Random Revelations: Article #142- 37 Intriguingly Odd and True Random Facts

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1Jane Whyte

Jane Whyte

In 1884, a 40-year-old mother of 8 named Jane Whyte was walking on the beach in Aberdeenshire when she saw the SS William Hope drifting towards rocks. She waded into the sea, caught a rope flung by the crew, wrapped it around her waist, dragged it back to shore, and created a lifeline saving 15 sailors.


2. In 2003, a 17-year-old transplant patient died after receiving organs with the wrong blood type. The error occurred because everyone assumed that someone else checked the blood type.


3. The rap/male vocals in Evanescence's "Bring Me To Life" was added because radio stations thought the song was "too feminine." You can listen to Amy Lee's version of the song on the band's 2017 album "Synthesis."


4. The vocals for Hozier’s “Take Me to Church” weren't recorded in the studio. He recorded a demo in his parents' attic and the record label found the vocals to be so powerful, they left them alone.


5. Death sentence with reprieve is a punishment in which the criminal is given a two-year suspended sentence before execution. By abstaining from additional crimes during the two years, the criminal can reduce the sentence to life imprisonment, or, by committing good deeds, a fixed-term sentence.


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6Cowboys

Cowboys

Up to 25% of cowboys in the West during the later 19th century were black. Former slaves or born into a formerly enslaved family, they worked in an industry that despite facing inevitable racism was a generally less discriminatory than other industries at the time.


7. The paper toilet seat covers, found in public restrooms, pretty much do nothing and do not actually have any health benefits.


8. In languages where spelling is highly phonetic (e.g. Italian) often lack an equivalent verb for "to spell". To clarify, one will often ask "how is it written?" and the response will be a careful pronunciation of the word since this is sufficient to spell it.


9. Japan's criminal justice system has a conviction rate of over 99%. For Japanese citizens and police, the arrest itself already creates the presumption of guilt which needs only to be verified via a confession.


10. Cows can have best friends and are significantly less stressed out when they get to hang out with them.


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11Last meal

Last meal

The Indiana State Prison system usually gives condemned inmates their last meal about two days early because "they typically aren't as hungry on the day they are to die."


12. “The Great Filter” is a theoretical point in evolution that only a minuscule fraction of species could evolve past. This may explain why we have never contacted other high functioning species. Also, we do not know if humans have yet to reach it, or have already passed it.


13. Inspired by the Black Mirror episode "Be Right Back," a software developer gathered over 8,000 lines of text from friends and family of her recently deceased best friend (Roman Mazurenko from left) and used it to create an artificially intelligent simulation of him.


14. Composer Arnold Schoenberg had a morbid fear of the number 13. On his 76th birthday, an astrologer wrote him a letter of warning which only read “7 + 6 = 13”, which caused him to fall into deep depression and illness, from which he died on Friday the 13th.


15. Home Depot stocked shelves with empty boxes instead of actual merchandise in its early days. Home Depot persuaded the vendors to give them empty boxes after the vendors were afraid that Home Depot could not pay them for all the merchandise.


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16Blue Java banana

Blue Java banana

The blue Java banana is a hardy, cold-tolerant banana that is said to have the consistency of an ice cream and a flavor similar to vanilla.


17. If any crimes occur at the McMurdo station in Antarctica, the US attorney in the district of Hawaii handles the case.


18. Michael Connor Humphreys, who played Forest Gump as a teenager, was initially supposed to learn how to talk like Tom Hanks. Hearing this, Hanks sat down with Humphreys and decided that he would talk in Humphreys’ Mississippi accent instead. He still has tapes of him and Humphreys practicing.


19. Alcohol breath does not come from the stomach. It's comes from the ethanol diffusing out of the blood in the lungs. So eating food, chewing gum, or vomiting won't help mask how much alcohol is in your system if you're breathalyzed.


20. The "Be Prepared" scene featured in The Lion King was based off the 1935 Nazi propaganda film "Triumph of the Will."


21Reese's peanut butter cups

Reese's peanut butter cups

Reese's peanut butter cups were also originally called "penny cups" since they cost just one cent each when Harry Burnett Reese first started selling them in 1928. The penny cups were so successful that Reese was able to sell them in 5-pound boxes to local retailers.


22. Lynyrd Skynyrd was named after Leonard Skinner, a gym teacher who used to send the band's members to the principal for their long hair. Later, the band used his real estate company's sign and phone number in album artwork, swamping Leonard Skinner Realty in prank calls.


23. One in eight US workers have worked at McDonald's, among them are Jeff Bezos, Pink, and Jay Leno.


24. Kerning is the art of spacing letters so they are readable. Keming is when you kern letters incorrectly and they blend together.


25. Steve Irwin once discovered a new species of the turtle while on a fishing trip with his father and he had the honor of naming it. It's called Irwin's Turtle (Elseya irwini).

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