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FASCINATING FACTS: 50 RANDOM FACTS FOR YOU RANDOS

1.  Blue whale

The blue whale is not only the largest animal currently on the planet but the largest animal to have ever existed.


2. A devout Mormon set out in 1955 on an archaeological expedition to prove the Book of Mormon’s claims. Instead after 15 years, he found that nearly every claim in the Book of Mormon was wrong and the papyrus J. Smith claimed written by Abraham was actually just a page ripped out of the Egyptian Book of the Dead.


3. Researchers historically have avoided using female animals in medical studies specifically so that they don’t have to account for influences from hormonal cycles. This may explain why women often don’t respond to available medications or treatments in the same way as men do.


4. There is a city in Washington named ‘George’. Every year, George, Washington celebrates the 4th of July by baking the world’s largest cherry pie.


5. Before the discovery of electricity, theatre spotlights produced light by directing a flame at calcium oxide (quicklime). These kinds of lights were called limelights and this is the origin of the phrase “in the limelight” to mean “at the center of attention.”


 

6.  Guns N’ Roses

The “Where do we go now?” ending to Guns N’ Roses ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ was born from the band not knowing how to finish that part of the song.


7. Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe from the sitcom ‘Friends’) published an academic paper in neurology the same year that F.R.I.E.N.D.S debuted on TV.


8. Honey bees make decisions collectively and democratically. Every year, faced with the life-or-death problem of choosing and traveling to a new home, honeybees stake everything on a process that literally includes collective fact-finding, vigorous debate, and consensus building.


9. The highest-grossing single-unit independent pizzeria in USA is “Moose’s Tooth Pub & Pizzeria”, which is in Anchorage, Alaska. It cashes in annual sales of over $6 million.


10. Pilots departing from California’s John Wayne Airport are required by law to cut their engines and pitch nose down shortly after takeoff for about 6 miles in order to reduce noise in the residential area below.


11.  Alfred Hitchcock

When Alfred Hitchcock got the rights to the novel that originated ‘Psycho’, he bought all copies to keep the plot twists under wraps.


12. Disney is an anglicized version of the French name “D’Isigny”, meaning “From Isigny”. Descendants from the same ancestors as Walt formed a cheese company in France. They sometimes collaborate and make Mickey-themed cheese packages.


13. An unnamed Viking warrior was tasked with guarding a narrow (4 people wide) bridge against the Saxons in 1066. He survived constant attack for 1 hour until a clever Saxon floated down the river in a barrel and piked him in the groin from under the bridge.


14. Blue eyes don’t have blue pigment and are instead blue for the same reason that water and the sky are blue: they scatter light so that only blue light reflects out.


15. The first game of chess against a computer was played in 1952 by Alan Turing. Because there were no computers powerful enough to actually run the program, Alan Turing simply “ran” the program on a piece of paper manually.

 


16.  Samoyeds

Because of their naturally friendly dispositions Samoyeds usually make for terrible guard dogs. They don’t attack threats; just kind of smile and bark at them.


17. Footwear retail company “Payless” set up a fake luxury store called “Palessi” to prank social media influencers. They pranked VIP shoppers into paying markups of up to 1,800 percent for the bargain retailer’s shoes as part of a viral advertising campaign designed to shift consumers’ perceptions of the brand.


18. Medieval dentists knew how to fill cavities, treat facial fractures, could spot oral cancer, and even knew the basics of whitening teeth. Evidence also suggests they knew how to create dentures out of cow bone and human teeth.


19. Only 12 people have walked on the moon and all within a 3-year span. No one has been to the moon since 1972, which was over 40 years ago.


20. A man named Narayan Khandekar protects the world’s rarest colors at the Harvard Art Museum in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Some of these color are poisonous, and some are very beautiful. One of the colors is a yellow pigment originating from dried cow urine where they were only fed mango leaves.


21.  Hummus

Lebanon made a massive bowl of hummus to get into the Guinness Book of World Records just so people around the world can recognize that hummus is from Lebanon.


22. Archaeologists routinely find edible honey in ancient Egyptian tombs. Honey never spoils, due to extremely low water-content, very low pH, and hydrogen peroxide (made by an enzyme in the bees’ stomachs).


23. David Reale, the actor who played Glen Coco in Mean Girls wasn’t even supposed to be there and never got paid – he snuck onto the set for free food.


24. The small hopping insect Issus coleoptratus uses toothed gears on its joints to precisely synchronize the kicks of its hind legs as it jumps forward. This insect has the only mechanical gears ever found in nature


25. The Hadza people are an indigenous ethnic group living in north-central Tanzania. Their ancestors have occupied the area surrounding the “Cradle of Mankind” for tens of thousands of years. Their oral histories are so ancient that it is possible they reference living alongside earlier extinct hominids such as Homo erectus.

