No matter what they say, there are some things you don’t learn in school. In fact, there are many, but let’s just all pretend that those volumes of school books devoured back in our childhood years did make a difference.

You see, learning facts is about being world-savvy. Like, when you’re out at the pub quiz competing for beers on the house, you may throw out some of the best Today I Learned’s for a killer checkmate. Formerly known as “Did you know that?” facts, Today I Learned has all their good qualities minus the annoying and needlessly pretentious vibe.

And thanks to the unofficial powerhouse of the knowledge-hungry ones among us, also known as the r/TodayILearned subreddit with 24.8 million members, we now have the most sought-after collection of randomly interesting facts out there. So take your notebooks out, kids, we're gonna take those brain cells for a ride.

For those who believe that knowledge is power, more hand-picked facts from r/TodayILearned can be found here, here, and here.

#1

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Slaveholders in the US knew that enslaved people were escaping to Mexico, the U.S. tried to get Mexico to sign a fugitive slave treaty, but Mexico refused to sign such a treaty, insisting that all enslaved people were free once they set foot on Mexican soil.

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Sunzilla
Community Member
4 months ago

Good for Mexico!

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A hunger for knowledge is something we have to nurture throughout our lives. After all, keeping our brains busy with learning new things, like a language, is known to be a powerful antidote against diseases in old age, like dementia and Alzheimer’s.

But our desire to learn starts from an early age as we don’t turn into life-long learners overnight. Previously, Bored Panda talked to Lenore Skenazy, the president of Let Grow, the nonprofit promoting childhood independence about nurturing our kids’ desire to learn beyond compulsory education.

#2

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

A school principal once made a student who'd gotten into trouble sit in the basement & read the U.S. Constitution as punishment. That student (who committed the Constitution to memory as a result) was Thurgood Marshall, who went on to become the first Black Supreme Court justice.

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J. Cole
Community Member
4 months ago

Can I get a "Hell yeah?!"

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First, Lenore recommends parents “designate an hour or two each day as ‘outdoor’ time without any electronic devices.” It turns out that this is a crucial step into bringing out the ‘curious child.’

“Put some junk out there—old suitcases, blankets, buckets—whatever you’ve got. Of course, at first, the kids might be bored. Scratch that: They will be bored. They’ll want to come back in and grab the iPad.”

At this point, parents would need to stay strong and resist the temptation to let them in or entertain them. “Give them a stretch of time—and especially if you can send some other kids out there with them—and out of ‘There’s nothing to do,’ something will catch their interest. And a curious kid is born,” said Lenore.

#3

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Charles Lightoller the second officer on the Titanic stayed onboard untill the end. And got trapped underwater until a boiler explosion blew him free. He survived by clinging to a capsized collapsible B. Later he volunteered in WWII and helped evacuate over 120 men from Dunkirk.

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LC Greenwood
Community Member
4 months ago

That is a HERO! Courage and selflessness

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#4

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has disdain for money and large wealth accumulation. In 2017 he said he didn’t want to be near money, because it could corrupt your values. When Apple went public, Wozniak offered $10 million of his stock to early Apple employees, something Jobs refused to do.

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

He is such a genuinely nice guy!!

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Lenore also said that even though we don’t always see it, curiosity is truly a very pleasurable emotion. In fact, we do many things because of it.

#5

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

There is an Australian pine growing out of an old railroad bridge in the Florida Keys named Fred the Tree. Fred survives with salt spray, lots of sunshine, and no apparent soil. Fred even withstood Hurricane Irma!

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Verena
Community Member
4 months ago

What a badass

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#6

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

In 1983 a Mexican pilot crashed landed in a small town in Ireland and the whole town came together to build a temporary runway for him to take off again and continue his flight.

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Sum Guy
Community Member
4 months ago

Some people are just better people

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“That’s why people travel—to see how other people do things, to try new foods and new experiences. Doing something new or unfamiliar brings our senses back to life.”

#7

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Mexico passed a law that requires food packages to display large black octagonal "warnings" if the product is high in sugar, sodium, calories, or unhealthy fats.

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Jaclyn
Community Member
4 months ago

It just makes me sad that soup can be so bad for you. Feels like a betrayal.

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#8

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Susan Travers, the only woman ever to serve in the French Foreign Legion, waited until she was 91 to write her autobiography so everyone mentioned had already died

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Smart lady.

