Random Fact Sheet #178 – Discover the Unexpected With These 35 Facts

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1Keep America Beautiful

Keep America Beautiful

The term "litterbug" was popularized by Keep America Beautiful, which was created by "beer, beer cans, bottles, soft drinks, candy, cigarettes" manufacturers to shift public debate away from radical legislation to control the amount of waste these companies were (and still are) putting out.

2. Roger Boisjoly was an engineer working at NASA in 1986 that predicted that the O-rings on the Challenger would fail and tried to abort the mission but nobody listened to him.

3. Arctic foxes create unintentional gardens by reusing den sites for generations and that these gardens are hotspots of biodiversity in such a challenging landscape.

4. While a 20-year-old boy named Rod Serling was serving in World War 2, he saw his best friend killed by a falling crate of food. Seeing the unpredictability and irony of life and death, he would later use that experience to create, 'The Twilight Zone'. 

5. Following their successful Billion Tree Tsunami campaign in 2017 to plant 1 billion trees, Pakistan launched the 10 Billion Tree Tsunami campaign, vowing to plant 10 billion trees in the next 5 years.

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6Sam Bartram

Sam Bartram

A football game in the United Kingdom was once canceled shortly after it began due to heavy fog. Everyone left except goalkeeper Sam Bartram who didn't hear the referee and guarded his goal in silence for 15 minutes before a policeman came and told him of the cancellation.

7. Moonshine alcohol jugs are typically marked with 'XXX' in cartoons because it needs to be distilled 3 times to reach nearly 100% pure alcohol. Each 'X' signifies a distillation.

8. In 2017, a Carl's Jr. in Santa Rosa, California which was untouched by surrounding wildfires caught fire after staff made 165 hamburgers for first responders.

9. "Every Breath You Take" by The Police is supposed to be about someone obsessed with a lost lover, and who stalks them. Sting, who wrote it, is troubled by how many people think it is a love song.

10. During a particularly cold spell in the town of Snag (Yukon) where the temp reached -83°F (-63.9°C) you could clearly hear people speaking 4 miles away along with another phenomenon where people’s breath turned into powder and fell straight to the ground and river ice booming like gunshots.

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A gentleman in the 1940s observed that the burr seeds that stuck to his clothes and his dog’s fur had a tiny hook structure. On closer inspection, he discovered the hooks were more reliable than a zipper. He developed a company popularly known today as Velcro.

12. 1972 democratic vice presidential candidate Thomas Eagleton was forced to drop out of the race after he was humiliated by the "revelation" that he had been treated for chronic depression.

13. American singer Paul Simon thanked Stevie Wonder for not releasing an album that year in his acceptance speech for the 1976 Best Album Grammy. Stevie had won the previous two years, and would, indeed, win again in 1977.

14. Before the Civil War, uniforms were custom-sewn. Such a massive number of people had to be outfitted that uniforms needed to be mass produced. Soldiers were put into subtypes: large, medium, and small—classifications that eventually found their way to civilian clothing.

15. Taco Bell provides tortillas for NASA to use in lieu of bread, which cause problems due to crumbs getting caught in instruments - these Taco Bell tortillas are ideal due to their long shelf life.

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16Death Wish III

Death Wish III

The movie "Death Wish III" was changed to "Death Wish 3" because the Cannon Group conducted a survey and found that nearly half of the U.S. population could not read Roman numerals.

17. The Spongebob Squarepants producers originally used royalty-free marching music at the end of "Band Geeks," but couldn't find music they liked. They instead used David Glen Eisley's "Sweet Victory." The song went from nearly unknown to selling 300,000 downloads on iTunes within a year of the episode airing.

18. A Starbucks hot “venti” latte and “grande” latte each have exactly two shots of espresso. The extra dollar you are paying for the larger size is essentially buying you 4 ounces of frothed milk.

19. More high-ranking Nazi officers died in the Czechoslovakian car Tatra 77a and 87 than in active combat, prompting Hitler to ban his officers from driving them. It was nicknamed the "Czech secret weapon" by the Allied forces.

20. The top two sumo referees, Tate-gyōji, have daggers on hand while officiating matches. These daggers symbolize the referees' willingness to ritualistically disembowel themselves if a call of theirs is overruled. In modern times, they submit resignation letters when they make a poor call.



A hippopotamus can defecate so much in the water they are in, that fish start to die because the bacteria in the hippo's feces use up the majority of the oxygen contained in the river.

22. A single Canada Goose has between 20 and 25 thousand feathers. Just a fraction of an inch of this feather insulation can keep a bird's body temperature at 104 degrees, even in freezing weather.

23. Ph.D. students display twice as many symptoms of psychiatric disorders such as depression than other people.

24. The frigate bird can fly continuously for 185 days, going more than 35,000 miles (56,327 km.) They are seabirds that can't land in or take flight from water, do not have waterproof feathers and can travel up to 40 minutes without having to flap their wings.

25. English drummer Phil Collins was the only artist to perform at both Live Aid 1985 benefit concerts. He played at Live Aid Wembley, went by helicopter to Heathrow, flew to New York on the Concorde, then another helicopter to Live Aid Philadelphia.

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