Random Fact Sheet #319 – Random Delights: 35 Facts That Will Make Your Jaw Drop


26Garden Path Sentences

Garden Path Sentences

Garden Path Sentences are grammatically correct sentences that confuse the reader by making them parse the sentence incorrectly initially, causing confusion. Examples include “The old man the boat” and “The horse raced past the barn fell.”

27. The opening sequence in Spectre features a Day of the Dead parade in Mexico City. No such parade had ever taken place in Mexico City. One year after the film’s release, inspired by it, an actual “Día de Muertos” parade was held and attended by 250,000 people.

28. There’s a guy who is responsible for maintaining the database of time zones that computers and operating systems use to configure locales. His name is Paul Eggert and he's a computer scientist based in California.

29. Imhotep was an Egyptian architect, physician, and advisor to four pharaohs. He lived around 2667-2600 B.C. Imhotep practiced early medicine nearly 2200 years before Hippocrates and designed Djoser’s step pyramid at Saqqara. He is the only Egyptian besides Amenhotep to ever be fully deified.

30. In the 1971 film, “The Andromeda Strain,” in order to film the sequence in which a monkey was ‘killed’, an airtight set was created into which carbon monoxide was pumped, forcing the monkey to suffocate. Then, awaiting veterinarian rushed on the set and treated it with oxygen.

31Fog Horn

Fog Horn

Sound travels at about 1,080 feet per second in a fog bank. Steamboat captains, rounding off to 1,000 feet for safety, would listen for the echo from their steam whistle to tell how far from shore they were in a fog. An echo heard 1 second after the whistle means the boat was 500 feet from shore.

32. George Cassiday a.k.a. the Man in the Green Hat was the man who during prohibition supplied alcohol to members of Congress, including those who voted for prohibition in the first place. After 10 years, when the story broke, the public’s outrage contributed to the repeal of the 18th Amendment.

33. The jabuticaba tree a.k.a. the Brazilian grape tree is unusual in the sense that its berries grow directly on the trunk. They are so popular in some Brazilian states that sidewalks are actually stained purple from the discarded skins of the fruit.

34. City spiders are getting bigger. One study found that when spiders lived in urban areas they increased in size and had larger ovaries: Scientists have found increasing evidence that the selective pressures of city living are driving “physical and biological changes” in urban wildlife.

35. In 1967, students at the University of Colorado voted to name their new cafeteria after Colorado’s most well-known cannibal, Alfred Packer.