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#9

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

The California Genocide, an oft-forgotten event in U.S. history due to occurring at the same time at the California Gold Rush. The Native American population of California decreased from as many as 150,000 in 1848 to 30,000 in 1870. Tribes such as the Yahi were hunted to extinction.

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Read about Ishi , the last survivor of his tribe, who appeared in a California town and no one could communicate with him because he was the only one left who could speak his language. Very sad.

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#10

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

A pregnant mother with twins lost one fetus in the first trimester and the other developed a coccyx tumor the size of a fetus that was killing it. Doctors removed baby LynLee from the womb, cut off the tumor, then put her back in the womb and she was ‘born again’ healthy 12 weeks later.

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Sum Guy
Community Member
4 months ago

Doctors are magicians... we never really appreciate just how much of what they do is borderline magic

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This is something dulled-out kids also benefit from greatly.

“Send them to do something they haven’t done on their own before. Have them run an errand, visit a neighbor, get something from the woods or the store—something that puts them in a new environment where they have to figure out some stuff on their own,” she concluded.

#11

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Vears at Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center in Montana have jobs: try to open coolers/dumpsters/containers of treats. If bears can't make more than a tiny hole, the item is certified bear-proof. The GWDC is the only place where products can earn a certificate from the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee.

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Candace Fitzpatrick
Community Member
4 months ago

I hope they are paid fairly

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#12

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Vietnamese farmers after the war repurposed external fuel tanks jettisoned by American planes into river canoes, which have lasted for nearly 5 decades.

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Modern version of beating swords into plowshares.

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#13

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

In 2014, four tenants refused to move out of their homes when developers wanted to create one of the most exclusive residences in Manhattan. Eventually, they all received huge payouts. The last tenant was so savvy and stubborn he received $17 million, plus use of a $2 million residence for life.

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devi L.
Community Member
4 months ago

Idk why this reminded me of "UP" a little

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#14

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Ancient Egyptians would shave off their eyebrows when their cats died and shave off all body hair (including their head) when their dog died to mourn until it grew back.

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

That's serious pet mourning. I'm sure there's more reasoning behind it .

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#15

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

There is an area in the middle of the Pacific Ocean in which scientists have discovered Great White Sharks congregate at every year. They have nicknamed this stretch of ocean "The White Shark Cafe"

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Raine Soo
Community Member
4 months ago

Hi Bruce!

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According to Lenore, part of the equation is authority figures like parents and teachers introducing children to all the various things they might come to love: from art and music and language to sports and nature and animals. So before taking care of our kids' desire for knowledge, don't forget to spark your inner child as well.

#16

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

When Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson was 15 years old, his family was going through a rough period. After losing their apartment, his mother Ata Johnson, stopped their car on a Nashville highway and tried to walk into oncoming traffic. The Rock grabbed her and pulled her back, saving her life.

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devi L.
Community Member
4 months ago

Damn that must be traumatizing and such a tough scary moment

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#17

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

About brothel candles, which burned for precisely 7 minutes and were heavily used during Victorian times. The individual would pay the fee, light the candle, and when the candle burned out, the session was over.

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

For some customers you only had to light a match...

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#18

Til Elizabeth Blackwell Became The First Woman To Be Accepted At A Medical School In The Us, Because The Students Thought Her Application Was A Prank From A Rival School And Voted To Let Her Attend

Til Elizabeth Blackwell Became The First Woman To Be Accepted At A Medical School In The Us, Because The Students Thought Her Application Was A Prank From A Rival School And Voted To Let Her Attend

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

Jokes on them!!

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#19

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

In 2003 two men, who weren’t licensed to fly, stole a parked Boeing 727 from Luanda International Airport and neither the men or the plane have ever been found.

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Truth Monster
Community Member
4 months ago

That's just plane strange

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#20

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Graffiti artist Banksy sought to trademark his image of a protester throwing flowers. The trademark office denied it on the grounds of him having no interest in selling his work. In the ruling they used a quote from one of Banksy's books: "copyright is for losers"

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

Ouch

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#21

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

A man was killed when he tried to shoot down a 125-year old Saguaro cactus. The man blasted most the way through and poked at one of the plants arms. The 500lb arm then fell crushing him.

