Elevenses
December 11, 2014 10:53 AM   Subscribe

People are obsessed with top tens. But what about things that are ALMOST as good but as-yet undiscovered due to their not-quite-top-ten-ness? What about ... Eleven?

Places:
11th largest city in America: Austin, Texas (885,400)
      in Canada: Quebec City, Quebec (491,140)
      in China: Xi'an (6.5 million)
      in the World: Cairo (7.78 million)
      in Iowa: Ankeny (51,567)
11th Highest Mountain: Gasherbrum I (8080 m)
11th Highest Town: Hanle, India (4517 m)
11th Highest Capital City: Windhoek, Namibia (1650 m)
11th Longest Undammed River: Aldan River, Siberia (2273 km)
11th Oldest Individually-Dated Tree: CB-90-11, a rocky mountain bristlecone pine, 2,457 years old

Science:
11th Prime Number: 31 (11 is the 5th)
11th Element on the Periodic Table: Sodium
11th Man on the Moon: Eugene Cernan

Communication:
11th Largest Language by Native Speakers: German, 89 million
11th oldest extant dot.coms: ibm.com and sun.com, 1986
                  .edu: uiuc.edu, 1985
11th oldest newspaper in the world: Weeckelycke Courante van Europa, 1655 (also the oldest still in publication)
11th longest running Broadway Show: Wicked, 4,625 shows and counting

History:
11th US President: James K. Polk, (1845-1849)
11th US State: New York (July 26, 1788)
11th Confederate State: North Carolina (May 20, 1861)
11th apostle: Simon the Zealot
11th Emperor of Japan: Suinin (29 BCE to 70 CE)
11th Emperor of Rome: Domitian (81-96 CE)
11th Largest Empire (historical, largest extent): Rashidun Caliphate (c. 632-661)
11th Country to Grant Suffrage to Women: Netherlands (1919)
11th War between France and England, counting from 1066: War of the Spanish Succession (1701)

11th of His Name:
      Louis XI (the Prudent) of France
      Charles XI of Sweden
      Henry XI of Glogow
      Ptolemy XI Alexander II of Egypt
      Alfonso XI of Castile

11th of His Name, Pope Edition:
      John XI
      Blessed Benedict XI
      Gregory XI
      Leo XI
      Blessed Innocent XI
      Clement XI
      Pius XI, first sovereign of the independent Vatican State (created 1929)

11th Longest-Reigning Monarch: Louis XIV of France, the Sun King (72 years, 110 days)
11th Shortest-Reigning Monarch: Lê Trung Tông, 3 days

Architecture:
11th Oldest Building: Midhowe Chambered Cairne (ca. 3500 BCE)
11th Tallest Building: Zifeng Tower (450 m)
            Smokestack in Canada: Ashbridges Bay wastewater treatment plant (607 ft/185 m)
11th Most Expensive Building: Bellagio Las Vegas ($1.6 billion)
11th Largest Building Footprint: The O2, London (104,634 m sq)
11th Largest Mosque: Faisal Mosque, Islamabad
      Church: Cathedral of St. Sava, Belgrade (largest Orthodox church)
      House in the US: Pensmore, MO
      Palace: Royal Palace of Stockholm
      Port: Port of Rotterdam, Netherlands
11th Longest Bridge: Donghai Bridge (32,500 m)

Organizations:
11th Largest University by Enrollment: Ramkhamhaeng University, Thailand (525,000 students)
11th Oldest Company: The Bingley Arms, UK, founded 953
11th Oldest Bank: Caja Madrid, founded 1702
11th Largest US Bank Failure: Gibralter Savings & Loan, California
11th Most Diverse City in the US: Springfield, VA
11th Most Corrupt Country: Yemen

Death and Destruction:
11th Deadliest Classical Battle: Battle of Red Cliffs (208-209 CE; approximately 100,000 casualties by some estimates)
11th Deadliest Modern Military Operation: Battle of Narva (1944 CE; 550,000 casualties)
11th Largest Ship Hit by a U-Boat: French Battleship Danton
11th Most Prolific Serial Killer: Alexander Pichushkin, Russia, the "chessboard killer," at least 49 victims

Miscellaneous:
11th Most Children, Mother: 4 women tied at 32, Moddie Oliver, Maria Casalini, Madalena Carnauba, Maria Olivera
11th Most Children, Father: 115, King Saud of Saudi Arabia
11th Highest Price Paid for a Book: Canterbury Tales, first printed edition, £4.6m
11th Highest Price Paid for an Internet Domain: business.com, $7.5m
11th Largest Box-Office Bomb: Adventures of Pluto Nash, $100m to produce, $20m to market, earned $7m total worldwide
11th Most Valuable Agricultural Commodity, 2013: Eggs, $54 billion
11th Largest Agricultural Product by Weight, 2013: Pig Meat, 108 million metric tons
11th Highest Beer Consumption Per Capita: Australia

