Monthly Archives: August 2013

today I learned:

  • in 1967, a magazine published a fake article about extracting hallucinogenic chemicals from bananas to raise moral questions about banning drugs. many didn’t realize it was a hoax, and began smoking banana peels to try and get high.
  • for-profit prisons are one of the top groups lobbying against legalizing marijuana in the states.
  • ravens are super playful– they even make their own toys and play games with otters and wolves.
  • there’s a restaurant in pittsburgh that only serves take-out cuisine from a country the US is in conflict with. it rotates every 6 months. right now they’re serving cuban, and in 6 months it’s korean.
  • in 1977, a signal from deep space was received that lasted 72 seconds. no one knows how it came or where it came from.
  • when taco bell attempted to enter mexico, their food was labeled as “authentic american food”
  • gillette and schtick own duracell and energizer, and created powered safety razors to increase battery sales. claims of a better shave have been labelled as “unsubstantiated and inaccurate” by american courts.
  • male garter snakes mimic female garter snakes in order to be cuddled by other males and steal their heat. it’s a process called “kleptotherpy”
  • you can train at MIT to become a pirate, where you are tested for archery, fencing, pistols, and sailing.
  • on september of 1918, a wounded german soldier limped into private tandey’s line of fire. “I took aim but couldn’t shoot a wounded man,” said tandey, “so I let him go”. years later he discovered that the soldier he had spared was adolf hitler.
  • social media has overtaken porn as the #1 activity on the web since 2008
  • cursive handwriting has been removed from the curricula of 41 US states.
  • saudi arabia still occasionally sentences people to crucifixion, most recently in march 2013.
  • julia louis-dreyfus (elaine from seinfeld) is the 4th wealthiest celebrity, with a net worth of $3 billion…just under steven spielberg and george lucas. she has nearly twice as much money as jerry seinfeld and larry david COMBINED.
  • a titanic II is being built by an australian billionaire. it will be an exact replica of the first, and will even serve the same meals.
  • jack daniels died from a blood poisoning in an infected toe wound, caused by him kicking his safe in anger when he couldn’t open it.
  • in 2009, a couple from the UK started a facebook campaign to make rage against the machine’s “killing in the name of” the #1 christmas single. the song sold 500,000 copies, and all proceeds went to homeless charities.