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Schott's Miscellany 2008

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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  1,370 ratings  ·  107 reviews
In the modern age, where information is plentiful but selection and analysis elusive, Schott's Almanac presents a unique biography of the year: from Hillary Clinton's and Barack Obama's historic presidential runs to George Bush's continued infatuation with "the Google," from marriage and crime statistics to the incidence of shark bites worldwide, and from the Nobel Prize f ...more
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published October 30th 2007 by Bloomsbury USA (first published 2002)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,414)
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Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Schott's Miscellany is a fascinating book of interesting, random, bizarre, hilarious, and informative facts and oddities. From Cockney Rhyming Slang to ways of saying "I love you" in numerous obscure languages (including Braile and Morse code), to sign language and Shakespearian insults, shoelace lengths and airport marshalling signals, the Miscellany is just as fun to pick up and read as it is a great reference source for all manner of things.
Paul
A less cultured man might refer to this as excellent bathroom reading... and, oh hell, well that it is: But that and so, so much more. From a collection of Euclidian Axioms and Postulates to a list of Academy Award Winners (up until 2002, when it was published); From a listing of the rules and weight classes in Sumo Wrestling to a run down of all the famous people on the cover of The Beatles Sgt. Pepper album, this pocket sized hardback with it's own elegant little red silk bookmark attached to ...more
Devon H.
If you love random tidbits of information, you will adore this book. I’ve taken to keeping a commonplace book, and I copied so damn much from this book it’s ridiculous. Almost all of the information is useful in some way. Heck, I copied out the common alchemy metals — because why not? — which turned out to be handy when I read the All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. I have found myself referring to these quotes and snippets of information in my daily life, which is incredibly surprising. A gr ...more
Jen
Omigosh...just started reading this last night as I'm in the midst of the odd quest to read something from each side of each aisle of Cascades Library.

I'm pretty sure you're not supposed to read this straight thru, but it was either this book--or beginning Word Perfect...which would you choose.

so loving it. It's like my nonsequitar brain has found it's god...and yes...it does want a space ship.

Update:

I finished it and i loved it. I may actually have to buy it...not cuz it's cover to cover...but
...more
Daniel
I came across this indispensable volume of worthless information in a box of giveaway books. It is perhaps altogether appropriate that also in this box were Portuguese-language books on Feng Shui, Spanish-language Bible study materials from the '70s, books on gardening, and an anthology of Chinese poetry. Sad though I was to remove this little book from its motley home, I was glad to let its contents fill my head, and to have some stuff actually stick. For the most part, a fun little read with p ...more
Connie
I finished this book on a Friday evening with a glass of wine, dictionary, Wikipedia, and some jazz, and I'm obsessed. Why aren't there more well-designed, well-written, and humorous miscellanies like this verbal divertissement?

Having been raised in three countries, I always feel like I am lacking in general knowledge and common sense, as most of my formative years were spent mastering a new language and social circle instead of pursuing trivia. Mr. Schott's treatment of miscellany is familiar
...more
Kimberlie
This book of random facts suits me perfectly! I frequently pick it up, read a couple of pages, put it down, and do it all over again. I've read it cover to cover at least 3 full times and I'm still entertained by it.
Rachel
A good sort of book to have by your bed to read between things. I learned (and quickly forgot) all sorts of interesting facts.
Kate Burgan
Fabulously wonderful reference book.
How to wrap a sari is in the same book as Degrees of Freemasonry
Peter K
Fascinating! Answered many questions I didn't even know I had!
Jessie Lorimer
fascinating, funny, and well presented minutiae
Jennifer
I love trivia so I loved this book :)
Michelle
interesting collection of random trivia
Gregor Erbach
great book if you love lists
Nikki
I decided that to keep my Shelf-Clearing Project honest, I should at least re-examine the reference books on the shelf -- they don't necessarily get a free pass. This slim volume was next on the shelf after The Stolen Lake. Although it does have an index, it is not arranged like a normal reference book, which tend toward the alphabetical or chronological. Instead, it's as if the compiler had started a scrapbook, and every time he found a useful or intriguing bit of information, pasted it in.

From
...more
brian tanabe
Despite the Bathroom Reader-esque nature of its content, I love the presentation and earnest attempt at respectability of the Schott's Miscellany series. Always a joy to read. Below are some of my high points from the 2008 volume:

Most men lie about their height online while most women lie about their weight.

The world's worst sound is the sound of vomitting followed by microphone feedback and wailing babies.

