Random #353 – 50 Absurd Yet True Random Facts

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1 Ozzy Osbourne’s Use of Acid

Ozzy Osbourne's Use of Acid

Ozzy Osbourne stopped using acid while Black Sabbath was recording Volume 4. He said, “I took 10 tabs of acid and then went for a walk in a field. I ended up standing there talking to this horse for about an hour. In the end, the horse turned around and told me to fuck off. That was it for me.”

2. Steven Spielberg instructed the Nazi saluting extras in “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” to also cross their fingers behind their backs.

3. King Tut’s tomb was unusually small, most likely because Tut’s intended tomb was used by Tut’s successor for his own burial. King Tut became famous in the modern age as a result of his small tomb, which allowed it to be forgotten and protected from thefts.

4. The stealing of baby Jesus from public nativity scenes is a common occurrence. To prevent theft, some churches had to chain their baby Jesus, while others equipped their baby Jesus with GPS.

5. It was widely held in the Middle Ages that ringing church bells during thunderstorms would deflect lightning from striking nearby buildings. After more than a hundred bell ringers were struck by lightning and killed, the practice was discontinued.

6 London’s Christmas Ban

London's Christmas Ban

In 1656, the troops of the City of London were given orders to search the streets and seize any Christmas food they found being prepared. They thought Christmas was a pointless celebration that undermined Christian values.

7. An Amish computer does exist. It lacks media players, a web browser, and other entertainment options. The product is aimed at Amish farmers who are in need of a solution to handle their increasingly complex businesses.

8. Senegal, a country in west Africa with a population that is 95% Muslim, has a long history of Muslims and Christians embracing one another’s holidays. Therefore, Christmas is widely celebrated there despite the country’s majority Muslim population.

9. Meals Ready-to-Eat (MREs) have a shelf life of 20 years, but they can still be eaten if the packaging is unopened and they are stored in a cold, dry place.

10. Before the Revolutionary War, British soldiers would sing “Yankee Doodle” as a way to make fun of American troops, portraying them as ignorant rural simpletons who would think that a feather in their caps made them “Macaroni” (i.e. cool). The song, however, was later adopted as a defiance anthem by Americans.

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11 Shorter Work Week

Shorter Work Week

In the 1960s, futurists projected a shorter work week, and a Senate Committee predicted that the standard work week would be reduced to 14 hours by the year 2000. They used the television show “The Jetsons” as an example.

12. Batdorj-in Baasanjab, who played Genghis Khan in a 2004 miniseries, is a direct descendent of Genghis Khan’s son Chagatai.

13. Computer security was such a problem for the Kremlin that they had to resort to buying typewriters in 2013 to stop leaks.

14. In the original “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” special, Boris Karloff, a horror actor best known for his roles as Frankenstein’s monster and the Mummy in Universal monster movies, voiced both the Grinch and the narrator.

15. A London resident known as “The Mole Man of Hackney” spent 40 years excavating tunnels up to 18 meters long and below the water table beneath his home.

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16 Steinert Hall Under Piano Store

Steinert Hall Under Piano Store

Steinert Hall, an abandoned music hall dating back 120 years in the heart of Boston, Massachusetts, can be found 40 feet below ground level, snaking its way under the foundation of a piano shop.

17. Clare of Assisi, who passed away in 1253, is revered as the patron saint of television. As the story goes, God showed her a video of Mass on her bedroom wall when she was too ill to leave her bed and go to church.

18. After the Gestapo interrogated his daughter Anna for over 12 hours, Sigmund Freud decided to leave Austria. With 31,000 Reichsmarks, he was able to secure a safe exit from Austria in time during the Nazi occupation of that country in 1938.

19. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled in 1986 that the United States’ actions in Nicaragua, which included the placement of mines in the country’s ports, were illegal. After not taking part in the proceedings at first, the United States finally decided to take back its consent to the court’s compulsory jurisdiction, which it had given 40 years earlier.

20. Emperor Norton was the first and only emperor of the United States. He was a successful businessman in San Francisco who declared himself Emperor of the United States in 1859 after losing his fortune. The people of San Francisco largely enjoyed his presence, accepted his currency, and paid him a “tax” to cover his rent.

15 Most Controversial & Costly Blunders in History

21 Making of A Christmas Carol

Making of A Christmas Carol

While writing “A Christmas Carol,” Charles Dickens “took night-time walks of 15 to 20 miles (24 to 32 km) around London” to flesh out the story in his head.

22. When Peter Zhu’s parents learned that he was brain dead at the age of 21, they sought permission to have his sperm extracted to ensure male offspring for the family. Despite bioethicists’ claims that a spouse never made the request, the Supreme Court agreed with them.

23. A headstone for blues singer Bessie Smith wasn’t placed on her grave until 1970, despite the fact that hundreds of people attended her burial. This was because her husband refused to pay for one and instead kept the money when her friends attempted to purchase one for her.

24. During World War II, British soldiers wrote a song called “Hitler Has Only Got One Ball” as a diss track against Nazi commanders. All Allied troops soon adopted and began singing the song.

25. About 55 million years ago, the North Pole resembled modern-day Miami. Temperatures hovered around 74 degrees Fahrenheit, and palm trees and alligators were abundant.