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

As someone who lives in Arizona not only is it illegal to harm a saguaro but it's rarely heard of that anyone ever wants to. We respect them. They're amazing. I read this story before and i don't feel sorry for the guy.

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#22

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Steve Jobs never coded for Apple. According to Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, he didn't do any original design and one of Apple's earliest employees also stated that Woz was the inventor while Jobs was the marketing person.

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devi L.
Community Member
4 months ago

I'm not surprised. This happens a lot. Like singers and artist take credit but writers who wrote the songs aren't really acknowledged

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#23

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

After the murder of his father, Genghis Khan went into poverty, even being enslaved at one point. It wasn’t until he was in his 50’s did he rise to power and become the Khan of Mongolia

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Sum Guy
Community Member
4 months ago

Motivation

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#24

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Min horses are used as blind guides. They have a very wide range of vision, with a range of nearly 350 degrees. Horses are the only guide animals capable of independent eye movement and they can track potential danger with each eye. Horses can see clearly in almost total darkness.

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Verena
Community Member
4 months ago

Problem is that they spook much more easily, which can put a blind person in serious danger

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#25

Til That Us President Calvin "Silent Cal" Coolidge Used To Buzz For His Secret Service And Then Would Hide Under His Desk While They Frantically Searched For Him

Til That Us President Calvin "Silent Cal" Coolidge Used To Buzz For His Secret Service And Then Would Hide Under His Desk While They Frantically Searched For Him

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The 5-star rated 5-star rating system
Community Member
4 months ago

That is ridiculously immature... but also kind of funny.

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#26

Til That Iceland Has Largest Banana Plantation In Europe. They Use Geothermal Energy To Heat Greenhouses, Allowing For The Production Of Tropical Fruits Like Bananas

Til That Iceland Has Largest Banana Plantation In Europe. They Use Geothermal Energy To Heat Greenhouses, Allowing For The Production Of Tropical Fruits Like Bananas

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로희
Community Member
4 months ago

Wow, that's bananas!

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#27

Til Not Only Do Bats Make High-Pitched Sounds For Echolocation, Many Bat Species Also Sing. A Team Of Scientists That Analyzed One Species’ Song Translated It As A Sequence That Opens With A Hello, Then A Gender Identification, Then Some Geographic Information, & Then A "Let's Talk" Section

Til Not Only Do Bats Make High-Pitched Sounds For Echolocation, Many Bat Species Also Sing. A Team Of Scientists That Analyzed One Species’ Song Translated It As A Sequence That Opens With A Hello, Then A Gender Identification, Then Some Geographic Information, & Then A "Let's Talk" Section

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Sky puppies are geniuses!

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#28

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Ninjas would carry crickets or cicadas to disguise their sound when they needed.

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

How do you switch on a cricket?

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#29

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

People who quit smoking before the age of 40 may live as long as people who never smoked at all. Researchers found a smoker loses roughly 10 years of life to the habit but regained most of that time if they quit before 40. The benefit is increased the sooner before 40 you quit.

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Jaclyn
Community Member
4 months ago

I quit smoking three years ago after a decade of at least a pack a day. One of the hardest things I've done but completely worth it. I'm just all around healthier and I hope this information holds true!

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#30

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Irène Curie and her husband received a Nobel Prize for their discovery of artificial radioactivity, 30 years after Irène's parents received their Nobel Prize. She died due to overexposure to radiation, also just like her parents. Her children are still alive and are also prominent scientists.

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Idaaoyama
Community Member
4 months ago

Actually, Pierre Curie didn't die of overexposure to radiation, he died of a street accident.

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#31

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

When Prohibition was enacted in USA, it took less than an hour for the first documented violation of it to happen

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Yeah, DOCUMENTED

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#32

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Wood ants practice chemistry, and will synthesize an antibiotic substance using tree resin and formic acid to protect the health of their colony. It is considered to be the most advanced act of evolutionary pharmacology seen in the animal kingdom

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

He even looks like a teeny little plague doctor!

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#33

Til The People Of Africa Have More Genetic Diversity Than The Rest Of The World Combined

Til The People Of Africa Have More Genetic Diversity Than The Rest Of The World Combined

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Some Cool Guy
Community Member
4 months ago

The study showed that while we may look radically different we are closely related in DNA. We are one.

