12 Bits of Trivia to Load Into Your Neuralink Brain Chip Like a HitClip of Fun Facts
It’s only a matter of time before a technocrat has direct access to your gray matter, so you’d better get used to it. Download these factoids and keep ‘em handy in case they get wiped from your brain in a buggy software update!
A Cruise to the Bahamas Was Rerouted to Canada
Passengers of the MSC Meraviglia were notified one day before departure that their Caribbean cruise was being rerouted due to “unseasonable and rapidly worsening weather.” That means 5,000 people who had packed for tropical weather now have to endure the climes of Canada, Maine and Boston (famously known to locals as the “Bahamas of the North”).
You Can Do It ‘A Tergo,’ As a Treat
Albert the Great was a saint, a philosopher and a scientist. He combined those three areas of expertise to write a treatise on the most “natural” sex positions: missionary is really all you need, but if you want to get crazy, you can get into spooning, sitting or even standing. As a last resort, you can do it “a tergo,” or from behind, on occasion.
Victorian Doctors Tried to Make Slideshows Out of Condemned Criminals’ Eyeballs
The practice of optography is an attempt to project the image of the last thing seen by an eyeball. Oddly, modern scientists have supposedly been able to make it work with rabbit eyes, but never with humans. Victorian doctors asked criminals on death row to look at bizarre images just before getting guillotined, and a bunch of them agreed. Unfortunately, these doctors were never able to project a discernible image.
German Scientists Have Solved the Climate Crisis (But Also Maybe Made It Worse)
One proposed solution to eroding glaciers is to pump seawater to the middle of Antarctica, to create a gigantic human-made glacier. With current technology, that amount of pumping would require enough energy to significantly add to the climate crisis, so they recommended their idea “be tucked away and saved for a worst-case scenario.”
2000’s ‘X-Men’ Nearly Starred a Ton of Non-Actors
Michael Jackson was in talks to play Professor X, with Janet Jackson or Mariah Carey playing Storm, Viggo Mortensen playing Wolverine and Shaq playing Bishop.
The Entirety of the Ming Dynasty’s Vast Pool of Knowledge May Be Right Under Our Noses
The Yongle Encyclopedia was a 23,000-scroll compendium of rare, ancient Chinese knowledge compiled in the 15th century, covering everything from music to medicine. We’ve retained about 400 volumes of a copy of the encyclopedia, but the rest has been lost to time. Some scholars believe that the original is buried with Emperor Jiajing, but archaeologists are too freaked out by his terracotta army (and other booby traps) to break into his tomb.
The Russian Navy Routinely Has to Fight Bears and Walruses
One member of the Northern Fleet noted that starving bears very much do not care about the armed forces: “The beast began to pursue us, not retreating a single step. He did not react to rocket launchers, screams, shots in the air.” And in 2019, a mother walrus went sicko mode and fully sank a ship that was attempting to land on Wilczek Island.
Jimi Hendrix Got Caught Masturbating in an Army Latrine
James Marshall Hendrix was in the Army before he became a rockstar — but he was really bad at it. He was supposed to be cleaning a latrine, but his squadmate caught him chilling out on a toilet and cranking his Private Hendrix. The guy squealed on him, and Hendrix got an official reprimand, starting his steady slide out of the good graces of the Army.
Lady Betty, the Inmate Executioner
Elizabeth Sugrue, aka Lady Betty, was an Irish widower who was sentenced to death for the murder of her son — they were estranged, she thought it was a different guy; it was a whole thing. The executioner was sick on the day of her scheduled hanging, so she volunteered to hang the other 24 prisoners in exchange for her life. She spent the rest of her days living in a prison cell, occasionally leaving to perform state-sponsored beatings and murders. She allegedly drew the faces of her victims on the walls of her cell with charcoal.
The Guy Who Karen’d His Way Into Popehood
Pietro Angelerio was a reclusive monk who asked to speak to management after they took too long with his order. At one point in the 13th century, the Catholic church was taking over two years to elect the next Pope. Angelerio wrote the cardinals a scathing letter saying God would be mad if they didn’t wrap it up soon, to which they responded: Okay, you do it. He was officially elected Pope, and forced against his will to take the job. His first order of business was to write a new rule saying Popes could resign; his second order of business was resigning. Even still, the stress and harassment he faced killed him within a year.
The Anchisaurus was one of the first dinosaurs ever discovered. Having not yet created the concept or the word “dinosaur,” everyone initially decided that, because this creature was approximately human-sized, all these weird bones must belong to some kind of jacked-up humanoid.
British and U.S. defense agencies have found that bees are often better at smelling than dogs, and have employed them to detect drugs and bombs.