1. A stray dog saved a woman after she crashed down an embankment and was thrown through the back window of her car. The German Shepherd emerged from the woods, pulled her by the collar off the trunk and 50 yards through the briars to the road where she could be seen by passing motorists.
2. U.S. Medal of Honor recipient Pililaʻau was found surrounded by 40 dead Korean soldiers and him holding a trench knife Herbert Kailieha Pililaʻau (October 10, 1928 – September 17, 1951) was a United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in the Korean War. A Native Hawaiian who was born and raised on the island of Oʻahu, he was drafted into the military as a young man. Sent to Korea in early 1951, he participated as an automatic rifleman in the Battle of Bloody Ridge. During the subsequent Battle of Heartbreak Ridge, he voluntarily stayed behind to cover his unit’s withdrawal in the face of an intense attack by North Korean forces. Alone, he held off the assault using his automatic rifle and hand grenades and, after exhausting all available ammunition, engaged the attackers in hand to hand combat until being overrun and killed. For these actions, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.
3. A pro Counter-Strike player said about his team that they ‘were all on Adderall’ in an interview; as a result, the ESL, one of the largest eSports organization, announced that they will be working with the World Anti-Doping Agency to implement drug-testing for pro players. Kory Friesen, a high-ranked Counter-Strike: GO player, not only admitted to using Aderrall, but also said that use of the drug was widespread. “We were all on Adderall,” Friesen said in an interview, referring to his team in the organization Cloud9. Adderall is used to treat ADHD and narcolepsy, but also has the side effect of making people more alert and improving reaction times, making it ideal for e-sports like Counter-Strike, where split-second reactions can mean the difference between winning and losing.
4. The lyrics of Bob Marley’s “No Woman, No Cry” are officially credited to his childhood friend Vincent “Tata” Ford, who ran a soup kitchen in the Jamaican ghetto where Marley grew up. Marley gave Ford credit for writing the song so that the royalty payments could keep the soup kitchen open
5. Steven Spielberg still gets 2.5% of profits from Star Wars because while visiting the sets of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, George Lucas thought that movie would be a bigger hit than Star Wars. Spielberg disagreed and they both decided to trade 2.5% profit on each other’s films
6. In WW2, Nazis rigged skewed-hanging-pictures with explosives in buildings that would be prime candidates for Allies to set up a command post from. When Ally officers would set up a command post, they tended to straighten the pictures, triggering these “anti-officer crooked picture bombs”
7. L. Ron Hubbard considered himself a nuclear physicist, though “His university records indicate that his exposure to ‘nuclear physics’ consisted of one class in ‘atomic and molecular phenomena’ for which he earned an ‘F’ grade.”
8. There is an airtight room in a University in Georgia (US), sealed in 1940, to be opened in the year 8113. The “Crypt of Civilization” contains a wealth of artifacts from literary works to everyday items. The room’s contents include more than 800 works of every subject known to mankind; notable recordings, like Adolf Hitler ‘s speeches and birds singing; everyday items such as pantyhose, electric razors, and clothing; toys like a Donald Duck figurine and Lincoln Logs, and even strange items like “lady’s breast form.”
9. Believing that his comic strip , ‘Calvin and Hobbes,’ only works in print form, cartoonist Bill Watterson has refused to ever sell the film rights to his comics and has turned down offers from Steven Spielberg and Pixar
10. Dogs have only recently been able to watch TV, with the advent of HDTV with their higher framerates. Before that, with CRT’s, it was like watching a strobe light. We humans need about 16 to 20 images a second to perceive what we see as continuous film, whereas dogs need about 70 images per second. So a few years ago, Fido was probably confounded by his master’s behaviour of sitting for hours staring at a flashing succession of images. With modern resolution and quicker imaging, dogs have become potential television viewers. This has not gone unrecognised in the USA, for example, where hopeful TV producers have started special TV channels for dogs.
11. Famous personal trainer/body builder Greg Plitt died earlier this year while filming a commercial for ‘No Fear’ energy drinks. He reportedly assumed a runner’s stance on the tracks as the train approached, and attempted to out-sprint the speeding train to show the effectiveness of the drink.
12. Best Buy used to have a fake internal website that looked exactly like their actual internet website, but with marked up prices, so they could price gouge in-store customers
13. In 2002, Sega’s president gifted all $695 million of his own company stock to save Sega from going bankrupt due to the Dreamcast; he died shortly afterwards following an arduous battle with cancer.
