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Culture

People share useless facts that simply won't leave their heads

random facts, viral reddit
Photo by Sean Benesh on Unsplash

Some facts are only useful for trivia contests.

Ah, useless facts. Random knowledge that serves no purpose other than to take up space in our brains, and maybe, just maybe, win a trivia game (yeah right) or kill time at a party (I’ve forgotten, what’s a party?).

Leave it to Ask Reddit to resurface all things odd and amusing, though. People shared their own useless facts that live rent free in their heads. And though they might be pointless, they are certainly entertaining.

Without further do:


  Mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell.

Yep, this useless fact has stayed with us since elementary school On the bright side, it’s been the source of many a fun meme.

Vending machines are more deadly than sharks.

animation domination lol GIF by gifnewsGiphy

Think about this next time you go to retrieve a Snickers bar: Between 2002 and 2015, the National Electronic Surveillance System reported that vending machines caused four deaths per year in the U.S. Mostly due to people tipping the machines onto themselves.

Compare that to the shark-related deaths averaging out to just 0.6 deaths per year. Not sure how only about half of a person is considered dead, but math was never my strength.

This statistic might need to be taken with a grain of sea salt however, given that those in landlocked states have next-to-zero chances of experiencing a shark attack. But there you have it, a useless fact to use when you’re at the beach.

Snails have teeth.

horror finger GIF by absurdnoiseGiphy

“They’re not big enough teeth to hurt humans. That’s what makes it a useless fact to know. & it won’t leave my head because it’s juuuuuust disturbing enough to make me rethink my entire opinion on snails.” – ghosts-go-boo

But cows do not.

At least, no upper front teeth. Makes chewing—and dentist visits—easier I suppose.

The Sun is about 400 times bigger than the Moon but also about 400 times farther away from Earth. So they look to be about the same size.

File:Solar eclipse 1999 4.jpg - Wikimedia Commonscommons.wikimedia.org

This explains how the sun can be completely blocked in an eclipse.

Pigeons and doves are in the same bird family.

Happy Animation GIF by sahlooterGiphy

Columbidae is a subspecies of birds that are stout bodied, with short necks, and primarily feed on seeds, fruits and plants. Though one lives on as a symbol of peace and love, and the other is often considered a flying rat, the names are practically interchangeable.

However, thinking about Stevie Nicks singing, “just like a white-winged pigeon” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

The length of a jiffy…

back to the future great scott GIFGiphy

According to ScienceFocus.com, physicists use a “jiffy” to define how long light takes to travel one femtometer (which is a tiny fraction of a millimeter). In layman’s terms, one jiffy equals one-fiftieth of a second.

So next time you say, “be back in a jiffy,” know that you better return really, really, really fast.

Most corn is inedible for humans.

corn on teal surfacePhoto by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

1% of the corn grown in the USA is sweet corn (the corn you eat as corn). The other 99% is field corn (or dent corn), which is fairly inedible raw and needs to be processed before human consumption. This field corn is also what they use for non-edible corn products, like ethanol, paint, cosmetics, etc. Yes, most corn goes to livestock feed. Ethanol and High Fructose Corn Syrup are up there as well. Yes, if you're driving on a highway and are passing fields of corn, you very likely cannot eat it.” – Kat_lbltko1pl

Infants have flexible bones.

stretching GIF by AFV BabiesGiphy

Ever wonder why toddlers seem so much more flexible? This is because a baby’s skeleton if very different from an adult's. Babies are born with about 300 bones (94 more than adults) that are joined together with pliable cartilage to make that whole birth thing possible. As they get older, the bones will fuse together. And suddenly that toe touch is nothing but a distant dream of the past.

Numbers from 1-999 don't have the letter "a" in word form.

white printing paper with numbersPhoto by Mika Baumeister on Unsplash

Some vowels just don’t get the respect they deserve.

