Random Fact Sheet #49 – 35 Fun Facts to Impress Your Friends (and Maybe Even Yourself)

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1RMS Olympic

RMS Olympic

The RMS Olympic, sister ship to the Titanic, rammed a U-Boat and sunk it, making it the only merchant ship in World War I to have sunk an enemy vessel.


2. Evangeline Lilly agreed to play Tauriel in the Hobbit movies on the condition that she would not be part of a love triangle. The love triangle was added during reshoots.


3. Disney's Tower of Terror drop has been developed by Otis, whose normal job is to make elevator rides as smoothly as possible.


4. In 1981, the Pentagon spent $6 million trying to determine whether or not burning a photograph of a Soviet missile would destroy the actual missile.


5. A Dutchman named Jan de Doot, in 1651, removed his own bladder stone with a kitchen knife. He pulled it out through an incision he made in his perineum. It was the size of an egg and weighed a quarter of a pound. He lived for years after and had the stone plated in gold.


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6Bill Skarsgård

Bill Skarsgård

Actor Bill Skarsgård (Pennywise in "IT") stayed in character so authentically while on set that when a group of (kid) extras met him for the first time, some got terrified and started to cry in the midst of the take. When filming cut, Skarsgård apologized to them, "Hey, I'm sorry, it's pretend".


7. Bill Werbeniuk was a Canadian Snooker player who drank 43 pints of lager in a drinking contest against Scotsman Eddie Sinclair. After Sinclair passed out following his 42nd pint, Werbeniuk was reported to say "I'm away to the bar now for a proper drink".


8. Natural gas has no smell. Gas companies are required to add a chemical called mercaptan as a safety precaution, so people know the smell and can identify a leak.


9. Chrysler built 55 turbine-powered cars from 1963-1964. It could run on any fuel that could burn with oxygen, including perfume and tequila, and produced 130 horsepower. Only 9 still exist.


10. One of the most popular national daily newspapers in Japan (The Mainichi) circulated an entirely recyclable newspaper. It had plant seeds embedded in the newsprint. After reading, you could plant the newspaper directly into the soil and it would grow.


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11Terrence Howard

Terrence Howard

Terrence Howard thinks 1x1=2. He has detailed a system called "Terryology" that he believes is "true universal math". For a time he also devoted up to 17 hours a day to cutting up wires and plastic to form building-block-like contraptions he believes will bring truth to the universe.


12. RPG doesn't actually stand for rocket-propelled grenade. Instead, it actually stands for "Ruchnoy Protivotankoviy Granatomyot", which translates to "Hand-held anti-tank grenade launcher".


13. In the late 1960s, some researchers reported catnip gave people a marijuana-like high, but it turned out they had simply mixed up the two plants.


14. While bored during his work with the Manhattan Project, Richard Feynman, would amuse himself by picking the locks of his colleague's confidential file cabinets and placing prank notes. His colleagues believed a spy had infiltrated the project.


15. Current WWE Wrestler Jeff Hardy and former wrestler Mick Foley have agreed to donate their brains for concussion research after death.


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16Frederic Pryor

Frederic Pryor

Frederic Pryor [Bridge of Spies] was never consulted by producers about his experiences in the 1962 prisoner exchange and went to see the movie with his family. Afterwards, when pressed by other moviegoers why he thought the movie was 'good but inaccurate' he responded: "I'm Frederic Pryor".


17. When Harvey Weinstein made aggressive demands of director Hayao Miyazaki to edit the U.S. release of Princess Mononoke, Studio Ghibli staff responded by sending Weinstein a samurai sword in the post with a note attached stating: "No cuts."


18. Clint Eastwood has an "undetermined" number of children. At least 7 with 5 different women.


19. In 2015, a journalist wanted to prove that the media will be quick to grab on any scientific claims to make the news. He fabricated a study that claimed chocolate helps in weight loss, got it published, then released it. He succeeded, fooling 20 countries.


20. Serial killers act similarly to bees. Serial killers commit a crime near their home, but far enough to prevent arousing suspicion. Similarly, bees collect pollen near their hive, but far enough from predators. Scientists found algorithms from studying bee behavior to catch felons.


21Rear-facing seats

Rear-facing seats

It has been proven that rear-facing seats on planes are safer in the event of a crash, however, due to passenger discomfort and costs, they are only common in military aircraft.


22. Steven Spielberg's ex-wife (Amy Irving) received a divorce settlement of $100 million after a judge invalidated a prenuptial agreement he had written on a napkin.


23. The United States Department of Justice has filed a forfeiture complaint in federal court to seize the rights to the movies "Dumb and Dumber To" and "Daddy's Home," on the grounds that the movies were financed using money stolen from a Malaysian government investment fund.


24. In 2016, a 13-year-old named Joey Warchal spotted an incorrect prop in the Al Capone museum exhibit because he casually knows the production timeline of antique radios.


25. Alec Guinness agreed to appear in Star Wars only after he negotiated a deal that doubled his initial salary offer, guaranteed he wouldn't have to do any publicity for the film, and that he would be awarded 2.25% of all gross royalties paid to George Lucas.

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