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  1. RE: Fact# 3 – King Tut’s Small Tomb : It also helps that his successors actually wanted to have his entire family wiped off the face of history because they were thought to be heretics. Even Tut made an effort to distinguish himself from his father whom the priests hated. After their deaths, you could see his family’s cartouches being erased from walls all around the nation.

    • Yeah, original fact in this article is a little off base. Being absent from the Kings List probably helped spare the tomb in antiquity, but that still wouldn’t have kept it from being rediscovered without the most important part: That the debris from digging out KV5—just a scant few decades after Tut—buried Tut’s tomb, and nobody afterward could be arsed to dig that pile up.

      The size of his tomb? They all have entrances that are more or less the same external feature. Is there really an Egyptologist out there trying to say that the reason Tut’s tomb remained largely undisturbed was because once you get past the entranceway it’s just three little rooms? Nonsense.

        • The numbers 1 through 64 are used to identify each tomb in the Valley of the Kings. Archaeologists therefore refer to King Tut’s tomb as KV62, and it was likely submerged by a flood before being covered by housing built for workers excavating a tomb for his successor, Ay, or KV57. Then, workers building the tomb of Rameses V and Rameses VI, aka KV9 (not KV5 as the other poster mistakenly wrote) piled debris over Tut’s tomb, making it even less accessible.

    • I know a man who once did ten tabs. He responded, “Oh, you simply fold the sheet up so it fits in your mouth,” when I questioned how he managed to do so many. Although it was completely unrelated to what I meant, that did, in a way, answer my query.

      • When bingeing, acid tolerance increases rather quickly. You’re in for a difficult ride if you go from being sober to ten hits, but if you’ve been bingeing for weeks, ten hits will just bring you back up.

        • In my experience, in order to receive the same dosage every day for a few days, you pretty much have to double the dose. To get the same high as one on the first day, you would need to take 8 hits if you used acid four days in a row (1, 2, 4, 8).

          I’ve only done it on more than one day during music festivals, and I’ve never gone past the fourth day. I’m not sure how long it takes to turn into Syd Barrett, but four days is about my limit, and I usually wait a few months before trying it again.

          plus you. I wouldn’t do it frequently because I have a nasty sadness hangover after coming down from many days. For me, it’s usually worthwhile, but be sure you understand what you’re getting into.

      • At one festival, I may have dropped 12 or so. I bought a few for myself and a friend, did one, didn’t come up, tried a few more, didn’t come up, did more, thought f**kit, and boshed the lot.

        Then we started to come up on the first one.

        I lost almost 14 hours of my life before I awoke in a jail cell. My friend awoke in the hospital. Before the trip, the last thing I can recall is turning to my companion and saying, “We may have been dumb and impatient.”

      • In my senior year of high school, I had a friend who I frequently visited in order to buy acid from him. One day, he texted me to say he wanted to hang out, and when I arrived at his place, he informed me that he had just taken 10 tabs. I took one even though I was a little spooked out since it tasted a little strange, like a little metallic or bitter, and I could tell something wasn’t right. He started behaving catatonic within 15 to 30 minutes of taking it, although his body was shivering when he tried to speak. Instead, he sat on a chair outside and stared blankly, as if nothing or everything were happening within his head at once. My friend just took 10 pills of 25I-NBOMe, which is not LSD. If you don’t know what that is, it’s a designer drug that is occasionally used to cut LSD due to its higher potency and cost. However, it is much more toxic and dangerous for your health than acid or mushrooms, and there is almost no way to dose it properly. As a result, the 1 tab I took ended up feeling like three.
        He was also marginally on the Autism spectrum and was only using psychedelics for the fourth or fifth time. He became anxious. He had to be kept from freaking out for about two hours, so I had to call a buddy who was much more experienced. Eventually, he ended up lying on the floor unable to speak or understand what was going on around him. Oh yeah, this guy’s parents are coming home soon, so I made sure to hide everything pointy or potentially harmful inside the house and lock all the windows and doors.
        We had to leave since his parents were strict Muslims and abusive who didn’t know their kid did drugs. They would also suspect us of poisoning their son or something similar and call the police. In the hopes that he would be okay, we left him in his room with a note explaining what he had done and asking that someone contact an ambulance if he became worse. (I don’t know whether leaving him there and letting his parents take care of him was an asshole thing to do, but I also didn’t even know him that well and tried my best to help.)
        The following day I don’t hear from him again, the following day I don’t see him at school, and then a week after. I learn later that right after we left and just before his parents got home, he managed to take off all of his clothes, unlock a window, and run into a busy street that crossed a major road in the town. He was apparently hit by a car lightly, but when the ambulance and police arrived, he became violent and required to be restrained by three to four police officers while his parents drove up to the scene on their way home.
        A month or two later, I saw him again, and he appeared to be virtually emotionless—very slow, delayed, and slurring his words. It absolutely screwed him over and fried his brain.

    • It’s not altogether uncommon for frequent psychedelic users to do 10 tabs. Even yet, it’s not an astounding amount. If you don’t take a lot of time off in between trips, you develop a tolerance to LSD rather quickly. There isn’t actually a maximum amount you can consume at once without dying, either. There’s a rumor that a few of my friends used to consume entire sheets (100 hits! ), but that someone else took it as a challenge and ended up in the hospital after having a violent breakdown.

    • He should probably be studied by scientists. How someone like him can still be useful after decades of drug misuse is a wonder.

