139 words TIL before Japan surrendered to end WW2, the US armed forces ordered over 1 million Purple Heart medals in anticipation of a difficult land invasion. That stock is still being used today.
145 words TIL a British engineer won £1.5 million from a £2 bet. He correctly picked 6 winners in a running jackpot and bet on a horse that had lost 28 races.
111 words TIL that Thor Heyerdahl, a Norwegian Ethnographer, sailed from Peru to Polynesia on an primitive balsa wood raft to prove that ancient trans-oceanic travel was possible. When experts called it a fluke, he made an Egyptian reed boat and sailed it from Morocco to Central America to prove them wrong.
123 words TIL that thanks to 3D printing, NASA can basically “email” tools to astronauts
125 words TIL most soap is designed to remove bacteria, not kill it
175 words TIL 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.
129 words TIL Link, from The Legend Of Zelda, was originally intended to have a button nose similar to Mario, but the wife of game designer Yoshiaki Koizumi convinced him to change it to a sharper one because she thought Nintendo didn't have enough handsome characters.
190 words TIL about Marion Stokes, a Philadelphia woman who began taping whatever was on television in 1979 and didn't stop until her death in 2012.. The 71,000 VHS and Betamax tapes she made are the most complete collection preserving this era of TV. They are being digitized by the Internet Archive.
138 words TIL half of the youth who age out of the American foster system will not have a steady job at age 24. Less than 3% will earn a college degree at any point in their life.
494 words TIL The Taliban used dynamite to destroy two 4th century statues of Buddha. They saw it as idolatry. The destruction revealed a previously unknown network of caves with wall paintings from the 5th to 9th centuries and another giant statue of Buddha.
316 words TIL that after the government's key witness died mysteriously in 1986, Rudy Giuliani declined to prosecute a London lawyer, a retired Israeli general and nine other men with plotting to sell more than $2 billion in American-made weapons to Iran.
1,180 words TIL The notorious segregationist George Wallace, best known for pledging "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, and segregationist forever" in his inaugural speech, ran for a fourth term as Governor of Alabama and not only won but earned over 90% of the Black vote.
174 words TIL It is estimated that by 2030, most 8-year-olds will have at least one living great-grandparent. But the boom will not last, due to today's trend of delayed childbirth pushing back the age of becoming a grandparent
129 words TIL The last person to be convicted of blasphemy in the United States was an Arkansas man who in 1928 put a sign in his storefront reading, "Evolution Is True. The Bible's a Lie. God's a Ghost." He spent 3 months in jail.
110 words TIL that when the CEO of discount supermarket chain ALDI was kidnapped, he haggled about his ransom money and claimed the sum as a tax-deductable business expense in court after his release
188 words TIL to cure constipation on their expedition, Lewis & Clark were given packs of "thunderclappers": laxatives made of 60% mercury. Archaeologists can track the route of the expedition by following mercury deposits.
116 words TIL one of the last German princesses was so broke by the 1980s, she started a business where she would adopt adult men and give them the royal 'Prince' title in exchange for money. She made about 35 regular guys 'princes' and in the process made millions of dollars.
129 words TIL Kylie Jenner isn't really a billionaire. She has a personal net worth of $100 million, and Forbes just controversially added the "estimated worth" of her makeup company, which isn't verifiable due to it being a private company.
222 words TIL that millennials in the ages of 18-34 are more likely to live with their parents instead of a spouse/partner - the first time this has occurred since record-keeping began in the 1880s
181 words TIL the baby boomer generation was labelled the 'Me Generation' in the 70s and was described as a 'culture of narcissism' by writers and journalists at the time.