50 Random Facts List #179

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1Benjamin Hornigold

Benjamin Hornigold

The pirate Benjamin Hornigold once raided a merchant ship just to steal the hats from the ship's crew because his crew had gotten too drunk the night before and had thrown their hats overboard.

2. California Governor Leland Stanford Sr. lost his only child to Typhoid. Because of this Stanford Sr. decided to honor his dead son by spending his fortune to build Stanford University, telling his wife that "the children of California shall be our children".

3. Priest Joseph Müller once told a joke about a dying German soldier who had asked to see people for whom he was laying down his life. The nurse laid a portrait of Hitler and Göring next to him. The soldier said, “Now I can die like Jesus Christ” [between two criminals]. Müller was executed for this joke.

4. German airplanes “Stuka” did not make that screaming sound when diving because of their engine, but because they had small fans attached to the front of their landing gear that acted as a siren. This contraption was fixed to “weaken enemy morale and enhance the intimidation of dive-bombing.”

5. Ebbie Tolbert was born in around 1807 and spent over 50 years as a slave. She gained her freedom at the age of 56. And lived long enough that at the age of 113, she walked to the St. Louis polling station and registered to vote.

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6Polar bear

Polar bear

A polar bear used to live in the tower of London in the 13 century which was fed by putting a leash on it and letting it fish in the Thames.

7. Daniel Radcliffe has made $94 million from playing the role of Harry Potter and has hardly spent any of it.

8. Honey bees, despite having the brain size of a sesame seed, can count up to 4 and can understand the concept of zero.

9. Students in competitions to design fuel-efficient vehicles routinely design vehicles capable of traveling thousands of miles per gallon of gas.

10. In 2002, a 7-year-old Philadelphia girl name Erica Pratt was abducted and locked in a basement. She managed to escape her kidnappers in less than 24 hours by gnawing through the duct tape binding her hands and feet, kicking out a panel on the basement door, punching out a window, and then screaming for help.

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11Kit Kat

Kit Kat

Kit Kat in Japanese roughly translates to "Sure Winner." As a result, they are considered good luck to Japanese high school students.

12. In 1784, Great Britain imposed a tax on bricks to pay for the war in America. In response, people started using larger bricks and now buildings in UK can be dated based on the brick size.

13. Stephen King, one of the greatest horror novelists of all time, has to sleep with the lights on.

14. The State of Hawaii has an "Aloha Spirit" law requiring business and government officials to act with kindness, harmoniousness, agreeability, humility, and patience.

15. After Neil deGrasse Tyson tried to persuade rapper BoB that the Earth isn't flat, the rapper released a diss song against him called "Flatline" in which he expands his views on the Earth being flat. In response, Tyson and his rapper nephew responded with their own diss track titled "Flat to Fact." 

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16Call of Duty

Call of Duty

A small group of developers behind Medal of Honor video game broke away from that series due to the increasing control of EA. They instead created a new game and called it Call of Duty.

17. In 1920s Paris, Irish novelist James Joyce would get drunk, start fights, and then hide behind Ernest Hemingway for protection, screaming, "Deal with him, Hemingway!"

18. In Norse mythology at the end of the world (Ragnarok) the gods--Odin, Thor, Loki, and the others--as well as all humans, will die. Evil triumphs over good and the world will be engulfed in water.

19. All airplanes must have a green light on their right wing, and a red light on their left wing, to indicate the direction of travel to other planes.

20. The first firemen to respond to the Chernobyl meltdown stood above the burning core, which emitted radiation at 30,000 roentgen per hour. When they died a few weeks later, their bodies were so radioactive they were buried in coffins made of lead with the lids welded shut.

21Grape Nuts

Grape Nuts

Breakfast being “the most important meal of the day” originated in a 1944 marketing campaign launched by General Foods, the manufacturer of Grape Nuts, to sell more cereal. During the campaign, grocery stores and radio advertisements promoted the importance of breakfast.

22. There is a "honeymoon phase" for people who acquire a new job that usually ends after the first year of employment. Happiness levels dip after the first year, and stress levels continue to rise and rise each year thereafter.

23. Monkeys aren't supposed to eat bananas. The bananas that humans consume are so full of sugar that monkeys will get diabetes if it is a regular part of their diet.

24. A Los Angeles homicide detective named Steve Hodel believes that his deceased father killed the Black Dahlia, after he found a picture of him with Elizabeth Short. He later discovered that his father had been one of the prime suspects at the time of the murder.

25. According to Italian folklore, on the same night that Mary gave birth to Jesus, a virgin cat in Bethlehem gave birth to a kitten.

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