      Just to be clear, he is currently 74 years old and has most likely used drugs heavily for 40–50 years. Despite this, he will perform live concerts next year. That’s a pretty functional human being, in my opinion.

      • They did, in fact. They were curious as to how he was still alive. It appears that he has a genetic predisposition that prevents him from developing an addiction to and being destroyed by drugs that would destroy most others.

  2. RE: Fact# 3 – King Tut’s Small Tomb : King Tut was a relatively insignificant pharaoh in the overall scheme of Egyptian history. He didn’t reign for long and was a child for almost all of that reign. But because his tomb was the only one that was discovered intact, he is most likely the most or second-most well-known pharoah in existence today.

    • I see people make this statement whenever a picture of Tut pops up, but I cannot imagine being even remotely familiar with the epic saga of Akhenaten, Tutankhamen, monotheism and Amarna and their legacy extending into the present day, and thinking it’s small potatoes.

      • It’s because there isn’t much proof that Akhenaten’s experiences with monotheism truly had an impact on or contributed to the development of Judaism and Christianity in later centuries. He’s fascinating, for sure, but Akhenaten and Tutankhamen didn’t exactly change the course of history.

  3. RE: Fact# 2 – Spielberg’s Nazi Salute Instruction: Fun fact about  “The Last Crusade”: Sean Connery’s improvised line, “She talksh in her schleep,” necessitated a second take because the entire cast and crew started giggling during the first.

  4. RE: Fact# 5 – Church Bells & Lightning: Our town still does this. Actually, it’s intended for farmers who are working in the fields. to let them know that they must return home.

      • Additionally, towering structures like bell towers are equipped with lightning conductors so that when they are struck, the lightning strikes the copper lightning rod on the roof rather than the tower itself.

  5. RE: Fact# 4 – GPS in Baby Jesus: In the 1990s, I believe, a baby Jesus was taken, and the kidnappers left a message saying that Baby Jesus was going on vacation. The church then received images of that baby jesus from all around the world. The following year, he was brought back.

    • At the end of 2019, I spent two weeks in Prague and witnessed a group of college students posing for photos with a plastic Joseph from a nativity scene.

      They had emailed images of the “father-to-be bar tour” back to the church. At that point, they had the thing for a few days.

      The best thing is that after first rejecting the photographs, the church was suddenly reacting in a more amiable, laughing-along manner.

      They must have returned it soon after, in my opinion.

      Good stuff

  6. RE: Fact# 22 – Death Peter Zhu: Though admittedly less common in modern times, this is somewhat of a Chinese cultural practice. Just look up Chinese Ghost Marriage for some context.

    Continuing the family line

    If a son died before marriage, his parents arranged a ghost marriage to provide him with progeny to continue the lineage and give him his own descendants. “A man in China does not marry so much for his own benefit as for that of the family: to continue the family name; to provide descendants to keep up the ancestral worship; and to give a daughter-in-law to his mother to wait on her and be, in general, a daughter to her.” Occasionally, a live woman is taken as a wife for a dead man, but this is rare.

    The ceremony itself took on characteristics of both a marriage and a funeral, with the spirit of the deceased bride being “led” by a medium or priest, while her body is transferred from her grave to be laid next to her husband. Once the deceased son had a wife, the family could adopt an heir, or a “grandson”, to continue on the family line.

    Since it is now scientifically possible, I guess the parents are considering using a surrogate for their son’s sperm rather than adopting.

  7. RE: Fact# 8 – Senegal’s Christmas Celebration: Japan is also crazy about Christmas. More so than many European countries.

  8. RE: Fact# 24 – Diss Song Againt Hitler: But also quickly forgotten after WWII by all but British.

    This is the only part I learned 55 years ago:

    Hitler has only got one ball,

    the other is in the Albert Hall,

    his mother, the dirty bugger,

    Took the other when he was just small.

    There are other verses as well as other versions of the part I know.

    • Hey I remember this song too (80s kid used to live in England, my grandad was a tank commander in WW2 served from 1939-1946). I really know the rest of the lyrics as well (as much as my memory serves me lol), and I’ll copy and paste them below yours (albeit a little modified).

      🎶 Hitler has only got one ball,

      the other is in the Albert Hall,

      his mother, the silly bugger,

      cut it off when he was small,

      she threw it, in the deep blue sea,

      the fishes,

      looked suspicious,

      And had scallops and bollocks, for teaaaaaaaaaa!!!!! 🎶

      I know another one too.

      🎶 in the German nick,

      where they hang you by the dick,

      and the rats play snooker with your balls,

      and you’re dying for a wank,

      but your minds gone blank,

      but they hang dirty pictures on the wall 🎶

      • I do not know if this is odd or not, but I learned it in scouting. We learned it while camping in the Welsh countryside from a member of a different troop. When one boy learned it, we gradually all did as well. I heard all of the verses but only memorized the first.

        The ‘German nick’ verse does not match with the verses about Hitler, Goebbels, Goering, and Himmler; nonetheless, it may be a very well-crafted improvisation aimed at teenage boys.

      • I know the second one as:

        In the Turkish jails

        Where they hang you by the nails

        And they paint dirty pictures on the walls

        Where your hair grown thick

        From your belly to your dick

        And the mice play billiards with your balls

        Wonder where that one came from.

