Facts That Will Make You Look Smarter (And Impress Your Friends!)By John P.
Nowadays, it’s easy to get sidetracked by misinformation. Even if there is so much fake news cluttering up the internet, facts are facts. Admittedly, Arming yourself with the right information these days can be tricky, but it’s still worth it. After all, knowledge is power.
That being said, it’s impossible to learn all there is, even if you sat in a library and read all day and all night for the rest of your life. We’ve come up with interesting anecdotes and tidbits to expand your mind and sharpen your wits. So refresh your knowledge and pick up some fun facts to share with your family and friends.
Starting Small And Finishing Big
Jaequan Faulkner chose to tighten his bootstraps and get to work at a young age. The Facebook group called “Bike Cops for Kids” posted about his hot dog stand, which brought him plenty of business. The modest firm immediately got a food-safety complaint. All food-serving companies must pass inspection.
To keep Faulkner in business, the city’s various agencies worked together to pay the permit fee, educate him about finance, marketing, and pricing, and keep the company open for as long as possible. In addition, they provided him with a tent as well as a hand-washing facility, all so that he could earn enough money to buy clothes for school. Inspiring!
Memorials For Good Boys
Ever since dogs began hunting alongside us, humans have adored them. These days, some believe that our obsession with pets begets a kind of softness that marks the beginning of the end of civilization. But did you know—even the Romans, not best known for their cuddliness or empathy, gifted them particular monuments and epitaphs upon their passing, like this one?
Ancient Greeks also used this method. These two groups buried their dogs beside roadways since there were no pet cemeteries. Some bragged about the dog’s exploits, while others labeled them “foster children.” Dogs are like part of the family, too, so giving them a good resting place just seems right.
Animals often fight. The cat motion for “hello” is also the dog sign for “let’s play.” Dogs pursue cats, who run in panic. This happens with dogs and skunks, which is why, after they’re finished playing with those bushy-tailed friends, they often find themselves in a bath of baking soda and dishwashing soap—they think that skunks are ready to play when they wag their tails.
Dogs don’t get along well with other animals since they are exuberant and gregarious and simply want to have fun, while other animals are scared of the large monsters that are running about them and howling at them.
How To Get Rid Of Unwanted Campers
Celebrity status changes people. Once you land a part in a movie, even if you weren’t a prom king or queen in high school, suddenly you’ll find yourself surrounded by men and women clamoring at your door, desperate for your attention.
Robert Pattinson’s a good-looking guy, so he got a lot of attention once he became famous. This is great advice for men, famous or not; the best way to make a lady run for the hills is to complain about your life. Once you do, you’re free to go about your business as you please.
Whatever Floats Your Boat
In certain parts of the globe, keeping an eye on the weather can mean the difference between life and death, especially when clucky poultry is involved. That’s right—chickens. They’re wonderful animals—tasty, healthful, and amusing—but they lack one thing: athletic prowess. They don’t seem to be able to float very well, either.
Ducks, on the other hand, can swim and float. Because even a single flood has the potential to wipe out an entire herd, farmers have opted to switch species. The verdict is still out if ducks taste better than chicken, but food always tastes better when you’re on the cusp of starvation.
Elephants Always Remember
In our opinion, there is no better animal in existence than the elephant. They’re elegant and majestic, and they have incredible intelligence, as well as an astounding memory. When it comes to their loved ones—which doesn’t necessarily only have to include other elephants—these animals never forget.
Maybe they were all able to recall precisely where Lawrence Anthony resided since an elephant is said to have extremely long-lasting memories, but it’s still unclear how they received the news. It’s amazing that these creatures are able to connect with another species which, for the most part, has done such incredible damage to their population.
Female STEM Stars
There are a lot of essential workers out there doing housework who have a lot of hidden talents. Williamina Fleming, a modest housemaid, had a secret knack for astronomy. Over the course of many years, her fine leadership led to the discovery of thousands of stars and astral bodies.