14. Dolphins will communicate with one another over a telephone, and appear to know who they are talking to Dolphins do have unique names, and their syntactical structure starts with something like, [my name] [your name] [message]. So not only do they know who they’re talking to, but they should know that they’re the ones being talked to.
15. Milton Hershey being unable to have children founded the Milton Hershey School for orphans in 1909. He donated 30% of all future Hershey profits. It now has 7 billion in assets, and continues to serve orphans in financial need. Milton also prohibited it’s use in any advertising.
16. British banking giant HSBC admitted to laundering billions of dollars for Colombian and Mexican drug cartels and violating a host of important banking laws (from the Bank Secrecy Act to the Trading With the Enemy Act), but there were no criminal charges and no one went to prison. Assistant Attorney General this week signed off on a settlement deal with the British banking giant HSBC that is the ultimate insult to every ordinary person who’s ever had his life altered by a narcotics charge. Despite the fact that HSBC admitted to laundering billions of dollars for Colombian and Mexican drug cartels (among others) and violating a host of important banking laws (from the Bank Secrecy Act to the Trading With the Enemy Act), Breuer and his Justice Department elected not to pursue criminal prosecutions of the bank, opting instead for a “record” financial settlement of $1.9 billion, which as one analyst noted is about five weeks of income for the bank.
17. A man trapped in a coma for 12 years was aware of everything. His hatred of Barney reruns constantly playing helped him to regain control of his mind.
The guitarist of AC/DC on their last world tour had to relearn the songs before each show as he was suffering from the early stages of dementia
18. Stephen King has made large charitable donations without announcing them because he was “raised firmly to believe that if you give away money and you make a big deal of it so that everybody sees it, that’s hubris. (…) you’re not supposed to make a big deal about it.”
19. Abraham Lincoln once gave a speech in Bloomington, Illinois so captivating that it caused every single reporter present to forget to take notes. There is no copy of this speech in existence, and we can only guess at the content. This speech is known as Abraham Lincoln’s ‘Lost Speech’.
20. A 43-year-old man who had his penis torn off in a horrible accident at the age of 6 has received a “bionic”, 8-inch, fully functional penis crafted and installed in a pioneering surgical procedure
21. Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers (article)
22. ETS, a “non-profit” organisation, has a monopoly over graduate testing, pays its CEO more than a million dollars a year, has 36 Senior VPs or VPs earning $400,000+ a year, made $7,000,000 in profits in 2009, and maintains a 360 acre campus with swimming pools, heliports and hotels.
23. H.H. Holmes, a 19th century serial killer in the US, opened a hotel which he had designed and built for himself specifically with murder in mind. It included soundproofed bedrooms, trap doors, walls lined with blowtorches and two incinerators. “I was born with the devil in me. I could not help the fact that I was a murderer, no more than the poet can help the inspiration to sing — I was born with the ‘Evil One’ standing as my sponsor beside the bed where I was ushered into the world, and he has been with me since.”
24. In Saving Private Ryan, all main actors went through army training except Matt Damon so that the other actors would show resentment for him. Before filming began, several of the film’s stars, including Edward Burns, Barry Pepper, Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg, Giovanni Ribisi, and Tom Hanks, endured ten days of “boot camp” training led by Marine veteran Dale Dye and Warriors, Inc., a California-based company that specializes in training actors for realistic military portrayals. Matt Damon was intentionally not brought into the camp, to make the rest of the group feel resentment towards the character. Fun fact: The story he tells at the end about his last night with his brothers was made up on the spot…which created a continuity error in the film. He’s says at the end of the story that one of his brothers went off to basic the next day and that was the last time the four of them were together. But when they showed his home at the beginning when his mother gets the news, there’s a picture of the four brothers…all in uniform.
25. Rod Serling, creator of The Twilight Zone, was so talkative that on a two hour car ride the rest of his family remained silent to see if Rod would notice their lack of participation. He did not, talking nonstop through the entire car ride. His parents encouraged his talents as a performer from the start. Sam Serling built a small stage in the basement, where Rod often put on plays (with or without neighborhood children).
26. As a child Joe Walsh struggled to learn the guitar solo to the Beatles “And Your Bird Can Sing”. Upon meeting a Beatle years later he found out it was an overdubbed two-part solo and that he might be the only person in the world that could play both parts at once. When he heard the Beatles’ “And Your Bird Can Sing,” which contains a ridiculously finger-stretching George Harrison guitar solo, Walsh worked tirelessly until he mastered it. Years later, after he became famous, Walsh met Starr (who plays on his new album) and told him the story. Starr looked at Walsh like he was nuts. Harrison had played two guitar parts separately and tracked them on top of each other in the studio.