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#34

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Leif Erikson was a Norse explorer from Iceland. He is thought to have been the first known European to have set foot on continental North America, approximately half a millennium before Christopher Columbus.

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Jihana
Community Member
4 months ago

Isn't that common knowledge? I learned that in school.

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#35

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Sudan has more pyramids than any other country on earth – even more than Egypt. There are at least 223 pyramids in the Sudanese cities of Al Kurru, Nuri, Gebel Barkal and Meroë. They are generally 20 to 30 metres high and steep sided.

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Kira Okah
Community Member
4 months ago

The Nubian Pyramids of Kush were inspired by Egypt's pyramids, most notably by the family tombs of the New Kingdom. They have narrower bases than Egyptian ones.Sadly, a number were destroyed in the 19th century, sme have been rebuilt. They are still discovering more of these pyramids today.

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#36

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

A sports writer wrote a rude and snarky article about the WNBA even though he had never been to a game. He was confronted by a WNBA star who chided him and invited him to watch her play. Two years later they were married.

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Linus Nilsson
Community Member
4 months ago

Such a fairy tale! Or not...

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#37

Til That In 1989, The Buffalo Sabres Goalie Had His Neck Sliced By Another Players Skate, Severing His Carotid Artery, Resulting In So Much Blood Loss That It Caused Eleven Fans To Faint, Two More To Have Heart Attacks, And Three Players To Vomit On The Ice. His Life Was Saved By The Team Trainer

Til That In 1989, The Buffalo Sabres Goalie Had His Neck Sliced By Another Players Skate, Severing His Carotid Artery, Resulting In So Much Blood Loss That It Caused Eleven Fans To Faint, Two More To Have Heart Attacks, And Three Players To Vomit On The Ice. His Life Was Saved By The Team Trainer

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Mike Crow
Community Member
4 months ago

Couldn’t find a photo of him in a sabres uniform?

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#38

Til: The Discoverer Of Neutron (James Chadwick) Was A Student Of Discoverer Of Proton (E. Rutherford) Which In Turn Was A Student Of Discoverer Of Electron (J.J. Thomson)

Til: The Discoverer Of Neutron (James Chadwick) Was A Student Of Discoverer Of Proton (E. Rutherford) Which In Turn Was A Student Of Discoverer Of Electron (J.J. Thomson)

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Linus Nilsson
Community Member
4 months ago

Who did Chadwick teach then? How far down the rabbithole can we go?

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#39

Til That After Landing On The Moon During Apollo 11, Buzz Aldrin Accidentally Damaged The Circuit Breaker That Would Arm The Ascent Engine That Would Get Them Off The Moon. The Astronauts Activated The Engine By Triggering The Circuit With A Felt-Tipped Pen

Til That After Landing On The Moon During Apollo 11, Buzz Aldrin Accidentally Damaged The Circuit Breaker That Would Arm The Ascent Engine That Would Get Them Off The Moon. The Astronauts Activated The Engine By Triggering The Circuit With A Felt-Tipped Pen

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Stephanie Did It
Community Member
4 months ago

Good thing McGuyver was a stowaway!

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#40

Til Nearly 8% Of The Human Genome Is Virus Dna. Meaning Some Of Our Ancestors Survived A Virus But Still Carry The Dna It Inserted

Til Nearly 8% Of The Human Genome Is Virus Dna. Meaning Some Of Our Ancestors Survived A Virus But Still Carry The Dna It Inserted

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Eliška Hůlková
Community Member
4 months ago

Not surprising, many viruses known today insert themselves into your DNA. For example varicella virus. When you catch it, it causes chicken pox and then hides in your genome. If it gets reactivated, you develop shingles.

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#41

Til Eminem Broke The "Fastest Rap In A #1 Single" World Record Three Times In A Row - After Having Set The Record With 6.46 Words Per Second In "Rap God", He Then Broke It In "Majesty" At 6.5 Wps And Later Broke It Once Again By Rapping At 7.5 Wps In "Godzilla"

Til Eminem Broke The "Fastest Rap In A #1 Single" World Record Three Times In A Row - After Having Set The Record With 6.46 Words Per Second In "Rap God", He Then Broke It In "Majesty" At 6.5 Wps And Later Broke It Once Again By Rapping At 7.5 Wps In "Godzilla"

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

He's so talented.

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#42

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Caffeine increases the power of aspirin and other painkillers, that is why it is found in some medicines.

