36 Ridiculous Random Facts That’ll Help You Win Trivia | Random List #292

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1Apollo astronauts car

There was a special GM program that allowed astronauts to lease up to two Chevys per year for $1 each. Six of the seven original Mercury astronauts took full advantage of the program by leasing both a family wagon and a Corvette.

2. Buffets are called "Vikings" in Japan. This is because a Japanese restaurant manager went to Sweden and liked smörgåsbords so much he copied the idea at his restaurant. This Swedish word was too hard to pronounce in Japanese, so the word "Vikings" was used instead after an employee suggested it.

3. Danny Devito often asks for a trampoline in his dressing room and uses it as part of his warm-up routine.

4. King Alexander of Greece died after being bitten by a monkey that had attacked his German shepherd. This significantly impacted Balkan history and Winston Churchill later wrote, "it is perhaps no exaggeration to remark that a quarter of a million persons died of this monkey's bite."

5. "TMZ" stands for the Thirty Mile Zone around Los Angeles within which film crews don't get paid overnight expenses.

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6Mark Hamill

Mark Hamill auditioned for the role of Mozart in the movie adaptation of 'Amadeus' after playing the role on Broadway, but was rejected after a studio executive said, "I don't want Luke Skywalker in this film." 

7. Japanese Honeybees have adapted to kill Murder Hornets by vibrating together in a ball around the hornet and using their combined body heat to cook it alive.

8. In 1991, news magazine 60 Minutes suggested red wine was the answer to the "French Paradox" (France enjoys a low incidence of heart disease despite a diet high in saturated fats). Within a year, American consumption of wine increased 40% and some wine sellers began promoting their products as "health food". 

9. In 1978, Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards was convicted of heroin possession in Canada where he was ordered by the judge to play a benefit concert at the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.

10. A man in Atlanta confounded doctors and specialists for over a year with a condition that did not respond to any therapies. After he mentioned that he played clarinet in a Dixieland jazz band, researchers examined his instrument and discovered Exophiala fungus inside his mouthpiece.

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11Shamrock Productions

When the FBI went undercover to expose the McDonald's Monopoly promotion scam that occurred between 1989-2001 they posed as a production company that interviewed supposed winners for TV commercials and named it Shamrock Productions with the byline “‘Cause you’re just lucky” printed on their van.

12. Elizabeth Blackwell became the first woman to be accepted at a medical school in the US because the students thought her application was a prank from a rival school and voted to let her attend.

13. Some roads in Australia are so long that the Australian government counteracts the risk of fatigue in these ‘Fatigue Zones’ by playing little trivia games on the side of the road.

14. Mozart had Tourette’s syndrome. 11 out of 25 people that were associated with him talked about “his perpetual movements and mannerisms, which were regarded as facial and bodily tics.”

15. Adam Mattocks is the only aviator to bail out of a B-52 cockpit without an ejector seat and survive. The B-52, he jumped out of, was carrying two 3.8-megaton Hydrogen bombs, before it crashed in North Carolina. Upon reaching an Air Force base to explain his story, Mattocks, who was African-American, was arrested for stealing a parachute.

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16Mike Birbiglia

American comedian Mike Birbiglia is a diagnosed sleepwalker who once jumped through a second-story window while dreaming that a missile was about to hit his hotel. Birbiglia restrains himself by sleeping in a sleeping bag and wearing mittens at night.

17. One of the worst books ever written is ‘English as She Is spoke’ which is a Portuguese-English phrasebook written by a man who did not speak English. He instead relied on a Portuguese-French phrasebook and a French-English dictionary. The reprinted version of this book now comes with a preface from Mark Twain, essentially espousing that “Nobody can add to the absurdity of this book, nobody can imitate it successfully, nobody can hope to produce its fellow; it is perfect.”

18. Caffeine increases the power of aspirin and other painkillers, which is why it is found in some medicines.

19. There is a grocery chain in the United Kingdom called Iceland Foods that once pursued legal action against Icelandic companies that used the name Iceland in their names. Iceland Foods was founded in 1970, while the country Iceland was established in 874.

20. Two Playstation 1 games featured a scratch and sniff disc. FIFA 2001 smelled like a soccer field and Grand Turismo 2 smelled like car tires.

21David Letterman

In 1984, David Letterman introduced the world to “Velcro Jumping” by proving that with enough Velcro a man could stick to a wall. By the 1990s, it had become a favorite pub activity in New Zealand.

22. Ancient Egyptians would shave off their eyebrows when their cats died and shave off all body hair (including their head) when their dog died to mourn until it grew back.

23. The idea of Catholic Monks/Nuns taking a "vow of silence" never existed. The concept is a misunderstanding of "Monastic Silence" which established rules for time and place when speaking in a monastery. There was never a rule which required perpetual silence.

24. Sushruta, the first known plastic surgeon specialized in rhinoplasty i.e. nose reconstruction. This was important in ancient India as convicted criminals and women accused of adultery had their noses amputated as a mark of untrustworthiness. Rhinoplasty offered them a chance to escape the stigma.

25. A shoelace knot gets untied while running due to the foot striking the ground at 7G. As the knot loosens, the swinging leg applies an inertial force on the free ends of the laces, which rapidly leads to a failure of the knot in as few as 2 strides after inertia acts on the laces.


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