Random Fun Facts That Will Amaze You
Here are a variety of interesting facts you will find amazing and mind blowing!Knowledge
Sometimes it pays to be knowledgeable about the obscure things in life, after all, random trivia is the making of a dazzling conversationalist, right? There’s nothing more satisfying than artfully sharing your wisdom with friends and family, and I’ve collected some of the most amazing facts around so you can do just that!
Why do UPS trucks always have their doors open?
Ever noticed how UPS drivers always speed around in trucks without any front doors on? This unusual practice is perfectly legal in America, and it all comes down to saving precious time and money.
The average UPS employee makes about 130 stops a day, that’s a lot of time spent opening and closing doors, especially when some stops are just minutes away from each other. In business terms, more time always equals more money, so it makes financial sense for the company to remove the doors altogether instead.
UPS trucks are also not fitted with AC for the very same reason, because getting in and out of the truck multiple times wouldn’t make for a very efficient flow of cold air. As a result, UPS drivers also rely on the breeze blowing through their doorless vehicles to get some much-needed respite from the scorching summer heat.
Why don’t UPS trucks turn left?
Generally speaking, you’d be hard-pressed to find a UPS truck making a left-hand turn at a busy intersection, and it’s all about that cold, hard cash. When UPS decided to focus on ‘greener’ driving, they fitted trucks with special sensors and did some data mining to discover that too many drivers were idling while waiting to make a left turn.
From 2004 onwards, management instructed drivers to turn right instead by reworking pre-planned routes to minimize the number of necessary left turns. UPS saw an immediate positive response to this new clockwise system, which amounted to some 350,000 more packages delivered annually, around 10 million gallons less gas burned and $ 35 million saved.
What is that small pocket on jeans?
There are plenty of everyday things you’ve probably never questioned the real purpose of, and I’ll bet that tiny pocket at the front of your jeans is one of them. Historically speaking, this seemingly useless addition to one of the world’s most popular clothing items was known as a ‘watch pocket’.
This came about in the 1800s when cowboys used to wear their pocket watches on chains in their waistcoats, until Levi’s introduced the small rectangular pocket which would keep watches from getting broken.
As times changed, the pocket adopted various other names, each describing a new use, including ‘ticket pocket’, ‘coin pocket’ and even ‘condom pocket’. Nowadays it’s too small to hold anything useful, but it remains a staple of iconic fashion history.
When was the most boring day in history?
You might think you’ve had a dull day at work or school, but can it compare to what has been dubbed the most boring day since the turn of the 20th century? According to the results of the search engine ‘True Knowledge’, April 11th, 1954 has been officially bestowed with such a glowing title.
By analyzing some 300 million facts about newsworthy events, the search engine was able to identify that on this particular Sunday in 1954, only two notable events occurred: a football player named Jack Shufflebotham died, and a Turkish academic named Abdullah Atalar was born.
Besides these events, no real history was made that day. The date has even surpassed April 30th, 1930, which had previously been considered the dullest day after a BBC radio announcer declared: “there is no news”.
Why can’t pigs look up at the sky?
Pigs might be one of the most surprisingly intelligent animals around, but they’re also one of the only creatures that are unable to look up and see the sky. Although they could lay on their backs or see it in a watery reflection, pigs will never be able to gaze at the sky like we do, simply because their anatomy doesn’t allow it.
Their neck muscles are developed in such a way that they can’t raise their heads high enough to see the sky above them, and it comes down to evolution. Most animals evolve in a way that optimizes escaping predators and finding food, and as a pig's natural food (like roots, flowers and insects) are all down-low, there is no need for such neck flexibility.
Were high heels always for women?
High heels and stilettos might be considered feminine accessories, but once upon a time, this wasn’t the case. Back in the 10th century, men in horseback-riding cultures in Europe wore heeled shoes which would make it easier for them to stay in their stirrups.
The Persian cavalry adopted inch-high heels like the ones in the image below, and the trend then spread to Europe as a signifier that someone owned horses and was therefore wealthy.
Eventually, upper-class women also began wearing heels to assert their equality, and the shoes became a standard form of dress for the wealthier members of society throughout the 17th century. By the turn of the 19th century, men had renounced the high-heeled shoe as highly impractical, but women’s heels had already become more decorative and fashionable, so the custom continued.
Why can’t you hold your nose and hum?
Humans are capable of lots of things but humming and holding our noses at the same time is not one of them. The simple explanation is the same reason you can’t exhale while holding your nose and closing your mouth, because there’s nowhere for the air to escape from.
To create a ‘humming’ noise air must pass through your larynx, also known as your voice box, but it’s impossible for this to happen when your lips are tightly sealed. As a result, you may be able to hum for a couple of seconds, but you’ll eventually have to open your mouth and catch your breath. Go ahead, try it!
Why can’t newborn babies cry tears?
This might come as a surprise, after all, most babies come out screaming and crying from the get-go, but newborns can’t actually cry real tears. This is because we’re not immediately born with functioning tear ducts, which usually don’t develop until we’re somewhere between two weeks and two months old.
Tears are produced by the almond-shaped ‘lacrimal’ glands under our eyelids, they come down over our eyes and the tear ducts in the corners then act as a handy drainage system to release them onto our cheeks, like a glass of water overflowing. Scientists aren’t really sure why this system isn’t in place straight away, but most babies definitely make up for it once those ducts open up.
