12+ Fun Facts We Didn't Know Yesterday

Diply 12 Sep 2018

I'm one of those people who has a weird fact for every occasion. I can't seem to help collecting them and I love learning new ones. Most of my friends put up with it, some are even interested, and those special few make sure to include me on their team for trivia nights.

1. Since 1971, Lake Superior State University has issued Unicorn Hunting licenses. 

IMDb | IMDb

The idea for the Unicorn Hunters was created by the late Bill Rabe, who had signed on as the school's new Director of Public Relations, and it resulted in many events that still live on today.

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One of the most popular events is the annual snowman burning on the first day of spring.

YouTube | Lake Superior State University

The snowman is usually 10-12 feet tall and made from wood and paper destined for recycling. Sometimes it's filled with firecrackers that are set off by the flames.

Do you wanna burn a snowman?

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2. There is a museum dedicated entirely to miniature books.

Twitter | @qikipedia

Located in Baku, Azerbaijan, the museum is the only one of its kind in the world. The oldest book in the collection is a miniature Quran from the 17th Century, and the smallest book is The Most Miraculous Thing, a Russian book measuring only 6mm x 9mm.

Is this a random thing to know? Yeah, but sometimes the most random facts are the most interesting.

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3. Elephant foot bones look remarkably like human feet.

Reddit | handsandhart

Elephants have six toes and an arch much like a human foot. A thick cushion helps balance the weight of the animal and makes it look like they're walking on fatty wedge heels.

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4. There was once a duel where the opponents shot from hot air balloons with blunderbusses. 

Reddit | ARTexplains

After learning that they had both been enjoying the company of a dancer from the Paris Opéra, Monsieur Le Pique and Monsieur de Grandpré decided that a regular duel wasn't good enough for them.

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Since they felt that pistols wouldn't work well for this kind of duel, they agreed on switching to blunderbusses.

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The shotgun-like weapons weren't very accurate at a distance, though. Le Pique missed entirely, but de Grandpré's shot hit his opponent's balloon and Le Pique died in the crash.

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5. Picasso's full name was Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso.

Wikimedia Commons | Wikimedia Commons

Try saying that five times fast.

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6. Cruciform keys are common on safes, but not really more secure.

Reddit | 420360noscope6969

You might also recognize their distinctive cross look from steering wheel locks. They are more difficult to pick, since they have four times the number of pins compared to a basic lock, but it'll barely slow down a professional.

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7. Fatal Insomnia is a disease that actually exists, though it's thankfully rare.

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The most common form of the disease is inherited, with about 25 known family lines carrying the gene that could cause its development. As of 2005, only 9 cases of the disease were reported that were unrelated to the inherited gene.

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One of the most well known cases is that of Michael Corke, an American music teacher who died in 1993 after not sleeping for more than six months.

Unsplash | Toa Heftiba

Shortly after his 40th birthday, Corke began to have trouble sleeping and the problem continued until he eventually couldn't sleep at all. He was first misdiagnosed with multiple sclerosis, but doctors were baffled.

They eventually tried to induce a coma, but even that wouldn't work, and Corke unfortunately passed away.

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8. Figs are actually inverted flowers.

Flickr | FolsomNatural

Unlike most fruit trees, which have flowers bloom before the formation of the fruit, the flowers of the fig tree bloom within a pod. Each pod contains many small flowers that become single seed fruits within the pod as it ripens.

Because the flowers are inverted, bees and other pollinators can't reach them.

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9. Fig wasps have a symbiotic relationship with the fruit they are named for.

Reddit | Nawrash

Female fig wasps enter male figs, where they lay their eggs. When the young wasps dig their way out, they bring the pollen out with them.

Don't worry. We only eat female figs, so there isn't a risk of eating fig wasps by accident.

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10. Many greenhouses now use purple light to grow crops, which can do funny things to the sky.

Reddit | Reddit

It takes a lot of electricity to light a greenhouse, but most of that light is wasted. Crops really only use the red and blue parts of the spectrum. So, by switching to low-power LEDs in only those colors, tons of energy can be saved and the crops grow better.

Unfortunately, on a cloudy night, this can turn the sky a funky shade of purple.

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11. Sea otters hold hands while sleeping so that they don't drift apart.

Joe Robertson | Wikipedia

This is particularly true for mothers and pups. They've also been known to use kelp to tie themselves together for extra security.

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12. Many tropical white sand beaches are mostly fish poop.

Flickr | Yuhei Kuratomi

Specifically, the poop of the bumphead parrotfish. They eat algae scraped and chewed off of coral reefs. The coral skeletons are ground up in their digestive track and are pooped out as the beautiful white sand so prized by vacationers.

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13. The first version of Kermit the Frog was made from an old spring jacket and two ping pong ball halves.

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The coat had belonged to Jim Henson's mother. Kermit appeared first on the showSam and Friends in 1955, where he was just a lizard-like creature. Once his character was more established, his neck frill was added to make him look more frog-like and to hide the seams.

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