John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald are both known by three names. And each full name is composed of 15 letters.

surprised season 4 GIFGiphy

Actually, this is not entirely correct. Oswald’s full name was not used until after Kennedy’s assassination, due to his habit of adopting false names.

Cockroaches molt.

Unlike a reptile shedding it’s skin, cockroaches molt out of their entire exoskeleton. Out crawls a soft, fleshy, ghostly-white creature that will turn brown over a few hours. You’re welcome for the nightmare fuel.

There you have it. Gems of wisdom no one asked for. They say knowledge is power. But in this case, I’d say knowledge is unnecessary. But still fun!

True

Music’s biggest night took place Sunday, February 4 with the 66th Annual GRAMMY Awards. Now, fans have the opportunity to take home a piece of the famed event.

Longtime GRAMMY Awards partner Mastercard is using this year’s campaign to shine a light on the environment and the Priceless Planet Coalition (PPC), a forest restoration program with the goal of restoring 100 million trees. Music fans are 1.5 times more likely to take action to help the environment, making the GRAMMY Awards the perfect opportunity to raise awareness.

“Through our GRAMMY Awards campaign, we’ve created an opportunity for our brand, our partners and consumers to come together over shared values, to participate during a moment when we can celebrate our passion for music and our commitment to make meaningful investments to preserve the environment,” says Rustom Dastoor, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Communications, North America at Mastercard.

The campaign kicked off with an inspired self-guided multi-sensory tour at the GRAMMY House presented by Mastercard, where people journeyed through their passion of music and educational experience about Mastercard’s longstanding commitment to tree restoration. Then, this year’s most-nominated GRAMMY artist and a passionate voice for the environment, SZA, led the charge with the debut performance of her new song, Saturn.

Mastercard’s partners are also joining the mission by encouraging people all over the country to participate; Lyft and Sirius XM are both offering ways for consumers to get involved in the Priceless Planet Coalition. To learn more about how you can support these efforts, visit mastercard.com/forceofnature.

While fashion is always a highlight of any GRAMMY Awards event, SZA’s outfit worn during her performance of Saturn was designed to make a statement; made of tree seeds to help spread awareness. Fans can even comment ‘🌱’ and tag a friend on Mastercard’s designated post of SZA’s GRAMMY House performance for a chance to win a tree seed from the performance outfit*.

“SZA has a personal passion for sustainability – not just in forest restoration but in the clothes she wears and the platforms and partners she aligns herself with. It was important to us to partner with someone who is not only showing up big at the GRAMMY Awards – as the most GRAMMY-nominated artist this year – but also showing up big for the environment,” says Dastoor.

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via KIvanKC/TikTok and KIvanKC/TikTok. Images used with permission.

Katrina Ivan's list for her babysitter.

A mother in Missouri has found a way to maximize date night with her husband. She left a note for her babysitter, giving her options to make more side cash by completing small tasks around the home.

The goal was to have a night out and to return to a cleaner and better-organized home. It makes sense. Most of the time, babysitters just sit around while the kid sleeps, so why not make their time more productive and profitable?

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Taking a lifelong cruise might sound like something out of a dream, and an unrealistic one at that. But leaving the land behind and adopting a seafaring lifestyle is now more attainable than ever.

By 2024, cruise line Storylines will launch a 741-foot ship dubbed the MV Narrative, a huge vessel containing 547 fully furnished rooms available for purchase or lease.

The cruise will definitely be the stuff of luxury, with its high-end spas, movie theater, yoga sun deck, state-of-the-art fitness center, art studio … it even has a bowling alley, for crying out loud. But being a “residential community at sea,” there will also be things like a library, post office, school and bank.
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6 alternatives to saying 'let me know if you need anything' to someone in crisis

If someone is drowning, you don't wait for them to ask for help. You just take action.

People going through major struggles don't always know what they need or how to ask for help.

When we see someone dealing with the loss of a loved one or some other major life crisis, it's instinctual for many of us to ask how we can help. Often, the conversation looks something like this:

Us: I am SO sorry you're going through this. What can I do to help?

