50 Random Facts List #222

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1Dale Schroeder

A guy called Dale Schroeder used his life savings to send 33 students to college. He grew up poor in Iowa, never married, had no children, and worked as a carpenter at the same company for 67 years and only owned 2 jeans.


2. Libations, the practice of pouring out alcohol in memory of those who have "passed on" was common in Ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. So “Pouring one out for the homies” is a custom that is over 3,000 years old and is mentioned in the Bible, The Iliad, and The Odyssey.


3. Alan Turing, a World War 2 codebreaker and father of modern computer science, was also a world-class distance runner of his time. He ran a 2:46 marathon in 1949 (2:36 won Olympic gold in 1948). His local running club discovered him when he overtook them repeatedly while out running alone for relaxation.


4. If sound could travel through empty space, we would be able to hear the sun at 125 decibels from Earth's surface. In comparison, 120 decibels is a train horn about one meter away from you.


5. Harry Potter has been translated to Ancient Greek so that students of the dead language would have something fun to decipher.


6Joel McHale

Actor Joel McHale once took an Uber from Rochester, New York to Manhattan. His flight out was canceled and he needed to get to his appearance on Jimmy Fallon, so he spent $700 on a (350 mile, 5-6 hour) Uber ride and paid $200 in tips, as well as paid the driver additional money for his gas back.


7. The New York City Ballet has a shoe budget of $780,000: the dancers go through 500 to 800 pairs of pointe shoes performing The Nutcracker over 6 weeks and use up even more pairs in 2 weeks performing Swan Lake.


8. In an attempt to make his spy novels feel more authentic, author John Le Carré is credited with coining a number of terms for his fictional intelligence agency (terms like the mole, honey trap, pavement artist, asset babysitter) which have become common terms used in real intelligence agencies.


9. Alex Trebek purchased 62 acres in the Hollywood Hills and donated it to a Santa Monica Conservancy.


10. A radio station organized a bonfire to burn Beatles records after they claimed they were "more popular than Jesus". The next day, the station’s broadcast tower was struck by lightning, damaging equipment and sending the news director to the hospital.


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11Medicine cabinets

Medicine cabinets are one of the worst places to store medicine because of the high temperatures and humidities of bathrooms.


12. Police in the UK can legally break into any person's house under the Bees Act 1980 if they suspect it contains foreign bees.


13. Mr. Rogers used a set of 9 simple rules when talking to children. He did this to be more inclusive and avoid confusion because he knew children would often hear things literally.


14. Serial killers are more likely to have suffered a head injury as a child than non-serial killers.


15. A blind lady named Suzanne O'Connor in Ireland was brought to court twice for not having a TV license, despite blind persons being exempt from requiring one.


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16Jay Hawkins

The song “I Put a Spell on You” by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins was supposed to be a ballad, but during a recording session, Hawkins “screamed and grunted” through the whole song because he was drunk. It was his most-successful recording and is in The Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.


17. In 1929, W. Forssmann performed the first human heart catheterization on himself. He tricked the OR nurse, put himself under local anesthesia, inserted a catheter into his arm, then walked to the X-ray room to see if it reached his heart. He was fired from the hospital but was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1956.


18. In 2012, Mountain Dew asked the internet to name their new apple drink. Before the poll was shut down, the top four names were: "Fapple", "Gushing Granny", "Diabeetus" and "Hitler did nothing wrong."


19. Elephants are known to take a great interest in the bones of their deceased and to mourn for dead relatives and Magpies have been observed burying their dead under twigs of grass.


20. Jimmy Carter's family were all farmers for 350 years and no member of his father’s family had ever finished high school. Carter's childhood dream was "to go to the Naval Academy, get a college education, and serve in the U.S. Navy."


21Death Star

In 2013, a petition requesting that the United States Government build a Death Star reached 25,000 signatures, the threshold requiring the White House office to make a response. One part of the response was, "The Administration does not support blowing up planets."


22. American writer Kurt Vonnegut adopted his sister’s three sons after she died of cancer two days after her husband died in a train accident.


23. The Royal Navy once saved 5 million pounds in training by having personnel shout "bang" instead of firing live rounds.


24. Meme of DMX crying is from an interview done with VH1, where he admits that his mother never told him that she loved him. " You know what I think a lot of people lose sight of the fact that no matter how strong you are as a man no matter how tough you are we all need to be somebody's baby."


25. A black cemetery in Florida disappeared 100 years ago. The local newspaper started looking for it and through old documents learned that maybe a public housing complex had been built over it. An archaeologist used ground-penetrating radar to see what was in the ground. He found 120 coffins.

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