1Robert Louis Stevenson
Before his death, author Robert Louis Stevenson gifted his friend's daughter his own birthday. The daughter had been born on Christmas and complained she felt like she had no real birthday.
2. Kryptonite was introduced in the Superman story five years after the comic was first published. It was created as a way to give Clayton Collyer, the actor that played Superman/Clark Kent in the radio show, some time off so he could take a vacation.
3. A grasshopper mouse from the Sonoran Desert is immune to scorpion venom and howls at the moon, thus having the nickname “werewolf mouse.”
4. The US military developed a set of playing cards with the names and faces of the most wanted members of Saddam Hussein's government on them so that the American troops would learn to recognize them while playing cards.
5. American actor Matthew Lillard originally screamed until his voice went hoarse and scratchy to achieve his voice for Shaggy in Scooby Doo. He even did it in his car before his audition at Warner Bros in Los Angeles.
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A Black Robin named Old Blue has become the mother of her entire species when she was the last fertile female in a group of 5 Robins. There are now 250 Black Robins on the Chatham Islands and have raised their status from Critically Endangered to Endangered.
7. Due to China’s early discovery and love of ceramics they didn’t produce any glass between the 14th-19th century. This meant they didn’t have mirrors and windows etc, leaving them behind in sciences, as they didn’t make lenses and other things fundamental to science.
8. In 2005, a mountaineer named Ricardo Peña found a wallet in the Andes mountain range that belonged to a person named Eduardo Strauch who was involved in a plane crash in 1972. When he realized that Eduardo had survived the crash, he returned the wallet, more than 30 years after the crash.
9. A Dutch bike company named Vanmoof prints televisions on their boxes and this has reduced shipping damages by 70-80%.
10. On the 12th of September 1897, 21 Sikh soldiers held their own against 10000 enemy tribesmen at the battle of Saragarhi, killing 180 and buying enough time for the nearby British fort to prepare and suppress the insurrection. All 21 were given the Indian Order Of Merit.
Actor Michael Keaton got his start in show business as a production assistant on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. He helped with the puppets and ran the trolley.
12. Terry Crews received a scholarship to attend the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan, a prestigious art school. His first job in entertainment was drawing courtroom sketches for the worst murder case in Flint, Michigan history. The murderer who had killed six people was also named Terry.
13. Tom Cruise turned down the lead roll in The Shawshank Redemption because it was the director's first feature film.
14. In 2014, a Florida woman named Hien Tran lay was taken to the intensive care after a car accident, when the investigators were searching for clues due to apparent stab wounds in her neck. A week after she died, a letter arrived from Honda urging her to get her red Accord fixed, because of the faulty airbags that were prone to explode.
15. Swedish pop group Abba turned down a $1 billion offer to reunite.
An illiterate man named John Corcoran was a high school teacher for 17 years before anyone realized he couldn’t read.
17. Godwin's law is an internet adage asserting that "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Hitler approaches 1."
18. The infamous Kitty Genovese case that's often cited as an example of the bystander effect has been wildly exaggerated. The residents that heard her actually did call the police and a 70-year-old woman went out to help her. Kitty Genovese died on her way to the hospital.
19. Pixar film 'Cars' (2006) earned $10 billion in merchandising revenue, almost 22 times its total box office grosses.
20. New ponds get naturally stocked with new fish through birds carrying fish eggs from one pond to another on their feathers or feet.
Immediately after Winston Churchill's 'We shall fight them on the beaches' speech during World War 2, he told a colleague, "And we’ll fight them with the butt ends of broken beer bottles because that's bloody well all we've got!"
22. If you are sentenced to death in Japan, once your final appeal is exhausted, your execution date is kept secret until the morning it happens.
23. After making edits and appealing to the MPAA for an R rating, Scarface director Brian DePalma felt that the cuts he made were so minor no one would notice if he put them back in, so he did.
24. Bruce Willis suffered from severe stuttering as a child. He discovered the stutter disappeared while performing in a school play through the memorization of lines. While studying acting in college it was the combination of acting and speech therapy which helped him overcome his condition.
25. Natalie Portman was originally cast as Juliet in Romeo + Juliet but was recast after rehearsal footage appeared as if Portman was being molested by Leonardo DiCaprio who was 21 at the time while Portman was only 14.