Person in crisis: I honestly don't know right now.

Us: Okay…well…you let me know if you need anything—anything at all.

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Incredible audio shows what WWI sounded like when the guns and bombs just suddenly stopped

It's both beautiful and haunting to hear the ceasefire silence at the agreed-upon 11th hour.

Much of World War I was fought in trenches.

On November 11, 1918, U.S.soldier Robert Casey wrote from the American front in Western Europe:

And this is the end of it. In three hours the war will be over. It seems incredible even as I write it. I suppose I ought to be thrilled and cheering. Instead I am merely apathetic and incredulous … There is some cheering across the river—occasional bursts of it as the news is carried to the advanced lines. For the most part, though, we are in silence … With all is a feeling that it can’t be true. For months we have slept under the guns … We cannot comprehend the stillness.

It was the 11th day of the 11th month, and the war was scheduled to end with a ceasefire at the 11th hour—11:00 a.m. exactly. It had been four years of bloody, brutal fighting in what would later be called World War I. (Ironically, the war that was dubbed "the war to end all wars.")

The sense of relief at the ceasefire had to have been palpable, and thanks to modern technology, we can get an idea of what it sounded like to have the constant gunfire, artillery shells, fighter planes and bombs just…stop.

The following audio is not a recording, since magnetic tape recording technology didn't exist in WWI. It's a sound recreation based on visual "sound ranging" recordings the military used to determine where enemy fire was coming from. Special units placed microphones in the ground and used photographic film to visually record the noise intensity of gunfire, similarly to how seismometer measures an earthquake.

The lines you see in the film below are vibrations from noises at the River Moselle on the American Front, which were interpreted by sound company Coda to Coda using meticulous research on the kinds of weaponry that would have been used and how far away they were, even taking into account the geography of the area.

The result is the sounds soldiers would have heard during the last minute of World War I. Listen:

The little bird chirp at the end really punctuates it, doesn't it? Beautiful, yet haunting.

The fact that there was an exact minute when opposing forces agreed to lay down their arms and then did so is a bit surreal. If you know you're going to stop shooting, why wait for a few hours and keep shooting one another? Why not just say, "Stop, we're done now"? Communication took time and the various forces needed to be informed of the ceasefire agreement, so it makes some sense, but still. The armistice agreement was signed six hours before the ceasefire. In those six hours—when peace had already been agreed upon—3,000 soldiers were killed. Talk about senseless deaths.

Of all the things humans have devised and systematized, war is probably the weirdest. Leaders get into disputes over political or geographic particulars, and then one says, "I'm going to send my people to kill your people." Another responds, "If your people kill my people, then my people will kill your people." Then the worst of human atrocities are perpetrated by people who would normally never dream of doing such things to one another until, at some point, they've all have had enough of the senseless destruction, the leaders come to some kind of agreement and say, "OK, our people will no longer kill each other. Good talk."

Of course, it's all a bit more complicated than that, but at the same time, it's not. War as a concept is simply stupid and stupidly simple. Humanity in general does seem to have grasped the stupidity of it, as we've been making global progress toward a more peaceful world for many decades. But as conflicts ignite and violence explode in certain regions, we feel the tenuousness of that progress, which makes peacemaking skills all the more valuable.

Twenty million people were killed in WWI, more than half of them civilians. Many of them died from famine and disease brought on by the conditions of war. This audio is a reminder that these things don't just happen—they are choices that human beings make. Destruction and diplomacy are both choices. Retaliation and restoration are choices. War and peace are choices.

We've tried choosing war followed by peace, many times over. Maybe we should try choosing peace without having to go through the stupid, senseless killing part first.

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In September of that year, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young (CSN&Y) were asked to play a duet with Welsh singer Tom Jones on his television show and the pairing was a perfect example of the culture clash. Jones was famous for his hit songs “It’s Not Unusual” and “What’s New Pussycat?” and was adept at dodging panties being thrown at him by the adoring ladies in the audience.

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