Fleming began her career by working a part-time administrative job, during which time she was mentored by Edward Charles Pickering, who instructed her on how to interpret stellar spectra. She went on to lead an all-woman team of mathematicians and pioneering computer engineers.
He Will Be Back!
Since the first Terminator movie hit theaters, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s voice has become a cultural touchstone. But even though he could dub himself, the German version of the film did not include Arnold’s real voice, even though he had the linguistic abilities to do so.
Audiences have different associations with different dialects. Imagine a heavenly angel that descends to earth and begins speaking with a thick regional accent. Wouldn’t that be a little odd? That’s what the German producers thought when they opted to dub his voice, anyway.
Never Take No For An Answer
If you’ve studied physics in any depth, you’ll recognize Planck’s name. Born in the second half of the nineteenth century, Max Planck revolutionized the way we understand physics today. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918.
Planck ignored his professor’s advice and went forward with his studies, leading to a paradigm shift in our knowledge of atomic and subatomic phenomena. You may know him from his award-winning work on quantum theory, which has inspired several organizations to bear his name.
The D&D Origin Story
Gygax has a long list of grateful followers, spanning many generations. From hit internet shows like Critical Role and the mountains of tabletop games available today to practically any type of role-playing video game you can come up with—all of it can be traced back to Gygax.
It’s funny to imagine this iconic tabletop game’s origin involving Gygax’s wife agonizing over her husband’s fidelity while, in reality, he’s sitting in a stuffy basement rolling oddly-shaped dice and making monster death gurgles with his friends.
Billions In Gold, Down The Drain
One of the world’s oldest financial institutions, the Bank of England, was established in 1715. Ensuring the safety of the UK’s gold reserve was no simple task. The vaults were designed with 8-foot thick walls. There are eight underground gold vaults to store the bank’s valuable supply. One hundred billion pounds of gold are stashed there today.
In a series of letters, an unassuming sewer worker warned the bank’s top brass that he would meet them in the vault at a time of his choosing. It’s incredible that this man had such a good sense of humor and was able to resist the temptation of those precious bars.
While most of the sound you hear is picked up by the small bone conductors in your ear, some sound is also picked up by your teeth. That’s why hearing your own voice played back to you is so uncanny— you’re literally hearing something different. This fact helped the musical genius Beethoven overcome his disability.
Because of this technique, Beethoven was able to continue writing music despite his loss of hearing. Similarly, several hearing aids take advantage of this convenient function of the skull to keep their users connected with loved ones and their favorite music.
It’s Just Rocket Science
It turns out that this legendary musician and comedian has an equally legendary mother. The scientist responsible for keeping the Apollo 13 astronauts safe went to work the day she went into labor. She birthed not only a talented actor and musician but also a creative solution that saved lives—and she did it all while strapped to a hospital bed.
The Apollo 13 astronauts returned safely, and School of Rock became a box-office smash, all thanks to the incredible efforts of this one dedicated woman. We think she deserves much more renown for her accomplishments—we’d be impressed if someone were able to finish an elementary-level math test while giving birth—never mind design a guidance system!
The Circle Of Friendship
Even when two sentient beings get together, it’s rare for them to create this kind of relationship. Ravens are remarkably intelligent, and they are well aware of the dangers wolves pose to their well-being. It’s fascinating to think that ravens have formed a mutually-beneficial relationship with a would-be predator in order to feed on delicious leftovers.
This is what’s called “mutualism.” This occurs between birds and herd animals, ants and honeydew-rich aphids, and clownfish, which reside within sea anemones. This is one of those unlikely pairings that benefits both species.
The Spammed Becomes The Spammer
Junk mail is something we all have to deal with. Insurance agents plead for our business, credit card firms beg for access to wallets, and outright fraudsters will say or do anything to rip you off if they can. Someone sent this man a bogus cheque, which the scammer probably didn’t expect anyone to actually cash.
