35 Tenacious Random Facts You Didn’t Know | Random List #282

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1John Morrissey

American boxer John Morrissey went from being a famous gambler during the Gold Rush to a heavyweight boxing champ to the boss of the Irish mob to a New York senator to Grand Sachem of Tammany Hall, which basically controlled New York politics for the Gilded Age, all before dying at 47 years old.


2. Sentinels guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier wear no rank insignia, ensuring that the guard is always junior in rank to whoever is buried in the tomb.


3. Bilingual reduced emotional resonance is a fairly well-established phenomenon where many bilinguals report “feeling less” in their second language, which might make it easier to use highly emotional vocabulary, and swear.


4. In Russian culture "British Scientists," is a running joke and Internet meme used as an ironic reference to absurd news reports about scientific discoveries, particularly ones that have no practical value. For example, "British scientists debunked the myth that mice love cheese."


5. Scheherazade, the storyteller from One Thousand and One Nights tells her stories (Aladdin, Sinbad, ...) to the monarch so that he would stop marrying and killing a new virgin every day after his first wife betrayed him. He had already killed 1001 women when they met.


6Viagra

Viagra is given to some premature babies to increase oxygen transport by widening the blood vessels, as their lungs often haven't developed enough to transport oxygen efficiently on their own.


7. The Soviet Union was issued “.su”, a top-level internet domain just before its 1991 collapse. The domain was never deactivated and has since become a haven for cybercriminals due to its lack of regulation.


8. George McClellan, the mayor of New York in 1904, was to symbolically start the first train at City Hall station and the hand it over to an engineer. However, he enjoyed himself so much that he refused to stop controlling the train until he reached 103rd street.


9. Cards Against Humanity was initially named 'Cardenfreude', a pun on 'Schadenfreude', which is the experience of joy that comes from the humiliation of someone else.


10. 95% of Mongols are lactose intolerant yet eat a diet that consists heavily of dairy products.


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11Native American towns

The Northern Great Plains was home to many fortified Native American towns, beginning in the 800s and existing all the way until the 1880s. These towns had over a thousand residents and a plaza centric layout. These were sedentary towns where people lived year-round.


12. Stephen King’s character of Annie Wilkes in “Misery” was the personification of his severe addiction to cocaine and alcohol.


13. Helga de la Brache was a woman who grew up in lower-class circumstances but successfully posed as a Swedish princess for years. She even convinced the Swedish royal family who gave her a pension and “furniture befitting a princess.”


14. Harry Houdini in disguise often attended magic shows by people who claimed to be “spiritual mediums.” Knowing their trick, he would finally light a flashlight that left the deception in the open and stand up and cry “I am Houdini! And you are a fraud!”


15. The Netherlands loaned $2.5 million to John Adams, who was the ambassador to the Netherlands back in 1782. This was done in order to stabilize the US after their war of independence finished. In today's value that would be a loan of roughly $150 billion.


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16Vanilla

All of the vanilla produced in today’s world is pollinated by hand utilizing a technique developed by an enslaved boy back in 1841.


17. In 1978, American actor Tim Allen was arrested after he was caught drug trafficking with over 650 grams of cocaine. He provided the names of other dealers in exchange for a sentence of 3-7 years than possible life imprisonment. Finally, he served two years and four months in federal prison.


18. Because of their massive balloons during Thanksgiving parades, Macy's is the second biggest consumer of Helium in the world after the US Military.


19. Food company Hormel offered a reward for information leading to the rescue of kidnap victim Jayme Closs. They paid out $25,000 to Jayme upon her escape, for "rescuing herself."


20. During the 1997 UK general election, the Liberal Democrats won the Winchester constituency by 2 votes. The Conservative incumbent legally challenged the result and secured a re-run of the election. The second time he lost by 21,556 votes.


21Radiative cooling

Using a natural phenomenon called radiative cooling, the ancient Persians created ice, even when temperatures were above freezing.


22. In World War 1, the British would fire giant stink bombs at the German trenches. The bombs smelled terrible but were harmless. This was done to compel the Germans to put on gasmasks, which made them less effective fighters, prior to an assault.


23. During World War 2, Aimo Koivunen became the first soldier to overdose on methamphetamine during combat. He entered into a state of delirium and became separated from his patrol for a week. In that time he was injured by a land mine, caught and ate a raw bird, and skied 400 km.


24. Production of alarm clocks in the US stopped in 1942, to direct resources towards the war effort. In 1944 production was restarted due to the number of workers arriving late because broken alarm clocks, and being unable to buy new ones.


25. Don Featherstone, the creator of the famous plastic Pink Garden Flamingo, also wore matching outfits with his wife every single day for 35 years.

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