Random Fact Sheet #154 – 45 Random Trivia Tidbits

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26Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton’s father paid for her birth with a sack of oats. She is the fourth of 12 children born to Robert and Avie Lee Parton of Sevierville, Tennessee. Her family was so poor that grain was all her father had to give the doctor who delivered her.

27. Charlie Chaplin, while directing his movie “City Lights”, made actress Virginia Cherrill re-do a scene 342 times where she says “Flower Sir?” The movie was a silent film.

28. AIDS was originally called GRID or “Gay Related Immune Deficiency”. In the early days of the disease, it was also known as “Gay Cancer.”

29. Oolichan is a smelt-like fish that is so greasy, with up to 15% of total body weight in fat, that if caught, dried, and strung on a wick, it can be burned as a candle. Thus it is also known as the “candlefish.”

30. In 2016, mummified body of a German man named Manfred Fritz Bajorat was found in his yacht adrift off the Philippines. He had reportedly been sailing the world on his yacht, Sayo, for the past 20 years. The corpse was found slumped at the desk ‘like he was sleeping’ in his yacht cabin, floating in the Pacific.

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31Chocolate Consumption

Chocolate Consumption

The average Chinese consumer has only 70g of chocolate a year while the average European consumer has 7kg.

32. In 1975 George R. R. Martin wrote a short story titled “The Last Superbowl” which depicted the last game of real sports to ever be played due to the rise in popularity of simulated sports. The fictional game took place in January 2016 between the Green Bay Packers and The Hoboken Jets.

33. In the Mexican state of Chiapas, Coca-Cola is easier to find than bottled water and this has led to a diabetes epidemic which has increased 30 percent between 2013 and 2016 and it is now the second-leading cause of death after heart disease.

34. Joker was intended to be killed off in his second appearance after his debut in Batman #1 (1940). The decision was however hastily withdrawn and Joker went on to become one of the greatest comic book villains and a pop-culture icon.

35. The biblical Tower of Babel was likely based on a real building, the Etemenanki which was located in modern-day Iraq. At about 300 feet tall, it was massive by ancient standards and was built by King Nebuchadnezzar II.

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36Trail of Tears

Trail of Tears

The American Indian tribes removed to Oklahoma in the “Trail of Tears” were considered “civilized” and had adopted “Christianity, centralized governments, literacy, market participation, written constitutions, intermarriage with white Americans, and plantation slavery practices.”

37. In war, it is illegal under the Geneva Convention to pretend to be injured in order to trick the enemy.

38. Baron Friedrich Von Steuben, Revolutionary War General, hero, and founder of America's professional military was gay.

39. Conrad Heyer, in 1852 at the age of 103, became the earliest born person to ever be photographed.

40. The “Nigerian Prince” money scam people receive through email can actually be dated back as far as the 1830s, with people receiving letters that falsely promise gold and diamonds in return for money.

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41Mitochondrial DNA

Mitochondrial DNA

Of all the humans tested so far, everyone has contained the same DNA from 1 of at least 2 ancestors with mitochondrial DNA being traced back matrilineally to a specific “mT-Eve,” and a Y-chromosome being traced back patrilineally to a specific “Y-chromosomal Adam.”

42. The pecan industry's success is attributed to a slave named Antoine, who was a gardener and expert grafter of pecan trees. In 1876, nuts from Antoine's trees were displayed alongside Bell’s telephone, the Remington typewriter, Heinz ketchup, and the right arm and torch of the Statue of Liberty.

43. One of the origin theories of the modern military salute comes from France. Knights were thought to greet one another in respect by lifting their visor with their free hand to reveal their face. The hand gesture of lifting the visor is similar to the “salute” hand gesture we do today.

44. The Haast’s Eagle which went extinct 500 years ago was the largest eagle to have ever existed, and evidence shows it may have occasionally preyed on humans.

45. The 1954 animated adaptation of George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” was anonymously funded by the CIA. They also influenced the film’s development, including changing to a more optimistic ending and changing certain characters’ ideologies. Their involvement was kept hidden for over 20 years.

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