Ximen Bao was an ancient Chinese minister. When he learned that some corrupt politicians were sacrificing beautiful women to a river god and threatened floods if they weren’t paid high taxes, Ximen had the politicians thrown into the river to tell the god they could not find a beautiful sacrifice, ending the practice.
2. Sputnik Monroe was a 60s Memphis wrestler. As part of his villainous act, he fought against segregation and frequented black neighborhoods. He succeeded in ending segregation in wrestling arenas and became one of the biggest draws in wrestling history
3. The movie “Independence Day” was originally meant to have support from the United States Armed Forces, but they backed out when the references to Area 51 were not removed from the script.
4. The 1990s most obese state (Mississippi) had at that time a lower rate of obesity than what the least obese state (Colorado) had by 2010.
5. Canadian researchers have discovered how to convert blood types A, B, and AB to universal donor O-negative. They found that human gut bacteria make a class of enzymes that reacts with the non-O type red blood cells, essentially transforming them into O-negative.
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“Lazy eye” or “Amblyopia” can be improved by playing Tetris. This is more efficient than an eye patch due to using your eyes in unison and using rapid eye movement to help check the pieces and where they should go.
7. Attending Harvard is free if your household income is below $65,000 a year. Harvard’s financial aid programs pay 100% of tuition, fees, room, and board for students from families earning less than $65,000 a year.
8. In 1992, Nike made a Super Bowl commercial where an animated Bugs Bunny played basketball with a real-life Michael Jordan. The commercial was so successful that Warner Brothers decided to turn it into a whole movie (Space Jam).
9. Will Wright, the creator of SimCity and The Sims, was also the winner of a 1980 illegal street race from New York to Santa Monica, driving a Mazda RX-7 with his co-driver Rick Doherty.
10. The Secret Service spent 10 years (1938 to 1948) searching for Emerich Juettner, a senior citizen counterfeiter. He only made $1 bills, just enough to support himself and his dog, never passing more than one in the same place. When Hollywood based a movie on him, he made more money than his counterfeiting did.
Prince Charles inherits the possessions of anyone who dies in Cornwall without a will or next of kin, a power that in some years has yielded hundreds of thousands of pounds. He funnels the money into charities after deducting his costs.
12. The Halifax Glove Guy is a man who has been prowling the streets of Halifax, Nova Scotia in Canada for almost 30 years picking up and preying on young drunk men. Once in his car, he convinces them to try on leather gloves, sometimes not letting them leave until they do. He is still active.
13. During the early days of the Soviet space program, one of the “Orbital survivability volunteer” dogs, named “Bobik”, ran away days before his first flight. His replacement was named ZIB, a Russian acronym for “Substitute for Missing Bobik”. He survived.
14. In 2004, teacher Barry Bradford and 3 students collaborated with a journalist to create a documentary about the murder of 3 civil rights activists by the KKK in 1964. Their discovery of fresh evidence got the case reopened, resulting in the conviction of white supremacist Edgar Ray Killen.
15. With an estimated 8,000 nerve endings, the clitoris is the only human organ that exists solely for pleasure.
16Reagan and Gorbachev
At a summit in Geneva during the Cold War, President Reagan asked President Gorbachev, “If we were invaded by aliens, would you support us?” Gorbachev said that he would. Reagan replied he would too.
17. In the 1880s, a man named Lester Moore in Arizona got into a gunfight with a customer over a package. They killed each other and Lester was buried in Boot Hill where his tombstone reads, “Lester Moore, four slugs from a .44, no Les, no more.”
18. When Henry Ford took over production of the B-24 Liberator bombers for WWII, he actively recruited “little people” from Hollywood and circuses to help fasten rivets in the narrow sections of its wings. Appreciative co-workers helped lift them up to punch their time-cards.
19. The sport of Lacrosse was originally a form of ceremonial combat played by Native American tribes with teams of 100-1,000 players, on a field several kilometers long, in games that lasted two to three days straight. The original term, Baggataway, means “little brother of War”. Native tribes would meet regularly to play instead of waging war on one another. The French Canadians observed this game and called it la crosse, because the sticks resembled shepherds’ crooks.
20. The father of the baby in the ‘Success Kid’ meme (the baby with a scowl with his fist balled up) needed a kidney transplant, and the family used the meme to raise over $100,000 to pay for the operation.
The Irish Elk is an extinct species of deer that stood 7 feet tall at the shoulders and had 12 foot wide antlers. The Irish Elk was the third largest deer to ever live but had the largest and heaviest antler of any animal in the deer family. It went extinct 7000 years ago.
22. In 2013, a 67-year-old Belgian woman was misled by her GPS and mistakenly drove 900 miles. Her actual destination was only 90 miles away. She was supposed to pick up a friend in Brussels but instead drove all the way south to Zagreb, Croatia. It took her two days.
23. An Australian restaurant called Pablo’s Escoburgers came under fire for their burger called “The Patron,” a double patty with candied bacon topped with a line of white powder (garlic flour) and a rolled-up fake $100 banknote. They announced that people were “lining up for a taste.”
24. Filipino people can travel to Israel without a visa because, during WW2, Manuel L. Quezon granted refuge to Jewish people looking to escape Hitler and Nazi Germany.
25. Thousands of Cuban children were sent to America in the early '60s out of fear that they’d be sent to the Soviet Union. Jeff Bezos’ stepfather was one of those children.