The man dancing with no shirt on and a straw hat in the music video for "Pink Houses" is Harvey Goodin, who at the time was the mayor of Austin, Indiana. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pin…
The steel man argument (or steelmanning) is the opposite of the straw man argument. The idea is to find the best form of the opponent's argument to test opposing opinions. Steelmanning will make you better at arguing and improve your critical thinking. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Str…
New York City rioted for over a week in 1922 over when it was socially acceptable to wear a straw hat, similar incidents led to a man being killed in 1924 en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Str…
The "Gish Gallop" is the debating technique of drowning the opponent in such a torrent of half-truths, lies, and straw-man arguments that the opponent cannot possibly answer every falsehood in real time. rationalwiki.org/wiki/Gis…
There was once a man in a restaurant who couldn't breathe who was saved by a quick-thinking doctor who cut his throat with a steak knife, inserted a drinking straw into the slit, and breathed into it to give him oxygen. He'd never done the operation before lvrj.com/news/on-the-fly-…
In 1922 Manhattan, there was a riot due to people wearing straw hats past the unofficial date that was deemed socially acceptable. In 1924, one man was murdered for wearing his straw hat. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Str…
There is a town in Sweden where two clubs compete every year to build the biggest straw goat, and every year someone (locals and tourists) tries to burn them down. In 2009, two men dressed as Santa Claus and the Gingerbread man burned a goat by igniting it with a flaming arrow. atlasobscura.com/articles…
The phrase "grasping at straws" was taken from the idea of a man drowning in a river trying to grab the grass along the edge to save himself from death. word-detective.com/2010/0…
Today I learned of Cargo Cults: during WW 2 the Melanesian Pacific Islanders, who are organized around a "Big Man" political system, thought cargo drops were gifts from the gods. Hence, they mimicked what soldiers did (incl. making straw "planes" and marching) to get it. It is Burning Man 2013's art theme. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car…
Thomas Edison really couldn't stand Mathematics. He struggled getting through Newton's Principia Mathematica and so made it a priority to hire mathematicians. mentalfloss.com/article/6…
When fingers and toes get pruny from prolonged exposure to water, it's not because they absorbed water directly and became mushy. The water triggers nerves under your skin to dilate blood vessels and skin tension relaxes. People with specific nerve injuries don't have this response. wikipedia.org/wiki/Wrinkl…
In 1962 Pres. Kennedy invited 49 Nobel Laureates for dinner at the White House. Kennedy remarked, "I think this is the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered at the White House, with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone." presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?p…
In early 1900s NYC, it was acceptable for gangs of teenagers to swipe and stomp people's straw hats if worn past Sept 15th. One day in 1922, they started early. People fought back, and 8 days of riots ensued. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Str…
An eight day riot occurred in NY city in 1922 after people wore straw hats past the unofficial date deeming it socially acceptable en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Str…
USA is last among economically advanced countries in the amount of paid vacation time, and almost 1/4 Americans has no paid vacation (23 per cent) and no paid holidays (23 per cent). Japan and Canada rank 2nd and 3rd last respectively. cbc.ca/news/canada/canada…
"The Himalayas", plural, should really be referred to as "The Himalaya" himalayamasala.com/himala…
When Margaret Thatcher died, the song 'Ding dong the witch is dead' got to the top 10 in the UK charts. huffingtonpost.com/2013/0…
There have only been 280 white shark attacks in the world in 137 years (that's 1 shark attack per 1560 people who were murdered by humans in the single year of 2012). flmnh.ufl.edu/fish/sharks…
Someone is making self sustaining kinetic creatures ted.com/talks/lang/eng/th…

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