MetaFilter
11th Most Prolific Poster to the Blue: fearfulsymmetry, 630
11th Most Prolific Commenter on the Blue: dhartung, 15209
11th Most Prolific Answerer on the Green: scody, 7288
11th Best Answerer on the Green: holgate, 569
11th Most-Favorited Comment on the Blue: garius, "Who ate the bananas then?!"
11th Most-Favorited Comment on the Green: lemuria, "YES I LIKE SEXY SEX AS IF IT WERE MY PROFESSION!! TELL ME MORE ABOUT IT"
posted by Eyebrows McGee (41 comments total) 37 users marked this as a favorite
 
Here is the theme song for this thread.
posted by bondcliff at 10:57 AM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


OK.. I know everyone is just wait for ten comments to be written so they can be all, "ELEVENTH!" but eff dat.

FIRST!

p.s. nice post
posted by ReeMonster at 10:58 AM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


Nigel Tufnel approves of this thread.
posted by Gelatin at 10:58 AM on December 11, 2014 [9 favorites]


Ahh, crap.
posted by ReeMonster at 10:58 AM on December 11, 2014 [6 favorites]


Nigel Tufnel approves of this thread.

As does Doug Walker.
posted by NoxAeternum at 11:00 AM on December 11, 2014


I was thinking of a ridiculous, not even funny theme song.
posted by knuckle tattoos at 11:00 AM on December 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


"Gasherbrum"? I can't decide if Edward Gorey or Mervyn Peake is more likely to have made that name up. That it's an anagram of "Hamburgers" does little to decide the matter.
posted by yoink at 11:06 AM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


I've thought for a while that a great radio programming format would be, for example, classic rock songs that made the top 45 but never made the top 20. Take that grouping of music that was actually popular at the time but didn't ascend to the status to put it on typical ClearChannel I ♥︎ Radio retro stations. People will remember and enjoy the music, and it won't be the same grind of 200 songs that ends up on these kinds of stations these days.
posted by hippybear at 11:08 AM on December 11, 2014 [10 favorites]


11 is also the dimension of maximal supergravity. Wikipedia doesn't list that, for some reason..

And, as it turns out, 11 was also the center of the discussion I once had with a friend of mine regarding whether the number of jokes one could tell was infinite, and if so, if it was countably or uncountably so. We ended up deciding that if we picked a number, say, 11, that was innately humorous, then the number of jokes would be uncountably infinite, but the number of jokes that could ever be written down are possibly told would be only countably infinite.

So now I still giggle whenever I hear the number 11. This post only increases that feeling.
posted by nat at 11:16 AM on December 11, 2014


Tenth! (I don't think I did that right.)
posted by anotherpanacea at 11:30 AM on December 11, 2014


SELF-ELEVENTH!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:31 AM on December 11, 2014 [11 favorites]


damn...had it all ready, but was late on the trigger....well done!
posted by OHenryPacey at 11:33 AM on December 11, 2014


Nice post! Very creative.

I miss Scody.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 11:38 AM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]




This is goddamn delightful.
posted by book 'em dano at 11:45 AM on December 11, 2014


... classic rock songs that made the top 45 but never made the top 20.

I've rated a lot of my MP3 collection on a 1-5 stars scale, and I made a playlist of the 3 star rated songs. It's really nice to listen to. It's not like I swoon to every song, but they're all really good.
posted by benito.strauss at 11:46 AM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


Very nice. Since you mentioned 31 as the 11th prime, it thought it appropriate to contribute a link to the hard sequence of Primeth recurrence, where a(n+1) = a(n)-th prime.
posted by TreeRooster at 11:59 AM on December 11, 2014


Buzzfeed will probably publish this as an article later today without attribution
posted by bobdow at 12:03 PM on December 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


11 Times that the Number 11 was TOTALLY ESSENTIAL
posted by sparklemotion at 12:04 PM on December 11, 2014


1) Fascinating stuff- has led me down a wonderful rabbit-hole of links.

2) Thank God for Eyebrows McGee.