  9. RE: Fact# 7 – Amish Computers: Oh man, today I sure did learn something. I was perplexed as to how the Amish could use a computer because I had always assumed they didn’t have electricity. They do, however, possess it, but not via the grid:

    Since they refuse to buy electricity from the public grid, but still depend on energy for many of their everyday operations, they were forced to develop many workarounds. To power appliances, Amish use batteries, propane gas, compressed air pressure, various generators, hydraulic pumps, and even solar panels.

    • A member of an Amish community worked with me. He worked in IT. Every day, his parents would bring a large quantity of rechargeable batteries to work and spend the day charging them for use at home at night. Many people will also connect a shed or barn to electricity, internet, and possibly cable as a workaround, then walk over to the shed adjacent to their house to use those appliances. Since it’s not in the structure where they sleep, God is okay with this. Many people also own phones, but they don’t usually charge them there and sometimes even leave them outside the door. Like any other religion, there is a wide range in terms of how rigid they are and what exceptions they permit.

      • Mennonites are experts at finding loopholes.

        I grew up adjacent to a sizable community of them, and as a child, my family would frequently visit them to get maize flour, molasses, and canned vegetables.

        The most common thing I noticed was that they had a lot more room for maneuvering in terms of business. They would have their house and farm, which are as stereotypically “Amish” as they come, but one of the barns had solar panels and computers with internet where they ran their construction company. They would then get in their $80,000 fully loaded “company truck” and don Oakleys under their straw hat.

        There’s a good chance one of those jerks is inside playing Fortnite or whatever.

        (nice individuals, btw, no resentment)

    • Yes, it’s all a tax scam. I saw them using brand-new Dewalt band saws and chop saws that function on batteries, yet they refuse to install lights on their idiotic buggies that they use to travel at night on dark country roads. I agree that everyone should have the freedom to practice their beliefs, but it seems like they are a group of individuals that enjoy breaking the law and endanger other drivers. Because your God says there should be no lights at night, I don’t want to lose all I own when I crash into your horse cart at 50 mph during a storm on a back road.

  10. RE: Fact# 5 – Church Bells & Lightning: From the source

    A church’s bell ringer passed away. The church posted the job opening in the local newspaper’s classified ads and a man came in with no arms wanting the job. The clergy weren’t sure he could do it, but he convinced them to let him try it. They climbed the bell tower and the guy ran toward the bell and hit it with his head, producing a beautiful melody. They gave him the job on the spot. The next day he went to ring the bell, tripped, bounced off the bell and fell to the sidewalk below. Two priests were walking past. One asked, “Do you know this guy?” The other responded, “No, but his face rings a bell.” The next day, the dead man’s twin brother came in for the again vacant bell ringer position. He also had no arms. The clergy led him up to the bell tower, where he ran at the bell, tripped and fell to the sidewalk below. The same two priests walked up. The first asked, “Do you know him?” The second responded, “No, but he’s a dead ringer for his brother.”

  11. RE: Fact# 9 – Life Span of MREs: On the USS Austin, my team discovered a box in one of the deep magazines back in 2005. It was hidden behind a false bulkhead. It had to be 20 years old or more. The M&Ms were simply dust, but the other ingredients were still edible.

    • On YouTube, there is a channel with the name SteveMRE. His entire channel consists of him devouring a variety of MREs, some of which are as much as 150 years old.

      • I found it most shocking that Italian rations contain booze after watching his station.

        Additionally, I believe the two occasions he got sick were from eating fresh, up-to-date Chinese rations, which I find to be quite revealing.

  12. RE: Fact# 31 – Excited Delirium: For a coroner of the sixteenth century, I found this to be somewhat embarrassing. However, this occurred in 1985, yikes!

    • Oh yes. And today’s police officers use it as an excuse when they murder citizens.

      During Officer Chauvin’s murder of George Floyd, another officer was overheard saying, “I’m concerned about excited delirium.”

    • As a Canadian paramedic, I find this Wikipedia entry confusing; in Canada, excited delirium is a genuine medical emergency, not code for police abuse.

      It is plainly untrue to assert that no fatalities have resulted from this illness, which is a very dangerous and very real condition.

      • The AMA says otherwise New AMA policy opposes excited delirium diagnosis

        From Wiki:

        “It is not listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or the International Classification of Diseases, and is not recognized by the World Health Organization, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Medical Association, or the American Academy of Emergency Medicine.”

        If you read the full wiki, you will notice that it lacks evidence. And the few who assert its existence have a financial stake in it.

        The consensus is unambiguous. Most medical organizations DO NOT recognize it as a diagnosis.
        Further information

        Source 1

        Source 2

        Source 3

        Source 4

        Source 5

        Source 6

        Source 7

        Source 8

        Source 9

        Source 10

        Source 11

        • Paramedic of 12 years here, US based. They taught us about it when I went through school, typically presents as a consequence of stimulant abuse. I can acknowledge that the term probably has a deeply unsavory history. To be frank, that’s basically most of modern medicine. Call it what you want, but a 400 lb dude who’s trying to beat the shit out of everyone nearby because he’s convinced he’s got a devil inside him by any other name is just as excited and delirious.

  13. RE: Fact# 9 – Life Span of MREs: I recall when they distributed them to Katrina refugees. The victims were reportedly accusing the MREs of being inhumane, according to the news, which covered a program about food relief.