But against all probability, the woefully misspelled “check” (not cheque) actually went through, and somebody somewhere lost almost 10,000 dollars—hopefully, it came right out of the scammer’s bank account.
A Barter Way To Get Rich
Steve Ortiz was handed a friend’s iPhone after its screen shattered. He went to Craigslist and bartered it for an iPod Touch that worked. After a few more swaps, he’d worked his way up to a computer, which became a dirt bike, which became an SUV—a Ford Bronco.
What an incredible journey —from broken phone to functional automobile. His last swap was for a Porsche convertible, which instantly made him the envy of his peers. Is this what they mean when they say one man’s trash is another man’s treasure?
A Million Dollar Friendship
Friends can offer you a lot in life, but a good friendship rarely translates into hard cash. After Tom Cook’s lottery win in Wisconsin in 2020, that’s exactly what happened. A Wisconsin resident and his spouse were in a state of disbelief when they heard the unbelievable news.
No one anticipated either of these guys winning anything from their monthly lottery tickets, much alone this massive win. It’s a testament to their friendship that Cook made good on his word and split the cash with his best buddy.
Seeing The Light
Under normal circumstances, if a person loses their vision due to sickness, injury, or anything else, that’s all there is to it. Because of advancements in technology and methodological techniques, this may no longer be the case. The process by which visual information is sent from the eye to the brain is very convoluted, but we may have cracked part of the code.
January 11th, 2021, in the Beilinson Hospital in Israel, the work on this miracle operation was completed. An artificial cornea was successfully transplanted into a patient. The operation was described as straightforward and quick.
Mosquito-Based Detective Work
No one knows how this information went down when it was delivered to the court, but the officers who came up with the concept deserve some credit. Catching the sight of a dead mosquito takes sharp eyes, but extracting it and having it tested is conceptually brilliant.
Police in Finland stated this was their first time using insects to investigate a crime. In their interview, the man who was bitten by the mosquito claims he was hitchhiking in the vehicle and didn’t know the driver, or the car, at all.
Sending Love From Africa
If there’s one thing the Sahara Desert is known for, it’s its dust. Every year, the desert sends tons and tons of dust across an entire ocean to another continent. Rather than being a problem, the Amazon Basin actually gains enormously from this.
The dust contains micronutrients that aid in the growth and development of rainforests. There was a time in the Earth’s history when dust from all across Africa and South America made its way to Amazonia, not just the Sahara.
The Big Boss
Sorrell Booke, the actor behind Jefferson Davis “Boss” Hogg in the popular television show Dukes of Hazzard, wasn’t anything like his on-screen persona. He was fluent in a half-dozen languages, including French, Japanese, Spanish, Russian, and Italian.
When he wasn’t performing, Booke loved moving into old homes and fixing them up, as well as doing his gardening and carpentry. It’s impossible to know what counterintelligence operatives did throughout the war, but it’s probable that they debriefed American POWs, surveyed the terrain, and observed enemy troop movements.
The King Of Rock And Roll
In the film Girls! Girls! Girls! Elvis sang Return to Sender. The song, released in 1962, laments the narrator’s relationship with a vindictive lover. This particular stamp, commemorating Elvis’ passing, was a great way to honor the all-time rock and roll king.
This song, which has endured as a classic from the early days of rock & roll, is still one of the most popular songs of all time. It peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and several other charts and has been a fan favorite ever since.
The First Dark Horse Crashed Through The Finish Line
James K. Polk served as president from 1845 to 1849 as the country’s eleventh president. When he was elected president over Whig contender Henry Clay, he became known as the first “dark horse” in American history. Even though he served just one term, he pursued and fulfilled his goals, including lowering tariffs, restoring an independent treasury, and adding more real estate to the US map.
During his reign, the United States grew tremendously, but it also fell out with neighboring Mexico. While Polk came into the White House full of enthusiasm, the demands of the job eventually took their toll on him. Polk died not long after he stepped down from his post as president.
