Random Fact Sheet #153 – 35 Unconventional Facts That Will Leave You Wanting More

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1Power button symbol

Power button symbol

The power button symbol used in modern electronics is based on binary’s off (0) and on (1).

2. While high on substances and during a meeting with a CBS executive in Germany, Ozzy Osbourne performed a Nazi goose-step on the executive's table before dipping his testicles in the executive's wine and then urinating in it. He only came to find out what he had done later by Sharon Osbourne.

3. "Hickam's dictum" is a counterargument to Occam's razor in the medical profession. While Occam's razor suggests to a doctor that they should assume the simplest solution - a single cause for multiple symptoms, Hickam's dictum states: "A patient can have as many diseases as he damn well pleases."

4. In 2010, a 12-year-old girl named Martina Maturana saved much of her village's population on the remote Chilean Pacific Island from being killed by a tsunami. She noticed the fishing boats bobbing crazily in the morning and ran 400 to the town square to ring the warning bell.

5. In 2017, scientists at the Columbia University in New York City were able to store a full operating system and a film on to a DNA and then were able to recover the data back with no errors.

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6Japanese adults

Japanese adults

39.5% of Japanese adults sleep less than 6 hours a night making naps in public a social norm, even to the point that napping during work is often seen as a subtle sign of diligence. They have a social belief that you must be working yourself to exhaustion.

7. In 1927, a bank robber dressed as Santa Claus was responsible for the death of 6 people during his robbery and getaway in a small Texas town. When he was caught and thrown in jail, nearly 2,000 people showed up, pushed past the guards, dragged him out of the jail and hanged him.

8. The band Aerosmith once bailed out at least 30 of their fans who were arrested for smoking weed at their show.

9. Mark Henry has the world record for combined lifts of snatch, clean and jerk, squat, bench press and deadlift totaling 3324.5 lbs all in drug tested competitions, making him arguably the strong man to have ever lived.

10. The default location of an IP address in the USA, if no more granular location information is available is mapped to a farm in Kansas. Because of this, the owners have been constantly harassed and visited by the FBI, IRS, and others who have been scammed by someone with a US IP address.

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11Catcher in the Rye

Catcher in the Rye

Catcher in the Rye isn't available in an ebook form because J.D. Salinger refused to allow adaptations to the book and even after his death, his agents continue to uphold his wishes.

12. During Jose Fernandez's 4th attempt to defect from Cuba to the U.S., a person fell overboard. Jose jumped into the waters and saved the person. He recalled, "I don't remember much, just diving in the water and swimming towards this woman. As I was getting close, I could see it was my mother."

13. Senator Strom Thurmond, a pro-segregationist, had a mixed-race African American daughter (Essie Mae Washington Williams) that was kept a secret until after his death in 2003.

14. Carrie Fisher's ashes are contained inside a giant novelty Prozac pill.

15. NASA makes a movie poster every time they send an expedition to the international space station. Some of the themes are The Matrix, Star Wars and Pirates of the Caribbean.

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16Alcohol abuse

Alcohol abuse

Between 1998 and 2016 Iceland managed to reduce the number of 15 and 16-year-olds who had been drunk in the previous month from 42% to 5%.

17. MIT lawyers did not patent turn-by-turn in-car navigation in 1989 because "This will never happen.. because the insurance companies won't allow it."

18. A Filipino diver from the Badjao tribe can descend 65 feet to the sea floor and stay underwater for up to 5 minutes. Even without weights, he is negatively buoyant and can 'walk' across the bottom of the sea as if like hunting on land.

19. The most expensive Mega-Project ever was Eisenhower's Interstate Highway System, costing $500 billion, spanning 48,181 miles, and dwarfing the cost of every other Mega-Project in history.

20. In 2011, a U.S. marine called customer support for help in the middle of a firefight to get help with his M107 sniper rifle which wasn’t firing consistently. The armorer instructed the marine on how to correct the problem and within 45 seconds, the weapon was firing properly.



Elephants are very good swimmers. Once an elephant was rescued from the ocean 10 miles off the Sri Lankan coast. It got caught in a current off the coast near Kokkilai but it was still swimming.

22. The Americans leveled an island in the Philippines to build a concrete battleship, Fort Drum. Captured by the Japanese during World War 2, the Americans retook it by pouring gasoline inside and setting it aflame, killing every Japanese soldier inside.

23. Dragonflies have one of the highest hunting success rates in the animal kingdom at 97% (compared to a lion's mere 20%).

24. The earliest written record of the Finnish language is an early 13th century travel journal log stating, “I want to speak Finnish, [but] I am not able.”

25. In 2017, cops in the small Dutch town of Nijmegan-Zuid arrested a 99-year-old woman named Annie just so that she could cross it off her bucket list.

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