    Then I went to the surplus store and saw several that I simply had to try. The pork one I had was decent; it tasted much like a McRib without the bread. Heating it up was quite cool; all you had to do was add a little water to what appeared to be metal shavings in a bag. I didn’t think it was cruel, but I probably won’t eat another one until I absolutely must.

    • Simply said, those who believe MREs are inhumane are too soft. MREs work well for what they are intended to be: hot food in an emergency.

      • And a ginormous amount of calories. MREs are meant to be simple and quick to eat while giving all the calories, lipids, and vitamins to keep someone going. I believe that many MREs chalk up to roughly 1300 calories per bag, even if many don’t taste great. If a soldier can endure a month of MRES while engaging in constant, physically demanding activity and battle. Then, a random citizen will have little trouble subsisting on them.

        The only drawback is that your body will get so incredibly constipated if you eat an MRE three times a day without doing anything to merit that many calories-dense meals.

      • I’ll have to agree with you there. I had to once consume them three times a day for 21 days straight. Once you start only eating two a day and keep getting the same ones, you simply start losing weight. When we take one out of the box, we aren’t permitted to peek. You can exchange, but sometimes it gets frustrating to keep getting the same thing. But you toughen up and make do with what you’re given or starve; it doesn’t matter if you eat; you still have to perform to the standard that was specified.

  14. RE: Fact# 39 – London Frost Fairs: The final Frost Fair took place in 1814, with the conclusion of the Little Ice Age. On the frozen river, a 9-pin bowling alley, pubs, food, and drinks were all put up, and an elephant wandered across the ice. On February 5, as the ice began to break up after only four days, several people drowned.

    • Charles Dickens is a significant contributor to the current popularity of “white Christmas.” Born in 1812 and relocating to London in 1815, Dickens’ formative years missed the elephant and the last of the full ice fairs, but they undoubtedly shaped his conception of Christmas and his upbringing. His 1843 A Christmas Carol helped reignite the celebration of Christmas during a time when it was waning in England due to the industrial revolution.

  15. RE: Fact# 14 – Boris Karloff: Ahhh yes, the best Pratt in Hollywood. The man began his acting career in my hometown of Kamloops, British Columbia, so I may be predisposed.

    Fun fact: William Pratt changed his name to Boris Karloff in order to blend in with the local theater company, which had a reputation for being comprised of rough, macho, inebriated rednecks. He utilized the stage name Boris Karloff to apply for the position since he believed it sounded more tougher.

  16. RE: Fact# 19 – Nicaragua vs United States: The US has a remarkable track record of creating international tribunals, insisting that everyone participate, and then disbanding them as soon as they start to cause inconvenience to them.

    The US still adheres to the military doctrine known as “Plan Orange,” which states that should any member of the US military or government end up in the custody of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, the US will invade the Netherlands to liberate them.

    • The US has served as the “World’s Policeman” for the past 70 years or so. The refrain is “we examined ourselves and found no misconduct,” which is similar to criticism of contemporary policing.

      America contributes 25% of the UN budget. With dozens of nations, it has alliances, defense pacts, and trade agreements.

      Nobody else is stepping forward to fill the void. Brexit has made a complete mess of the UK. France is renowned for being uniquely French and rarely intervenes outside of the francosphere. We can see what China and Russia desire from world relations. America is a thorn in the world’s side.

  17. RE: Fact# 9 – Life Span of MREs: I believe I can top everybody. In 81, I enlisted. Because MREs weren’t yet available, we had c rations. While eating one, I was casually reading the box’s printing. Given that the packaging date was 1957, the beef came from a cow that had passed away before I was born.

  18. RE: Fact# 11 – Shorter Work Week: Further context:

    I assumed George Jetson worked every day because of the show and the way the opener always showed him leaving for work, even if he appeared to be a lazy. It turned out that he only worked two days a week, for an hour each day. Which means he was supporting a family of four, a dog, and a luxury home in the sky with just two hours of work per week.

    In the 1960s, futurists and a Senate committee sincerely predicted that by the year 2000, the standard full-time workweek will be at least 14 hours, albeit 24 hours is currently regarded as part-time.

    George really works 7 hours less per week than the average person in Orbit City, where he lives and works, where a workweek of 9 hours is the norm. Another exception comes from a chat he had with his wife Jane about how his supervisor is making him work TWO hours in a single day, which they both find to be inhumane.

    “Yesterday I worked for two hours straight!” George grumbles after having countless nightmares. Jane, his wife, is horrified. “Well, what do you suppose Spacely is running? It’s a sweatshop?

    Overall, back then, people had a lot of hope for the future.


    • It turned out that he only worked two days a week, for an hour each day. Which means he was supporting a family of four, a dog, and a luxury home in the sky with just two hours of work per week.

      It was better or worse than that. The Jetsons were LOWER CASTE! George Jetson doesn’t have a lot of money, and it’s kind of indicated that the reason for this is that George is a real lazy. Nevertheless, despite being from a lower class, George Jetson provides for his wife and two kids, has an apartment, a maid, a car, and really has nothing to complain about with only two hours of labor a week!