This one might come in handy if you’re ever transported to the year 1998. Back then, emails were accessible to anybody who typed the letters “eh” in the password Hotmail field. A group calling themselves “Hackers Unite” uncovered this to bring attention to Microsoft’s weak security setup.
Experts speculated that Microsoft had unintentionally left a “backdoor” open, but the company strongly denied this. People’s emails, while left exposed for a short time, were safer in the long run because of a Hackers Unite’s “altruistic” attack.
To defend themselves against blood-sucking lice, many birds use this ingenious strategy. Insects like garlic snails, amphipods, millipedes, grasshoppers, and wasps are also used by birds as lice deterrents in the same way.
The formic acid acts as a natural repellent for lice. As well as pesky lice, this guards against ectoparasites and even aids certain birds in their molting process, helping them to shed unneeded plumage. How do they know how to use it without being taught? That’s a mystery for another day.
Trends That Did Not Age Well
Many in the past aped the fashions of the affluent and famous to appear more trendy. Both sexes strived to seem weak and pale as though they had TB by padding their calves. This is one of those trends that did not age well.
But then, it’s not like every single generation doesn’t fall into this trap. Remember JNCOs, those extra, extra wide jeans? “Jersey Shore” style still hasn’t faded from the fashion scene, and celebrities of today are always releasing something ridiculous that ends up becoming popular.
Blending In With The Cowed
Cows are known to wander away from their herds in the fall, but this one was found months later with a herd of bison in the middle of winter. Due to its light-brown color, it stood out from its adopted tribe, who were all chestnut in color, making the renegade cow easily recognizable.
In contrast to the farmer’s expectations, the cow thrived in her new home with bison, which may have even acted to protect her from wolves. While it’s a cute story, we hope the cow managed to find her way back to her own herd.
When Life Gives Your Orange Peels
In the mid-1990s, 1,000 truckloads of orange peels were dumped in a Costa Rica national park. Sixteen years after delivery, Princeton University researchers found a 176% rise in aboveground biomass across seven acres. Some food waste may be good for the planet and, therefore, good for us.
The region that had been fertilized by orange peels had richer soil, more tree biomass, a wider variety of tree species, and a greater forest canopy enclosure, according to an investigation. All of those, we presume, are beneficial to a forest.
The Great Mississippi River
When you think of the Mississippi River Delta, whales don’t exactly spring to mind. Sperm whales are plentiful in the Gulf of Mexico, and the river’s original entrance was big enough for the whales to go all of the way from the Gulf to the Great Lakes.
Since the Mississippi Delta is now too small for most whales to fit into, this seems quite unusual to us in the modern-day. People in Michigan still go “whale-watching,” but that’s just another way to say fishing or camping, we suspect.
Unexpectedly there were a lot of bees in the church of Notre Dame. We thought Hunchbacks were the only thing occupying the top of these kinds of towers. Nurtured by a monk in the 1920s, these urban honey bees, known as the Brother Adam Buckfast kind, were designed to increase plant life and biodiversity in Paris.
Most of the small bumblers survived the heartbreaking flame, but it’s hard to count them all. Bees don’t have lungs. Thus, the roof hives weren’t affected by the flames. These bees must have coated themselves in wax to survive the fire, but we’ll never know how they survived that heat.
Spy VS Spy
Robert Hanssen has been recognized as one of the US’s most infamous spies. The Department of Justice referred to his work for the Soviet Union, which was afterward found out to have been carried out for Russia, as “perhaps the biggest intelligence debacle in the history of the United States.”
Hanssen was subsequently sentenced to fifteen life sentences in prison without the chance of release after he collected more than one million dollars in cash and diamonds from Russia when he was finally apprehended in the year 2001.
All beaches in Mexico are owned by the government. After a series of well-publicized instances in which private property owners refused to let visitors onto their long stretches of sand, legislation was passed making all beaches public property, forcing owners to provide passage through, and imposing penalties on anyone who broke the rule.
