’re like me and you like those then read it and learn why White Chocolate isn’t really chocolate and why the classification of hardwood and softwood have nothing to do with how hard or soft the wood is.
This was quite a fun and interesting read. It's not earth shattering information, but it's fun party conversation. They've written several other Imponderables books, and I'm thinking I'll probably read those as well. And, for the record, they do have knees.
Matthew Dambro
Jan 03, 2017 Matthew Dambro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. I am a sucker for trivia of all kinds. It is part of a series of books on trivia. It is well written and adequately researched. One just never knows when the subject of a penguin's knees will come up in a conversation about sex or violence.
Nov 19, 2007 Chanel added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone!
Shelves: good-reads
This book was so great it not only answered these question but a lot of other questions that are prevelent in the world and seem to slip onder out radar like... " Why are peanuts listed under a plain M&M's package?" haha this was the funniest book ever!
Mar 05, 2012 Lori rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Boring. I sometimes like reading little books like these...I'm always curious about the little "why's" and "hows" in life. But this one just wasn't all that interesting. At least you could read it in less than an hour.
Nov 04, 2009 Adam rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was pretty interesting but half the stuff was too sciency for me.
Melissa Fields
Aug 19, 2008 Melissa Fields rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I feel so informed about things that have no real impact in my life. However, every time i go to the bathroom, I no longer wonder who those YKK zipper people are. Now I know for sure! Yay!
Dec 05, 2013 Todd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fun book! I loved it! I can't wait to read the rest of them. :)
Aug 10, 2007 eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this is an amazing reference book for all those things you never knew you wondered.

P.s. - Yes, Fish can drown
Jim Short
Feb 26, 2013 Jim Short rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: trivia
A book of unanswerable questions. Also unsatisfying and dated.
Alex Seals
Apr 05, 2010 Alex Seals rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Random questions are answered in this book series.
Andd Becker
Feb 25, 2013 Andd Becker rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fun to read!
good read...
Apr 23, 2009 J.M. rated it it was ok
Borrowed from my mother. Read most of it but some of it wasn't very interesting. The parts I read, I enjoyed.
Nov 03, 2011 Calista rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It has questions and answers for interesting facts... I think it's a great book! I highly recommend this!
Beth Olson shultz
Some of the info in this book was a little outdated, but still a decent read.
Apr 26, 2007 Barry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

He holds a bachelor's degree in literature from Grinnell College, and a master's degree in popular culture from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. He consults and lectures on the media. He lives in New York City.
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