50 Random Facts List #230

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1Vanna White

Vanna White has never repeated wearing a single dress during her entire career on “Wheel Of Fortune”. She has worn over 6500 dresses and been on the show for almost 37 years (Since 1982).


2. Non-Hispanic ethnic Mayans are still alive and makeup 40% of Guatemala’s population.


3. In 1984, Burger King ran a commercial featuring a parody of Mr. Rogers. The real Mr. Rogers (a vegetarian) called up the BK vice president, who then ordered the commercials taken off the air at once. Mr. Rogers later met the actor and told him he was proud of his marvelous job.


4. Millennial dads are spending 3 times as much times with their kids than their fathers spent with them. Back in 1982, 43% of fathers admitted they’d never changed a diaper. Today, that number is down to about 3%.


5. Deaf children or children born to deaf parents babble with their hands instead of vocalized babbling. Manual babbling indicates that babbling is not nonsense, but instead an important part of language acquisition.


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6André Gardes

In 1990, unemployed nuclear physicist André Gardes tried to invade the island of Sark (a feudal system until 2008) on his own. Sark’s only policeman complimented his gun, Gardes showed it off to him and the policeman took it and imprisoned him for 7 days. Gardes tried to invade again a year later.


7. The Black Knight from Monty Python was based on a real person. Arrichion of Phigalia was a Greek wrestler who famously refused to give up during a particularly tough wrestling match. He died during the match but still won because his opponent surrendered, not realizing he was dead.


8. In 2009, a 14-year-old boy showed up at a Chicago police station in uniform and worked 5 hours of a shift. He allegedly got a police radio, ticket book and rode with an officer for several hours before his identity was realized. He knew police procedures due to a “police explorer” program he’d gone to.


9. Paris holds an annual contest to find the city’s best baguette. Around 200 bakers each submit two baguettes (must be eligible) to be graded on quality, look, smell, taste, and crunch. The winner wins €4000 and a contract to supply the French president fresh baguettes every day for 1 year.


10. Bayard Rustin was an openly gay black man who advised Martin Luther King Jr. on the principles of nonviolence, was a major civil rights leader, and was the main organizer of the ‘March On Washington.’ He has been largely forgotten (especially relative to other activists) due to his sexuality.


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11Futurama

According to Matt Groening, FOX was never supportive of Futurama, as they moved the show around from time slot to time slot unpredictably for four years, which resulted in poor ratings and its cancellation in 2003. This move left many Futurama fans and production crew shocked and angry.


12. Hedwig Porschütz who rescued Jews during the Holocaust, was jailed in a concentration camp but was not honored as an “unsung heroine” in West Berlin because she had been a prostitute and at the time they did not consider helping Jews an act of resistance. She died poor and no known photos of her exist.


13. A Canadian woodworking tool company named ‘Lee Valley’ pays its employees on a “slope”. This means the top paid CEO cannot make more than 10 times the lowest-paid employee. It also means the same CEO gets the same cut of their profit-sharing as the lowest-paid employee.


14. In the film Candyman, Tony Todd negotiated a fee of $1000 for each time he was stung during the bee scene. He walked away with $23000.


15. A man named Paul Brown invented the upside-down squeeze bottle in 1991. He then sold his product to everyone from shampoo companies to ketchup companies to NASA, and then four years later he sold his company for $13 million.


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16Skyscrapers

Skyscrapers shrink over time due to building materials compressing. This shrinkage is large enough that elevator guide rails in the highest skyscrapers need to be mounted to sliding clips, instead of attached solidly, so they can move when the building shrinks instead of warping.


17. “Accuracy” is the ability to hit a target, while “Precision” is the ability to achieve the same results over and over. You can be accurate without being precise and precise without being accurate.


18. When Japanese pole vaulters Shuhei Nishida and Sueo Oe tied for silver at the 1936 Olympics they refused a tie-breaker. The silver was arbitrarily awarded to Nishida. They had their medals cut in half and then welded together so they each had one “friendship medal” of half silver, half bronze.


19. Before 1954, stop signs used to be yellow with black lettering. This was because there was no red dye that would not fade over time. However, by 1954, sign makers began using a fade-resistant porcelain enamel, and it was then declared that stop signs should be red with white lettering.


20. Aldous Huxley’s descriptions of the effects of alcohol on fetuses in Brave New World predate the scientific recognition of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome by more than four decades.


21Clark Gable

Actor Clark Gable fought in World War 2 and almost got killed once. When word of this reached MGM, studio executives began to badger the Army Air Forces to reassign him to noncombat duty. Also, Hitler was a fan and offered a sizable reward to anyone who could capture and bring Gable to him unscathed.


22. A K-9 Cadet named Gavel was fired from the Police Academy for being too friendly after months of training. He then got a new job as Vice-Regal Dog for the Office of the Governor in Queensland where he greets visitors, attends official functions and sits in on Governor’s briefings.


23. In the Antebellum South, slaves dreaded January 1 a.k.a. “Heartbreak Day” because New Year’s Day was traditionally when debts were settled. This resulted in black families being torn apart as slave owners sold or rented slaves out long-term to pay back those they owed money to.


24. In 2013, there was a train crash in Australia caused by millipedes. There were so many of them on the tracks that a train pulling into a station ended up losing friction from squishing so many of them and crashed into another train.


25. Curly, from the Three Stooges, would often take in stray dogs while traveling for work and care for them until he found them a home. His love for dogs purportedly contributed to his financial difficulties throughout his lifetime, as he spent so much money caring for the dogs he encountered.

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