Article: 19980201019

Title: Raw Data

Raw Data
HMH Publishing Co., Inc.
Betty Schaal


"I'll get a chain and tie you to the front bumper of my pickup, and you try to pull it while I'm in reverse. Then you'll know."--Greg Ostertag of the Utah Jazz on the Strength of Shaquille O'Neal

Er By The Numbers

Average loan debt of a medical student: $64,000. Average debt of a dental student: $68,000. Average debt of a law student: $40,000.

Hot Type

Percentage increase in number of books published between 1991 and 1996:83. During the same period, percentage increase in number of books of erotica: 324.

Gun Show

According to a national study funded by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, percentage of Americans who support legal hunting: 81. Percentage of Americans who hunt: 6.

The Three-Car Garage

Number of American households in 1960 that had three or more cars: 1 million; in 1990: 16 million.

Hardening Of The Arteries

Average amount of time per year drivers in America's 50 most congested cities and suburbs spend stuck in traffic: 33 hours (20 percent of their total commuting time).

Checkbooks And Balances

According to Wastewatcher, published by Citizens Against Government Waste, percentage decrease between 1989 and 1995 of government employees with the rank of GS-1 (who earn $13,000 to $16,000 a year): 76. Percentage increase in GS-15s (those in the $76,000-to-$99,000 salary range): 19.

Fact Of The Month

The lock that was picked by the Watergate burglars in the 1972 break-in that doomed Nixon was recently auctioned off for $13,000--$2000 less than the price Yul Brynner's cowboy hat fetched at the same auction.

Jumbo Jock

Weight of Aaron Gibson, a tackle at the University of Wisconsin and the heaviest player in college football: 385 pounds.


The number of spider bites that were reported to poison-control centers in the U.S. in 1994: 9418. The number of bites that were from tarantulas: 82.

Exec Set

Percentage of the FAA's national air traffic control system resources needed to track flights of corporate jets: 20. Percentage of air traffic control revenue that comes from business jets: 2.

This Is Where We Get Our News?

In a survey of 780 newspaper editors, publishers and advertising directors, percentage who felt their reporters were informed enough to cover education reform: 24. Percentage who said reporters understood complex changes in welfare: 10.

Campaign Dollars: No Change

According to Paul Taylor, director of the Free TV for Straight Talk Coalition, number of votes taken in Congress on the issue of campaign finance reform during the past decade: 113. Number of speeches delivered on the subject: 3361. Pages of congressional testimony: 6742.

Disingenuous Gender

According to a Lutheran Brotherhood survey, percentage of respondents who feel men are more ethical than women: 10. Percentage who feel women are more ethical: 51.

Steve Turk