People commonly attribute the phrase “I know that I know nothing.” to Socrates. We’ll never know if Plato wrote that down correctly, but it still holds true. More of us need to acknowledge just how little we know about the world. It can be a wonderful thing to realize, that we are all learning new things every day. Like these 17 little known, but awesomely strange, facts.
1.) After getting struck by lightning, you can be left with this weird tattoo pattern.
It’s called a “Lichtenberg figure,” a temporary mark that consists of fractals.
2.) Lobsters don’t seem to age. They don’t die of old age, but external factors.
3.) Neil Armstrong went through customs in Hawaii on his way back from the moon.
4.) Oral sex has actually led to pregnancy in two very bizarre incidents.
1. In 1988, a 15-year-old girl living in the small southern African nation of Lesotho went to the doctor because she seemed like she was in labor. The doctors were puzzled. It seemed she didn’t have a vagina due to a birth defect. The girl had been in the same hospital 280 days (approximately nine months) earlier, after she was stabbed in the abdomen. She had practiced fellatio with her new boyfriend and was caught in the act by her former lover. A knife fight ensued. Doctors concluded that spermatozoa had gained access to the reproductive organs via her injured gastrointestinal tract. 2. In 1999, Sharon Irons, a married doctor who was having an affair, saved the semen of her lover in her mouth after an episode of fellatio and used it to inseminate herself, resulting in a pregnancy. Her paramour (a fellow doctor) sued her for fraud and emotional distress, but the court sided with Dr. Irons and ordered him to pay child support for the baby.
5.) The rings of Saturn are only 30 feet thick.
6.) Figs have dead wasps inside of them. The wasps pollinate the figs by entering them, laying their eggs, and subsequently dying inside. There, they’re digested by special enzymes within the fig.
7.) At its launch, the iPhone had the same computing power as NASA in 1969 when it launched the historical manned mission to the moon.
8.) Elvis was a natural blonde through his teens. When he had his hair cut for the army (age 22), it was chestnut. Then, he dyed it black.
9.) “Happy Birthday” is copyrighted. Warner/Chappell Music owns the copyright and the company continues to insist that one cannot sing the “Happy Birthday to You” lyrics for profit without paying royalties. In 2008, Warner collected about $5,000 per day ($2 million per year) in royalties for the song.
10.) More people have died from drowning molasses (1919 Boston Molasses Disaster) than from coyote attacks. (Which are slightly different numbers than wolf attacks.)
11.) The average chocolate bar contains 8 insect parts.
12.) While sitting on a chair, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles. Then, while doing that, draw the number six with your right hand. The direction of your foot will change.
13.) There are more synapses in your brain (nerve connections) than there are stars in our galaxy.
14.) The “portal to Hell” in Turkmenistan measures 60 meters wide and 20 meters deep. It is a giant gas crater, constantly burning and smelling of sulfur.
15.) If you could fold a piece of paper 42 times, it would be thick enough to reach the moon. It’s impossible, but the math checks out.
16.) Cigarettes were being promoted as good for your health as early as the 1950s.
17.) About 50% of all U.S. presidents have been left-handed (or ambidextrous).
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