Random #381 – 50 Unique Facts You Didn’t Know

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1 Louis XIV’s Spice Preference

Louis XIV's Spice Preference

During King Louis XIV’s reign, he popularized pairing salt with pepper since he disliked dishes with overwhelming flavors. Pepper was the only spice that complemented salt and didn’t dominate the taste.


2. The Australian Ibis (also known as bin chickens) have learned how to eat the invasive and poisonous cane toad. They do this by picking the toad up, shaking it around to get it to expel its poison and empty its poison sacs, then washing the poison off with water.


3. New York’s Paramount Theater would reek of urine after Frank Sinatra shows because the bobby-soxers, young female fans characterized by their enthusiasm and penchant for wearing rolled-down socks (bobby socks), would attend the first show at 9:15 a.m. and stay for subsequent shows, determined never to relinquish their precious seats even if it meant soaking in them.


4. Only about 20% of homes in the UK are completely detached with zero shared walls, whereas almost 85% of homes in the US are detached.


5. The antimony pill, also known as the everlasting pill, was used in the 18th and early 19th centuries for stomach relief. Made out of the element antimony, they were taken orally as a laxative for constipated bowels. It was reusable after being expelled, making it very cost-effective. Entire families used the same pill, which sometimes went through multiple generations.


6 Boeing’s Tariff Tactics

Boeing's Tariff Tactics

In 2017, Boeing pressured the US government to impose a 300% tariff on imports of Bombardier C-Series planes. The situation got bad enough that Canada filed a complaint at the WTO against the US. Eventually, Bombardier subsequently sold a 50.01% stake in the plane to Boeing’s main competitor, Airbus, for $1, since Airbus offered to produce it for US customers in its US assembly line in order to circumvent the tariff.


7. David Bowie concluded the Ziggy Stardust persona and effectively disbanded The Spiders from Mars during their final performance at London’s Hammersmith Odeon on July 3rd, 1973. Much to the astonishment of both fans and the band, Bowie declared, “Not only is it the last show of the tour, but it’s the last show we’ll ever do.”


8. Despite consuming over 10,000 calories daily, sumo wrestlers have minimal visceral fat due to their rigorous training. The intensity of their workouts is such that they can lose over 10 pounds of sweat in a single session.


9. Modern Africa is associated with large mammals like elephants, lions, and rhinos, but large mammals had a global distribution until a mass extinction roughly 11,700 years ago, and Africa is simply the only continent that retained a large number of them.


10. Korean astronauts eat a version of kimchi that has been irradiated to kill all of the microorganisms.


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11 Tragic Tale of Peter Pan’s Voice

Tragic Tale of Peter Pan's Voice

Bobby Driscoll, the voice of Disney’s Peter Pan, lost his film contract due to acne related to puberty. He subsequently turned to drugs, went to prison, hung out with Andy Warhol, and died penniless and alone in an abandoned building in the East Village.


12. In 2015, Billy Mitchell filed a lawsuit against Cartoon Network, claiming that a character who cheats at video games in the series Regular Show infringed on his likeness. Years later, the legitimacy of a number of his records was called into question, leading to them being stripped.


13. When Prince changed his name to a symbol, Warner Bros. distributed floppy disks to major news outlets containing the digital representation of the symbol.


14. Referencing the movie Topgun or its sequel while at training at the Topgun school incurs an immediate $5 fine for all personnel because it is seen as conflicting with the institute’s atmosphere of professionalism.


15. In the 1990s, Donnie Yen (known for his roles in Ip Man, Star Wars, and John Wick) and his girlfriend Joey Meng were leaving a club in Hong Kong when they were attacked by a group of men who had been bothering them earlier that night. Donnie hospitalized all eight of them.


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16 Toxoplasma Gondii and Human Behavior

Toxoplasma Gondii and Human Behavior

There is a parasite that can infect the human brain and alter our behavior. Toxoplasma gondii infection can cause road rage, increase the chances of dying in a road accident, and much more.


17. Osceola was a prominent Native American leader, and the doctor who attended to him ignored Osceola’s dying wish to be buried in Florida. Instead, the doctor removed Osceola’s head after his death and displayed it in his drug store. When his children misbehaved, the doctor would move the head to their room for the night.


18. David Bowie was born David Jones. When starting out, Davy Jones of The Monkees was already famous, so he had to choose a different stage name. His first choice was Tom Jones.


19. In 1995, a woman who went by the name Jennifer Fairgate was found dead in a locked Oslo hotel room with a gunshot wound to the head. Ballistics showed that suicide was not possible. Yet there were fingerprints, and strangely, her clothing labels were all removed, making it impossible to identify her. Theories speculate that she was a spy.


20. In 2016, Burger King opened a spa in one of its restaurants in Helsinki, Finland. Customers could enjoy a Whopper while sitting in the 15-seater sauna room, and the spa also featured showers, PlayStation, TVs, and beverages, with the price set at $283 per person.


15 Most Controversial & Costly Blunders in History


21 Feels Like Temperature Explanation

Feels Like Temperature Explanation

The “feels like” temperature refers to an actual physical difference in how quickly your body loses heat rather than just the psychological perception of temperature.


22. The movie Zoolander was released two weeks after 9/11, with the World Trade Center digitally removed from the background skyline.


23. Luciano Re Cecconi, an Italian football legend, died in 1977 while pulling a prank on a friend’s jewelry store, posing as a robber. As the store had actually been robbed, the scared owner shot Cecconi dead. His last words were, “It’s just a joke! It’s just a joke!”


24. In 1967, a man named Thomas Jolley fled the US to Canada and renounced his citizenship to avoid being drafted in the Vietnam War. A few months later, he returned to the US and was ordered deported, but Canada refused to accept him back. He spent the rest of his life in the US as an illegal alien.


25. The Academic Quarter, established in the early 18th century, was designed to accommodate students and professors who didn’t own pocket watches. It allowed them extra time to arrive after hearing the church’s clock strike the hour. People could arrive at academic gatherings during this quarter-hour grace period without having to adhere to the clock’s strict requirements for punctuality.


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