Anyone, regardless of nationality, may make use of them. Hotels in Cancun understand that the government has the legal authority to destroy structures that obstruct access to public beaches, and don’t let them tell you otherwise. Anyone up for a trip to the beach in Mexico?
The Catch Of The Day
Before he could go fishing with his friends on a long-awaited fishing trip, Ron Harper passed away. To honor his last request, Harper’s friends used his ashes as bait in Thailand, and the “Purple Ronnie” bait caught a huge carp.
The two mourning friends spent three hours wrangling the carp into their boat before they could get it in. It’s unfortunate that the International Game Fishing Association no longer tracks Siamese carp records. As one of Harper’s friends said to the media, they were meant to capture this monster fish.
During most sporting events, Americans rush to get a bite to eat, get to the bathroom, or prepare some coffee at halftime. With just fifteen minutes to spare during typical soccer halftimes (or, as they call it in England, football), little can be accomplished while still keeping up with the action on the field.
England’s power sources have to compensate to avoid power disruptions during World Cup events. In addition to missing out on their tea, they’d also miss out on their favorite sporting events, as TV sets nationwide would be kaput. That would almost certainly mean rioting.
Trees of Old
The Gingko tree, a favorite of herbalists, is considered a living fossil. There are striking similarities between even the youngest of these trees and plant fossils which are more than 100 million years old. This tree’s evolutionary code has remained a winner for over 50-million years.
They haven’t changed much in fifty-one million years, to be exact, according to fossil evidence. While there are little variations – such as leaf shape or seed formation – they are almost identical. They must be doing something right.
There are two words we don’t ever want to hear together at 30,000 feet: plane and crash. In this case, we are talking about a computer crash. Unfortunately, that computer might be responsible for guiding your aircraft. Computers are always improving, yet they have several flaws.
Just look at Windows’s last couple of attempts at getting Windows 10 to work! If the machines on these jetliners aren’t restarted, the computer system shows erroneous data to the pilots, which could result in a crash—and by “crash,” we mean the plane.
Healthy Kind Of Fat
Despite its importance, cholesterol is one of the most complex aspects of nutrition and human biology. Apparently, there are two kinds of cholesterol: HDL and LDL. All you need to know is that LDL is harmful and HDL is good.
Some cholesterol is actually beneficial to your health. You should aim to consume as much of the good stuff as possible. Eggs, which have traditionally been regarded as a major source of bad cholesterol, seem to be free of the bad stuff. Just think—all that egg abstaining for nothing.Computer Crash
Like plenty of other technologies, auto-tune (or pitch correction) is used by many artists and vocalists. The idea is this: when you don’t have much time in the studio and flub a note—shift it. Unfortunately, this has led to laziness amongst producers and some artists and, in our opinion, has led to terrible music.
T-Pain could make us chuckle, but hearing a voice that sounds practically artificial is never pleasurable, particularly for those who have learned to appreciate the beauty of a genuine voice. Oh, how we miss the good old days when we could listen to good music in the supermarket.
Traditional British Food
For the most part, when you think of British cuisine, you might think of deep-fried delicacies like fish and chips (French fries to us Americans). Even though curry does not originate in the United Kingdom, it’s been around longer than fish and chips.
It is said that chicken tikka masala is the actual national cuisine of the British Isles. Even in the days before fish and chips, a cookbook from 1852 noted that a pantry was complete without the ingredients for a curry. Now that is what we call a melting pot of food.
A Pirates’ Life For Him
Colin Darch, a former sailor who was abducted by pirates in 2008, went on the speaking circuit. He was shocked to see several Women’s Institute members costumed like Jack Sparrow. Members expected he’d lecture about piracy’s history, not his personal experiences.
When the truth was revealed, the members were understandably mortified, but Darch took advantage of the situation to assess the costumes and bestow some honors on the best-dressed participants. He didn’t seem to mind at all and willingly posed for shots with the rest of the party, who were all decked up for Halloween.