Random #333 – 50 Fascinating Random Facts

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1History of Fish Book

While impressed by the book "Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica," the UK's science academy couldn't publish Isaac Newton's book due to being nearly bankrupt from spending all of its money printing the "History of Fish." Thankfully, scientist Edmond Halley funded the printing.


2. The top floors of New York City's branch libraries consist of 13 secret apartments which were originally built for custodial use.


3. Lieutenant Elmo Zumwalt III contracted cancer and died at the age of 42, after getting exposed to Agent Orange while he was deployed in Vietnam. It was his father, Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, who had ordered the use of Agent Orange in Vietnam.


4. The crust of the Earth is so thin that it makes up just 1% of the earth's volume containing all known life in the universe and it can be compared with an apple peel.


5. The city of Cancun in Mexico was established by the Mexican government using computer models to find a nice spot for tourists.


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6Tom's Diner Song

Susan Vega's hit song "Tom's Diner" was remixed by two British record producers under the name ‘DNA remixed’ in 1990 and circulated to clubs without Suzanne or her label's permission. When Vega heard about the remix, she advised the label to buy it and officially release it rather than sue the group for copyright infringement.


7. During a financial crisis in 1720, the British parliament debated a resolution for bankers to be sewn into sacks with snakes and dumped into the Thames River.


8. Before 2012, pizza hut was the largest purchaser of kale in the US, but they only used it as a garnish for their salad bars.


9. Hidetaka Miyazaki, the creator of the Dark Souls series was inspired to design its summoning based on an experience he had when his car got stuck in the snow on a hill and a bunch of strangers came to help push his car to the top before vanishing.


10. Mariah Carey demanded a $50 million inconvenience fee from her ex-fiancé James Packer after they broke up. She received a multimillion-dollar settlement and kept her $10 million engagement ring. 


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11Walking Speed Correlation

There is a strong positive correlation between how fast someone walks and the population of the city that they are from. If a city is 10 times larger than another, people will walk 24% faster on average.


12. About 1.8 billion to 0.8 billion years ago, nothing relatively interesting happened on earth. There was tectonic stability, a static climate, and hardly any biological evolution. It has been termed "The Dullest Time in Earth's History" or the "Boring Billion" in earth’s history.


13. The Eurasian magpie is one of the most intelligent birds as well as the most intelligent of all non-human animals. The expansion of its nidopallium is approximately the same in its relative size as the brain of humans. It is the only bird known to pass the mirror test.


14. Scooby-Doo was designed by Iwao Takamoto who first learned illustration from fellow prisoners in the Manzanar concentration camp for Japanese-Americans in USA.


15. In 1993, a college basketball coach named Bob Knight invented a fictitious player named Ivan Renko to expose disreputable basketball recruiting experts. Sure enough, the "experts" began listing Renko as a prospect and some even claimed to have footage of the nonexistent player.


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16The Sixth Sense

David Vogel and Disney's production president read M. Night Shyamalan's spec script for 'The Sixth Sense' and loved it. Without corporate approval, Vogel bought the rights for the movie for $3 million and for this he was dismissed by Disney. The film went on to spend 5 weeks at number one.


17. The "lower bar" on women's bikes is antiquated and was created to accommodate the heavy dresses women wore in the late 1800s.


18. In 2015, Ex-Miami Dolphins running back Rob Konrad swam for 16 hours to shore after he fell off his boat in the ocean.


19. Paul McCartney once mentioned that he liked Jelly Babies. Later his fans started throwing them at the Beatles during live concerts. In the USA, fans started throwing jelly beans at them after mistaking them to be the same thing. One concert had to be stopped twice because the Beatles members kept getting hit.


20. The first international war crime trial took place in the Holy Roman Empire in 1474. Peter Von Hagenbauch was found guilty of atrocities committed during the occupation of Breisach and beheaded.


21Reason Magazine

In 2004, Reason Magazine sent out 40,000 special magazine prints, tailored to every subscriber, which surprised and terrified each one of them. Each cover of the magazine displayed the satellite photo of the subscriber’s house. The featured article was about how databases can be utilized on a mass scale with automation.


22. In the 4th century C.E., Roman bishop Acacius of Amida sold all of his church's treasures to free 7000 Persian prisoners captured by the Romans during the war. Theodosius II, the Persian emperor was so impressed by the act that he ordered an end to Christian persecution throughout his empire.


23. Buddhists create sand mandalas only to destroy them, to teach the belief that nothing lasts forever.


24. Palm fronds are extremely hardy and are difficult to process into mulch or compost and can take up to 50 years to decompose on their own. The fronds also account for 3.4% of the 1 million tons of waste each year in Phoenix, Arizona landfills.


25. In Iceland, Arctic foxes were the only land-based mammals roaming the landmass before humans arrived.

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