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

Idk this, but it makes sense.

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#43

Til The Danish Police Resisted Nazi Command So Fiercely That 1,960 Of Its 10,000 Police Members Were Arrested And Sent To Concentration Camps. Faced With Nazi Demands, The Danish Police Administration Was Inclined To Accepted Them, But The Police Organizations Refused, Leading To The Deportations

Til The Danish Police Resisted Nazi Command So Fiercely That 1,960 Of Its 10,000 Police Members Were Arrested And Sent To Concentration Camps. Faced With Nazi Demands, The Danish Police Administration Was Inclined To Accepted Them, But The Police Organizations Refused, Leading To The Deportations

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

I'm proud of anyone or Country, that fought against any Nazi policies or demands. And my whole heart goes out to those ppl taken to concentration camps. My heart breaks for those who never made it out. Thank you to all humanity that tried to help or hide the Jewish from this evil!!

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#44

Til That "Shaun Of The Dead" Was Considering The Title "From Dusk Till Shaun." And That "Into The Spider-Verse" Has A "From Dusk Till Shaun" Movie Poster In The Background- Suggesting It Exists In A Parallel Universe

Til That "Shaun Of The Dead" Was Considering The Title "From Dusk Till Shaun." And That "Into The Spider-Verse" Has A "From Dusk Till Shaun" Movie Poster In The Background- Suggesting It Exists In A Parallel Universe

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Boopie Dew
Community Member
4 months ago

Snapchat ghost is Picaboo

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#45

Til That Despite Increases In Computer Power, Each Shrek Film Has Taken About Twice As Many Hours To Render As The One Before It. Dreamworks Calls This "Shrek's Law"

Til That Despite Increases In Computer Power, Each Shrek Film Has Taken About Twice As Many Hours To Render As The One Before It. Dreamworks Calls This "Shrek's Law"

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Az
Community Member
4 months ago

I thought Shrek's law was "Get out of my swamp!"

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#46

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

Edgar Allen Poe wrote "William Wilson", a story where doppelgangers share a name and similar traits. In the 1980s, there were 2 switch hitter, center fielders, that shared similar traits and backgrounds, playing in the MLB. Their names were William Wilson.

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Jill
Community Member
4 months ago

I love this painting.

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#47

Til Robert Frost Couldn't Read The Poem He Wrote For John F. Kennedy's Inauguration Due To The Glare On The Snow Being Too Strong. So He Instead Recited One He Knew From Memory

Til Robert Frost Couldn't Read The Poem He Wrote For John F. Kennedy's Inauguration Due To The Glare On The Snow Being Too Strong. So He Instead Recited One He Knew From Memory

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Sunzilla
Community Member
4 months ago

I didn't know about this poem recital thing until that poet with the yellow coat showed up on my tv on 20 Jan 2021.

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#48

Til That A Woman Experienced A Brazil Nut Allergy After The Allergen Was Passed To Her From Her Partner's Semen During Intercourse. The Researchers Believe This To Be The First Case Of A Sexually Transmitted Allergic Reaction

Til That A Woman Experienced A Brazil Nut Allergy After The Allergen Was Passed To Her From Her Partner's Semen During Intercourse. The Researchers Believe This To Be The First Case Of A Sexually Transmitted Allergic Reaction

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Jaclyn
Community Member
4 months ago

One more reason to wear condoms kids.

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#49

Til When The # And * Keys Were First Put On Phones They Had No Purpose Whatsoever And Were Only Included Because Touch Tone Phones Could Create Up To Twelve Tones

Til When The # And * Keys Were First Put On Phones They Had No Purpose Whatsoever And Were Only Included Because Touch Tone Phones Could Create Up To Twelve Tones

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Sunzilla
Community Member
4 months ago

Cool.

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#50

Today I Learned

Today I Learned

In 1991, 60 Minutes suggested red wine was the answer to the "French Paradox" (France enjoys a low incidence of heart disease despite a diet high in saturated fats). Within a year, American consumption of wine increased 40% and some wine sellers began promoting their products as "health food"

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Panda Kicki
Community Member
4 months ago

The paradox has been debunked after that. https://theconversation.com/the-french-paradox-turned-out-to-be-an-illusion-but-it-led-to-some-interesting-research-78196

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Note: this post originally had 127 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.