50 Random Facts List #193

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1Spider-Man

In 1998, Sony had the chance to buy the rights to almost every Marvel character for $25 million. They opted to only buy the rights to Spider-Man for just $7 million, stating, "Nobody gives a sh*t about the other Marvel characters."


2. For 4 years, English actor Hugh Grant pretended to be his own talent agent under the name James Howe Ealy. He communicated with people via a fake email account and even disguised his voice with a Scottish accent on the phone. “I saved myself an absolute fortune,” he said.


3. Lemmy Kilmister of Motörhead loved to play a particular arcade game at his local bar. When he found out he was terminally ill, the bar owner brought the game machine to Lemmy's apartment so he could keep playing it at home.


4. Along a lonely stretch of highway in Awa-shi, Japan, a rare vending machine sells homemade meals of fresh curry over rice. The vending machine owner, Tadashi Yoshimoto, grows the rice he uses in every meal just down the road on his own farm.


5. The directors of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (James Gunn) and Baby Driver (Edgar Wright) consulted each other to make sure that the films would not have the same songs on their soundtracks.


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6Gary Hart

Gary Hart, a politician running for president in 1988, invited the media to follow him around after he was alleged to be a womanizer. He was quoted as saying, “Follow me around. I don't care. I'm serious.” Members of the media complied and he was caught having an affair 2 weeks later.


7. In over 50 years and 10 billion passengers later, the Japanese bullet train has never had a single passenger fatality caused by a derailment or collision.


8. In the USA, a check does not need to be written on a bank check. It can be written on anything (including clothing) and legally be cashed as long as it includes the proper information.


9. Once a year in parts of England flying ants migrate. Seagulls catch and eat them and then become drunk off the ants' formic acid, causing them to crash into buildings and moving cars.


10. Prior to his death, Steve Irwin designed and funded a study which discovered that crocodiles can “surf” long distances across the ocean. One of the crocodiles in this study surfed 366 miles within 25 days.


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11Drunken bees

In Australia when it gets very hot, the nectar in some flowers ferments and turns into alcohol. The bees get "drunk" and are not allowed back into the hive.


12. There is a 1420 book that was found to have cat piss on one of its pages. The author of the manuscript even wrote on the page "Cursed be the pesty cat that urinated over this book during the night in Deventer... and beware well not to leave open books at night where cats can come."


13. In Finland citizens legally have the right to the internet connection, similar to getting an education and health care.


14. Khalid bin Mohsen Shaari, a Saudi man, who was then the heaviest person alive and the second heaviest person ever recorded at 1340lbs (610kg) in 2013, was ordered by his King to lose weight. He then lost 1195lbs, and in 2017, weighed just 150lbs (68kg).


15. The Russo Brothers were given the reins of the MCU after Marvel president Kevin Feige saw and loved the Community episode "A Fistful of Paintballs."


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16Circle of Life

The opening lyrics from the Lion King’s ‘Circle of Life’ are sung in Zulu, a language which belongs to an ethnic group from Southern Africa. The lyrics translate to “There comes a lion. Oh yes, it’s a lion.”


17. Inventor Yoshiro Nakamatsu, who has filed over 3300 patents, dives underwater till he is "0.5 seconds before death", to come up with ideas. He believes that the deprivation of oxygen helps his thinking process.


18. Buster Keaton was an international mega silent movie star but broke down after movies with sound took over. He became an alcoholic and was institutionalized in a mental ward but escaped his straitjacket using techniques he learned from Houdini. He then married his nurse but had no memory of it.


19. "Sleepunders" are a thing. Kids arrive already in pajamas and do sleepover activities, but everyone leaves before bedtime.


20. Braille is imprinted on beer cans sold in Japan. This is to ensure that blind people won't confuse a can of beer with a soft drink.


21Switzerland

Switzerland has maintained neutrality in all wars since 1815 and is so adamant about remaining neutral that it rigged its entire infrastructure to explode in an attempt to prevent direct conflict if provoked.


22. The actors playing the rebel soldiers on Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back, were all members of the Norwegian Red Cross. For their participation in the film, George Lucas made a large donation to the organization.


23. Benedict Cumberbatch, who plays Sherlock Holmes on "Sherlock," is distantly related to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who created the character.


24. Stephen Wiltshire is an autistic savant, who can draw detailed landscapes from memory. He was featured in a BBC documentary as a child and now he has his own gallery in London. He also has a 76 m panoramic memory drawing of New York on display at JFK Airport. He was appointed an MBE ('Member of the Order of the British Empire) in 2006.


25. Harvard Associate Professor Dr. Lester Grinspoon tried to prove pot was harmful to get his friend, Carl Sagan, to smoke less. He then wrote a book on the lies behind the pot and prompted a study into using THC for chemo associated nausea and vomiting, after seeing results in his son with leukemia.

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