Random #253 – 50 Random Facts You Didn’t Knew

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1Chemotherapy

Many doctors have stopped calling cancer treatment a "fight" or "battle". They argue these terms misrepresent how the treatment works and if treatments fail, the patient is left with guilt and a false belief they didn't "fight" hard enough.


2. The US $2 bill is still being produced in large numbers. The apparent scarcity of the bill is caused by collectors taking it out of circulation because they think that it is rarer than it actually is.


3. In 2014, Korean Air vice president Heather Cho was so angry about receiving macadamia nuts in a bag instead of on a plate, she forced the plane to taxi back to gate and unload the offending flight attendant. "Nutgate" ended up costing her 5 months in jail.


4. In 1978, 2,300 students tried to set a world record for the largest tug of war game. Instead, disaster ensued. The 2,000-feet long braided nylon rope snapped, recoiling several thousand pounds of stored energy. Nearly 200 students lay wounded 5 with severed fingertips, hundreds more faced 2nd-degree burns.


5. Stephen Hawking is believed to be the longest living person ever with ALS at 55 years since diagnosis. ALS can kill in months, with less than 20% living past 10 years.


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6Oradour-Sur-Glane

In 1944, the Nazis massacred the entire village of Oradour-Sur-Glane in France, killing 642 people, including 247 children. Unlike other Nazi village massacre sites, which were razed or rebuilt and marked by monuments or fields of roses, the charred remains of the village have been left untouched.


7. A stationmaster named Ghulam Dastagir refused to leave his post during the Bhopal Gas Tragedy. He prevented any trains from stopping at the station, saving thousands of lives even as his colleagues lay dead around him. He himself spent 2 decades in and out of the hospitals due to long exposure to the gas.


8. Majority of coconuts exported worldwide are picked by trained monkeys. Most coconut oil and meat comes from Thailand where monkeys are used to climb trees and retrieve coconuts. Male monkeys on average can retrieve 1,600 coconuts a day whereas humans only get about 80.


9. In 2001, Stan Lee was given the opportunity to re-imagine DC's Justice League and he made Batman black, Wonder Woman Hispanic, and The Flash a teenage girl.


10. New York City’s tap water is full of copepods (tiny crustaceans). Because of this, the water is technically not kosher.


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11Nigerian-Americans

Nigerian-Americans are the most educated ethnic group in the United States. According to the Migrations Policy Institute, 29% of Nigerian-Americans have graduate degrees (compared to 11% of the overall American population)


12. After all the local swans were eaten by Alligators a Florida woman wrote to Queen Elizabeth for assistance. The Queen provided two royal Swans. The Swans alive in Lakeland today are their direct descendants.


13. The "Chameleon Effect" is how people subconsciously copy other people. This mainly includes accents, facial mannerisms, and vocal inflections. People who can hear and separate musical notes are more susceptible to the Chameleon Effect. They also come across as more empathetic or nice to others.


14. Psychologist B.F. Skinner tried to train pigeons to serve as guides for bombing runs in World War 2. After canceling the project, he successfully taught the pigeons to play ping pong instead.


15. A rescue ship at the Titanic sinking pulled a dead infant from the sea who wasn’t able to be identified. The ship’s sailors paid for a graveside monument dedicated to The Unknown Child. In 2007, DNA testing showed the child to be from an English family of six, the Goodwins, who all drowned.


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16Taos Pueblo

People have been living in the multi-story buildings of Taos Pueblo for over 1,000 years, the longest continuously inhabited place in the USA.


17. Attila the Hun died of a nosebleed. On his wedding night, he drank heavily and passed out in his bed. He then had a severe nosebleed and choked to death on his own blood.


18. In the 1700s, pills made out of the element antimony were taken orally as a laxative for constipated bowels. Once they passed through, they were retrieved from the excrement to be used again. Some families passed down the same pill from one generation to the next.


19. Black tea and green tea come from the same plant. The only difference is black tea is fermented.


20. Cheetahs are so instinctively shy animals, especially in captivity, that they even fail to procreate. Therefore for years, conservationists have been giving cheetahs emotional support dogs who are raised with them and help them socialize and reduce anxiety.


21Judge Judy

In 2018, Judge Judy made $147 million, and she films her show 52 days a year. Thus, in 2018 she made approximately $2.8 million a day when working.


22. When bandleader Miles Davis checked into a hospital for routine tests, doctors suggested he have a tracheal tube implanted to relieve his breathing after repeated bouts of pneumonia. The suggestion provoked an outburst from Davis that led to an intracerebral hemorrhage that killed him.


23. Antonio Pigafetta was an Italian tourist who joined Magellan’s historic circumnavigation around the world. Magellan himself was killed, and only 18 crew members survived, including Pigafetta. His surviving journal is where most of the information about the voyage comes from.


24. Manatees rely on their farting abilities to keep them afloat. When they have gas stored up, they’re more buoyant and float to the surface. When they fart out that gas, they sink. When constipated and can’t pass gas, they can't swim properly and float around with their tail above their head. 


25. One of the rarest fish in the world is the Devils Hole Pupfish. They are only found in Devils Hole a water-filled cavern in Nevada and are critically endangered with only 136 fish (as of 2019) left in the wild.

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