50 Random Facts List #173

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26Sailing

Humans have been sailing for 8,000 years, about 1500 years longer than we have been using wheels.


27. A cat in heat can have multiple eggs, and they can be released over several days of her cycle. If Tabby has chosen more than one Tom during her heat cycle, it's possible she'll be carrying kittens from multiple fathers.


28. The Irish Elk was an extinct species of deer that weighed over 1,000lbs and carried antlers up to 12 feet wide.


29. The eruption of Vesuvius in 79 C.E. destroyed the city of Pompeii and buried its library in ash. Texts from that library are now being read for the first time in two thousand years.


30. Jimi Hendrix played guitar in Little Richard's band until he was fired for being too flamboyant, out-dressing, and upstaging the singer.


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31Westgate shopping mall attack

During the 2013 Westgate shopping mall attack in Kenya, an ex SAS member and former Irish soldier joined forces to rescue victims of the shooting, organized police to attempt a counter-attack and evaded gunfire while rescuing people still trapped in the mall.


32. NY Rangers fan still chant "Potvin S*cks" at every game, against every team, even though Denis Potvin retired from the NY Islanders in 1988.


33. The city of Detroit sits on top of a working salt mine, and that the mine has provided road salt for most of North America since 1910.


34. Despite being studied since its discovery in 1906, scientists have yet to rule out a germ origin for Alzheimer's disease. The infectious hypothesis could explain why neurosurgeons are twice and a half more likely to die from it than the general population.


35. Red tape was actually used to bind government documents and you had to literally cut through them to get stuff done. And you can buy pieces of US red tape from the National Archives.


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36Val d'Isere downhill ski competition

The prize for the Val d'Isere downhill ski competition in 2005 was a cow. The organizers intended to trade the cow for a $5000, but Olympian Lindsey Vonn declined and kept the cow. It was later found to be worth $20,000.


37. The term "silhouette" has a political backstory. King Louis XV's General of Finances, Étienne de Silhouette, had a reputation for being cheap. Shadow portraits became popular during his tenure and got named after him due to being very cheap to make compared to commissioning a painting of oneself.


38. 'A black sheep' is unlucky because its wool could not be dyed.


39. The last Saturday of each month in Rwanda is Umuganda day, which means 'coming together in common purpose' when adult Rwandans are required to join in countrywide clean-up tasks like picking up litter.


40. A Wisconsin man named Don Gorske has eaten over 30,000 Big Mac hamburgers over 46 years, averaging 2 per day. He has only missed 8 days in those 46 years, including when his mother died as she requested he forgoes the burger in her memory.


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41Criminal law

In English Criminal Law, you cannot kill a person for food, even out of necessity. In 1884, three sailors were stuck out at sea and killed the weakest one for food. After being rescued, they were found guilty of murder. This set a legal precedent which continues today.


42. Chip pans are the single largest cause of fires in the United Kingdom, causing over 12,000 each year. Some cities even offer chip pan 'amnesty' programs where you can trade in your outdated deep-sided chip pan for a deep-fryer.


43. The avant-garde band The Residents recorded an album of 40 one-minute songs, then purchased 40 one-minute advertising slots on San Francisco's most popular Top-40 radio station and had the station play each track over the course of three days.


44. Marie Curie invented a mobile x-ray machine for use on the front line during World War 1 and taught 150 women to use them. She also believed her radiation exposure during this time caused her terminal illness, not radium.


45. An indigenous Mexican woman named María Lorena ramírez from the Tarahumara community won a 50km race featuring 500 runners from 12 countries while wearing a skirt and sandals made from tire rubber.


46Jack Van Der Geest

A Dutch resistance fighter named Jack Van Der Geest was one of eight people to escape from Buchenwald. Pretending to be dead, at 80 lbs, he hid in a pile of bodies for 11 hours before killing a Nazi, stealing his uniform and a motorcycle to escape.


47. The band Kansas got their record deal by posting signs that said free beer when they knew a producer was coming to their show. They had a huge crowd and the producer thought that if they could draw a crowd like that he should sign them.


48. The band DEVO's name comes from the concept of DE-eVOlution; the idea that humanity has begun to regress to a more primitive herd-like mentality and become more dysfunctional.


49. Slugs evolved from snails, and when baby snails are exposed to platinum, they turn into slugs.


50. It was feared Mike Tyson would forget choreography and injure Donnie Yen during the filming of Ip Man 3 but ultimately, Yen accidentally fractured Tyson’s finger by blocking punches with his elbow.

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