46 Random & Silly Facts You Never Would Have Guessed – Part 143

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1Bike trail

There is a planned bike trail that will run from Maine to Florida.


2. Parasite (parasitus) was an accepted role in Roman society, in which a person could live off the hospitality of others, in return for "flattery, simple services, and a willingness to endure humiliation".


3. Harley Quinn wasn't originally a comic book character. She was actually first introduced in Batman: The Animated Series and was so popular that the comic writers decided to add her into the comic universe.


4. In 1994, in an attempt to ban raves, the UK passed a law banning the public performance of music “wholly or predominantly characterized by the emission of a succession of repetitive beats.” In response, the electronic band Autechre issued a track, Flutter, in which no two bars have the same beat.


5. The Soviets set up fake border posts at the Czechoslovak borders in order to trick emigrants, making them think they were already in Germany. Once comfortable, they would talk to an "American" agent, revealing their contacts.


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6Time

Time seems to speed up as we get older because each year we live is a smaller percentage of the total amount of time we have been alive. It’s called proportional theory.


7. In 1986, an organ transplant aircraft broke down in Fargo resulting in the governor summoning an F-4 Phantom to transport a heart to California for a recipient.


8. Greek philosopher Anaxagoras (510-428 B.C.) was the first person to correctly explain eclipses. He also theorized the Sun was a star and that stars were burning rocks but the other stars are too far away to feel their heat.


9. Water has been America's #1 drink since 2013. Before that for 20 years it was soda.


10. An architect named Oscar Mendez in Colombia started a company to turn waste plastics into Lego-style bricks for low-cost homes. Using the bricks, it takes 4 people about 5 days to construct a 430 square foot house. The concept is to reduce plastic waste and give homes to those most in need.


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11Orville Wright

Orville Wright, the younger of the two Wright Brothers, expressed sadness about the death and destruction brought about by the bombers of World War 2, stating “I once thought the aeroplane would end wars. I now wonder whether the aeroplane and the atomic bomb can do it.”


12. In 1931, a scientist tried to teach a baby chimpanzee-human behavior by raising it alongside his human son (Donald). The chimpanzee (Gua) never acquired language skills and the experiment was called off when the human baby began imitating the chimpanzee's vocalizations.


13. Benjamin Franklin became a vocal advocate for inoculation after losing his oldest son to smallpox.


14. Soviet politician Joseph Stalin had a webbed left foot. In Russian folklore, this is a sign of the devil.


15. The Wright brothers may not have done what they did if not for a hockey accident that sent Wilbur Wright into a depression, causing him to cancel his plans of going to Yale, and eventually open the bicycle shop with his brother.


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16William Dean Sullivan

A man named William Dean Sullivan attempted to board a cruise ship by bungee jumping off a bridge as it sailed below. He miscalculated the speed and suffered minor head injuries when he bounced off the ship’s tennis court, volleyball net, and a deck railing before being left dangling in mid-air as the ship sailed away.


17. The one-liner, "Why Do We Drive on Parkways and Park on Driveways?" seems ironic because the terms predate automobiles. Way means path, park means scenic natural space, and drive means a short private road.


18. Ostriches don't bury their heads in the sand and think are have hidden from danger. They dig holes to bury their eggs. The myth came about from people seeing ostriches putting their heads in the holes to turn the eggs to ensure they are evenly heated.


19. Queen's drummer, Roger Taylor has the same 4-octave vocal range as Freddie Mercury and Aretha Franklin.


20. Every Autumn a fungus epidemic kills off 75% of house flies. It attacks their brain forcing them to land on a surface and climb to the highest point, stand up on its front legs and spread its wings. The fungus then erupts from its abdomen to be spread to other flies.


21Bats

Bats can eat up to 1,200 mosquitoes in an hour and often consume their body weight in insects every night.


22. One chapter of Memory of Light, the last book in the Wheel of Time series, contained 81,200 words. By comparison, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's stone was about 78,000 words in its entirety.


23. British people tend to be “bi-measurement” the same way some people are bilingual. Both imperial and metric units factor into their lives.


24. In 2012, a schizophrenic inmate named Darren Rainey died after he was put in a 180°F (82°C) shower for 2 hours. His skin reportedly "fell off at the touch". Two officers who were on duty at the time later received promotions and nobody has ever been charged.


25. The British World War 2 Civilian Respirator gas mask had filters containing blue asbestos and arsenic. Because of this, it is recommended to wear a gas mask when handling the gas mask.

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