The Moron's Daily Briefing

Jun. 24 - It's Countryman's Day in Peru and Zaire Day in Zaire.

New Jersey was founded on this date in 1664. It derives its name from the isle of Jersey, just off England's shore, and not too far from Britain.

It was the third state admitted to the Union, admitted on December 18, 1787.

The official state bird of New Jersey is the Eastern Goldfinch. The state bug is the honey bee (apis mellifera). The state tree is the red oak (Quercus borealis maxima). The state flower is the common meadow violet (Viola sororia). The state shell is the knobbed whelk, also known as the conch shell (Busycon carica gmelin). The state fish is the brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis), the state animal is the horse (Equus caballus), and the state dinosaur is the Hadrosaurus (Hadrosaurus foulkii).

The eggplant is not the official vegetable of New Jersey because it's not a vegetable. It's a fruit--a berry, actually--and New Jersey produces two-thirds of all the eggplant in the world. There is no official berry of New Jersey, but if there were it would almost certainly be the eggplant, which would cause great confusion among persons accustomed to putting berries in their cereal.

New Jersey has a population of 8.48 million on 7,417 square miles of land. It's the fifth smallest state in the country.

With 1,134 people per square mile, it's the densest state in the nation. The relative density of New Jersey should come as no surprise to anyone who's ever driven behind a car with New Jersey plates.

Jeff Beck is 58 today and Mick Fleetwood is 60. Jack Dempsey (1895) and Ambrose Bierce (1842) were also born on this day.

2002, The Moron's Almanac™

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