Random Fact Sheet #172 – Explore the Extraordinary With These 40 Facts

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1Gene deletion

Gene deletion

Deleting a certain gene in mice can make them smarter by unlocking a mysterious region of the brain considered to be relatively inflexible. Scientists at Emory University have named this gene associated with memory and learning the "Homer Simpson gene."

2. A 25-year old man named Ramveer Tanwar in India has up until 2019 revived 12 dead lakes in India to fight off water scarcity.

3. The kidnapping for a 4-year-old American named Charley Ross in 1874, for ransom (considered the first in US history) became a nationwide sensation. Charley, who was never found, was lured by two men offering candy and fireworks, giving rise to the warning “never take candy from strangers.”

4. A child once turned orange from drinking too much Sunny Delight. The company used Beta-Carotene (found in carrots) to color the drink which can make you orange at extremely high doses. The girl was drinking 1.5 liters a day.

5. A Basset Hound named Yo-Yo was kept by the master of Selwyn College in U.K. Dogs are not allowed on the premises, so Yo-Yo has been officially classified as a “very large cat” so that the master can keep him on the campus.

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In 2008, two pygmy whales, a mother, and a calf got stranded in a beach unable to navigate back to the ocean past a series of sandbanks. Seeing their plight a dolphin arrived and guided the whales 200 yards along the shoreline and out through a channel into the open sea.

7. Spiders legs extend using hydraulic pressure from their circulatory system, and when they are crushed the legs curl in due to the loss in pressure.

8. Wolves have arrived and now outnumber the residents of Chernobyl. They are multiplying and the overall wildlife in the area is now flourishing due to the lack of human interference and competition.

9. Tesseract is the name of a real geometrical concept. It is a cube in 4-dimensional space. It is a 4D shape whose every face is a cube. Just like a cube can be unfolded into 6 squares in 2D space, a tesseract can be unfolded into 8 cubes in 3D space.

10. Dwight's brother Mose (Michael Schur) in The Office was the producer of The Office, as well as the creator of Parks and Recreation, The Good Place and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

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11Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood was offered the role of James Bond following the departure of Sean Connery but turned it down due to his belief that the character should be played by an English actor.

12. A Polish poet named Stanisław Jerzy Lec in 1943 tried to escape from a Nazi work camp in Tarnopol (now Ukraine), for which he was sentenced to death. While digging his own grave, he killed a guard with a shovel and successfully escaped disguised as a Wehrmacht soldier.

13. The deepest ocean sinkhole in the world is in the South China Sea and is named the Dragon Hole, or Longdong. It is roughly 987 feet deep. Below 328 feet, the hole is devoid of oxygen and deadly to marine life.

14. Fentanyl lollipops are used in the US military to treat combat casualties. They are taped to the victim's finger so that, once sedated, they let the lollipop fall from their mouth to reduce the chance of overdoses.

15. Brad Pitt agreed to do a brief cameo in Deadpool 2 for just the daily minimum rate (less than $1000 per day) plus a cup of coffee hand delivered by Ryan Reynolds.

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16British royal family

British royal family

Men who marry into the British royal family can never become King. They only have the opportunity of being Prince consort. However, women who marry in have the opportunity of becoming Queen.

17. Iwao Takamoto, the creator of Scooby Doo learned to animate from fellow prisoners while incarcerated in the Manzanar internment camp for Japanese-Americans during World War 2.

18. Wilfred Pickles was a northern English BBC newsreader during the World War 2. Because of his strong Yorkshire accent, he was chosen for the job as “a deliberate attempt to make it more difficult for Nazis to impersonate BBC broadcasters.”

19. The Triceratops possessed a ball-and-socket joint at the base of its skull, not found in any dinosaur or any mammal today. This joint would have allowed it to maneuver its head almost 360 degrees, allowing movement to any direction in a fraction of a second.

20. During a hiatus from filming "Mr. Roger's Neighborhood" Fred Rogers created a TV series for adults named Old Friends...New Friends that sought to highlight the difference that individuals can make in the lives of others.

21Power Rangers

Power Rangers

Despite Power Rangers making Saban around $1 billion in its first year, the original cast was being given non-union pay of only around $2000 a month with no residuals and 12-17 hour days.

22. The Portuguese man o' war isn’t actually a jellyfish, it’s a colonial organism called a siphonophore and is comprised of four different organisms all working as one.

23. The first known instance of the classic “twirly mustached villain tying a woman to the railroad tracks” occurred in 1867 and it was actually a man tied to the train tracks who was saved by a woman.

24. Rhino horn is not considered an aphrodisiac in Chinese “medicine”. This is a misinterpretation of Chinese texts. However, due to the repetition of this misinterpretation in the West, people in Vietnam are starting to believe the rumor, and demand there is surging because of it.

25. In April of 2018, Revée Agyepong became one of the first adults to be cured of sickle cell anemia via stem cell transplant. Revée’s donor was her own sister, who turned out to be a 100% match.

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