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Interesting Things a Marketing Man Learned in 2023

Kent Hendricks has worked in marketing for the past ten years in the technology and publishing industries. His current role is as Senior Director of Marketing at Zondervan Academic, a division of HarperCollins Publishers. Here are some of the fascinating things he learned last year.

Painting of Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson | Wikipedia

One reason the United States didn’t adopt the metric system was because the ship crossing the Atlantic from France carrying a standard kilogram - yes, a real physical object - requested by Thomas Jefferson in 1793 was blown off course into the Caribbean and captured by pirates.

Pheasant Island, a 200-meter long island in the middle of the Bidasoa River between France and Spain, swaps sovereignty every six months. Spain holds the island between February 1 and July 31 each year, and France gets it from August 1 through June 30. It’s been this way since the end of the Thirty Years’ War (1618 to 1648).

In the three-month period after Dobbs - the Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade - the number of vasectomies rose 29 percent.

Canal in Amsterdam

Houses in Amsterdam are narrow because of tax avoidance. In the sixteenth century they were taxed by the width of a property’s canal frontage, rather than height or total size. This incentivized the construction of narrow, deep, and tall buildings, which, in turn, required steep, narrow staircases. This is why Dutch architecture contains “hoisting hooks” which can move goods to the upper floors without using stairs.

Santa’s reindeer are all female. Male reindeer don’t start growing antlers until February, so any reindeer with antlers hauling goods on Christmas Eve wouldn’t be male.

Tic Tacs are labeled as sugar free even though they are 94 percent sugar. As long as there’s less than half a gram of sugar, America's FDA permits products to be labeled sugar free. Each Tic Tac has 0.49 grams of sugar.

In Iceland, it was legal to kill Basque people until 2015.

Twice as many women get tattoos as men: 39 percent of women and 21 percent of men have tattoos. The ratio is the same for hidden tattoos, too: 30.2 percent of women have a hidden tattoo, compared to 16.7 percent of men.

Costco is responsible for 50 percent of all cashew sales in the world.

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