“Today I Learned”: 30 Interesting Things About The World That People Have Only Recently Found Out (New Pics)
When we come across something intriguing, we often feel the urge to share our excitement and pass it along. But instead of interrupting our roommates with random tidbits of information in the middle of a TV show, we can now turn to the internet.
There's a subreddit called 'Today I Learned' (or TIL for short) and its 30.4 million members make it the fifth-largest community on the platform. People go there to share all the new and fascinating stuff that blows their minds, and since its inception in 2008, the place has become like an encyclopedia.
From cheating in professional sports to kids' gaming habits, here are the best recent posts from TIL.
(Additionally, for those who want to learn more, check out Bored Panda's previous articles on the subreddit, which can be found here, here, and here.)
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TIL of the lesbian Blood Sisters, who, starting in San Diego in 1983, gave their own blood and organised blood drives to make up the shortfall after gay men were banned from donating because of the AIDS crisis.
TIL about Brady Feigl and his doppelganger, Brady Feigl. In addition to sharing a name and extreme similarities in appearance, each was a minor league baseball pitcher and had the same elbow surgery performed by the same doctor. A DNA test confirmed no relation.
TIL Hirsoshima, Japan is one of the few places outside of the US that celebrates Martin Luther King Jr day, due to his outspoken views on nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament.
TIL To "protect the truth," a woman recorded hundreds of thousands of hours of TV news between 1977 and 2012. Her archives grew to about 71,000 VHS and Betamax tapes stacked in her home and apartments she rented to store them. Upon her death, the Internet Archive agreed to digitize the volumes.
TIL in Nome, Alaska in 1925, a diphtheria epidemic struck and there was no antitoxin left. Land, air, and sea routes were unavailable, so 20 mushers and 150 sled dogs relayed the serum across 674 miles in 5 1/2 days, in subzero temperatures, near-blizzard conditions and hurricane-force winds.
TIL about "Terminal Lucidity." The unexpected return of mental clarity and memory shortly before the death of patients suffering from severe psychiatric and neurologic disorders.
TIL At the second Tour de France, the first four finishers were disqualified because they took the train.
TIL that in the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the total number of deaths, including deaths from cancer due to radiation exposure, is 1.
TIL of Baseball Hall of Famer Rube Waddell, who, despite his skill, showed various unpredictable behaviours including leaving midgame to go fishing, and was also incredibly easily distracted by shiny objects, puppies (who he would leave the field to play with), and fire trucks, which he would chase.
TIL more than 1 in 10 Americans have no close friends. The share of Americans who have zero close friends has been steadily rising. From 3% of the population in 1991 to 12% in 2021. The share who have 10 or more close friends has also fallen - from 33% to 13%.
TIL In 1971, the Texas legislature unanimously passed a resolution honoring "Boston Strangler" Albert DeSalvo for his work in "population control." Representative Tom Moore Jr. introduced the bill to prove that they pass legislation with no due diligence given to researching the issues beforehand.
TIL Zhang Zongchang, a Chinese warlord, had proclaimed that he would return only in a coffin if he was defeated in battle. When his forces were pushed back in a campaign, he was true to his word—he was paraded through the streets, sitting in his coffin and smoking a cigar.
TIL The "shower effect" of having more creative ideas in the shower or doing moderately boring activities is a real thing. Physicists and authors reported 20% of their most creative ideas and solutions to problems came with a wandering mind. Later papers termed this "the shower effect".
My better ideas seem to turn up when dozing off, the time between disappearing beneath blanket and sleeping. Have to keep a notebook between pillows.
TIL onions are toxic to dogs. They can cause hemolytic anemia and result in death. A 45-lb. dog would only have to eat one medium to large onion to experience dangerous toxicity levels.
TIL Hans Gruber, the villain of Die Hard who appears on numerous “greatest movie villains of all time” lists (AFI, Empire, etc.), was theater actor Alan Rickman's first film role.
TIL that to get the pear or apple into a bottle of brandy, they place the empty bottles over the budding fruit at the start of the season, and allow it to grow into the bottle all summer.
TIL Caligula, the third emperor of Rome, once declared war on the sea itself, commanding his men to collect seashells as proof of victory.
Oh, I remember this fool. Thinks taking my seashells will do anything…WRONG!
TIL most so-Called “Medieval Torture Devices” are fake actually made up by hoaxers, showmen, and con artists in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
TIL that Frank Prentice a survivor of the Titanic, stated that the scent of the iceberg was detectable before the collision occurred.
TIL that an achene is a single-seeded fruit, and that strawberry "seeds" are achenes. Each little strawberry achene is its own tiny fruit, and the entire rest of the strawberry is an accessory fruit. A single strawberry is actually approximately 200 little fruits attached to a big fruit.
My Dad is allergic to the seeds on a strawberry. He can eat them if they've been taken out
TIL Bill Watterson used to sneak signed Calvin & Hobbes collections onto the shelves of his hometown bookstore, but stopped doing so when he discovered they were being sold online for high prices.
TIL The ~1mm large animal known as Trichoplax can regenerate from just a handfull of cells and if its chopped up, the individual pieces will try to find each other and join back together.
TIL that when Weird Al wrote I Want A New Duck in 1985, he went to the library and researched ducks for a week.
No one can accuse him for not knowing what he's singing about😂
TIL that a Dutch woman was denied Swiss naturalization despite having lived there for 39 years, because her 'neighbours' deemed her too annoying and not integrated into Swiss society since she often critized Swiss tradition of hanging large bells on cows' necks.
TIL that an 84-year-old man named Park Byeong-gu has eaten nothing but instant ramen for over 41 years.
This guy needs to be on every cup noodle package.
TIL that a Kia/Hyundai whistleblower was awarded $24 million USD for reporting the companies' failure to recall unsafe cars and share accurate recall information with the government.
TIL that the record for longest time without sleep was set in 1963 when 17 year-old Randy Gardner stayed awake on purpose for 11 straight days.
My panic attacks once kept me awake three days a few years ago, I was having trouble stringing thoughts together and hallucinating by that point. Eesh, 11 days...
TIL that in the early 90's Bart Simpson T shirts were banned at many schools across the country (United States).
In 1992 George HW Bush said he wanted to make the American family "less like The Simpsons and more like The Waltons". Writers on the programme had Bart comment "We're just like The Waltons, we're praying for the end of the depression too."
TIL Canadian artist Michael Snow sued the Toronto Eaton Centre mall in 1982 after they put Christmas bows on an art installation of flying geese which he had sculptured. This led to a landmark court case, and a leading Canadian decision on artists moral rights. Snow ultimately ended up winning.
TIL the average minor spends about 7 hours per week with their father, but about 15 hours a week on video games.
Note: this post originally had 75 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.
Wow. This is mind blowing.
Wow. This is mind blowing.