Random Things That I Know


You can only catch a yawn from someone that you like. (This also holds true for sneezes.)

“Richard of York Gains Battles in Vain” is the British version of “Roy G. Biv.”

You can write on a wall with a fish heart. If you do this, what you write will glow in the dark, due to phosphorescence from the fish heart. (God knows why anyone tried this, though.)

The emperor Claudius died from eating poisoned mushrooms; the emperor Augustus died from eating poisoned figs, which were poisoned when they were still hanging on the tree. (He thought he’d be safe if he only ate fresh fruit.)

Caligula means “little boot” in Latin.

My own name means “elf army” in ancient French.

Angles, Saxons, and Jutes.

A man, a plan, a canal: Panama.

Hitler most likely died a virgin.

Superman was originally supposed to be a bad guy.

Most people did not think that the earth was flat when Columbus made his voyage.

JFK was shot and killed by one of his Secret Service agents, who accidentally fired his gun. (Look this one up — seriously.)

Igneous, Sedimentary, and Metamorphic.

“Antidisestablishmentarianism” is not the longest word in the English language. (The longest word is the really long name of some obscure chemical.)

Marie Antoinette never said “Let them eat cake.”

In Revolutionary times, we were one vote away from having German being the official language of the United States.

Ben Franklin thought that the national bird should be the turkey.

Syphilis was originally a disease that only animals had. (The reason that people now get it is that lonely shepherds would fuck sheep, and the disease was transmitted from sheep to people.)

Bees are color-blind.*

The creators of the atomic bomb thought that there was a 50/50 chance that the first atomic bomb test would ignite the atmosphere, killing everyone on earth.

Eventually, there will be no more blond-haired people.

The Golden Ass is the earliest known novel. (Circa 2nd century A.D.)

“Pontifex” means “bridge-builder.”

You can make a bomb by scraping the gelatin off of old playing cards.

No one has ever gotten poisoned Halloween candy in their Halloween bag (or a candy bar with a razor blade in it, for that matter). The whole thing is an urban legend.

In folklore, the ghosts of suicides must walk forever to the North. (Which means that the ghosts of American suicides would all end up in Nome, Alaska.)

The first sentence of Ulysses is written in dactylic hexameter.

You can sing Emily Dickinson poems to the tune of “The Yellow Rose of Texas.” Or to the tune of the Gilligan’s Island theme song. (“…Because I could not STOP for death, he KINDLY stopped for me. The carri-aaage held BUT ourselves, and immort-TAL-it-y!”)

Jane Austen’s last words were: “Nothing but death.”

Stonewall Jackson’s last words were: “Let us cross over the river, and rest under the shade of the trees.”

You can sing “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening” to the tune of “Hernando’s Hideaway” from The Pajama Game. (“Whose WOODS, these ARE, IthinkIknow! …His house… is in… thevillagethough!”)

Arms and the man I sing.

This is the / forest pri / meval. The / murmuring / pines and the / hemlocks.

Gerard Manley Hopkins died a virgin. (And he said, “I am a eunuch, but for the kingdom of God’s sake.”)

Gerard Manley Hopkins’s last words were: “I am happy! So very happy!”

Sing, goddess, the wrath of Peleus’ son Achilles.

Christopher Smart wrote the 1,200 line poem Jubilate Agno by carving it into the wooden walls of his cell in an insane asylum.

A murder of crows.

“Unless the kettle boiling be, filling the teapot spoils the tea.”

The ancient Greeks voted with pebbles.

Someone had to be found guilty in a trial in ancient Greece. If there was a murder and no guilty party was found, the court would declare a tree to be guilty, and they would cut down the tree.

Joan of Arc’s final words were: “Jesus!”

James Dean’s final words were: “That guy’s gotta stop. …He’ll see us.”

“Get out, get out! Last words are for fools who haven’t said enough” — Karl Marx.

The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

“Yesterday, December 7th, a date which will live in infamy.”

A swift is the fastest animal.

The Amazon is the longest river.

Angel Falls is the highest waterfall.

“Now I am become Death, destroyer of worlds.”

It took people a long time to come up with combining salt and pepper. They tried lots of different combos before they got to that. One combination was salt and cinnamon.

As Marie Antoinette was walking to the guillotine, she accidentally stepped on her executioner’s foot.

“We are damned! We have burnt a saint!”

Bonnie and Clyde were eating bacon and tomato sandwiches when they died.

Ethelred the Unready.

Charles the Fat.

An ice cream soda is the best cure for a hangover.

Napoleon was not actually very short.

People used to brush their teeth using twigs and urine.

Cavemen spoke with sign language.

Cavemen did not understand where babies came from.

Jesus was probably tied to the cross, not nailed to the cross. (Tying people to the cross was far more common — the point was that you died of exposure.)

There are two different, contradictory genealogies given for Jesus in the Bible.

God creates plants twice in the Book of Genesis.

Jesus’s actual name was Jeshua Ben Joseph. (So, “Josh, the son of Joseph.”)

The book of Genesis was not written first.

Bees cannot smell fear.

(*Bees are not actually color-blind. I was wrong about that one.)

Grant is buried in Grant’s tomb.

Plato did not think that Atlantis was real. It was always supposed to be a myth.

Able was I, ere I saw Elba.

The North Pole is just made of ice.

The Reuben is the only sandwich that is named after a person.

There are a couple of things on this list that I’m not totally sure about.

I couldn’t really think of what to write today.

Add your own random shit in the comment section.


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image – MarcusObal