Today I Learned (TIL)
You learn something new every day; what did you learn today? Submit interesting and specific facts about something that you just found out here.
TIL that Harvey Weinsten wanted to cut a fish scene from the film Snowpiercer. Director Bong Joon Ho told Weinstein that the scene had personal importance, because his father was a fisherman. This was a lie. The scene stayed in.
TIL Chipotle pioneered a program to recycle their used gloves into trash bags. Their goal was to reduce waste to landfills by 50% by 2020. 95% of food industry gloves go to landfills because no commercial solution existed, until now.
TIL that after a horse ran into No Man's Land during World War I and got shot, French soldiers decided to replace it with a fake papier-mache horse with a sniper inside. He also had a telephone wire so he could message back to the trenches on enemy movement. The ploy was discovered after three days.
TIL MMA fighter Rory MacDonald would come out to music like M.C. Hammer's "U Can't Touch This", "300 Violin Orchestra" and Nickleback because the music guy was texting Rory's old phone number for his walkout music and a fan was responding
TIL that during WW1, a Canadian soldier brought his pet bear to Britain. He named the bear Winnie after his home town Winnipeg an later donated the bear to the London Zoo where a boy named Christopher Robin liked it so much it inspired his father to write about it, thus Winnie the Pooh.
TIL a golden chamber with ultra-sensitive lightbulbs is buried under a mountain in Japan and contains water so pure that it can be corrosive and dissolve metal- and it's helping scientists detect neutrinos from dying stars.
TIL that Johnny Cash’s guitar player died in 1968. Cash found himself at a show where the temporary replacement, Carl Perkins, couldn’t make it. An audience member asked Cash if he could fill in for the night, and he said yes. Bob Wootton then became Cash’s guitar player for the next 29 years
TIL one of the 'unwritten rules' of the Tour de France: if the Tour is passing through where one of the riders grew up, everyone will slow down to let that rider lead the whole Tour through his hometown (also, if the race leader needs to stop to take a pee break, everyone else slows down/stops too)
TIL The State of Israel is widely believed to possess nuclear weapons. Nuclear technician and whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu revealed details of Israel's nuclear weapons program to the British press in 1986. Later he was drugged, abducted and secretly transported to Israel and ultimately convicted.
TIL before dogfighting was a thing, enemy pilots would simply exchange waves or shake their fists at one another. At the beginning of WWI, recon pilots would often resort to throwing bricks, grenades, and even rope in hopes that it would get entangled in the enemy's propellor.
TIL about Black Day, the anti-Valentine's Day, where S. Korean singles dress in black and gather together to eat dark colored food. Jajangmyeon, a savory black bean sauce over noodles, is the preferred dish for those resenting Valentine's to commiserate over.
TIL African Americans made up a significant portion of the Continental army fighting the British in the American Revolution. At the Siege of Yorktown, one German officer estimated the American army to be about one-quarter black.
TIL that albatrosses outfitted with data trackers are being used to expose illegal fishing operations. The birds, which can fly thousands of miles, are drawn by the smell of fish. Their tracker then detects the radar from boats that have otherwise switched off their location reporting.
TIL that the first movie about the Titanic came out 29 days after the actual ship sank, starred a real life survivor who wore what she had on the night it sank in the production, and resulted in her suffering a mental breakdown shortly after its completion.
TIL After losing a drunken bet with his bandmates, Sabaton singer Joakim Broden had to walk to the band's next gig. Broden walked from Falun, Sweden to Trondheim, Norway, over ~700km, staying at fans' houses and accepting food/beer donations along the way to complete the journey.
TIL a Swiss company is developing a shot called "Hypo Pet", to be injected in cats that essentially makes the cat hypoallergenic to humans. Hypo Pet modifies a cat's immune system to destroy primary allergen Fel d1 before it's released through the cat's skin and saliva.
TIL about Stone Man's Syndrome, a disabling disorder with no cure or treatment in which the body repairs damaged connective tissue with bone structure. Surgical removal of the extra bone growths has been shown to cause the body to "repair" the affected area with even more bone.
TIL during sexual arousal for men, muscles at the base of the bladder contract in order to close off the passageway from the bladder into the urethra, thus making it impossible for urine to be released during ejaculation.
TIL Lyndon B. Johnson was known for wandering the White House turning off lights in rooms he thought empty, sometimes to the surprise of people working in those rooms! This earned him the nickname “Light Bulb Johnson.”
TIL: Most Canadians can just email or text eachother money. All the major Canadian banks offer services from a company called Interac which include debit and e transfer services, the latter can be sent to an email address or by text message, most banks do not charge for the service.
TIL that Marthe Richard, a French prostitute, was the 13th woman to hold a piloting license, a spy during WW1 and the legatee of Rockefeller Foundation's financial director. After WW2 she started politics. A law named after her outlawed prostitution in France and 1,400 brothels were closed.