49 Random Things You Definitely Didn’t Know – Part 153

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1Paranormal Activity

The movie "Paranormal Activity" had a budget of only $15,000 but made $194 million. During the screening, people were walking out and one studio executive thought that the film was bombing. They later learned that the viewers were actually leaving because they were too frightened to sit through the movie.

2. In 2016, a baby girl named Lynlee from Lewisville, Texas was born twice. Pediatric surgeons, removed her from the womb to cut out a tumor on her spine, placed her back and several weeks later Lynlee was born healthy.

3. In 1897, three Swedes attempted to be the first people to reach the North Pole. They traveled by hot air balloon but crashed after 65 hours. About 33 years later, a ship discovered their camp, along with their dead bodies, journal, and camera. It was found that they had survived for weeks by killing and eating polar bears.

4. The Old Testament says farmers should leave the edges of their fields unharvested for the poor and traveling foreigners to eat.

5. After South Park aired the episode Chef Aid, the term 'Chewbacca Defense' entered the legal lexicon. The legal strategy aims to deliberately confuse juries than refute cases. The practice was widely used by lawyers before the episode, but South Park gave it a term.

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6Steve Jobs Brand

Steve Jobs is the name of an Italian clothing company created in 2012 when the creators realized that Apple never trademarked Jobs' name.

7. After Jean-Claude Van Damme's biggest movie hit (Timecop 1994), he was offered a 3 picture deal at $12M per picture. He turned it down and demanded he gets the same deal as Jim Carrey - $20M per movie. He was rejected and his career never recovered. He later admitted he "acted like an idiot."

8. L. Ron. Hubbard’s own son, L. Ron Hubbard Jr. was highly critical of Scientology and claimed black magic was the inner core of Scientology, once stating, "my father did not worship Satan. He thought he was Satan."

9. Actor Dwayne Johnson a.k.a. 'The Rock' travels with a private gym which consists of over 40,000 lbs of equipment that over 100 crew members assemble at each filming location he is in.

10. The term and concept of "jay-walking" was introduced in the 1920's by the auto industry as part of a propaganda campaign to claim that the roads were for cars and shifted the blame of accidents from cars to pedestrians. At that time "Jay" was a slur that had a similar meaning to "redneck" or "hillbilly."

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11Genome Size

The human genome is 3.3 Gb in size. HIV virus is only 9.7 kb. Largest known virus genome is 2.47Mb belonging to pandoravirus salinus. The largest known vertebrate genome is 130 Gb belonging to marbled lungfish. Largest known plant genome is 150 Gb belonging to paris japonica. The largest known genome belongs to an Amoeboid measuring 670 Gb, but it is disputed.

12. Most cities have poorer areas in the east, due to prevailing winds carrying smoke and odors that way during the industrial revolution.

13. Charlie Chaplin was criticized when he did not volunteer during the First World War. Although he registered for the U.S. draft, he received thousands of white feathers and angry letters. It was later revealed that he was rejected because he was undersized and underweight.

14. Pink Floyd is inducted into the National Association of Brick Distributors' Hall of Fame for their services to the brick industry through their 1979 album, "The Wall".

15. Before 9/11 there were only 16 people on the no-fly list. As of 2013, there were over 47,000 people on the no-fly list.

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16Gordon Brown

In 2009, British PM Gordon Brown hand-wrote a letter of condolence to a mother whose son had died in Afghanistan, in which he misspelled the son's surname. The Sun (a tabloid) wrote a scathing article criticizing his mistake. In this article, the paper misspelled the same name.

17. When it rains, people publish more negative posts on Facebook. Each negative post negatively affects one to two other people. The negative post spreads like a contagion, negatively affecting people's moods in cities without rainfall. In short, social networks magnify the synchronization of global moods.

18. During the entire filming of Mary Poppins, nobody, not even Julie Andrews, let Dick Van Dyke know he had the “most atrocious cockney accent in the history of cinema.”

19. The Flying Wedge was a popular football play in the early 1900's where the entire team would form a V and charge down the field, sweeping down the field like a tank. Teddy Roosevelt threatened to abolish the sport after 18 players died and 159 were badly injured during one season.

20. Plaid is not meant to describe a pattern. It was an article of clothing (blanket draped over shoulder). The pattern is named tartan.

21Forrest Gump

The author of Forrest Gump had a deal to receive a lump sum and a cut of the film's net profits, but Paramount reported a loss and refused to pay him the cut. He settled with Paramount and they bought the rights to the sequel, which has been stuck in development for over a decade.

22. In 1900 a young clerk named E. D. Morel at a British shipping company observed the massive amounts of rubber returning from the Congo while only guns and manacles were being sent in return. He correctly deduced that these resources were being extracted from the population by force and campaigned to expose the abuses.

23. Michael Keaton, a longtime Pittsburgh resident, and fan of its sports teams negotiated a break in his Batman movie contract in case the Pirates made the playoffs that year. "They thought I was kidding," he said. "I wasn't."

24. Actor Jon Heder’s famous dance finale in the cultural phenomenon comedy movie "Napoleon Dynamite" was shot with a roll of about 10 minutes of film left. Heder danced three times, and the entire dance sequence in the final cut was taken from those. The film earned $46 million from a budget of $400,000.

25. Friedrich Wilhelm I, the King of Prussia had a personal army of 3000 tall men and admitted that "The most beautiful girl or woman in the world would be a matter of indifference to me, but tall soldiers—they are my weakness"


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