A study titled “Where Are They Now?” in 1978 followed up on 515 people who were prevented from attempting suicide using the Golden Gate Bridge from 1937 to 1971. About 90% were either alive or had died of natural causes, concluding “suicidal behavior is crisis-oriented” rather than inexorable. (study)
In Medieval Christianity, Satan was not feared. He was more ‘comic relief’ and the butt of jokes. It was the increased belief in Witchcraft which eventually caused Satan to be feared
Lyndon B Johnson worked 18-20 hour days without breaks and had no leisure activities. He also smoked heavily, knew every senators’ ambitions, hopes, and tastes were and used it to his advantage in securing votes. And was the “[most] powerful majority leader in American history” as a congressman
He had a phone line installed in his bathrooms so he could make calls while in the shitter, he would also have staff follow him into the bathroom and continue giving instructions while using the throne. He took multiple showers near the Senators gym when he first came to DC so he could chat up and get to know his colleagues faster
Nellie Bly, America’s first investigative journalist who faked being crazy and was sent to an asylum, where she experienced misdiagnosis, abuse, and harassment. In 1887, “Behind Asylum Bars” was printed. A grand jury investigation soon forced NYC to allocate more money for the mentally ill. (article)
Committed to the asylum, Bly experienced the deplorable conditions firsthand. The food consisted of gruel broth, spoiled beef, bread that was little more than dried dough, and dirty undrinkable water. The dangerous patients were tied together with ropes. The patients were made to sit for much of each day on hard benches with scant protection from the cold. Waste was all around the eating places. Rats crawled all around the hospital. The bathwater was frigid and buckets of it were poured over their heads. The nurses behaved obnoxiously and abusively, telling the patients to shut up, and beating them if they did not. Speaking with her fellow patients, Bly was convinced that some were as “sane” as she was.
While assisting displaced Vietnamese refuge seekers, actress Tippi Hedren’s fingernails intrigued the women. She flew in her personal manicurist & recruited experts to teach them nail care. 80% of nail technicians in California are now Vietnamese—many descendants of the women Hedren helped (article)
Lack of personal hygiene and body smell is such an issue at Super Smash Bros tournaments that some tournaments now disqualify players not keeping up with hygiene and even resorted to passing out deodorant. (article)
Ernest Hemingway lived through anthrax, malaria, pneumonia, dysentery, skin cancer, hepatitis, anemia, diabetes, high blood pressure, two plane crashes, a ruptured kidney, a ruptured spleen, a ruptured liver, a crushed vertebra, and a fractured skull
The creators/directors/writers for Parks and Rec, Bob’s Burgers, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Silicon Valley, Modern Family, The Good Place, American Dad, and Rick and Morty all got their big breaks on King of the Hill (article)
Vanna White, the letter presser lady on Wheel of Fortune makes 8 million a year. Her net worth is 140 million
WW1 could have ended hours earlier, but one man wanted to wait until “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month”. ~11,000 men were wounded or killed waiting for the Armistice to take effect
The last person to be killed during WWI died just one minute before the Armistice.
The US government had a secret military operation called Project Eldest Son during the Vietnam War. It involved leaving behind thousands of rounds of faulty ammo that would backfire in Vietcong AKs while also leaking fake docs that questioned quality control in Chinese munitions factories. (article)
THE U.S. MILITARY’S Studies and Information Group might sound like a dull Washington policy think thank, but during the Vietnam War, the SOG planned and carried out some of the most daring, not to mention devious, operations of the long and bloody conflict.
Case in point: Beginning in 1967, the notorious unconventional warfare unit flooded communist ammo depots throughout Southeast Asia with thousands of sabotaged rifle, machine gun and mortar rounds. Each of the ordinary looking bullets was packed with enough high explosives to destroy any weapon that fired it while also maiming (or perhaps even killing) the unlucky shooter. Charges hidden within spiked mortar shells were powerful enough to wipe out an entire gun crew.
The objective of the scheme was two fold: thin the enemy’s ranks and sapping his confidence in his own equipment.
The Sioux have refused $1.3 billion in restitution for the seizure of the Black Hills by the U.S. Government, holding out for the return of some of their sacred ancestral lands (article)
The refusal of the money pivots on a feud that dates back to the 1868 Treaty of Fort Laramie, signed by Sioux tribes and Gen. William T. Sherman, that guaranteed the tribes “undisturbed use and occupation” of a swath of land that included the Black Hills, a resource-rich region of western South Dakota. But in 1877, one year after Gen. George Armstrong Custer’s infamous defeat at the hands of Crazy Horse at Little Bighorn and without the consent of “three-fourths of all adult male Indians” stipulated by the treaty, the government seized the Black Hills, along with their gold, and began profiting from the protected land.
Driving from nearby Rapid City to the reservation on Pine Ridge, it’s easy to see why the tribes want to reclaim some of that unused land — and why it was parceled as it was. Unlike the barren stretch of land that encompasses the reservation, the Black Hills are green, resource-rich, and thick with the smell of Ponderosa trees. Stretching across western South Dakota to neighboring Wyoming, they’ve been a draw for tourists and investors alike. In addition to gold, timber and minerals have been extracted, reaping profits for people other than the Sioux.
Fast forward to 1980. The Supreme Court agreed with the Sioux: The land, long since settled, had been taken from them wrongfully, and $102 million was set aside as compensation. The trust’s value continues to grow well beyond $1 billion, but the Sioux have never collected.
One key problem: The tribes say the payment is invalid because the land was never for sale and accepting the funds would be tantamount to a sales transaction. Ross Swimmer, former special trustee for American Indians, said the trust fund remains untouched for one reason: “They didn’t want the money. They wanted the Black Hills.”
There is a species of jellyfish whose sting inflicts the victim with an impending sense of doom. The sensatation of constant imminent dread is reportedly so severe, patients beg their doctors to kill them to end it.
Alduos Huxley was injected with LSD on his deathbed and essentially tripped into death (article)
Huxley died on the same day as CS Lewis. Both deaths were overshadowed by a third, the assassination of John F Kennedy.
A Japanese rail company has apologised after a train left a station 25 seconds early. The operator said, “the great inconvenience we placed upon our customers was truly inexcusable" (article)