New York's Metropolitan Museum spent over $99 million in acquisitions during FY2004-05, th
...more
Jennifer
Mar 30, 2014 Jennifer rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Trivia buffs, Miscellany lovers, thinkers and tinkers
Love, love it! So much fun. You either get it or you don't. This book got right inside my brain, it's where I live.
I'll buy that ticket to the moon!
Carlos Vazquez
Si vd quiere saber un montón de tonterías pero llenas de amenidad, desde cómo hacer bien un dry-martini hasta el equivalente de las medidas de zapato británicas con las continentales, o como hacer el roast beef o de qué tamaño y marca usa el papel higiénico la reina de Inglaterra o el teléfono del Vaticano, o la buenas maneras ala mesa y el uso apropiado de los vinos, o mil disparates más, solo puede encontrarlo en un libro de excentricidad inglesa y es este entre otros. Su primera edición debe ...more
Camille
On trouve absolument de tout dans ce livre dont le contenu pourrait tout aussi bien être qualifié de "savoir inutile". Et pourtant... on tire un plaisir immense de la lecture de ces informations sans rapport les unes avec les autres. On saluera d'ailleurs l'adaptation française, qui est de très bonne qualité et pensée spécialement pour des lecteurs francophones (certains articles, peut-être moins intéressants pour des non-britanniques, ont été remplacés par des articles spécialement rédigés pour ...more
Raffael Regis
Divertido, curioso, maravilhoso. Abra em qualquer página e se divirta :)
Annalisa
If you ever wanted to learn basic Cockney rhyming slang or which president had the shortest term (not to mention how to tie a sari, which honorific to use when greeting a foreign dignitary, or what a stratocumulous cloud looks like), then Schott's Original Miscellany has your answers. It's a perfect addition to the basket you keep next to the bathroom sink. No, don't deny that you have one. Or that it's filled with Reader's Digests from 1982 and copies of US magazine. Recycle that old crap and p ...more
Squirrel Circus
I love, love, love this book. It is the most RANDOM collection of reference information I have ever seen, in such a small package. Don't go into it thinking that you'll find everything about anything. What you'll find is....chat room acronyms, the service for Princess Diana, a list of the provisions on the Titanic, Ivy League Fight songs, blood group compatibility, and MORE. I read it cover to cover for fun. A good gift for the trivia freak or lover of random facts in your life.
Melissa
Fun little book of random facts but hard to read for long stretches. Best done a few pages at a time.
Diana
I purchased this book after seeing it sitting by the printers at my last job. It's a book of what it says, "Miscellany". I think everyone should have a copy of it. Great facts and tidbits within it. I had the computer close by to look up topics that I wanted to know more about.

For the graphic designers out there, it's a wonderfully typeset book which the author did himself. I hope he comes out with an updated version in a few years.
John
If you have ever spent a couple of hours leafing through an almanac or an encyclopedia, you will like this book. It consists of 150 pages of random information. Irish duelling codes, bed dimensions in England and America, the husbands of Elizabeth Taylor. I suppose the information is not really random, since it's all mildly interesting and each topic can be covered in a half a page or less.
Anne
What a blast this book was to read. Someday I'll own this for my collection. It took me about a month to read this short non-fiction book. It is a unique collection of trivia.Lists like Cockney Rhyming slang, Palmistry Lines, Demon's dictionary, American Diner Slang are just a few of the fun lists. Highly recommend - put next to your nightstand and read a few every night. :-)
Brian Hischier
Aug 16, 2013 Brian Hischier added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Petra
I now nearly know all the things that Schott knows, but more thoroughly, because I have the gift of breadth, whereas he only has the gift of scope, and he says as much in the introduction so I don't feel like I'm slandering him. Then he proves it in the rest of the pages with a sort of viscous pride reserved only for the most scoped of men. We men of breadth have a more sticky pride.
Canard Frère
Une sorte de compilation de savoirs plus ou moins utiles (de la longueur des lignes du métro de Londres aux degrés hiérarchiques de la franc-maçonnerie en passant par des tableaux de locutions espagnoles ou latines) piochés au hasard et jetés en vrac dans le bouquin. Dommage que l'auteur gâche un peu le côté futile de l'œuvre en incluant un index à la fin...
Derrick
Interesting. Nothing in there you could not easily look up online but things you wouldn't think to look up online. Lastly, the book will not age will simply based on the book's data goes only to 2002 which is already a few years ago. So the dated material (Who won the Superbowl since the first one) will be significantly dated in another few years.
Megan
Aug 28, 2007 Megan rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who enjoy useless trivia
Shelves: nonfiction
This books is a seemingly random collection of facts. Though these facts are not individually weird, funny, or strange, when compiled together they reflect the bizarreness of our society. For example on page 52 you can learn American diner slang and all about the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Of course.
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