  19. RE: Fact# 15 – Mole Man of Hackney: “After this, Lyttle was moved to a hotel for three years, before being rehoused in an apartment in a high-rise building. He was put on the top floor, to discourage tunnelling.[6] While there he knocked a hole in a dividing wall between two rooms.[7]”

    LOL. This guy’s a legend

  20. RE: Fact# 23 – Bessie Smith’s Grave: Bessie Smith was killed in a vehicle accident during the Great Depression in 1937. Money was scarce, which may partially explain her estranged husband’s actions. In addition, she was traveling with her lover, who was driving, which affected her husband’s actions. Janis Joplin paid for Bessie Smith’s tombstone in 1970, just before her own death in the same year. Bessie Smith was one of the most renowned African-American vocalists of her day when she passed away.

    • This is why I sometimes dislike short facts such as these. As with any other title, it is simple to make something sound shocking when it is not.

      According to wikipedia, Bessie Smith married Jack Gee in 1923. Prior to their separation (without divorce) in 1929, they cheated heavily on each other. Seven years later, in 1937, she passes away. Yes, it is shady to keep the money, but he has the legal right to do so. Relationship-wise, none of them appeared to be very good people.

  21. RE: Fact# 18 – Sigmund Freud: If the table I came across is correct then 31k RM equals around $15.2k in 1938 and 1938 $15.2k comes up to around $319k 2022

        • That wasn’t even the worst of it. In spite of the fact that some of the Jews who settled in Germany were nationals of other nations (Poland, Lithuania, etc.), other nations were anti-Semitic enough to either refuse them passports outright or at the very least delay giving them. Therefore, even if you wanted to leave Germany, you wouldn’t have the proper documentation to cross the border.

          During the biggest crisis of this type, Poland refused to accept many thousands of its own citizens expelled by Germany, who were forced to stay in no-man’s land at the border for months.

  22. RE: Fact# 13 – Typewriter to Prevent Leaks: From the source

    “After scandals with the distribution of secret documents by WikiLeaks, the exposes by Edward Snowden, reports about Dmitry Medvedev being bugged during his visit to the G20 London summit (in 2009), it has been decided to expand the practice of creating paper documents,” the source said.

    So, the motivation was not exactly exclusive to leaks in the Kremlin. Snowden leaked stuff from the American NSA, no?

    • One of the top 5 Russian history scholars in the US taught a class on the history of the Soviet secret police in college that I took. After the USSR collapsed in 1991–1992, this guy’s early academic work involved collecting funding to fly himself, graduate students, and a few copier machines to Moscow and copy and transmit back as much declassified information as they could. He made a fairly direct assessment, claiming that the west had never really had a successful plant in the KGB and that their two or three greatest success stories from the Cold War had actually been double agents. Since the demise of the USSR and the development of technology, he asserted, it has only become worse. He claimed that although the Russians are aware that they cannot compete with western technology, they have been using secret police and espionage for so long that they have mastered and are still using non-tech alternatives that cannot be traced. For instance, he asserted that there were hundreds of Russian spies in the US in 2010, even though he was convinced that no such spies would be working in the country or stealing hard drives from the government, etc. He asserts that they memorize or otherwise record information and that they frequently distribute it to others using dead drops and other non-contact techniques. We believe we are succeeding since they don’t have burner phones or any other technology, making them invisible to us.

    • Yes, the above fact makes no sense, lol. The Snowden (and Manning) leaks, if anything, demonstrated that you cannot secure your way out of those who leak information from within the agency. They even talk about the typewriters leaving unique signatures on the paper, which would be for catching leakers, not stopping outside access to computer systems.

  23. RE: Fact# 15 – Mole Man of Hackney: Holy fuck, what a serious addict and troublemaker this guy was.

    Lyttle’s work attracted complaints from neighbours when sinkholes began to appear in the pavement, and when water and power supplies were interrupted. The local pub also expressed concern that its cellar could collapse into one of Lyttle’s tunnels.

    [After he was evicted,] 33 tonnes of soil and debris were removed from Lyttle’s former garden and from some of the rooms, including the wrecks of three cars and a boat.

        • What a bizarre Wiki page. There are several tunnelers listed there. Many of them were probably on the spectrum and simply used this method to channel their energies. One man dug a tunnel through rock for 32 years. WTF?

  24. RE: Fact# 16 – Steinert Hall Under Piano Store: It was shut down as a result of new fire safety laws brought about by the Cocoanut Grove Fire, which claimed the lives of 492 people.

    • According to what I understand of the report, there are no steps at all and only a lift can get you there. With today’s standards, that is unacceptable.

      • Although there are stairs, commercial and public buildings must now all have at least two independent exits as a result of the Grove Fire. Therefore, drilling a new stair shaft on the opposite side of the hall was the only way for the Hall to comply with the code.

      • Fair warning: after learning about this fire, I became aware of a ton of additional fire tragedies, and now I frequently experience panic attacks in crowded places.

        • There are numerous infamous fires in the UK where significant numbers of people have perished. The list is as long as your arm. Sadly, our health and safety laws are written in blood, and following the 2017 Grenfell tower disaster, we now have new building safety laws addressing safety in tall structures. After the 1985 Bradford fire and the Summerlands fire on the Isle of Mann, safety in sports arenas and recreation facilities was enhanced. Following the Kings Cross fire, the London Underground removed all wooden escalators, and in 2005 we received a new fire safety order. It is continuously changing.

