Random Fact Sheet #214 – The Quirky Side of Life: 40 Facts

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26Dr. Who series

Dr. Who series

9 missing episodes of the 1960s Dr. Who series were found in a TV station in Nigeria. They’d been left there in the 60s-70s for foreign syndication. It was the largest haul of classic Who episodes ever recovered in the last three decades.

27. New York City has the highest concentration of nesting Peregrine falcons in the world. The birds can soar over the city by taking advantage of updrafts from skyscrapers. Pigeons are widely available for food, which also negates their need to migrate.

28. Zofia Rydet was a Polish photographer who, at the age of 67, decided to try to shoot the interior of every home in Poland. Over the final 19 years of her life, she shot 20,000 images. She said, "The simplest, most ordinary documentary picture becomes a great truth about human fate."

29. During the Irish Potato Famine, the poor were hired for useless construction projects called 'famine follies' in order to provide them with work that would not take existing work away from other workers. These included roads in the middle of nowhere, between two seemingly random points.

30. The IRS and the USPS both have a plan in place in case of a nuclear war. The IRS has an employee handbook called the "Internal Revenue Manual" that details how to collect taxes after the nukes. The USPS will continue delivering mail and has 60 million change-of-address forms prepared.

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31US two-dollar bill

US two-dollar bill

The US two-dollar bill is still being produced today. Its apparent rarity is in part due to the common misconception that it is no longer being produced, causing people to collect them, thus pulling them out of circulation.

32. Giant manta ray has the largest brain of any fish — with specially developed areas for learning, problem-solving and communicating. Giant manta rays are known to be playful and curious and might even recognize themselves in mirrors, a sign of self-awareness.

33. When Elvis Presley's debut single was first played on the local radio station, he was invited for an on-air interview. The DJ asked Elvis which high school he attended: a roundabout way of informing the audience of his race without actually asking the question.

34. The beat of the Mission: Impossible theme song spells the letters M.I. in Morse Code: dash dash-dot dot).

35. John D. Rockefeller once had an apprenticeship making $16 per month and his dream as a kid was to make $100,000. His personal fortune ended up being $1.4 billion by 1937 which makes him the wealthiest person in recent history.

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36Orange Crush soda

Orange Crush soda

Orange Crush soda originally had orange pulp in the bottles, giving it a "fresh squeezed" illusion even though the raw pulp was merely added during bottling, rather than actually being the remains from freshly squeezed oranges.

37. A day before she was to guest star on Hill Street Blues (1981), Dominique Dunne was badly beaten by her boyfriend. She showed up on the set with bruises on her face with no makeup; since she was playing an abused teen in the episode. The bruises we see in the episode are real.

38. The original Black and White set for the Addams Family was actually pink because it looks better on Black and White screen.

39. The disclaimer that now appears at the end of every American film, (“The preceding was a work of fiction, any similarity to a living person...”) first appeared because Rasputin’s assassin Felix Yusupov successfully sued MGM for libel against his wife in the movie “Rasputin and the Empress.”

40. The largest octopus species in the world, the giant Pacific octopus, has three hearts, nine brains, and blue blood.

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