27. The “tradition” of spending several months salary on an engagement ring was a marketing campaign created by De Beers in the 1930’s. Before WWII, only 10% of engagement rings contained diamonds. By the end of the 20th Century, 80% did.
28. There is an informal “Small Penis” rule, which authors use to protect themselves against libel lawsuits, by saying that a character they based off of someone else has a small penis, which stops most people from wanting to associate themselves with that character by suing the author
The “small penis rule” is an informal strategy used by authors to evade libel lawsuits. It was described in a New York Times article in 1998:
“…For a fictional portrait to be actionable, it must be so accurate that a reader of the book would have no problem linking the two,” said Mr. Friedman. Thus, he continued, libel lawyers have what is known as ‘the small penis rule.’ One way authors can protect themselves from libel suits is to say that a character has a small penis, Mr. Friedman said. “Now no male is going to come forward and say, ‘That character with a very small penis, that’s me!’ “
The small penis rule was referenced in a 2006 dispute between Michael Crowley and Michael Crichton. Crowley alleged that after he wrote an unflattering review of Crichton’s novel State of Fear, Crichton libeled him by including a character named “Mick Crowley” in the novel Next. In the novel, Mick Crowley is a child rapist, described as being a Washington-based journalist and Yale graduate with a small penis.
29. Google hires programmers through their own search engine…If Google sees that you’re searching for specific programming terms, they’ll ask you to apply for a job.
One morning, while working on a project, I Googled “python lambda function list comprehension.” The familiar blue links appeared, and I started to look for the most relevant one.
But then something unusual happened.
The search results split and folded back to reveal a box that said “You’re speaking our language. Up for a challenge?”
I stared at the screen. What? After a moment, I decided yes, I was most definitely up for a challenge.
30. There’s been a drug for over a decade called Truvada that may be up to 99 percent effective at reducing the risk of HIV infection
In addition to Truvada being effective as PrEP(pre-exposure prophylaxis)… it is also used in combination with another med AFTER an exposure to HIV… that when taken within 72 hours it effectively prevents infection
31. Elephants console one another when they are upset with gentle touches and trunk strokes. Previously, only humans, great apes and birds in the raven family were known to do this.
32. There’s a stinging plant called the Gympie Gympie that produces a toxin so painful, it’s driven people and animals to suicide. It’s been described as being sprayed with hot acid and electrocuted at the same time. A man was reported to have shot himself after using the leaves as toilet paper.
Sony BMG initially denied that the rootkits were harmful. It then released, for one of the programs, an “uninstaller” that only un-hid the program, installed additional software which could not be easily removed, collected an email address from the user, and introduced further security vulnerabilities.
34. Serial killers behave like bees. They commit crimes close to home, but far enough that neighbors don’t get suspicious. Similarly, bees collect pollen near the hive, but far enough that predators can’t find them. Scientists studied bee behavior and found algorithms police now use to catch felons
35. Instead of donating money to a New York Food Bank, Toyota offered ‘kaizen’; a Japanese word meaning “continuous improvement”. Toyota’s engineers applied kaizen to the soup kitchen, reducing the average wait time from 90 to 18 minutes.
36. Student loans have passed credit cards and auto loans to become the second biggest source of personal debt in the U.S., trailing only mortgages.
“I have been pursuing higher education to raise myself out of poverty,” she said. “I grew up in the projects. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I want a better life. I don’t know if I can do everything I want to do, because I have these bills to pay each month.”
37. Of the 2.9 million female high school athletes, only 3% are cheerleaders, yet cheerleading accounts for nearly 65% of all catastrophic injuries in girls’ high school athletics.
38. China’s Great Leap Forward, a social engineering plan put forth by Mao Zedong in 1959, was the single most deadly event in human history, with an estimated 30 million lives lost
When Mao came to power in China, he had big plans to change his country. For all of it’s history, China was an agrarian nation, or farmers. Mao wanted to change this. He envisioned the poor farmers of China uniting to remake the country into a vast, modern industrial superpower, similar to the rise of the neighboring Soviets, whom Mao drew inspiration.
His program, called the great leap forward, involved taking millions of farmers off their fields into industrial collectives. Farmers where told to melt their ploughs and steel scrap into the tools of industry to make steel.
But obviously there is a problem, as a lifetime farmer doesn’t know anything about making steel. And when you take everyone off of farming and turn them into workers in a field they know nothing about, both farming and steel making fail.