  25. RE: Fact# 28 – Black Arrow Rocket: This has been the primary issue with the British investment strategy for at least fifty years. When it comes to defense, technology, and infrastructure programs, we have always gone for the cheaper, streamlined option. When the more expensive domestic investments would have yielded significantly greater returns over time.

  26. RE: Fact# 45 – Jet Turbine Blades Structure: Additionally, it is practically hard to balance a rotor with the precision required to prevent bearing destruction. What is the solution? It is positioned on a flexible shaft. Permitting the turbine to rotate about its mass center as opposed to its geometric center.

  27. RE: Fact# 42 – Wooden Fireplace: This is not true of all fireplaces, as I grew up with a glass-door fireplace.

    When you ignite the fireplace, you should use tinder and kindling to get the fire going. The fireplace and room temperature have reached balance at this moment. The colder fire will produce billowing smoke that ascends the chimney and fills the room. At this point, you must close the glass door and open the baffles beneath the doors to allow fresh air to enter while preventing smoke from rising.

    Once your primary logs are burning well, the hearth will be sufficiently hot for the updraft to pull the smoke upward. At this time, the glass doors are opened to let in the fire’s early heat. Smoke still rises, but the room is rapidly heated.

    This updraft, in conjunction with a heated chamber, will permit a raging fire. This is NOT productive. You’ll consume logs at a rapid rate. Once the room has reached the desired temperature, close the lower baffles and glass doors. Convection will draw in sufficient air to prevent the flames from suffocating, but the lack of oxygen will cause the fire to burn more slowly. At this stage, you can adjust the heat using the bottom baffles.

    What you want to do is heat up the brick or masonry of the fireplace (thermal mass) to generate a slow, steady heat. It’s not about having a blazing fire, but about keeping the fire as slow as possible to conserve wood and limit the amount of time spent tending to it.

  28. RE: Fact# 19 – Nicaragua vs United States: Due to a lack of enforcement mechanisms, one of the problems with international law is that it is more of a recommendation than anything else.

    And the USA wasn’t the first country to do this with the ICJ: in 1962, France opted to stop recognizing any jurisdiction over cases involving national security following complaints from nations testing nuclear weapons in the Pacific.

  29. RE: Fact# 26 – Persian Limes: Citrus is quite interesting; oranges are also a hybrid of a mandarin and a pomelo; grapefruits are a hybrid of those hybrid oranges and a Caribbean-developed pomelo; and my favorite citrus fruit is the bitter orange. Seville oranges are the same hybrid but with a different type of pomelo, and lemons, pomelo, mandarins, key limes, and all other citrus fruits that aren’t taxonomically classified as hybrids are actually hybrids of citron and unknown fruits.

    I bought key limes to make a pie this past summer and found that I like them better than “regular” limes, they’re very bitter but in a much more pleasant way than lemons or “regular limes” and even though they’re half the size you get double the amount of juice. Same thing with quinces which are one of the ancestors of the apple, I get pies that are less goopy and sickeningly sweet if I use quinces and honey rather than regular apples.

  30. RE: Fact# 27 – First Recipe of Mac & Cheese: Here’s the recipe-


    Take and make a thynne foyle of dowh. and kerve it on peces, and cast hem on boillyng water & seeþ it wele. take chese and grate it and butter cast bynethen and above as losyns. and serue forth.


    the recipe below this:

    Take wyne and hony and found it [2] togyder and skym it clene. and seeþ it long, do þerto powdour of gyngur. peper and salt, tost brede and lay the sew þerto. kerue pecys of gyngur and flour it þerwith and messe it forth.

    Looks like it’s Torrijas (Spanish French toast) and I definitely want to try it.

  31. RE: Fact# 32 – Fisheries Observers: I have spent almost one thousand days at sea doing this job. I worked in Alaska, Hawaii, and the eastern United States. Conditions ranged from factory-like boats in Alaska to no toilets, no showers, and an abundance of roaches and bedbugs in Hawaii to a sort of mix on the continental United States. My love-hate relationship with the job was tremendous. I’ve observed more fish and marine life than the majority of “marine biologists.” I have been immersed in the culture of Northeastern, Vietnamese, Korean, and Philippine fishermen. I have not seen land in over 50 days. I had consumed the most fresh fish possible. I’ve visited incredible ports and much of the nation. However, I endured a great deal of hostility, unclean circumstances, and tremendous isolation. I have friends who have “disappeared” or lost their minds. It was amazing, lonely, enriching, and satisfying simultaneously.

      • There were two alternatives available. The first item was a five-gallon bucket. The rookie error is not adding water to the bottom first. This makes it extremely difficult to clean. The second alternative was to dangle your ass over the edge of the boat and let loose. The disadvantage is that you run the chance of slipping overboard and “disappearing.” No one wants to leave in such a manner. The chance of falling overboard is terrifying. The boats are nearly always in motion. There’s a chance you won’t be missed for hours, and it’s damn difficult to find someone in that vast ocean. It would be a lonely death, bobbing for hours or days in the ocean while hoping to be miraculously rescued and fighting tiredness to keep afloat.

        Others devised various solutions. One person I know would simply place newspaper on the deck and squat.

    • I’ve worked in the Bering Sea fishing fleet for around 15 years and have always gotten along with the observers. We have a zero-tolerance policy for harassment, and all allegations of harassment are taken seriously. However, it appears that not all boats are like this.