What is the loneliest creature on earth?
In 1989, an array of underwater hydrophones called SOSUS (which had been built by the navy to detect enemy submarines) picked up some unusual signals near the Pacific coast. The sounds were familiar enough to be classed as whale songs, but they were at a frequency of 52 Hertz, which is significantly higher than a blue whale which sings between 10-40Hz, or fin whales at around 20Hz.
A marine mammal researcher named Bill Watkins then decided to dedicate his life’s work to tracking this solitary whale, which he nicknamed ‘52’. By the time Watkins passed away in 2004, he had collected 12 years’ worth of recordings of the unrequited mating calls of this lonely whale, whose voice is simply too unique to attract a lover. Researchers have never even seen the whale, and can’t be certain if 52 still wanders the seas today.
Were stop signs always red?
Road signs are well-established nowadays, but once upon a time, the iconic bright-red stop sign was yellow instead. The story goes that in 1922 the American Association of State Highway Officials met to determine a standard design and settled on yellow as their second choice.
By this time, red was already used on traffic lights, partly because the color had historically signified danger, but also because it is scientifically classed as the color with the longest ‘wavelength’. The cone-shaped cells in our eyes are tuned to detect different wavelengths in the ‘visible light spectrum’ from 380-700 nanometers away, and as red falls right around 700, it is the color that can be seen from the furthest away.
Sadly, there was no red dye in 1922 that wouldn’t eventually fade, so they settled on yellow, which has the second longest wavelength, until fade-resistant red porcelain enamel became available in 1954.
How many licks does it really take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop?
This age-old question has troubled anyone with a sweet tooth and a taste for Tootsie Pops since the candy launched the iconic slogan "how many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?" in its commercials in 1970.
Although, as the commercial states, the world may never know for sure, a few official attempts have been made to settle the debate once and for all. Engineering students from Purdue University designed a ‘licking machine’ which was built to function exactly like a human tongue.
They found that it took an average of 364 licks to reach the Tootsie-roll center. 20 human volunteers also participated in the experiment the old-fashioned way and averaged around 252 licks, so I guess the real number is somewhere between the two. In other words, it takes too many licks than anyone truly has time for!
How old is the phrase ‘OMG’?
‘OMG’, which was officially welcomed into the Oxford English Dictionary in 2011, is undoubtedly one of the most widely used slang acronyms out there besides ‘LOL’, but the origins of the phrase are actually far older than you might think.
In fact, the earliest use can be traced right back to a letter dated from a British Navy admiral named John Arbuthnot Fisher in 1917, and its recipient was none other than Winston Churchill himself.
Fisher famously wrote: “I hear that a new order of Knighthood is on the tapis – O.M.G (Oh! My God!) – shower it on the Admiralty!”. If only Fisher could foresee what would become of the English language in the 21st century!
Why are chef’s hats pleated?
The classic chef’s hat, which is officially called a ‘toque blanche’, is instantly recognizable for its towering white shape, but there’s more to this design than just fashion.
Origin stories vary from talk that chefs were gifted special headgear in the 7th century to placate them into not poisoning the king, to one tale that Henry VIII ordered his chefs to wear hats after he found a hair in his soup. By the time the toque blanche had reached its recognizable design, though, the pleats came to serve a subtle purpose by signifying how much experience a chef had.
In the early days, a chef with 100 pleats might know 100 different ways to prepare eggs or cook a chicken. Nowadays chefs' hats don’t have so many pleats, but a greater number, even if it’s only 3 or 4, still demonstrates their level of experience.
Why does one nostril get blocked at a time?
One of the earliest signs that you’re coming down with a common cold might be a stuffed-up nose, and usually, one nostril feels suspiciously more blocked than the other. This is thanks to a mind-blowing process called the nasal cycle which happens constantly but only becomes apparent when you’re sick.
You may never notice, but you’re always breathing more heavily from one nostril than the other, because they switch sides throughout the day. The body inflates tissue with blood to open one side of your nose and partly close the other every 3-6 hours so that they work in regular ‘shifts’.
This system is thought to round out our sense of smell, because some smells are better picked up by fast-flowing air through the nose, while others are detected with slow-moving air.
A constant stream of air through both nostrils would also dry out and kill the tiny hairs which protect us from foreign contaminants. This subtle process is amplified when you’re sick, because the nostril that is effectively ‘turned off’ feels way more clogged than the other.
How was Nutella invented?
Nutella is one of the world’s favorite spreads which can now be found in many shapes and forms, but its beginnings are far humbler than you might imagine. Although the first jar of Nutella left the factory on April 20th, 1964, its origins can be traced back to the 1940s.
During WW2, an Italian pastry maker named Pietro Ferrero decided to mix a sweet paste he’d made from hazelnuts with a small amount of precious cocoa to make his chocolate ration last as long as possible.
His popular creation, named ‘Giandujot’ after a famous local carnival character at the time, was then packaged in the form of a small loaf and sold in slices. Legend has it that on one hot summer in 1949, the same year Pietro died, the Giandujot product melted in a warehouse in Alba, so his son Michele packaged and sold it in jars instead.
After being branded ‘Nutella’ in 1962 the spread slowly gained its legendary status, and it was a series of accidental coincidences that started it all!
If you were amazed at these random fun facts, you might want to read our article about interesting facts that you're too lazy to google. Thanks for reading!