50 Random Facts List #237

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1Economic depression

You are less likely to die during an economic depression. This is mostly attributed to cleaner air, reduced traffic, and fewer dollars spent on vices like tobacco and alcohol.


2. America’s most notorious bandit Jesse James once paid off a widow's mortgage and saved her from foreclosure because she gave him food. He made sure she got a receipt from the banker and then robbed the man a mile down the road.


3. Bears are considered by many wildlife biologists to be one of the most intelligent land animals in North America. They possess the largest and most convoluted brains relative to their size of any land mammal. In the animal kingdom, their intelligence compares with that of higher primates.


4. Many female workers at Ravensbrück concentration were forced to produce army uniforms for the Nazis. They deliberately sabotaged them. An example of this is that they made the heels of socks too narrow or defective. This gave soldiers painful blisters on their feet.


5. In 2017, a ‘cancer patient’ in UK underwent surgery to remove a lump in his lungs. It turned out to be caused by a toy traffic cone he had inhaled 40 years ago. He did not have cancer after all.


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6William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare became wealthy by hoarding the grain and reselling at inflated prices during a period of famine. He used the profits for money-lending activity and was pursued by authorities for tax evasion and was prosecuted for hoarding grain.


7. The reason drinking is so prevalent on Saint Patrick's Day is because St. Patrick died during lent and to celebrate his life properly, restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol were lifted for the day.


8. For the movie Rango, the director of the movie had all the actors, including Johnny Depp, get together and act out each scene like a stage play in order to get a more organic animation reference.


9. A student nurse called Lupe Hernandez in 1966 invented the hand sanitizer (alcohol gel). She realized that if alcohol was in gel form, it could clean hands when people had no access to soap and water.


10. A German biologist named Stefan Lanka believed that measles was a "psychosomatic illness", announced that he would pay 100,000 Euros to anyone who could prove that measles was a virus. German doctor David Barden proved him wrong and Lanka was ordered by the court to pay the money as promised.


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11YKK

The zipper brand, YKK, makes everything they use in their production processes, in-house. From the machines they use to make their zippers, to smelting their own brass - they even make the boxes they ship their zippers in.


12. If your headphone plug has 1 stripe, it's mono; if it has 2 stripes, it's stereo; if it has 3 stripes, it's stereo and also passes microphone input.


13. Japan is so successful at returning lost property that 130,000 mobile phones, or 83% of those reported missing, were returned to their owners in 2018.


14. A nurse's aide named Elizabeth McWilliams took care of influenza patients in 1918. She worked tirelessly for patients before contracting the illness herself and dying. Her last words were “I am happy because I’ve tried to be a real American.”


15. Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II had young infants raised without speaking to them in the 13th century to determine if there was a "natural" language imparted by God. His experiments were proven unsuccessful because all the children raised this way died.


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16Big Brother

The TV show "Big Brother" had a policy of keeping the contestants in total information isolation. This included not informing the cast about 9/11. They had to change the policy after one of the cast's family members was lost at Ground Zero.


17. Dalmatians are associated with Fire Fighters because they were originally used as sirens. Dating back to the 1800s, they could keep up with the horse-drawn carriages and warn people they are coming as well as scare off anything that would spook the horses.


18. American cyclist Greg LeMond was accidentally shot with 60 shotgun pellets during a hunt and he lost 65% of his blood volume. Two years later, with 35 pellets still in his body, he won the 1989 Tour de France, becoming the first (and only) American to win the tournament twice.


19. When George Washington became president, he scrapped the plans for “Washington monument” as he didn’t want to use public money for a personal memorial monument. Long after he died, in 1833 a small group of Washingtonians established a society to raise private funds for the project and got it built.


20. One of the first soldiers to charge the beach on D-Day was a Canadian bagpiper named Bill Millin, who only survived because he said German Snipers thought he was too crazy to be shot.


21Mensch of Malden Mills

Owner of the Malden Mills, Aaron Feuerstein, could have retired when his textile factory burned down in 1995. Instead, he paid employees for 60 days and rebuilt the factory in the same place. When asked about his decision, he replied: “And what would I do with it? Eat more? Buy another suit? Retire and die?”


22. A man named Jia Jiang set out to overcome his fear of rejection in “100 Days of Rejection.” He forced himself to ask strangers for favors with a high risk of a “no” such as: Ask to borrow $100; ask for a free “burger refill” at a restaurant. His odd requests sometimes got a “yes.”


23. Bacteria are becoming more tolerant of hand sanitizers, but they will never survive regular hand washing with soap. Soap’s physical action of lifting and moving them off your skin, and letting them run down the drain is very important.


24. Domestic pigs will quickly adapt to living in the wild if set free. They become extremely aggressive, and their physiology will change and resemble that of feral swine (bristly hair, tusks, increased muscle mass) within a matter of months.


25. Stained glass originated to help illiterate people learn about the Bible.

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