  32. RE: Fact# 22 – Death Peter Zhu: “I’m very sorry Mr. and Mrs. Zhu but it appears that your son has no brain func–

    “We want his cum.”

    “I’m sorry, you want his semen?”

    “We have here a signed writ from the Supreme Court allowing us to have all that sweet sweet braindead cum, now I don’t care, doctor, if you have to suck it out of him yourself but we aren’t leaving here without a vial of his spunk.”

    “But isn’t the Supreme Court just regular court with sour cream and tomatos?”

    “You’re a doctor and don’t know that the plural of tomato ends with an ‘es’?”

    “Wait, you can see the words that I’m saying?”

    “We are all just characters in some asshole’s Reddit comment doctor now get in there and jack off my braindead son before his jizz goes bad and we sue this entire hospital.”

  33. RE: Fact# 20 – Emperor Norton: He was renowned for refusing charity, but he frequently observed that the person who had just offered it hadn’t just paid their imperial taxes, so he would accept it in its place.

    A young police officer once detained him for vagrancy with the intention of getting him a warm jail cell to spend the night in. Emperor Norton was released as a result of the overwhelming outrage. Later, he officially absolved the young officer of all misconduct, claiming that all he had been doing was carrying out his duty.

  34. RE: Fact# 21 – Making of A Christmas Carol: Walking is an extremely effective approach to think and get ino tyour own head. Every day, I take roughly 10,000 steps, and throughout that time, I try to solve problems.

    • Okay, but what’s a wonderful way to break free of your own thoughts? Sometimes I get so lost in my thoughts that I fall into a negative loop and lose sight of reality. I can’t seem to snap out of it in a positive way.

      • You might give some mindfulness exercises a shot. They assisted me in overcoming the same kind of destructive circular thinking that you appear to struggle with.

      • I realize this is a boring answer, but go to the gym. While working out, nothing else is allowed to cross your mind. It also aids in boosting self-esteem if you struggle with it.

        • I support this. This year, when I stopped working out, my depression significantly worse. My stomach’s loose skin made it practically impossible for me to continue working out at the gym, and at the same time, I started a second job that sapped all of my energy. I used to work out intensely (and dropped 115 pounds). I just had an abdominalplasty to get rid of the excess skin, and I can’t wait to start working out again. It will still be a few months before I can, but I am positive that exercising DOES help, even though it is not a complete cure. Even if it’s only 5%, it’s still something.

          Also Sunshine . I can already feel the winter approaching, and it’s only just begun.

  35. RE: Fact# 35 – Pakistan’s PMs & Corruption: In Pakistan, the role of prime minister is mostly symbolic. Comparable to what existed in Myanmar. The military enables citizens to vote and the prime minister to make speeches and ask for aid, but the military chiefs control the military and economic operations.

  36. RE: Fact# 49 – Pruno Prison Drink: During one season in the Aleutians, our ship ran short of alcohol, so my bunkmates brewed a large quantity. Waiting for it to be ready was such a test of patience for those of us in our twenties. It had the same flavor going down as it did coming up.

  37. RE: Fact# 34 – Bela Lugosi’s Early Life: Bela Lugosi was also a communist and was forced to leave Hungary due in part to his involvement in revolutionary operations. Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi contributed to the founding of the Screen Actors Guild. His inability to secure better jobs later in his career has been attributed to a variety of factors, including racism and opiate addiction; nonetheless, I would not be shocked if his politics played a role in his exclusion.

  38. RE: Fact# 44 – Douglas Engelbart : Given that the cost of the tech demo that introduced Steve Jobs to the GUI was Xerox’s ability to purchase 100,000 shares of Apple stock at a pre-IPO price of $10 per share, this is an acceptable price. Not bad, considering Apple’s IPO price was $22.00, and it finished at $29 Remember that this occurred before a lengthy line of CEOs who desperately attempted to bring the corporation to ruin.

    But I digress. This option to purchase one million dollars’ worth of shares was not a license or anything of the sort; it was merely a demonstration, because Xerox PARC was where all the fun things was happening. Yes, at Xerox. Stop laughing; this is not humorous. Okay, cool things were also occurring at IBM… I’m going to leave if you cannot take this matter seriously.

    Anyway, that price tag did not include a license, so Xerox waited to see how the “look and feel” portion of the Apple-Microsoft legal battles played out. If Apple could sue Microsoft for essentially stealing the Mac interface for Windows, then Xerox could sue Apple for doing the same for the Macintosh operating system. However, it turns out that appearance is not legally protected, and converting a trash can into a recycle bin is just enough of a difference to qualify as unique. Consequently, Xerox never received more from Apple than a good stock acquisition price.

    No, I am unable to tell you when Xerox sold the shares. Hopefully before the conclusion of the Sculley administration, much less Michael Spindler or Gil Amelio, who were desperately attempting to sell the corporation to any moron who would purchase it. Apple once had approximately two weeks of operating capital remaining. Due to stock splits (a 4-for-1, a 7-for-1, and three 2-for-1) and other factors, that $10 per share would have been worth around a cent per share today. Remember that towards the end of 1997, Apple was on the edge of bankruptcy and its split-adjusted stock price hovered around 15 cents. Nobody knew if Apple would exist in six months, and if a time traveler had told you that it would be the largest firm, you would have asked him where he gets his drugs, therefore Xerox probably sold before Apple.



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