Everyone has a few favorite pieces of trivia they keep on file, and they're best when they're the kind that make people scoff, demand proof, and reach for their smartphones.
A recent Reddit thread asked users for their favorite fact that "sounds like b.s. but is actually true."
They all sound completely ridiculous, but the facts bear them out.
Here are some of our favorites. Sources or additional reading provided when they weren't by the Reddit users.
(Photo shows a non-fatal fight between Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto)
Via Reddit user xRyNo:
"Death rates in boxing exploded after the introduction of the boxing glove. Almost nobody ever died bare knuckle boxing because head punches often resulted in broken hands, so nobody used them."
Via Reddit user CaptainNoBoat:
(Photo shows a tiger, but not the Champawat Tiger)
"One tiger killed 430 people. That tiger killed more people than 300 years of worldwide shark fatalities. More people than snakes, bears, wolves, and spider fatalities combined in the U.S. in the last 100 years.
He's referring to the Champawat Tiger, active mostly in the 19th century, and eventually shot in 1907 by legendary hunter Jim Corbett.
Via Reddit user ma_petite_choufleur
Tim Boyle/Getty Images
"Mammoths were lumbering around Russia* 3600 years ago.
The Egyptians were making pyramids 4000 years ago."
*The original post referred to Siberia, but the last surviving mammoths were the small mammoths of Wrangel Island, which is in the Arctic Sea to the north. They may have died out as late as 1650 BC.
Via Reddit user --wasp:
(Photo shows Gliese 436 b)
There is a planet that is covered in burning ice. Not dry ice. Ice, but it's incredibly hot. It is called Gliese 436 b. Its surface is at a constant 800ºF, but the ice remains as ice because the gravity of the planet is so incredibly powerful that it compresses all of the water vapour into a solid state. It is actually called ice-ten/ice X.
Via Reddit user Eagle1388:
"There is a measurement of radiation exposure called "The banana equivalent dose"...bananas are naturally radioactive because they are high in Potassium-40 isotopes."
A dental X-ray, for example, delivers about 50 "banana equivalent doses."
Via Reddit user somnicule:
"Anosognosia is when someone has a stroke or another kind of brain injury, which leaves them with some disability (e.g. the inability to move their arm), and also leaves them incapable of believing they have that disability.
The bullshit part? Squirting cold water into the left ear temporarily enables them to acknowledge the disability - for about 10 minutes."
Read more about how the treatment works here.
Via Reddit user Noxate:
"The grandsons of tenth US President John Tyler (born 1790) are still living."
Via Reddit user VLHACS:
"14 years before the Titanic sank, a fictional story was written by a man named Morgan Robertson. In the story, the ship was described as the largest ever built at the time (same as the Titanic), it was also woefully short on lifeboats, and it also struck an iceberg and sank. The ship in the story was also a triple screw propeller liner, and it was named the Titan."
"Theodore Roosevelt watched his mother die from typhoid fever then went upstairs in his home to watch his wife die from child birth an hour later. This all happened on Valentine's Day and was Theo's 2 year anniversary of getting engaged to his wife."
Via Reddit user Monkey0410
"A day on Venus is longer than a year on Venus."
Via Reddit user MuskMelon12:
"Tropical rain forests in the Amazon have their nutrients periodically replenished by the Sahara Desert.
Wind blows dust particles all the way from the desert, across the ocean, to the tropics where the sand and its associated nutrients help the fertility of the rainforest!"
Via Reddit user InsectOverlord
"The center star of Orion's sword isn't a star; it's the Orion Nebula and is the only nebula visible from Earth with the naked eye. It's so big that if the distance from the earth to the sun were one inch, the Orion Nebula would be 12 miles wide. (source: Jack Horkheimer)"
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