That is all.
posted by The Zeroth Law at 12:10 PM on December 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


11 cogs in my cassette lets me keep my cadence fast through turns, baby.
posted by Invisible Green Time-Lapse Peloton at 12:11 PM on December 11, 2014


The Eleventh released Beatles single according to Wikipedia
The Eleventh released Beatles single according to DM's Beatles' Site*
The Eleventh "Stand-Alone" Beatles single (and their Eleventh UK #1 song.
Side A of the Eleventh Beatles UK #1 single/Side A #2 of the Eleventh Beatles UK #1 single**
Eleventh U.S. #1 Beatles single

*The discrepancy is because a single version of "Misery" was released, but only in select European countries and not in the UK or the USA.
**"Paperback Writer was the eleventh song to hit #1, but a prior Double A-Side single means it wasn't technically the eleventh #1 single - it was the tenth #1 single

---

Lesson - music and numbers still don't mix as well as I'd like, but I'm working on resolving this conflict within myself by making lists.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:13 PM on December 11, 2014


This is my favorite type of post (except for all the others that are also my favorite type of posts)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:18 PM on December 11, 2014


posted by Eyebrows McGee (23 comments total) [add to favorites] 11 users marked this as a favorite
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:23 PM on December 11, 2014


This is my eleventh favorite type of post.
posted by Billiken at 12:25 PM on December 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


For the record, 57 is the funniest number. Eleven is the most wry number.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 12:53 PM on December 11, 2014


Eleven? This post certainly went there.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:51 PM on December 11, 2014 [3 favorites]


Inspired by Primus, I once tried to lead a hippie drum circle in 11/8 time. It didn't catch on.
posted by rlk at 1:58 PM on December 11, 2014


Fun fact: When doing precise measurements, it has been posited that one should take at a minimum 11 point-samples. All lower numbers are potentially symmetry pitfalls.

For instance, if one samples a disk with a three-lobed wear pattern in three evenly-spaced locations, the values will underestimate the true deviation from a plane (all three will fall at the bottom of each of three lobes, or the top, or 1-degree off the top, or 2-degrees, or...).

Six-fold measurements would provide more information, but still there is an obvious replication of information. Also, six-fold machining patterns are possible.

Etc., etc., up to eleven. Eleven is a large enough prime that it's hard to think of any wear-, machining-, or simple structural harmonic issues that are likely to degrade the independence of the data.

If more touches are desired, primes should be chosen to avoid de-emphasizing harmonics, as mentioned previously.

You're scoffing - I can hear you - and saying this is silly; no one needs this kind of measurement preparations. I've been near measurement machines that are completely coated in gold, to reduce the infrared absorption when humans enter the room (wearing protective tyvek suits and breathers) to place and remove samples for measurement.

Those sort of measurements are precisely the ones that can't take the risk that 7-fold machining marks exist.

--

All that being said, simply randomly placing the measurements is easier than relying on 11-or-higher-primes. It's even repeatable, as long as you record the random numbers you used.
posted by IAmBroom at 2:27 PM on December 11, 2014 [9 favorites]


Great post !! Now do twelve.
posted by Pendragon at 2:47 PM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


There are no 11 year cicadas, though 13 and 17 year varieties exist, probably because sunspots are on an 11 year cycle.
posted by jamjam at 3:02 PM on December 11, 2014 [2 favorites]


previously
posted by ardgedee at 3:34 PM on December 11, 2014


Did I do this wrong?
posted by nat at 3:37 PM on December 11, 2014


Ah. 11th post.
posted by nat at 3:44 PM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


SELF-ELEVENTH!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 2:31 PM on December 11 [11 favorites +] [!]
posted by ChuraChura at 5:33 PM on December 11, 2014 [1 favorite]


Eleven? I thought you said "Elven"!
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:54 PM on December 11, 2014


jamjam: There are no 11 year cicadas, though 13 and 17 year varieties exist, probably because sunspots are on an 11 year cycle.
I love how you throw that comment in without explanation.

However, for those without the background: choosing a not-small prime number for your predator satiation strategy won't work if there were external clues that predators could use to help time their expectations (or population surges).
posted by IAmBroom at 8:16 AM on December 12, 2014


Around here we get a cohort of cicadas every year.
posted by Invisible Green Time-Lapse Peloton at 8:19 AM on December 12, 2014


Yeah, but those are immigrant cicadas... taking the work of being eaten by predators away from native-born, 17-year cicadas.
posted by IAmBroom at 10:34 AM on December 12, 2014


I can't be the only purson who sometimes says under their breath when working with numbers, "eleventeen", and then pauses when something feels off. It still doesn't feel that wrong once I figure out what I did... weird.
posted by sylvanshine at 2:11 PM on December 13, 2014


Elevens that start with e elsewhere:

Old English: endleofan
Middle English: elleven
Scots: eleiven

Greek: έντεκα/énteka

Dutch, German: elf
Icelandic: ellefu
Norwegian, Danish: elleve

How to say “eleven” in 11+11+11 languages?
posted by sylvanshine at 2:41 PM on December 13, 2014


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