26.  Dust storms

In the 1930s, dust storms were so severe that the static electricity generated would arc from your body to the nearest metal object and knock you head-over-heels. Two men shaking hands could literally knock each other out.


27. In 1978, three Indiana teenagers were killed when their Ford Pinto was involved in a rear-end collision. Ford was indicted on three counts of reckless homicide. Indiana v. Ford was the first time a corporation faced criminal charges for a defective product and charged with murder.


28. Adolf Dassler, who went by the name “Adi,” returned to the ruins of post-war Germany and decided to abandon his career of baking and follow his passion for making athletic gear. He then founded Adidas.


29. During the Prohibition era, the U.S. Government allowed Whiskey to be sold through pharmacies. As a result, Walgreens grew from 20 retail stores to almost 400.


30. 1816 was a year where the New England states did not have a summer. Frost and cold snaps throughout the summer months killed crops and made life miserable.


31.  Battle of the Bulge

During the Battle of the Bulge, German troops who could speak English were air-dropped behind Allied lines while wearing American uniforms to raise confusion among the Allies.


32. Although they spend 16 hours a day in the water, hippos can’t swim because they are too muscular and sink. Instead, they just run around under the surface.


33. Ants manage large-scale infrastructure projects with no coordination at all. Each ant acts alone, solving problems such as removing obstructions as they are encountered. Research points to the simple, evolutionary energy-saving principle of: “If you do not need to communicate, don’t!”


34. The studies focusing on human nature and behavior overlook 85% of the people on Earth. Majority of these studies take into account a narrow slice of humanity – college students, people living near universities and highly educated residents of wealthy and industrialized countries.


35. There are companies with the fake first class plane, yacht, sports car interiors, etc so you can fake an upscale lifestyle for your social media.


36.  9/11

Thousands of Americans may have died after 9/11 just because they were too afraid to fly. Since 9/11 led travelers to choose driving over flying, Cornell researchers believe that the attacks caused an estimated increase of 242 deaths per month because statistically flying is much safer than driving.


37. In 2018, tenant of a Paris flat was evicted and ordered to pay her landlord the entirety of her €47,000 short-term rental earnings for illegally subletting the property on Airbnb.


38. The guitar solos finishing “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd were added to give lead singer Ronnie Van Zant a chance to rest while playing several sets per night.


39. The city of Topeka, Kansas was renamed to Topikachu for a day in both 1998 and 2018 to celebrate the release of new Pokémon games.


40. Inside Airforce One, commemorative packs of red, white, and blue-colored M&M’s are given to guests in lieu of cigarette boxes. This tradition was started on Nancy Reagan’s request to ban smoking on Airforce One in 1988.


 

41.  Sarah Halley Finn


Sarah Halley Finn has been the casting director for every single Marvel movie to date (except The Incredible Hulk). She has chosen over 1000 actors for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.


42. Kobe Bryant and his parents are not on speaking terms because they don’t approve of his interracial marriage and because they sold his high school memorabilia.


43. Silent film comedian Buster Keaton got his start in his father’s vaudeville act at the age of 3. His act would be to goad his father into throwing him across the stage, and he became so good at falling that he rarely got bruises. He was eventually billed as “The Little Boy Who Can’t Be Damaged.”


44. Harry Wilhelm was an unemployed veteran who memorized the entire US Constitution during the Great Depression. Rep. Sol Bloom bet he couldn’t recite it perfectly. When Wilhelm proved him wrong, Bloom immediately gave him a job.


45. During times of war and other crises in Britain, men with seafaring experience would be taken against their will by press gangs to become part of the Royal Navy crew. Sometimes they were taken in the middle of the street and would find themselves trapped on a ship and with no hope of escape.


46.  Heptarchy

The Seven Kingdoms from Game of Thrones are based on a real period of British History called the “Heptarchy.”


47. The previously unknown glymphatic system was first described in 2012. Previously, scientists did not fully understand how the brain, which maintains its own closed ecosystem, removed waste. During sleep, a system of plumbing pumps cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) through the brain to wash away waste.


48. Melanophila beetles (known as fire chaser beetles) are able to sense forest fires from 80 miles away and seek them out since burnt wood is the source of nutrition for their young.


49. Fritted glass is a special kind of glass that has small opaque dots to ensure birds can see the glass while humans can see straight through it.


50. US nuclear power plants, by law, are built strong enough to withstand the impact of a fully-loaded commercial airliner crashing into it without rupturing.

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